Articles Tagged with waistcoat

Traditionalists often study what is taught . . .

Not what there is to create. –Ed Parker

When a traditionalist attempts to school up and comers the tenets of true art, more often than not the traditionalists show they are not pliable in thought.  While it is important to understand the foundation, it is just as important to build, evolve and manifest a better way.

I love waistcoats (vest). The waistcoat’s history is an interesting one that began in the Restoration Era. The were declared by King Charles II as proper court attire and dare I say, the rest is history? The versatility they can bring has to be seen for one’s self.  So when I see some of these traditionalists go high makamaka and say never wear a pocket square with a waistcoat, I know some may be coming from a good place of stringent standards.  The others may need to hit the local pharmacy for Ex-Lax. Preferably the 48 count box. Some individuals will never deter from the standards. That doesn’t mean you have to velcro yourself to the same standards.  I don’t believe I have to reiterate my sentiments on creating your own style, yes?  A waistcoat can truly make you stand out.  If that’s what you desire.  Depending where you reside in the world, a waistcoat can take the the place of a blazer or be worn under a blazer.  Also keep in mind the varieties of styles there are for you to add to your possible confusion.  From the different materials (tweed, wool, silk, etc), the different patterns, with or without a pocket and double breasted, you could end up with something resembling a modest watch collection of sorts. I own 8 plus I ordered two more that are the double breasted kind.  As always, fit is important.  Different makers will fit differently so focus on makers who fit your body just right! And while I have never had a waistcoat tailored, I venture to say it can be done. In addition, if one is a bit startled on how to wear them whether it be casual or formal, I hope you have a Pintrest. It can keep the headaches to a minimum. If you were to ask my personal opinion on wearing waistcoats with a pocket square, in my very biased opinion I would hit you with an oh hell yeah! Until next time, jal ga! 

*Featured picture: Waistcoat by Perry Ellis, shirt by J. Crew, bow tie by unknown, pocket square by Windom Finery, watch by Timex, sunglasses by Miu Miu

*Supplemental picture, left: Blazer by Croft & Barrow, waistcoat by Allen Edmonds, tie by The Museum of Fine Arts, pocket square by Santostephano,watch by Seiko

*Supplemental picture, right: Waistcoat by Merona, shirt by Haggar, tie by Legal Limit, pocket square by The SquarExtraordinaire, jeans by Uniqlo, socks by Perry Ellis, shoes my Stacy Adams, watch by Timex

*Music vibe: Gold-OFFONOFF 

 

Creating Your Own Style . . .

Is easier than one thinks.  Absorb what is useful, discard what is not, add what is uniquely your own.  That my friend is a quote by the great Li Jun Fan better known as Bruce Lee.  His quote is applicable to just about anything as well as men’s fashion.  If you are like I am, you observe, you study and apply.

An important aspect (and what I feel in my humble opinion is most significant) of fashion is having a solid foundation.  A solid foundation means having your fundamentals down to a science.  If you ever played (dis)organized sports, there were always those guys who liked to hot dog everything.  What did these show-boaters have in common?   Zero fundamentals.  If you take short cuts, more often than not, everything crumbles like a house of cards.  It’s the same with how you dress.  It is absolutely no question when you dress well, you will be treated positively.  By being fundamentally sound, you will be able to evolve your own style.

The genesis of your wardrobe should be based on the classics (the fundamentals). These are timeless and will never go out of style!  In no particular order you should acquire the following: navy blazer/sport coat, white dress shirt, light blue oxford, v-neck sweater, polo shirt, v-neck and crew neck t-shirt (white, grey or black), Henley (short & long sleeve), grey trousers, chinos, indigo denim jeans, a tailored suit (preferably grey or navy).  As for shoes, one should invest in black dress shoes, brown casual/dress shoes and casual/dress boots.  A quick surf through the world wide web and what I have presented above is close to what most invite you to indulge save for a few more or a few less.

From this starting point, when you are comfortable, confident and have a grasp of what you desire in your look, you can expand from here and experiment.  The aforementioned list appears it could end up being rather expensive and it could be if you go high end with everything!  But metaphorically speaking, you’re poor & broke.  Many of us are always searching for a deal and they are out there.

For example, in the photograph to the right, I am wearing a Perry Ellis waistcoat ($28), an Alfani slim fit stretch dress shirt ($13), an Orsini Surrey Collection knit tie ($7) and a pocket square ($6) from a vendor on Ebay known as TheSquarExtraordinaire.  What you can’t see, I am wearing a pair Ralph Lauren chinos ($20) and a pair of Joseph Abboud suede monk straps ($60).  Total price: $134.  The vest, dress shirt, knit tie, pocket square and chinos were purchased from Ebay.  The monk straps from Sierra Trading Post!

Now for comparison’s sake, I chose Nordstrom because it is considered high end.  I took the average of the first 9 waistcoats, white dress shirts, knit ties, pocket squares and chinos listed on the respective site.  For the monk straps, I chose the first 9 suede because this style of shoe is what I wore and is great for summer wear!

  • Waistcoat, $86
  • Dress shirt, $55
  • Knit tie, $63
  • Pocket square, $36
  • Chinos, $68
  • Monk straps, $268

Total price: $576.  That’s a lot of cake.  If you can afford it, go for it!  But if you cannot, there are great, economical alternatives.  My outfit saved me $442.  You are aware a portion of what I saved was used for a day at the vineyard with some lovely friend?

The points I wanted to introduce are from having sound fundamentals, you can expand and create a style suitable to your tastes without working 4 jobs.  Next time, I will elaborate a little further on where to search for deals.  Jal ga!

 

*Featured picture: Jacket by Ermenegildo Zegna, shirt by Geoffrey Beene, pocket square by Windom Finery. glasses by Uniqlo