Quick looks & pleasing everybody

I was tossing and turning in bed the other day, unable to fall sleep. In situations like this, most normal people would read a book, count sheep, or just idly lay in their beds till the inevitable sleep haze engulfed their conscience.

Well, I’m a bit weird, and probably not very normal. Thus, as a sleep remedy, I decided to go into my closet and start randomly taking pieces out, just to put them together in different combinations that I thought might work out. Also, I felt compelled to add ties to the mix as well.

It kind of worked, as I was so tired of putting on and taking off clothes that I eventually plopped on my bed and immediately fell asleep.

The outcome is below. And yes, I am actually wearing pants.

mGYcx Quick looks & pleasing everybody

The hunter’s look.

Jacket: Barbour | Vest: Barbour | Tie: Ovadia & Sons | Shirt: Brooks Brothers

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The formal look.

Jacket: Black Fleece | Pocket Square: Nordstrom | Shirt: Brooks Brothers | Tie Bar: Thetiebar | Tie: Theory

SFXsI Quick looks & pleasing everybody

The ultra-hyperextended neck look.

Jacket: John Varvatos Collection | Shirt: Black Fleece | Tie: Drake’s

Fiknf Quick looks & pleasing everybody

The cold day layering look.

Coat: Hugo Boss | Knitwear: Banana Republic | Shirt: Black Fleece | Tie: Theory

GkwgP Quick looks & pleasing everybody

The overcoat with suit look… or as I like to call it: blue steel look.

Coat: Banana Republic | Jacket: John Varvatos Collection | Shirt: Ben Sherman | Tie: Ben Sherman

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The Looper-ish look.

Jacket: Theory | Shirt: Armani Collezioni | Tie: Thetiebar

tSoEK Quick looks & pleasing everybody

The blue, blue, blue, and blue layer look.

Coat: Black Fleece | Jacket: Levi’s | Shirt: Brooks Brothers | Tie: Ovadia & Sons

My first thought was to put these photos on reddit, mainly because I was curious to see which outfits vibed well with the huge crowd over there, and which didn’t. I put the album up on reddit in the morning, walked away from the computer for about an hour, and then revisited its status shortly afterward.

Apparently the album became quite popular in that hour, ultimately hitting the first spot on /r/malefashionadvice, receiving thousands of up-votes, and getting more comments than I could read.

Turns out that pretty much every single look was simultaneously criticized and praised, showing how incredibly different peoples’ tastes are. Some people said my Barbour look was the best, while others thought it was the worst. Some argued that leather jackets should never go with ties, others said leather jackets looked best with ties. Let’s just say there was a lot of noise, and it taught me a valuable lesson.

The lesson is that you aren’t going to please everybody with your look, no matter how great it is. Sure there are rules that you should follow to look better overall (for example, getting things that are more fitted to your body), but even then, you just aren’t going to win everyone’s approval, as everyone’s tastes are different.

I put together 7 very different outfits, and for each outfit I got hundreds of different reactions. At first, I took each comment constructively, learning from what people had to say. Later on though, all I ended up really caring about was my own opinion, especially after seeing how much contradiction there was about what people thought was right and what people thought was wrong.

I think the best thing is for you to feel confident in the clothes that you wear, and present your unique style to the world expecting nothing in return. Sure, positive reinforcement may help you feel better, but ultimately, I think the most attractive thing about someone’s style is how they own their look. The swagger and confidence they have in wearing what they are wearing. The great thing is that no one can help you own your look, only you can.

Anyhow, sorry to go on a rant there, but I hope I was able to at least provide you with some ideas for outfits. Oh, and just kidding about the pants comment I made above. Commando all the way.

Trying too hard

tumblr m5slfp1WIP1rw8ydao1 1280 Trying too hard

So yes, we want to dress better as individuals. We want to make a good impression in front of others, and we want to look and feel great.

All awesome. But can we go too far?

My answer to that question is yes. I’ve seen it, you’ve seen it, we’ve all seen it. The truth is, fashion can easily go from helping a man’s image, to making that same man outright laughable. I think a simpler man would not want to cross that line.

First off, I never want clothing to take away from the product that is you. How does the saying go? Wear your clothes, don’t let the clothes wear you? Well, I am a huge proponent of that, and think that sometimes we need to take a step back and realize that clothing is simply static material. Static material that is there to help the dynamic you look and feel more confident.

When starting to dress better, I think we need to sometimes be careful and consider a couple things. First is occasion. What is the occasion that you are dressing up for? Is it formal, casual, somewhere in between? Whatever it is, you want to make sure you fit somewhat appropriately to the picture, or else unwanted attention may come to you. You know that guy who wears a suit to the all-casual work place? Ever heard the people around you whispering, asking “why is this tool wearing a suit to work for no reason?”

Now if you are that guy, and you feel best in a suit regardless of the occasion, all power to you! However, if it’s simply to show that you have fashion sense, you want to make sure you’re wearing suits at the appropriate times. In a casual setting, you can still look damn good with a nicely put together casual outfit, and you won’t look out of place. Likewise, you can still set yourself apart during formal events as long as you have a nicely fitting suit, and the right accessories to make you stand out.fc2 Trying too hard

As a general rule, I would say that if you pull something out of your closet, put it on, and wonder “can I pull this off?” for even a split second, then you should evaluate why you are wearing those clothes in the first place. The reason I say this is that you might get self conscious while you’re out and about for the rest of the day, and remember, we want to promote self confidence, not self consciousness. If you’re walking around constantly wondering if you can pull off your newly bought wine-colored slim pants, then you’re probably not fooling anyone. Go back to those trusted blue jeans of yours, there are plenty of ways to improve dress even with just basic blue jeans!

Lastly, remember that fashion trends are just that… trends. I’ll say it again, stick with the classics and staples, as they will never do you wrong. Wearing camo, colorful bowties, hot pink skinny pants, and the like are fine at times (minus the hot pink skinny pants), but I personally think that you’ll look better with a pair of dark jeans and a thin v neck sweater. And you probably won’t think twice about what you’re wearing, letting your true self come out more.

Dress in confidence, but remember why you’re doing it. Is it to prove to others that you can follow fashion trends? Or is it to look awesome and feel even awesomer? Keep it simple gentlemen. You can call me a broken record, but at least I’m replaying the key part of the song.