OCI/callbacks/etc Men's Clothing Mega-thread

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NoleinNY
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Re: OCI/callbacks/etc Men's Clothing Mega-thread

Postby NoleinNY » Tue Aug 16, 2011 2:53 am

TaipeiMort wrote:0L Newbie (and anyone else), if you want to do this right as cheaply as possible:

1) Go to the nearest Brooks Brothers outlet near you. Buy two 346-stretch suits for $549, one navy, one charcoal. These suits are much better quality than Jos A Bank for the same price, and especially better than Mens Wearhouse-- they just aren't double canvassed, so they wont last 15 years. Get measured for a dress shirt, don't buy one there.

2) Take your Brooks Brothers suits to a normal BB store, they will have a tailor option that is high quality and inexpensive-- they wont overcharge like most places because they figured that you have purchased one of the more expensive suits and have rolled it into the price. My tailor was shocked that I paid "500 per suit," actually I paid 250 per suit (but didn't have the heart to tell him).

3) Find a Van Huesen outlet, or go online to a van heusen store (or amazon works too). Buy white or light blue dress shirts, no patterns or stripes, for around $21 each, using the measurements BB gave you. If you are really skinny or fat, buy the regular oxford shirts, they will make you look bigger, or conversely hide your curves. If you are in the middle (slightly overweight or buff), buy the fitted shirts because they will fit correctly. Either pointed or fashion spread collar should work, don't buy normal spread collars-- they are not conservative enough.

4) Go to the Nordstrom Rack and either buy Allen Edmonds Cap Toe Park Avenue or Fifth Avenue black shoes for around $205 on discount from $330, or if you want cheaper, buy Cole Haan cap toe, non square toe, black, lace ups for around $100. Also, while you are at the rack, buy cheap dress socks that match your suit pants or shoes, and buy a black belt.

5) Go to http://www.thetiebar.com. Buy "traditional" (non-skinny) red or blue or mixture silk ties that are striped or dotted for $15 each.

Get a watch if you want.

The end.


$549?? For TWO Brooks Brothers suits? Or did you mean $549 EACH? If the former, I am hauling ass to the Camarillo Outlet Mall this weekend.

Aqualibrium
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Re: OCI/callbacks/etc Men's Clothing Mega-thread

Postby Aqualibrium » Tue Aug 16, 2011 3:27 am

beach_terror wrote:
0LNewbie wrote:
Well, this thread is pretty long, but I'm doing my best to work my way through it.

Basics:

Don't get pinstripes, get a solid navy or solid charcoal, wear a white shirt and a fairly conservative tie. Wear black shoes and a black belt. Don't wear cuff links or get shirts with french chuffs. Wear a watch if you have one as long as it's chrome or matches your belt/shoes if possible. Get the suit tailored so it fits you well.

For instance, this is a solid look for an interview:
--ImageRemoved--


I'm honestly not a fan of the "only solids" suggestion, but I'm admittedly a bit of a "fashonista." My two favorite suits are pinstriped, and I wore them extensively throughout the interview process.

Also not a fan of black shoes and a suit EVER (unless of course you're wearing a black suit, which you shouldn't be doing unless you're going to something extremely formal/a funeral). I think it's a myth that you need to have black shoes, and I mean that in the context of life, not just OCI. Again though, I'm kind of a fashion snob.

LOL I'm sensing a trend here, but I'm also not down with the "conservative tie" suggestion. I've worn my bright purple, orange, yellow, bold red, etc... ties to callbacks and gotten compliments several times.

In the end though, if you aren't someone who is into fashion/dressing well all the time, I'd agree that you should er on the side of being conservative. You need to feel comfortable in whatever you're wearing so that you can perform your best. If you aren't a suit guy or someone who is comfortable with a little flash, being conservative may do that for you. I personally didn't go overboard, but also didn't let my personal flare and style be stifled. At work and in interviews, I was comfortable in my bright ties and my pinstripes or my bow ties with my pattern shirts and did very very well when it came to jobs. Comfort is the key.

