I've taken a real shine to French cuffs of late. Even if you are not wearing a tie or the rest of it, the French Cuffs really add a snap to an outfit.
French Fuccs, natural fabrics, don't let the colours get to elaborate. Just keep shopping around. Sales will manifest themselves in short order, or if you have a TJ Maxx near you, they are often a great place for decent clothes on the cheap.
I started wearing French cuffs back in the mid-90s after catching some re-runs of Remington Steele. French cuffs definetely add some flair to your style especially if you can find some unique cuff links. When you watch some of the older movies you run across quite a few of the classic leading men sporting French cuffs.
When I first started wearing French cuffs I could find them at JC Penny for a decent price, but they don't seem to carry much in stock anymore. They still carry some other nice shirts for a fair price.
There are great articles about men's dress tips in the Dress & Grooming section of the Blog. Do check them out before you go shopping.
I had to get some slacks and dress shirts for work too so I went to an outlet mall. I got 4 shirts, 3 dress pants and 2 sweaters for $150 bucks. Look up on the internet if there are any places like this near your house.
You can also visit Marshall's, TJ Maxx or any stores of that kind at the nearest mall, although it does take a lot more time since you have to look for the close on the racks by yourself, but you can ususally find very good shirts for decent prices.
The best ones I've owned are made by Roberto Villini. They are "no iron", and I've worn them for almost 3 years with regular washing and drying and I always pull them from the dryer looking like I just picked them up from the cleaners. I bought them from a men's wear store, 3 shirts for $100. I've had my share of dress shirts, but these are my favorite. Don't waste your money at Lands end, the "no iron" shirts they sell are garbage, and won't last 1 wash without looking like you threw yourself on a wrinkle grenade. Take a drive to a men's wear store in your area, and have a sales person show you some samples, you'll be happier (and more professional looking) in the long run.
Well, Mervyn's is now gone and I don't know who carries the brand anymore, but I bought one or two Cambridge Classics dress shirts. I bought a $20 CC shirt that was special fabric or something, and after 18 months or so of wearing it a ton, it's still pretty spiff, and dang comfy too.
"Having a hair nazi parent is not one of those things you look back on as an adult and appreciate, because it's less about the job of raising a good human, and more about Mom's image. The kid knows that, and will remember that."