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    Expanding Dappered Deals Coverage



    I like Dappered. But the site confines its coverage to the likes of Macy's, Gap, Banana Republic, Lands End... you get the picture. There isn't a bargain good enough to make me wear their clothing most of the time, at least when it comes to dress items. It's no deal at all to me. You wouldn't wear a potato sack just because it's free, after all.


    I know some people are content with merchants like those, and that's fine. The site would benefit though from devoting more coverage to deals on higher end clothes. I may be a cheap fuck, but I still appreciate deals on expensive clothes. This would broaden the appeal of the site. Not asking for deals on Brioni and John Lobb, more like Polo, Brooks Brothers, Corneliani, Hickey Freeman, Charles Tyrwhitt et cetera - basically the next step up.


    What are your thoughts?


    #2


    I'm not saying that I disagree with you, as I'm sure a lot of that would be interesting, but I think that would be a whole other blog. I agree that a bit more variety is always welcome, but for many I think that next step up would push Dappered from "affordable men's style" to "almost affordable men's style"

    "You don't need money to dress better than you do" - Salvatore Romano

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      #3


      I believe Macy's carries Polo don't they?

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        #4


        Can't speak for Joe, but this is how I read his intent:


        Joe started the site with the goal showing how to dress in style on a limited budget. There are plenty of sites that showcase luxury brands (in my view, many of the brands you listed), and he has chosen to specialize in an area he thought was undeserved. Also, I assume Joe makes little if any money off the site, so the more accessible the clothes, the more page views he gets. If Joe changes content to include more high-priced items, I don't know if he would gain or lose viewers. I know I wouldn't get in on deals if they were more expensive than now. If you're talking about broadening content and keeping the "wardrobe budget" the same, I'm for that. It might be that he's looking at places that he has experience with or access to.


        Every now and then Joe does post a Brooks Brothers sale, or mention a splurge item in a list (like Allen Edmonds). I know you posted a discount on Charles Tyrwhitt shirts in these forums, I could get on board that deal. I know you're looking for articles though.


        I hate to make a generalization but it seems to me that the readers (on this board anyway) are the type who try to do more with less so I think broadening content would only work if the price range is kept the same.

        My Measurements: 6' 1" height, 35" sleeves, 41-42" chest/jacket, 35" waist, 34" inseam, 11.5D/EEE shoes, 200 lbs

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          #5


          I think it's a fine goal for these forums, but probably not dappered. I've posted links for Brooks Brothers sales and talked about ctshirts.com a few times (wearing one today). I think for most of us our Corneliani and Hickey Freeman lusts are channeled into our thrift store searches. I got an excellent condition HF suit for $10, for instance. Those suits retail at $1500, though, and even on sale I'm not going to have $700 to spend on it.


          Joe does cover some of the next tier above mall stores, however. He's talked about Suit Supply and Polo for instance.

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            #6


            I suggest sending this in a StyleTip email to Joe (the link is on the right side of the home Dappered page). He may have some direction that considers your idea.


            The site is affordable clothing, meaning the best of the common quality price range. Higher end wouldn't fit into the "affordable" tagline. Joe already covers Brooks Brothers on occasion, but beyond that, there isn't a whole lot of widely available higher end designs that fit in the affordable category. You may be somewhat within the range, but there just aren't many brands missing from Dappered that we can all access.

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              #7


              Jason is right, though, that this forum could very well be a place for those kinds of things to be posted. While most of us are looking for very affordable, never hurts to see a few splurge items.

              "You don't need money to dress better than you do" - Salvatore Romano

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                #8


                I think it's a chicken and egg thing - if you never have deals on higher end goods, the people who would appreciate them wouldn't be around to ask for them. The hardest part may be finding them - the volume of higher end goods is smaller, and less of it goes on sale. Still, there are deals, trouble is finding them.


                As for affordability , affordable is relative. Not that I'm Mr. Moneybags. Even for those who don't make much, it can be a matter of priorities - personally, I cook most of my meals, don't drink much, don't have cable TV, and drive an old comfy car, so that's money I can save or spend elsewhere. The spending profile of the average person is very different from mine. That's probably true for style enthusiasts as well. The uninitiated might question spending $1000 on a suit, while I don't see any wisdom in say, buying a Camry new, but there are millions of people who clearly disagree.


                There's also this mentality of, I can only spend $30 on a shirt, but then you're buying more shirts than you need, i.e. quality vs. quantity. I know - none of this is very novel. I know that I'd be willing to spend 20-50%+ more than what's currently featured on the site, in return for better design. Maybe it's my narcissism, but I think there are some other people in my position.


                Thrifting is good, but it's very hit or miss, and very location dependent. Ebay is decent, but frustrating. Myself, I'm wearing dark wash jeans from Gap, a $16 Mossimo shirt from Target, and a ribbon belt from Macy's right now. The latter two are new, purchases incited by this site. One of my favorite casual shirts is from Steve & Barry's, meaning its MSRP was $8, I think. So I'm not a brand snob, it's just the design and fit of most cheap clothes is lacking. And, to an extent, for no apparent reason, to my everlasting consternation as I've noted elsewhere - ugly patterns aren't cheaper.

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                  #9


                  For some reason this thread makes me think of this article.


                  http://putthison.com/tagged/The_Craftsman

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                    #10


                    Good article. I have the "gap" problem...damn it.