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Pufer
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Re: OCI/callbacks/etc Men's Clothing Mega-thread

Postby Pufer » Tue Aug 16, 2011 5:02 am

TaipeiMort wrote:1) Go to the nearest Brooks Brothers outlet near you. Buy two 346-stretch suits for $549, one navy, one charcoal. These suits are much better quality than Jos A Bank for the same price, and especially better than Mens Wearhouse-- they just aren't double canvassed, so they wont last 15 years. Get measured for a dress shirt, don't buy one there.


346 generally will be better than anything at Mens Wearhouse and lots of department store stuff.

However, 346 suits may well suit an individual's body better than the JAB suits, but they slot in somewhere just below the JAB Signature line in terms of quality (both 346 and Signature fit slightly differently and are of slightly different quality across their lines; many Signature suits will be better than any 346 and vice versa, but there are some Signature suits that will beat any 346 out there), only for substantially more money at the constant JAB "first and only time ever" sales. JAB Sig Gold and Platinum will both generally be substantially better than 346.

If you're really going for basic, decent, and cheap, I'd recommend getting yourself measured at a menswear store (BB, BB Outlet, JAB, or even Mens Wearhouse if that's all you can find) or the menswear section of a higher end department store (Nordstrom, Saks, etc.; nothing below Dillards). Sign up for the Sierra Trading Post email list and wait for a good coupon. Compare the coupon deal on Lauren suits on STP in your size with what Overstock has on Abboud suits. Buy a solid navy suit for $160 or less (sometimes the "charcoal" suits on STP and Overstock are actually heather or medium gray; navy is always navy). If it's not crazy unsuited to your body when it arrives, get it tailored by a good tailor and I'd be very surprised if you didn't look better than at least half your classmates at OCI.

If you want to go better than that, JAB Signature is the next step up around $200 during a good sale (or Sig Gold above that). Higher than that, go to an actual BB store during one of their big sales (the next one is probably sometime around Thanksgiving) or start to learn enough to where you'll know what you're doing elsewhere.

TaipeiMort wrote:2) Take your Brooks Brothers suits to a normal BB store, they will have a tailor option that is high quality and inexpensive-- they wont overcharge like most places because they figured that you have purchased one of the more expensive suits and have rolled it into the price. My tailor was shocked that I paid "500 per suit," actually I paid 250 per suit (but didn't have the heart to tell him).


If they've rolled it into their price, it'll be free (like basic finishing is on all top-line BB OTR suits). If you're paying the in-house guy anything at all, you could likely find similar quality anyplace for a pretty similar price. I'm always very leery of in-house tailoring.

TaipeiMort wrote:3) Find a Van Huesen outlet, or go online to a van heusen store (or amazon works too). Buy white or light blue dress shirts, no patterns or stripes, for around $21 each, using the measurements BB gave you. If you are really skinny or fat, buy the regular oxford shirts, they will make you look bigger, or conversely hide your curves. If you are in the middle (slightly overweight or buff), buy the fitted shirts because they will fit correctly. Either pointed or fashion spread collar should work, don't buy normal spread collars-- they are not conservative enough.


Rather, go to TJ Maxx or Marshalls and pick up a PVH shirt for like $14. Tommy Hilfiger, Geoffrey Beene, Chaps, Calvin Klein, Izod, Van Heusen, Arrow, and Kenneth Cole shirts are all made by the same company (PVH) and will all be found regularly at TJ Maxx/Marshalls (which are effectively identical and are another same company deal) for cheaper than they can be found at their respective outlet stores.

That said, Van Heusen is primarily the brand PVH uses for JC Penney, which (because JCP is relatively crummy itself) means that they're relatively crappy compared to PVH's Nordstrom or Dillard's/Macy's brands (Hilfiger and Beene, respectively). Look first for Hilfiger or Beene shirts, then go on to Van Heusen. If you want to go outside the PVH bubble, look for Nautica, which is comparable to Beene.

As to fit, Mort is right on when he says that normal/buff/slightly-to-moderately overweight folks should go fitted on all the PVH brands. Skinny people should do the same, contrary to what he says (nothing looks more stupid than a billowy-ass shirt on a skinny dude). Go point or medium-spread collar.

