Do you ever get so sick of your wardrobe that you want to toss the whole thing out the window? I often hear that sentiment from new clients – they’re tired of wearing the same boring blue shirt and khakis every day. I don’t blame them. If you don’t work at Blockbuster, why dress like it? If you’re in this kind of rut, now’s as good a time as ever to define a new personal style. Below are eight tips on how to do that:
1) Look for inspiration from celebrities, magazines and style blogs. Earmark looks or parts of looks that you want to try.
2) Try elements of what you like and ask a friend whose opinion you value and who you know will be honest.
3) Incorporate elements of your personality into your style. Love your Vespa? Wear a pair of cufflinks that pays homage to it. Integrating features of your unique personality into your look will help you feel more comfortable in your own skin – and make it more likely that you’ll actually wear your new items.
4) Go ground up. The easiest, most pain-free first step in a style redo is new footwear – mostly because there’s no tailoring involved, so you can literally walk out of the store in them. There’s something about a great pair of shoes that makes you stand straighter and walk with more swagger.
5) Make sure the new look you select works for your body type. How to tell? Check out your overall silhouette in the mirror. Many of us home in on a certain part of our bodies when checking ourselves out. Try a more macro approach and see yourself as a larger whole. If the overall shape appeals to you, you’ll know it’s flattering.
6) If you’re nervous to try something new, make like Gavin and take it for a test drive to the grocery store. See how you feel when you’re there. No one has to know you’re just going to the supermarket!
7) Try a little at a time. I’ve seen too many closets full of one particular style that the client went whole hog on without realizing that it wasn’t right for him (Western shirts, I’m looking at you!). So pick one to start. If you find yourself going to that item again and again, you’re ready to commit to getting more.
8) Be patient and open-minded when you look at yourself in the mirror. Your eye is used to seeing you dressed in one specific way. The new look might be jarring and take some getting used to – like a new haircut.
Defining your own personal style takes some work, but it’s definitely worth it. Try the steps above, and let me know in the comments how you do. And if you’d like more tailored help with ramping up your look, contact me.
The polo shirt has been unfairly accused of looking boring, most notably in the summertime. The key to avoiding a polo snoozefest is, rather than having the same exact shirt in every color it comes in, finding a variety of styles and details that suit you depending on the occasion. There are loads of options to choose from: colored stitching to make it casual, or a contrast collar for pop, to name just two. Below are some of my favs for this season in 6 different styles.
1. Supersoft Casual
The small pocket, long placket, and contrast stitching (especially the unexpected diagonal lines to the right of the pocket) combine nicely to give this polo a laid back feel. I’ve gotten this specific top for a few clients, and they’ve all remarked on how soft and comfortable the fabric is. Billy Reid, $88.
2. Sporty Stripe
A polo that has horizontal lines across the upper half is excellent if you want to look broader through your chest and arms. I particularly like the fresh color combo on this one. Gant by Michael Bastian, $135.
3. Interesting Details
The marled cotton and button-free placket give this shirt a understated-cool and even beachy vibe. It would look great with white jeans or rolled up chinos. Orlebar Brown, $119.
4. Button-Down Collar
The good thing about a button-down collar is that the collar stands at attention and frames your face nicely. Brooks Brothers Black Fleece, $150.
FIT NOTE 1: This model’s sleeves are too long. The correct (and most flattering) sleeve length should be about halfway between your bicep and your elbow. Your tailor can shorten it if necessary.
A polo shirt is inherently casual and therefore should be untucked most of the time. This one is on the dressier side with its smooth fabric and slight sheen, so I’m ok with it being tucked in. Ralph Lauren Purple Label, $295.
FIT NOTE 2: When worn untucked, the bottom hem of a polo shirt should hit just below your waistline. If it’s any longer than that, you should get it shortened.
6. Quirky Print
I like how this polo is offbeat in its pattern but understated in its color palette. Keep the look low-key by wearing it with dark grey jeans, or flashy fellows can rock it a pair of red cotton chinos. YMC, $70.
How about you? What are your favorite options from above, and how do you like to mix up your polos?