Style Update

One of my focuses over the past few months has been to improve my style, and I feel I’ve made some large strides in this regard.  I’ve been educating myself about men’s fashion by reading websites such as Kinowear and the Sartorialist and applying what I’ve learned by observing what people around me are wearing, and upgrading my wardrobe.  I’ve gotten to the point that people who haven’t seen me in a while are complimenting me on my style, which is a nice feeling.

My latest addition to my wardrobe are two pairs of designer jeans that I picked up off of Ebay.  One is a pair of Seven for All Manking jeans with a dark blue wash and white stitching, and the other is a dark blue pair of Chip & Pepper jeans with a light brown wash.

I have to say I am very pleased with the jeans so far.  The Chip & Pepper’s especially were quite a find for only $50 (they retail for about $170), and I really like the style and color of the jeans.  At first I felt the jeans were a little tight, but after wearing it for a while, I’ve found them to be just perfect, and they look really great on me.  The Sevens are also very nice, but don’t fit in quite as well into my wardrobe as the Chip & Peppers.  Plus the jeans ride up a little on my crotch, which is a little annoying.

Both of the jeans are a tad too long for me (I feel short now), so I had to get them hemmed at a tailoring shop that does custom alterations.  I have to say I am very happy with the results, and am looking forward to getting more of my clothes fitted for me in the future.

I’m pretty happy with the jeans, and though I might look for another pair or two in different styles to round out my collection, I think I am pretty happy in this department for now.  I think the next step for me is to start looking for a cool blazer that I can wear over my outfits when I go out at night.  I could also use some new shoes, as well as some more cool accessories to compliment my outfits.

Those are the three areas that I feel I need to improve on the most, to take my style to the next level.  If I can round these areas out, and continue to develop and improve my image over the next few months, I’ll be looking like a brand new man by the end of the year.

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How To Tie A Scarf

So the blog Kinowear just came out with an article on 9 ways how to tie a scarf, which is great because I recently purchased my first two scarves ever.  One of them is a short, light-colored, faux burberry scarf and the other is a long bright orange scarf, and I have been playing around with different ways of wearing them.

My friend Joe showed me how to tie the Slip Knot, and I’ve figured out how to do the Ascot and the Drape just from watching others, but the other styles of tying scarves are new to me.  I’ve been having the hardest time finding articles on how to tie scarves online, so this is a great find for me.  I can’t wait to wear my scarf to work tomorrow with one of these new knots.  I think I may go with the Twice Around Ascot.

Jewelry Update

So the jewelry that I ordered arrived a couple weeks ago, and so far I’m very happy with the pieces that I got. I’ve been mixing the different necklaces to go with different shirts that I own, and I really like how the pieces contribute to make my overall look more interesting. Even a plain t-shirt and jeans is more interesting when there’s a necklace draped over it.

The necklaces have received a lot of attention from women as well. It’s amazing how women can notice even a small detail like a silver charm hanging from my neck. All of my female friends seem to immediately pick-up on the necklaces, and even with strangers, I can think of a half-a-dozen instances in this past week alone where the subject of my jewelry came up with women I’d just met. It’s been a great way to share something about myself and keep the conversation going.

With the success of my necklaces, I also tried ordering a cool-looking stainless steel & rubber bracelet off of eBay. Unfortunately, after trying it on, I found that it was a little too big for my wrist. I will have to experiment more with wrist bracelets to figure out what works for me. This is all still very new territory for me, but it’s fun trying out new things and figuring out what does and doesn’t work.

Shopping Day

So I went shopping today for some new clothes.  I went out with the intention of getting a new warm top for the winter season, as well as to experiment with some scarves.  I tried to apply some of the style advice I’ve been reading, but it was really difficult to put into practice.

My main problem is that I’m still not clear as to what look I’m going for, so I’m not sure what to get.  I should really take Kinowear’s advice of modeling a look that I like, and customizing it to fit my needs.  That should make shopping simpler.

Anyway, what I ended up getting was a green, zip-up sweater and an orange patterned scarf from H&M.  I am really excited to try on the scarf, and will have to experiment with different ways of tying it.  I saw a guy in the mall rocking a scarf with a plain white tee, and it looked great, so I will have to emulate that look.

