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Thoughts on skimping and spending

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    I may be in the minority, but I have a couple of ratchet belts that I actually like. I believe they are Marino brand. The plastic ratchet bit is well hidden and it's sewn in between the front and back layer. Questionable sales tactics aside, I wouldn't throw away my favorite belt by any means, but I don't think they're all bad. They do kind of have a clip on tie type vibe going on I guess, but it works for an every day belt, especially if you've got a bit of a weight sway. Might not get as many clicks in on Mondays


      Originally posted by CK83 View Post

      Completely agree with the brown sportcoat. Goes with everything except grey trousers basically, and is a bit different from the sea of navy you'll see out there.

      Thank you sir. I'm glad I'm not totally out to lunch on that one.

      I think it's really hard to write a skimp or spend article without controversy or causing an uproar with half your readership, so I can understand why Joe hedged a bit on some of the categories.


      I was thinking on some of the categories a bit more, and how you might take a more firm stance without taking a firm stance. On suits, I think I'd recommend skimping, but on quantity. If I could go back and do it all over again, I'd have maybe two suits that I really like, one for business, one for more fun (maybe a linen or something), and I'd spend on one nice brown sportcoat. I think you could get a ton of mileage out of just those three. I'd also only have a few ties.

      Oo, good suggestion for a caption wardrobe. Actually, that's close to the route I've taken. I thought about buying some additional suits, but it occurred to me 1) my job doesn't require daily suit wear and 2) I prefer sportcoats and odd trousers. So I've basically got one really nice MTM suit for interviews, conferences, and assorted fancy occasions from the Before Times and a nice selection of seasonal sport coats for most days. I could definitely stand to pare down my tie collection, but I got most of them cheap and they don't take up too much space, so they're worth hanging on to even if I only bust them out a couple times a year. Its true that a few solid color ties in some kind of textured weave would hit the spot most of the time.

      I say this as someone who has wasted an awful lot of money (due in part to this website) buying suits, ties, and sportcoats, many of which just decorate my closet most of the time. I don't even want to think about the amount actually, kind of makes me sick to my stomach!

      Do you ever wear your suits casually, like sans tie with a patterned shirt? You can still get some wear out of them even if you don't dress formally as much anymore.
      My $0.02...


        Originally posted by tankerjohn View Post

        Do you ever wear your suits casually, like sans tie with a patterned shirt? You can still get some wear out of them even if you don't dress formally as much anymore.
        I do get some wear out of my suits for work, or at least did pre-Covid. I'm a forensic accountant, so there are occasions where I need to be in court/depositions, or at an attorney's office. I've found that even at an attorney's office on a non-court day, you'll probably feel a bit overdressed in a suit and tie.

        As for casual wear, almost never. With a relaxed dress code at the office, wearing a suit just draws innocent, but annoying questions. I get tired of telling people no I'm not I just avoid it. I don't get as many of those same comments with a sport coat, so I tend to go that route more often. I may wear a suit for an occasional evening out, or at least did when that was a thing...but again, pretty rare and could get away with having just one or two suits.

        Totally agree with you on the ties by the way. They're not hurting anything hanging there, and it's nice to have some options anyway, even if you're not wearing them regularly.


          Originally posted by tankerjohn View Post

          To be clear, "not as useful" is not the same as "useless". Just sayin'.

          Yes, its a rewrite, hence I introduced my comments with "dusted off the ole 'Skimp or Spend'". He probably updates it once a year or so. I don't know, give or take. There's a bunch of those "stock" advice columns that Joe updates and republishes. Its kind of like the Dappered version of the sit com "clip show." But yeah, I'm not knocking it! Its a lot of work keeping content up to date on a site like this. And if you're really bored, or just a nerd with no life like me, search the old columns and compare. The evolution is kind of interesting.

          Thank you for confirming my skepticism of ratchet belts. There was a time, like a couple years ago, when every style guy on Youtube was hawking ratchet belts. Sometimes in really terrible, hackneyed ways - "Top 10 tips to update your wardrobe. #4 Throw away your favorite belt and buy this ratchet one I'm shilling! Its so dope, dude!" And I always thought, how good can the leather really be when there's a bunch of plastic ratchet teeth on the back? Is there a breed of plastic cows that I'm not aware of? Like the chocolate cows that make chocolate milk?
          Plastic Cows must be it. It says genuine leather, but one of the belts peeled of the edge (no big deal, but not something leather does) the other was damaged when I had to open real fast (nature called). The damage was shallow, but revealed that the leather like surface was very thin.

          I don't doubt some rachet belts can be good, but they must cost more as a normal belt. There is also the fact that one has to get used to opening the right way.