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How long did it take you to feel comfortable with your personal style?

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  • MarkB
    replied
    @Matt- It took me a couple of months I'd say. I'm 33, but I'm a full time student (started school at 29). So I know what you mean about wanting to wear a blazer, but never having the opportunity. When it gets cold (more like if it gets cold here in Florida), I'm gonna wear some of my blazers (I have 3). I typically wear a trim fitting polo or a sport shirt with the sleeves rolled up with dark straight jeans (514). For shoes I usually wear my Clark's db in beeswax or a pair of grey pro keds (69er lo in ripstop). I feel like I definitely look pretty well put together without being way over dressed. I wear a lot of patterned shirts (gingham, tartan plaid) or just a simple white or blue OCBD. I have gotten compliments from professors, girls and even some of the guys, so I feel like I'm doing something right. I think the trick is to start small, maybe a gingham shirt with your normal chinos/jeans and see how you feel.

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  • alan
    replied
    Originally posted by goterps View Post
    I still don't know how to compliment them back beyond a very-PC "I like yours too". Some guys got mad too which is a bit disturbing.
    A simple, "Thanks for noticing! I've been trying," would suffice. Responding to compliments can be awkward, though. I agree. The upside is that if you're awkward about it, they can probably tell that you're sincere rather than stuck up.

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  • goterps
    replied
    lol, I got the somewhat accusing "Did you have an interview today? (promotion)" and the "I like your suit" from some female coworkers. I still don't know how to compliment them back beyond a very-PC "I like yours too". Some guys got mad too which is a bit disturbing.

    zerostyle- I got a bunch of DB's thanks to dappered/styleforum: the oxblood, grey suede, white nubuck for casual days, and the desert trooper for actual boot use. I suppose compared to anything in AE they look cheap. I only have the brown neumoks so far, but yes there is a huge difference. Definitely feel conscious wearing the neumoks.

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  • alan
    replied
    Originally posted by zerostyle View Post
    Alan - I hear you. I'm pretty sure you own around 100 pairs of shoes based on what I've seen on the forums here. I almost feel the need to buy the same
    I certainly own a lot more than I did a year ago, but the only first-quality high-end shoes I have are from ebay (and used). I have yet to buy a brand new pair of first-quality high-end shoes. That may change if I keep these recent Malverns. I do make an effort not to duplicate niches, but sometimes I just come across something I can't pass up. The average pair costs about $100 or possibly just below.

    I also can't justify paying money for these, but I added them to my Christmas wish list. I know they're a little unusual, but they keep singing to me.
    http://www.allenedmonds.com/aeonline...40000000001_-1

    ... and with that, I'll shut up. I'm derailing this thread fast.
    Last edited by alan; December 7, 2012, 11:50 AM.

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  • BB
    replied
    Matt: it's true that Dappered and the other Dappered-ish sites don't focus on casual wear. It's there every now and again, but I don't know of any place that focuses on the look you're going for. In the summertime I'm casual, so I look for good patterned collared shirts and good chinos, and I try to wear good looking shoes (my Elgins come in handy for this; the Stafford wingtips are also good for this, and I found a pair of suede loafers on clearance that I rotate with the other two). If I were casual in the winter I'd wear nice cords with a patterned shirt. My problem is that I'm a big dude, so jackets are naturally slimming while sweaters tend to amplify my gut, so I think I'd look for chunky sweaters that I could leave unzipped/unbuttoned.

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  • shad0w4life
    replied
    Monks are fine depending on if it's like my work, heck anything "dressy" is fine I think, I see people wear runners, the ones bad for your knees ones with shocks etc at work. So red double monks I have no problem wearing it's about 2000+ people as well.

    99% of people wear square toe bicycle stitching(is that the dual ones going down the front?) heck I have a pair even and at my friends house party there were about 12 pairs and there were about 4 guys leaving and they had to look at EACH shoe and try them on because of duplicate brands etc.

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  • zerostyle
    replied
    Alan - I hear you. I'm pretty sure you own around 100 pairs of shoes based on what I've seen on the forums here. I almost feel the need to buy the same

    All of mine are factory firsts, but I've only paid in the $150-$230 range, always on sale. (And have bought and sold a few other odd sizes to get my average price down). I'm still kicking myself for not buying more at the $$135 price range when Endless + MSN Bing Cashback was working.

    Here's what I own now:

    AE Park Avenue Black - wear to work - just boring now - wish I would have gone with the 5th avenue for this. (paid $220)
    J&M Aldrich II (5th avenue copy) - nice simple perforated cap toe, but the leather feels plasticky and cheap. Wish I bought a nicer leather. (paid $90 on ebay)
    AE Strand, burnished brown - have only worn this with a blazer on dates (paid $230ish)
    AE McAllister, walnut - have not worn yet (paid $200ish)
    Varvatos Chukka, pebble grain brown - got for $50-60ish. Looked nicer on the website, but works as a beater shoe in bars
    Clarks DB in taupe suede - nice summer shoe, but is not sleek and feels a bit cheap. Kind of wish I would have just bought a higher end brand.
    Misc sneakers/etc.

    I'm thinking I want a blucher longwing next to go with jeans. Not really sure. I'll definitely start rotating in the dark brown strands at work - I intentionally bought that color to be more subtle.