I also dropped by Off 5th, and ended up picking up a brown hoodie from Resurge.  It wasn’t on my shopping list, but it has a really cool design with some intricate details, and there’s just something that I love about hoodies.  I also picked up a pair of sport oxfords from Payless.  Not sure how I feel about those yet, but it’s a good start for branching away from sneakers, and for $20, it’s hard to go wrong.

My most exciting purchase of the day, however, was made online.  I’ve been looking for awhile for some accessories to compliment my look, and today I stumbled across a site that sells jewelry based on the Chronicles of Narnia series by C.S. Lewis.  Those books have had more impact on my life than any other, so I was excited to find some cool Narnia-related pieces, and went on a bit of a shopping spree there.  I can’t wait to try these on, and will definitely report back on them once they come in.

So it was a pretty productive, if exhausting (can you tell from the scatter-brained post?), shopping day today.  I plan on stopping by Crossroads tomorrow after class to see if I can’t find some t-shirts to match the hoodie I picked up today, so that should be exciting.

Kinowear

My friend AlphaWolf recently sent me a link to the Kinowear Blog, and I’ve found the site to be simply a goldmine for advice on style, fashion, and personal development.  I’ve enjoyed spending the last few days going through the site and reading through all of the great articles there, and have since learned about different types of socks, what a pocket square is, and how to find the right pair of jeans.  There’s so much information there it’s like getting a second education, outside of school.

I’ve also enjoyed applying the things that I’ve learned through the blog to my life.  I don’t really have the money right now to go out and get a new wardrobe, but I’ve cleared out a lot of my old clothes to make way for new items in the future.  I’ve also enjoyed experimenting with different combinations of pieces that I already own, and have started looking at websites for different looks and pieces that I may want to purchase.

Right now, my number one priority is to get a new pair of shoes, as my old ones are pretty tattered.  I’m also looking to get a new jacket or sweater for the winter season, and am toying with the idea of getting a scarf to spice up my look.  Also on my list are accessories such as arm bands and neck bands.  That’s a lot to shop for– hopefully Santa’s got me down on his list!

For now I am just having fun observing what different people are wearing, and seeing what works and what doesn’t work, seeing who has clothes that fit them well, and trying to identify the elements that go into a great style.  It is a whole new way of looking at the world, almost like looking through a new set of eyes, and I am enjoying the whole process of learning more about fashion.

Some Thoughts on Fashion

Growing up, I never paid much attention to fashion.  Up until high school, I pretty much just wore whatever my parents got me, and even in high school I was pretty clueless.  I never even owned a pair of jeans until I got to college (growing up in Hawaii, I just walked around in shorts and flip-flops), and it wasn’t until I got into the Game that I took a serious look at how I dressed myself.

I used to think that clothing was just superficial, and it is to a degree, but it’s also one of the first things that people judge you by when you meet them, so they’re important for creating a powerful first impression.  No matter what you wear, you cannot not communicate, so you may as well pick clothing that communicates what you want.

I think my style has come a long way in the past couple years, but I still have a lot of work to do.  One of the things that my current ensemble is lacking is accessories.  Necklaces, bracelets, rings– these aren’t just for women anymore.  Worn tastefully, they can accent an outfit and work as excellent conversation starters.

Another thing that I feel I lack is an overall theme for my clothing.  I have been flailing around picking up bits and pieces for my wardrobe, but it doesn’t always come together in a consistent “look.”  My friend Joe recently lent me a copy of Brad P.’s fashion bible, and one of the things it emphasizes is picking a “sexy stereotype” and modeling someone who already has a very cool style.  It makes sense not to have to re-invent the wheel, and I will take this advice to heart as I add more pieces for my collection.

Finally, working with Dan this past weekend, one of the things he stressed in regards to fashion was finding clothes that fit.  He explained that one of the key differences between expensive and inexpensive jeans is the way they fit.  He suggested finding a good tailor who can make adjustments to my clothing, which I think is great advice.  A tailor can also spruce up an item with custom stitching, embroidery, and other alterations, which is a good way to personalize an otherwise generic outfit.

Anyway, those are just some thoughts I’ve been having about fashion.  Time to go shopping!