Can A Man Be Overdressed?

A man has to make sure he looks good in every social situation he throws or attends. While a man may always try to look good, there is one factor that will trounce him every single time. This is the fact of being underdressed. Nothing takes the wind out of one’s sails faster than being the only person wearing jeans at a gathering. Sneakers at a wedding. Your designer tee is a sad tee among collars. I’m sure everyone has been through it. In my tweens I was emotionally scarred by wearing nylon pants to a wedding because I didn’t have slacks. The feeling of everyone staring, judging & causing you to want to hide as you have convinced yourself you are a vacuum of negative attention. Being underdressed has definite negative effects. I vowed then to never be underdressed again.

All men know how dumb it feels to be underdressed, but lets look at the opposite end of the spectrum: Can a man be overdressed?

Oscar Wilde said: “You can never be overdressed or overeducated”

Clothier Levenson Rodriguez said: “There’s no such thing as being overdressed… it just so happened that everyone around me is underdressed.”

I fully agree with the above quotes. I would like to assure you that there is no such thing as being overdressed. The biggest problem, in my opinion, with men not dressing fancy is that they don’t know how to. I recommend you find out if you don’t already know. Society has become very underdressed overall from people rebelling against the uptight norm starting in the 70’s and coming up to present time, but now it has almost done a complete reversion. Society is too casual and lazy, so today, to rebel, one has to dress nicely to disagree with the can’t-do attitude that has especially set in since the recession, unless of course, one prefers to look like a street kid, drug addict or welfare case.

If you are overdressed you get complimented. If you are underdressed you get shunned. One thing dressing nicely communicates is that you know what you are doing and are confident, you don’t even have to act confident. The opposite shows you don’t know what you are doing.

Now some will say you can’t wear a tuxedo to a rock concert. I would respond by telling you to please use judgement and common sense in life with every rule you come across. But I would also argue that if you wore combat boots and skull cufflinks with the tuxedo to said concert, you would be the best dressed there and to some degree appropriately dressed too.

 

By dressing up in situations where you don’t have to, you create the allure of mystery. You will make others will feel underdressed, hopefully causing them to step up their game. They will wonder where you came from before you are presently. They will wonder where you are going after you leave where you are now. This is literally how you dress to impress. If underdressing is how you become the negative center of attention, then overdressing is how you become the positive center of attention.

Wear a tie to a bar, slacks to your friend’s birthday party, a bow-tie bowling. Try overdressing to see what happens, I promise you will like the results. Just make sure you have good responses ready for inquisitive minds.

BCS

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Shop, don’t ship.

Okay, shopping ProTip: Don’t order clothes or shoes online. Remember, with clothes, fit is the most important factor & you MUST try everything on before buying it. Each company & each line of clothes in that company are going to have different cuts. If you think the waist size on your pants reflects actual inches, I will direct your attention to the chart below from The Style Blog:

waistline-measurement-chart-for-men-090710-xlg

Retail companies make sizes bigger to boost the self-esteem of the people buying it. Women have this worse than men, but it still exists for us. Why be ‘fat’ at H&M, when you could be ‘normal’ at Old Navy? But you’re still the same weight. Women, why buy a size 8, when you are a 4 at Banana Republic? It’s all in your head & that’s what marketing is and does.

So how do you know what size to get? Also in photo shoots & on mannequins, you see clothes you love & the fit seems great, but they are pinned in the back to make them look good. Investigate the mannequins at your favorite stores & you may be surprised at what you find.

pinning

Also, with just pictures, you can’t always tell the exact color or tint based on the lighting of the picture.

So don’t pay your hard-earned money for 1. Something you don’t know the size of. 2. Something you’ve only seen how sales and marketing want you to see it, not the actual product. 3. Something you have no idea how it will fit your body.

One time a company made a pin-stripe hoodie that I had to own, even though it was $160.00 & made in San Fran, so I had to order it online. I ordered one in small after looking at the size chart. When it finally arrived, it said ‘small,’ but was humongous! Like XXL huge. They made an XS but I knew that wouldn’t fit me with the size of the small, so I sent it back & got a refund, but still paid the shipping.

On a few occasions I had ordered things that never showed up! Then I had to call my bank to dispute the charges & while the money was fully refunded eventually, there is a big waste of time and energy.

While I love getting packages in the mail like anyone else, with clothes, it is not worth the hassle, & the online sales industry knows this so they are constantly trying to make it easier, but just don’t do it. It is too easy to settle for things you don’t really like & a waste of time, money & energy in most cases. Don’t gamble with your style & image, be sure.

You can always find something good in the city, I promise. Get a friend & go out and about. Try everything on, get feedback & only buy what you love. Plus this keeps more of your money in the local economy, which is good for the city.

Have your own online shopping horror stories? Wanna prove me wrong & defend online shopping? Share below:

Fun Socks!

happysocks_fall10_1

This is the easiest way to show your individuality & spice up your wardrobe. Instead of rocking a mohawk, use fun socks to show your wild side. While in the laid-back business scene in Portland these may not be 100% professional to the more traditional businessmen, but even haters have to respect your rebellious side. The mix between subtlety & craziness is a perfect blend of Portland cool. White and black socks are played out, it’s a fact, unless they are black & white frozen yogurt swirl with a waffle cone pattern on the toe & heel. Swag.

Breakdown

Where to get them – Nordstrom Rack downtown. You can find them almost anywhere these days but The Rack has the walls of selection for the right price.

Cost – $4-7/pair. You can find them cheaper & can spend $20 on a pair. That’s why The Rack is the best place, they are usually $4-7/pair, but you will see some for $9 there. Now, you may be thinking “$5 for a pair of socks?” Yes, they are totally worth it. They are of high quality & since they are so bright, hard to lose. $35 makes you a new, much more interesting man for all seven days of the week.

When to wear – Casual, business casual, business & formal. Always. If you are wearing socks, they should be fun!

How to wear – There is only one trick to fun socks, it is that you cannot try to match them. WRONG: If you are wearing a red shirt, don’t wear red socks. The problem is that the shades always seem off or it looks like you’re trying too hard. Fun socks are an accent, so they should be an accent color. RIGHT: Blue/white pin-stripe button up with light grey pants with red socks & either brown or black shoes.