    Part of the problem is that the AE's don't fit me that great. I think I'm going to try to pick up a pair of cheap used 8.5E's and see how they work out over the long run. (Tried the on in the store but they were a bit snug in the toe box). Very tempted to just gamble on the Meermin shoes in an 8. ( http://meermin.es/ficha_articulo.php?id=1958 ).

    What's everyone think about monks in the workplace?

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  • MattRicketts
    replied
    Glad to see so many responses to my post! I think the main thing I'm still grappling with, however, is how to incorporate all the advice here and other menswear blogs into my primarily casual wardrobe. I know a lot of you dress in suits, ties, and blazers while the rest of your office is casual because you want to and more power to you, but what I'm getting at is that I just don't think that those pieces will ever become a part of my everyday wardrobe (although of course I still want them in my closet for those times when I actually need to get dressed up). Sure, on those rare occasions when I need to wear a suit I want to look as dapper as possible, but on most days I just want to look sharp without HAVING to wear a suit, sport coat, or tie. For example, I love the outfits that Broke and Bespoke guy wears, but at the same time I know that I won't ever dress like that on an everyday basis; it's just not my style. I guess what I'm trying to say is that I'm still trying to discover my style within a casual setting, so sometimes have difficulty finding advice on here that's pertinent to my situation since most posts on here address dressing up to a level above what I wear day to day. Some of the posts on Dappered and even other blogs occasionally venture into casual clothing, but so far I haven't been able to find any menswear blogs that are focused on how to look great in a casual environment.
    Last edited by MattRicketts; December 7, 2012, 12:52 AM.

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  • BB
    replied
    This is an interesting question. I've been trying to dress nicer for about a year now, and I'm definitely not comfortable yet. But I am feeling more confident as time goes on. At first, I felt very awkward for a few months, and I was still pretty self-conscious for a few months after that. In the last three months I've thought about what I'm wearing much less, and I take that to be a good thing. What I mean is that I am not self-consciously guessing what other people are thinking about what I'm wearing. So while I'm not entirely comfortable with my clothes and my look, I am much more confident. And it helps my confidence at work quite a bit.

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  • shad0w4life
    replied
    Originally posted by alan View Post
    Maybe if your top half wasn't in such good shape, people would look down more often! I kid, I kid... I think other guys are less likely to make comments because they may not have the same level of appreciation that we may have. Plus some may feel like it violates some sort of "bro code". Plus how many of those shoes do you wear casually (ie. around girls outside the office)? Sometimes, you've just gotta look down and say "Damn, I look good". Then you just have to believe that everyone else knows it too, even if they're not saying it.
    I wear them out all the time, no runners etc. If the get wrecked they get wrecked, although I try and wear my ebay purchased ones to bars but good point.
    I tend to have a lot going on when I'm out, ties, vest so maybe I did a good job drawing attention to my face....maybe if I stuff my pants they will look down and notice my shoes....

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  • alan
    replied
    I guess my situation really is similar to BenR. I've always had some nice stuff in the closet. I just never wore it.

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  • alan
    replied
    Originally posted by shad0w4life View Post
    Hah Zero, I haven't had anyone at my work outside my team say anything about my shoes, walnut strands and players, red mahogany double monks, tan chukkas, brown strawfuts etc.

    Not..one...stinkin..word

    Kinda makes me mad, I wear flash shoes and get nada!
    Maybe if your top half wasn't in such good shape, people would look down more often! I kid, I kid... I think other guys are less likely to make comments because they may not have the same level of appreciation that we may have. Plus some may feel like it violates some sort of "bro code". Plus how many of those shoes do you wear casually (ie. around girls outside the office)? Sometimes, you've just gotta look down and say "Damn, I look good". Then you just have to believe that everyone else knows it too, even if they're not saying it.

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  • LesserBlackDog
    replied
    My "style transformation" (or whatever) has been such a long process and I don't even know how to answer the question of how it became "comfortable."

    Since high school, I've been attracted to elements of menswear like blazers, nice button-up shirts, fine leather dress shoes, decent trousers, and so on. But it took until after college for me to really start buying nice pieces with any regularity, and into my first year of law school to really begin integrating them into my everyday attire. At some point in my first or second year I started making a conscious effort to "dress well every day." Which more or less amounted to wearing a collared shirt every day, nice shoes most days, and a jacket and tie occasionally. These days that has reversed. I wear a jacket and tie to class most days... my "casual" days (jeans and canvas sneakers) are few and far between.

    For me, the process has been so long and so slow that I can't say there was any particular moment where I was uncomfortable with my style and later became comfortable.

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  • alan
    replied
    Originally posted by zerostyle View Post
    Ugh. Anyone else as torn about shoes as me?
    Just get one of everything and then you won't have to compromise! Seriously, though, I'm sure I spend as much on shoes as everything else in my closet combined. Possibly more. And it's not because I'm paying a lot for shoes, either. Over the past year, I've averaged over one pair of shoes per month.

    And start working those Strands into your work rotation! Dark brown is a very safe color and the broguing isn't over the top. :-) For compariosn I wore these to work yesterday:



    They're cap toe, wingtip spectators with grain leather across the vamp. If those can fit into an office setting, surely a Strand can.

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  • bjmcgeever
    replied
    It took me quite a while to feel comfortable with my new style, probably several months. First, it took me a long time to find the right fit and style of clothes that I liked. It was hard to find a sweet spot. In the midst of that process, I had to get used to comments from coworkers and friends for whom dressing "nice" is a polo and jeans.

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