Want an easy way to both stand out and convey some confidence? If you’r wearing a button-up shirt without a tie. Undo the top two buttons instead of just one. It will make you look less stiff and it’s a good way to show off some chest hair. You should have chest hair.
Exhibit A: Only one button undone. Looks Herbly and stiff.
Exhibit B: Two buttons undone. Looks more rakish and masculine.
This only works if you’re wearing the right undershirt. These include wife beaters, tanks and V-necks. A regular crew neck underneath will just look dorky.
I don’t recommend undoing more than the top two unless it’s summer and you’re in an appropriate environment. Too much chest falls into fashionista rather than stylish man.
Hipsters and SWPL’s have developed an affinity for tradition when it comes to clothing and other “safe” areas. For a man in the alt right, this can be the same conundrum with dressing well.
With shows like Mad Men and Boardwalk Empire gaining in popularity, along with the economy leading consumers to focus on quality and pine for the nostalgia of better times, menswear is becoming more and more popular. Five years ago you had to hunt long and hard to find a shirt that fit well off the rack or shell out the bucks to have a tailor bring it in for you. Now even low-end brands like Old Navy are offering their “slim collections.” That same trim shirt would have made you stand out from the crowd before and now it’ll barely get you a second glance. Don’t believe me? Head to the mall this holiday season. I’m constantly surprised by how many well-dressed men there are at stores like Nordstrom’s and even H&M; and I live in Salt Lake – not exactly a fashion mecca.
It’s only inevitable that as you start to dress better you’re going to be making choices that can be seen on hipsters, SWPL’s or actual WASP’s and Yuppies. I grew up as a punk/ska/bmx kid and the idea of wearing anything preppy was heresy.
But there’s a difference between us and the other guys who dress well. For them, the clothes are their substance. They use their clothing as a way to fit in. The hipsters will wear traditionally masculine clothing in an ironic way because they believe they’re well above the need to think in terms of gender and they think their women love them because they’re sensitive. We wear them because we respect ourselves enough to dress like men instead of teenagers. Metrosexuals will wear fitted clothes as a way accentuate their perfectly sculpted figures without a single hair or thread out of place in an attempt to show the world their attention to grooming and sartorial detail rivals that of their women. We wear fitted clothes because we know they are more functional and because they flatter a man and convey his concern for his appearance. Brand-whores will wear logos and be walking billboards for their favorite companies in an attempt to curry favor or impress their peers by their brand loyalty alone. We buy specific brands because the clothes they make are quality and are a good investment, even if no one besides us ever knows which company made our suits or shoes.
They are worn and defined by their clothes. We use our clothes as a way to communicate what we already internally are. I can show up at a party wearing the same jacket or pants as one of the hipster kids, but I’ll still look different, because I carry myself differently. This blog is not about how you can use clothes to define you; it’s about how you can use them to communicate what your actions have already defined you to be.
OneSTDV had a post about Tim Tebow making people uncomfortable because he is serious in a silly and ironic world. Most men, even those who dress well do so as a costume. It may be intentional – which falls in the realm of ironic; or it may be unintentional and earnest – which falls in the realm of silly. When a man, who knows his worth as a man and doesn’t apologize for being one, dresses well, it won’t be a costume, but a tool to help him accomplish his other goals.
Found these online today. The contrast between dandy dress shoes and the violence of a weapons is pretty damn cool and a perfect peacock. Why buy them when they’re just begging for a DIY though. You do own a gun, don’t you?
With fit being the most important aspect of dressing well, most men who are just starting out are left in a tough spot. Either they pay for all new clothes, or they pay to have their existing clothing altered. Neither one is an especially cheap option.
My recommendation is to start off buying one new piece or having your tailor tweak with one existing piece at a time .
For most of us, our clothes don’t fit because they’re too large. Let’s say you have to wear a shirt and tie to the office every day like I do. That’s a lot of button-up shirts to replace. There’s a cheater option though, and this option is a lot easier now that the winter months are upon us.
Here’s a picture of an old shirt I have that doesn’t see much rotation in my closet. The sleeves are too billowy and the body of the shirt balloons out at my pants – not particularly flattering. I like the color of this shirt and it’s a good one to have around if the laundry hasn’t been done and I’m in a pinch.
Here’s my cheater solution. With a fitted sweater over the top, no one has any idea how poorly this fits. I still get the color on the cuffs and collar and I don’t have to have it altered. On top of that, the sweater will work with any shirt I have that doesn’t fit.
And here it is with my jacket on as well.
The sweater cost me ten bucks at H&M a couple of years ago. Cheaper than having a single shirt altered and now I can wear a few extras that hang out in my closet if I want to. Easy.
If you go the cheater route, get a neutral color. Things like grey, blue and brown go with almost everything. I personally avoid black because it’s too overplayed but if that’s your personal preference, run with it. The sweater isn’t a permanent solution but it’s a good cheater option while you’re building up your others.
It’s no surprise to most men that anything found from a top-tier designer is going to look overly effeminate or too stylized. Even if they do design the occasional piece that looks masculine, it gets snatched up by effete hipsters who ruin all traces of masculinity in it (the lumberjack look anyone?).
But that doesn’t mean a man who likes to look like a man can’t take some cues from these designers and find something to wear that will make him stand out and still look like a man.
Here’s an example I found the other week.
As “hard” as he tries to look, this guy is relatively girly. But take a look at his traditional hunting vest. The leather is used to pad your shoulder from the butt of a shotgun. It’s in camo and he’s wearing it over a tweed jacket. It even has cargo pockets on it. All of these are very traditional and very masculine in both style and function. So what separates this vest from one you’ll find at Cabela’s? First it looks like it’s made of wool instead of some modern synthetic blend. And second, is the fit. This is tailored to hug this guy pretty closely. I would assume that, were it not over his jacket, it would still look fitted but be roomy enough he could breathe.
For some reason, puff vests are huge right now. Men’s magazines are talking them up and it seems like every style blogger has a post featuring them. I like the way they look. But I’m going to scour eBay until I can find a traditional shooting jacket. It’ll be a quick trip to the tailor and I’ll have something that is unique, stylish and unquestionably masculine.