So I've been reading up on style clothes etc. Chiefly because I'm now 24 and find the allure of punk rock slogans has been worn out, and I'd ideally want to dress myself 'better'. However I work in retail so rotate chinos or dickies(for delivery day) with my provided work shirt. My day off thought, or when I have afternoons or evenings free I would like to build a wardrobe that I can look nice and stylish in. That and I think my closet has way too much in it? I've got som many hoodies and other sweaters, but none of them one would expect to be proud of going out in, less your just popping over to the shop for some milk or the latest cd.

For a value of better I would say the following, slacks, or dress trousers if needed instead of jeans(less one is lounging around or doing yardwork/helping friends move stuff-always fun) and for shirts I would trade my  juvenile t-shirts for solid tshirts(if I were wearing them by themselves) or button down or polo shirts. I've started acquiring some of what I think I need, but other things I am unsure of, what type of button down shirts are good but not dress shirts, or are they really dress shirts that one pairs with chinos instead of slacks? I've got button down shirts from j crew and some dress shirts and a pin stripe suit. But aside from the trousers and dress slacks I am not sure when to wear them, or if I should/could go out in chinos and my favorite button down? I've got 10 or so plain white t shirts and socks- I know I need more dressier socks, but I do not know how much. That is what it boils down to me, trying to find a numerical break down so I can compile a list. I've got three pairs of dress slacks, one in grey, black and tan each. I've maybe six pairs of jeans, as well as some dickies, but the dickies I wear for work so I would want to keep them.

Ok hopefully this makes sense, let me know if it is not and I will add more when I get back from work.


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I feel like you're running the risk of feeling uncomfortable in what you're wearing. Most of the questions your asking are indicative of that. I'm sure you've seen men like this before who feel overdressed in most occasions, a bar for example.

I agree with you seeking help. I feel like its our civic responsibility as men to take our personal style seriously, as its a serious matter. I don't know, however, if it's in your best interest to entirely alter your idea of personal style.

For example, I'm an electrical technician. I work in film and television and I live in New York and for that reason, if I go out to a bar, I won't be wearing khaki's and a button down. That's a costume. It isn't who I am, nor is it the person I'm interested in deceptively projecting. At the same time, I'm an adult and I need to be taken seriously in a social atmosphere. I would generally wear a nice cotton flannel shirt or an oxford cloth button down tucked into a nice pair of raw, untreated denim jeans with a fancy pair of cowboy boots from collection and a leather belt. Although I may have higher salary than most people who would consider themselves laborers or technicians, at the heart of it, that is what I am.

To me it doesn't sound like you're the type of guy that would be wearing a dress shirt and a pair of khaki's in a bar either. I like your thought process regarding the tee shirts. I also don't wear graphic tee shirts. Try finding a few with a breast pocket and don't be afraid to tuck a tee shirt into a nice pair of jeans (never distressed or treated). Make sure when you're buying jeans you look for something raw straight leg. You want to be able to fit two fingers into the waist. Jeans that have elastaine in them are meant for that skinny look. AVOID THEM. You will find that they stretch out in awkward ways, rip, and lose color in the wash. As far as jeans, I think it would be a good idea to look for jeans that have stitching that's a different color from the denim; this is classic and American. You want good thick denim that feels like it will age and last. I'd get a good black pair, dark blue pair, light blue pair, and a grey pair. If you aren't threatened by it, high waisted jeans can produce a clean look. Again jeans are not always inappropriate or too casual as long as they fit well and aren't distressed or aged in any way, though you should always keep in mind that you are wearing jeans so don't pair a blazer or a tie with denim. It's very reminiscent of that whole "Metrosexual" period in menswear, which no one wants to relive. Finally and most importantly, GET A TAILOR who you trust. Jeans need to be hemmed. It's no longer considered stylish to have that bunching at the sock thing going on. Get your jeans hemmed so you show a little sock if they're on the tighter side. If not get them tailored as you would a suit pant. It's not considered unstylish or sloppy to roll the legs up a little bit, but it's a good idea to have jeans that fit. Cheap Monday is a company that makes inexpensive denim that you might like.