TaipeiMort wrote:4) Go to the Nordstrom Rack and either buy Allen Edmonds Cap Toe Park Avenue or Fifth Avenue black shoes for around $205 on discount from $330, or if you want cheaper, buy Cole Haan cap toe, non square toe, black, lace ups for around $100. Also, while you are at the rack, buy cheap dress socks that match your suit pants or shoes, and buy a black belt.


I've never actually seen an A-E black captoe in stock at any of the three Racks I've frequented over the last four-or-so years in my size (11.5, so not an uncommon size), so this isn't particularly reliable advice in my experience on A-E.

If you're going cheap and simple, go Bostonian black cap-toe (under $50 at the Rack; under $80 virtually anywhere on sale - they will only probably last through law school, but that's all you really need right now) or look for a sale on Johnston & Murphy Meltons or Cole Haan cap-toes if you can't find them at the Rack. A-E shoes are way overkill if all you're wearing is a 346 suit (much less a $150 Lauren) and a $15 Tie Bar tie.

TaipeiMort wrote:5) Go to http://www.thetiebar.com. Buy "traditional" (non-skinny) red or blue or mixture silk ties that are striped or dotted for $15 each.


Good advice. Darker-blue or darker-red Sweet Tooth, Pindot, and Biz styles are solid picks.

NoleinNY wrote:$549?? For TWO Brooks Brothers suits? Or did you mean $549 EACH? If the former, I am hauling ass to the Camarillo Outlet Mall this weekend.


Sounds too good to be true, right? Well, that's because it is. Hell, a 346 suit isn't entirely wool.

346 isn't sold in actual BB stores, only the outlets (indeed, many of the outlets will never see a single item of BB clothing found in an actual BB store; it's really pretty shady). It's a little bit like when Chrysler was owned by Daimler. Yeah, the same corporate overlord made both the Mercedes S-Series sedans and the Dodge Caravan, but that didn't make the Caravan a Mercedes. Don't be that guy who would say, "OMG! You mean they're made by the same company? And I could buy four Caravans for the price of one S-Class? If so, I'm hauling ass out to the Camarillo Dodge Auto-Mall this weekend!"

None of this is to say that 346 suits are terrible or anything, just that they're not really Brooks Brothers suits. They're a base-model Dodge Caravan with a wildly inflated sticker price, having nothing at all to do with the named partner's S600. Further, also similar to the Caravan, while they'll perform their function admirably, they're neither the cheapest nor the best option at their price point.


Anyway, not that anyone cares overmuch, but I'm back from the bar exam and moving 1500 miles to Phoenix.

Did the Nordstrom Last Chance thing for the first time today (all the shit returned to all the Nordstroms throughout the nation that can't be re-shelved (missing tags, worn, etc.) ends up in the basement of a mostly-abandoned mall here in Phoenix). It's like the Black Friday sale rush at the doors every day (a lot of people apparently make a living reselling the stuff on eBay), complete with someone reading the throngs of middle-aged women lined up at the gates a list of rules before opening the doors (the big one is "no aggressive shopping," enforced by a bunch of baton-wielding security guards beating on old ladies - place is legit).

The ties were all crap (apparently, if you vomit blood on your tie and then give it to a pack of wild dogs who tear it to pieces, Nordstrom will still accept it back as a return, and then try to get $4.95 for it). However, I found a brand new $1700 list charcoal Hickey Freeman that it appears someone marked for tailoring but then gave up on (a bunch of tailor's chalk marks all over it, but otherwise flawless and untouched other than all the sleeve tags being removed). Price? $99.95!!! I was thinking that the hundreds of old ladies were nuts rushing in every day to dig through the nightly dump of big piles of returned purses, but for 94% off top-quality flawless suits, I think I have a new favorite store.

-Pufer

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Bronte
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Re: OCI/callbacks/etc Men's Clothing Mega-thread

Postby Bronte » Tue Aug 16, 2011 10:40 am

NoleinNY wrote:$549?? For TWO Brooks Brothers suits? Or did you mean $549 EACH? If the former, I am hauling ass to the Camarillo Outlet Mall this weekend.