                    My Measurements: 6' 1" height, 35" sleeves, 41-42" chest/jacket, 35" waist, 34" inseam, 11.5D/EEE shoes, 200 lbs

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                      #11


                      Nice article. Reminds me of a thought I had: There's lots of talk about unemployment. Between automation and offshoring of labor, increasing numbers of Americans are having difficulty finding work. Despite a significant drop in employment since the recession began, total output is just as high, if not higher. Meaning that all those people fired weren't all that necessary, that we've increased in productivity since, or both.


                      A revival of the crafts could put these people back in employment, in jobs not easily automated. The skills required by these jobs, eg manual dexterity, are mostly independent of those currently rewarded by the market. The US used to have quite the thriving shoe manufacturing industry, for one, of which Alden is one remnant. But there's simply no demand for it, for quality. Sure, here and there, there's appreciation for artisanship. But it's confined to yuppies going to farmer's markets, and the like.


                      I tried explaining to two coworkers, the concept behind buying a pair of $300 dress shoes (regardless of what you actually pay for them): resole as appropriate, store properly, and wear for perhaps a decade or two, instead of buying a new pair of rubber-soled shoes for $100 every year. The $300 shoes will have superior materials and craftsmanship, and with the use of a good cobbler, will be cheaper in the long run. They laughed, called me 'old-fashioned' despite being 10-30 years my senior. There just isn't an appreciation for quality. All that matters is, "new new new!"


                      I see the same thing with cars - people will sooner buy a sardine can of a car new, complete with cloth seats and toxic fumes from all the new plastic, than buy, say, an old reliable luxury car. Or with gyms - I routinely hear people dismissing gyms because "their equipment is old." Who cares, as long as they work? A half century old 45 lb plate weighs just as much as a new one. At a gym I just joined, the weights are outdoors and covered in rust.

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                        #12


                        Excellent article grasking. Charles, the article does highlight your point well. One that I agree with. I recently acquired my first pair of AE shoes, along with a few other high quality American made goods over the last few years. The quality difference is apparent, as is the cost. I hope as I age, my income allows for my needs and to slowly build quality pieces that will last. That being said, I do think the point of the dappered blog (though this forum can go any direction we please) is to emphasize more affordable wares. The tricky part is finding the affordable quality. That would be an excellent thread topic for this forum, I think.

                        "You don't need money to dress better than you do" - Salvatore Romano

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                          #13


                          Here are my thoughts... not meant to be criticisms, just my reactions.


                          The first is that I certainly appreciate, and mostly agree with, the argument that modern consumers treat our clothing as far too disposable.


                          But I'm not sure that the solution to the problem is to try to refocus Dappered to more expensive brands than the ones currently featured.


                          There are a lot of forums, blogs, and even professional magazines dedicated to high-end men's style. Dappered isn't that. It's always been a place where people in transitional phases of their life can come to get an idea of what's available for men on a budget. To me, the archetypal Dappered reader is a recent college graduate looking to upgrade his wardrobe from hoodies and jeans, or a guy who suddenly finds himself in need of an interview outfit, or just someone who likes to get updates about when his favorite stores are having sales or special offers.


                          There are a few important kernels in there. First of all, it's good and well to invest in your wardrobe over a lifetime. But sometimes people don't have the luxury of waiting. Sometimes a guy is starting his first office job and he needs a functional work wardrobe now, using the money he has now, not later. A college or graduate student who suddenly finds himself living in a different climate needs a coat he can wear this winter, not three years from now. In this sense, there is a great degree of value in affordable clothing. It may not be the best but it does the job, and it can keep you dressed well and looking good until you can afford some of the "better" stuff.


                          Another thing is that I think it's a little, um, I don't know how to say this... well, a little arrogant to declare that stuff from Macy's or Banana Republic or J.Crew is no better than a potato sack. And even if it weren't, most people in the world don't live within driving distance to anywhere that sells Hickey Freeman or Corneliani or whatever. One of the good things about stores like Old Navy, GAP, J.Crew, etc., is their ubiquity. When you read about stuff here on Dappered, you can drive to the mall after work and try stuff on to see what fits you, and what suits you. 90% of clothing looking good is good fit. And regardless of what you think of the quality of these stores, you can absolutely find your fit.


                          A final comment is about modernity. Brooks Brothers and co. may or may not be higher quality than J.Crew and Banana Republic. But from what I can tell, their fits are stuck in the 1980s sack suit era of pleated pants and boxy coats. I, personally, wouldn't pay hundreds and hundreds of dollars for a suit that turned me into a giant rectangle, regardless of its quality. And I don't think it's necessarily a tailor's job to take an outdated suit design and make it modern. Clothes should fit you pretty close to perfect BEFORE you take them to a tailor - a tailor's job is really just to personalize the fit for you, not to remake the entire garment.


                          Anyway, I don't have any problem with folks making use of the forum to talk about more expensive brands. I just don't think it makes any sense for Dappered.com to focus on them when Joe has got his niche (and his audience) pretty well established already.


                          [Edit] P.S. - Just because something is cheap, doesn't mean it's crappy. I've been wearing my Target Merona button-down shirts for years now and not a single one of them has fallen apart, or even shows signs of wear. Because I take proper care of them. Just because you CAN treat inexpensive clothing as disposable doesn't mean everyone does.

                          Ben

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                            #14


                            ^^ I concur

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                              #15


                              Ben, very good points. The exact reasons that I follow dappered.


                              I do think Charles's comments can apply here too, though. Providing information on higher end goods sales would be nice for when any of us are looking to splurge or have questions about reasonably priced quality (American made often pops into my head here) goods. I have found amazing products that are made in small artisan shops for reasonable prices, but often through a tip from another person. I think that can still fit into an affordable wardrobe.

                              "You don't need money to dress better than you do" - Salvatore Romano

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