Regarding your dress shirt vs. button up question. If I understood you correctly, you want to know the difference. Well ultimately there isn't one. There are just varying amounts of dressiness in button ups. Silkier fabrics are obviously intended for a suit. Certain collars can be a dead give away.

This article may be helpful. Basically if a shirt has little buttons to button down the tips of the collar then you probably don't want to wear a tie with it, unless you're attending something particularly casual like a day event.

Shirts made of oxford cloth are always going to be more tailored to casual wear. I would highly suggest having a few oxford cloth shirts in different colors. They are extremely comfortable and resilient to washing.

Finally don't wear sneakers unless you're at the gym. I'm not going to go into it, but just don't. It's lazy and sloppy. Don't be afraid to wear a nice pair of loafers with jeans and a nice pair of boots will look good with absolutely everything.

You are absolutely on the right track with the socks. So many men forget about their socks when they get dressed which is really unfortunate. Get lots of different kinds of socks in all kinds of colors. It's great.

I hope I helped answered your questions. Feel free to ask me for some vendors or other advise on this topic. I think you're doing a great thing for yourself. Good luck.

Gents, thank you both for the reply. I am not generally big into sweaters, but I know I look nice in them and they keep me warm. The other day went out in sweaters and jeans and got some compliments, which is always nice. from what it sounds like, I need to get enough basic articles that I can experiment and play around to find my what I am the most comfortable in. The rotating hangers is a brilliant idea, and anything I don't wear by springtime I shall sleek to get rid off. I have already made the switch from sneakers, less I'm doing my pt. where can you get Henley shirts? I see those and think they belong as under shirts, but then I possibly watch way too much historical movies and shows. I think in the interim I will make use of what I have but start to replace my clothes going forward with some nice alternatives. However where can one get w blazer or sport coat? I got a coat from my friend and back then I put my social distortion pins and patches on it, since it was from a thrift store and well worn, but it is awesome. I could totally see myself wearing a nicer coat when I go out. I might well think of a few more questions, but you both have been helpful.

Story of my life....nan nah na nan nah. You hear their version where ness flips genders? Such an awesome band.

social d awesome band. Got their newest cd almost has a blues rock vibe to it (along with the straight up punk of course)

less I'm doing my pt

Okay, so you are a soldier, then? Let's start here. Look at everyone else in your company. Notice how they dress, then wear nothing that they do. Soldiers are the worst offenders of horrible style. Jeans, running shoes, and a hurley hoodie are far too standard. Heck, when I was a private, I only shopped at PacSun just like everyone else. 

I'm still developing my wardrobe, but these are what I think are the essentials.

  • 3 - 4 solid color button up shirts
  • 2 - 3 patterned button ups (I like western style with the double pockets)
  • 2 - 3 v-neck sweaters (can be worn with an undershirt or one of those solid button ups)
  • 2 - 3 crew neck sweaters
  • 2 pairs of khakis/slacks
  • 2 pairs of jeans (one in a dark wash and one in a lighter wash)
  • 2 - 3 pairs of chinos
  • shoes, shoes, and more shoes (I have a problem)
  • a sports coat

Department (Macy's, JC Pennys, etc) stores can be a good place to start, as you can get decent clothes at a reasonable price. I have a problem with liking clothes from Banana Republic, Ralph Lauren, Express etc. so I spend more than I would like. 

Nope but I grew up with parents in military, and have several friends in service, so I've never called it going to the gym.
Though, the breakdown is appreciated, I have to wear t shirts for work, considering the retail work. So if I come home from AM shift, I'll throw jeans on just around the house. I mean would chinos work for only wearing half the day?

if you're looking to look a bit better but still pull off casual dark jeans, plain tshirt, and a sport coat. It's not like black tie fancy, but the sport coat adds a little more than just jeans and a t-shirt.

and don't get rid of your rock tees.

Hell I'm 28 I have an old vietnam era jacket that i've slowly (over 12 years) covered in patches of punk/rock concerts I've been too. I don't WEAR it anymore but I still buy patches/add to it. When I get out of my apartment and into a house it's going to go up on the wall as a little memento of all the shows i've been to.


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