You look in the mirror and get that hair perfectly quaffed in a vertical spike that tilts back just a little, looks great -- now for the clothing. A black t-shirt with a spirited set of words scrolled on the chest, and to cover your hindquarters, you choose that red pair of knee length shorts that coordinate perfectly creating a harmony that you have spent decades honing and it defines you -- it is you! Your friends know it as you, you feel comfortable, and you don’t think you can be done any better. You go to the club and, well you see the guy at the table with his girlfriend and he’s wearing a button up casual shirt and jeans, the man next to you at the bar is wearing jeans and a grey t-shirt with a wolf image on his back and the man behind the bar is sporting a t-shirt with a beer logo on his chest and a pair of black trousers. Great it’s a club, that’s normal. But I do have to say that we sartorialy inclined men are abnormal beings and a t-shirt and jeans at a nightclub, a house party, a date or an auction just isn’t going to cut it when you want to slice a hole in the crowd. Whether it be good or bad press, standing out is still a better alternative than falling into that gray in-between that is today’s clothing standard
In Saturday Night Fever, Tony Manero rocked a white suit because he knew he’d either be noticed as a clown or seen as the hottest guy in the place. All the others in between looked like people wearing clothes in-between. Those others were at their comfort level when it came to style, sartorial cowards? Perhaps, but some people need to be grass on the lawn letting that flower stand out to be admired.
Like a uniform makes a soldier feel like a soldier, a stronger willed set of clothes can make a stronger willed person. So the black t-shirt and red shorts combo is nice, but here in 2012 it’s the easy way out, and if you are looking to a be a sartorial stand out and reach for that higher end of the fun spectrum you’re going to need to break out of your shell and dress the part! This means the next level.
Tailored clothing. Trust me guys the world around you is going to love it! It’s not going to be easy, there is a transition time and nobody has the eye off the bat for creating that tailored wardrobe that mixes and matches. It’s an eye that has to be honed, honed in the same fires that told you that t-shirt went with that pair of shorts, yet this time around you have to be the rebel and fight the urge to blend in; a rebel with a tie on. Where do you start? Do you buy a suit? And what color? Well if you haven’t got a suit, don’t go for one yet, it will just put you in a corner with your style unless you buy three off the bat, but I don’t think that’s wise until you have some experience with what looks good on you when it comes to fitted jackets and trousers).
No suit. If you are starting from scratch there is one way to go and that is with a versatile sports jacket in a brown or gray color. Best case scenario you can get two jackets with patterns that aren’t too loud and if you’re lucky they will both work with khaki, gray, black, navy and brown trousers (just keep hunting that jacket is out there). If you have two well-fitted staple jackets you can buy a slew of trousers and work on the shirts and ties as you go. With this start, you have the versatility with colors and a start of a look that will put you on your way to reinventing that droll t-shirt clad man into a true man of the world that looks at home at the congressional hearing and the party after the indictment is called off.
Yes the suits will have to come next, but before being cornered into a single look, take the time to build your wardrobe piece by piece, and that means taking off those shorts and putting on those khakis that are in that drawer (I know you have them) and roaming around till you find the sports jacket that suits you. The suits will come, but that’s when you are settled
Just a shot of Tony for good measure.
There is a sartorial revolution in the winds and you too can join us by getting that sport jacket. It can be gray or brown or even navy blue with shiny buttons (a blazer) just as long as you can wear it with jeans, khakis, gray flannel trousers, and just about any shirt in your closet that has a row of buttons that lead up to your neck and end in a collar that can house a necktie.