When I get dressed, I ask myself the following question:
If the Sartorialist saw me today, would he want to take a photo of me?
According to his website, Scott “The Sartorialist” Schuman started his blog with “the idea of creating a two-way dialogue about the world of fashion and its relationship to daily life.” His photos are an awesome inspiration when creating outfits. If he takes the time to photograph you for your outfit, it is for one of two reasons: either you are boldly sporting an outfit that pushes the mold or you have a perfectly crafted outfit made of classic pieces. This is my goal in how I present myself to the world; I want to be edgy and try to uniquely bring new styles into my fashion, or I want to show that using time-tested articles I can create a dashing outfit. Either way, I am using my clothes to express and represent myself to the world. Different tastes, opinions, political ideals, etc. are unique to me and can define me as a person, but one of the most essential characteristics that needs representation in my fashion is that I am a man. This is why I have to ask myself another question.
Are you dressed like a man?
My girlfriend, Lisa, has an obsession with chambray, and over our years of knowing each other she has tried and tried to get me to purchase one. The case wasn’t that I dislike chambray, but more of the fact that I was a poor college student never really allowed me to spend money on a new chambray shirt. Last summer, I finally found an acceptable one on the Gap clearance rack. A few weeks later, we were planning on going on a date and she asked me to wear the chambray shirt with some jeans I have and a fuschia/white striped bowtie that I own, along with a pair of linen cap toe oxfords. In theory this is a great outfit. When I put on the outfit, something was off. The wash of the jeans was so close to the blue of the chambray and the cut of the jeans that it looked like I was wearing cowboy boots. I thought in my mind that, yes, the Sartorialist would probably be impressed with the boldness enough to snap a photo, but I wasn’t totally comfortable with the outfit. Either way, my girlfriend had requested the outfit, so I wore it. When I got to her place we had a good laugh about how ridiculous I looked and continued on with our date. This instance, along with a few others, helped me to create this second rule of clothing: dress like a man.
Everyone has a different way that they would describe “dressing like a man”, but I do not think dressing like a man has much to do with loose jeans and tee shirts that tell us which Beer is your favorite. Dressing like a man has to do with wearing clothes that are cut for your body type and make you look professional and your age. Maturity has a lot to do with it. The most important part of this criterion for me is being comfortable and confident with what you are wearing. While I was dressed as (what was later dubbed) “The Gay Cowboy”, I was neither comfortable nor confident in my manhood.
The whole point of this post is to introduce you to a series of writings I hope to do, where I will write more specifically about ways to better dress like a man. There are all sorts of ways to dress trendy and try to snag the attention of fashion bloggers, but I want to jot down a few pointers on how to better dress like a man, man.