These aren't the signature Brooks Brothers suits. They're an outlet mall line.

Aqualibrium wrote:I'm honestly not a fan of the "only solids" suggestion, but I'm admittedly a bit of a "fashonista." My two favorite suits are pinstriped, and I wore them extensively throughout the interview process.

Also not a fan of black shoes and a suit EVER (unless of course you're wearing a black suit, which you shouldn't be doing unless you're going to something extremely formal/a funeral). I think it's a myth that you need to have black shoes, and I mean that in the context of life, not just OCI. Again though, I'm kind of a fashion snob.

LOL I'm sensing a trend here, but I'm also not down with the "conservative tie" suggestion. I've worn my bright purple, orange, yellow, bold red, etc... ties to callbacks and gotten compliments several times.

In the end though, if you aren't someone who is into fashion/dressing well all the time, I'd agree that you should er on the side of being conservative. You need to feel comfortable in whatever you're wearing so that you can perform your best. If you aren't a suit guy or someone who is comfortable with a little flash, being conservative may do that for you. I personally didn't go overboard, but also didn't let my personal flare and style be stifled. At work and in interviews, I was comfortable in my bright ties and my pinstripes or my bow ties with my pattern shirts and did very very well when it came to jobs. Comfort is the key.


A "fashionista" that doesn't believe in solid suits or black shoes? Anyone who's "into fashion/dressing well all the time" will have a broad selection of solid suits and black shoes. A solid navy suit is not just "conservative," it's one of the best looking items a man can wear. Although a navy suit (outside of OCI) should be worn with brown shoes, a charcoal or especially a medium gray suit looks excellent with black shoes and belt. A well-dressed man will regularly don a solid suit and black captoes, especially when he wants to make a strong first impression.

The same can be said of "conservative" ties. Red and blue pindot and houndstooth ties are timeless power ties. Every man should have them in his wardrobe. Ultimately, someone who is into dressing well knows how to wear a more flamboyant ensemble as well as he knows how to wear classic men's attire.

Element
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Re: OCI/callbacks/etc Men's Clothing Mega-thread

Postby Element » Tue Aug 16, 2011 10:45 am

Any advice on traveling with a suit? I'm reluctant to check baggage when I'm flying out for a one-day CB interview. Are recommendations on a decent carry-on garment bag?

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Bronte
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Re: OCI/callbacks/etc Men's Clothing Mega-thread

Postby Bronte » Tue Aug 16, 2011 10:59 am

Element wrote:Any advice on traveling with a suit? I'm reluctant to check baggage when I'm flying out for a one-day CB interview. Are recommendations on a decent carry-on garment bag?


I have a carry-on rolling suitcase that has a detachable garment back built in. This has worked very well for me. You can even put two suits in it in a pinch.

Element
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Re: OCI/callbacks/etc Men's Clothing Mega-thread

Postby Element » Tue Aug 16, 2011 11:06 am

Bronte wrote:
Element wrote:Any advice on traveling with a suit? I'm reluctant to check baggage when I'm flying out for a one-day CB interview. Are recommendations on a decent carry-on garment bag?


I have a carry-on rolling suitcase that has a detachable garment back built in. This has worked very well for me. You can even put two suits in it in a pinch.


That sounds like it would be perfect. Where could I get something similar? Maybe a high-end department store? Thanks.

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Re: OCI/callbacks/etc Men's Clothing Mega-thread

Postby Emma. » Tue Aug 16, 2011 11:28 am

Element wrote:
Bronte wrote:
Element wrote:Any advice on traveling with a suit? I'm reluctant to check baggage when I'm flying out for a one-day CB interview. Are recommendations on a decent carry-on garment bag?


I have a carry-on rolling suitcase that has a detachable garment back built in. This has worked very well for me. You can even put two suits in it in a pinch.


That sounds like it would be perfect. Where could I get something similar? Maybe a high-end department store? Thanks.


I don't travel enough to have a fancy suit bag, but so far I've just been using the garment bag that came with one of my nicer suits. It was free and works just fine. You can pick something similar up for ~$10.

General travel advice: Most hotels will have a steamer you can borrow when you arrive, but if not just hang the suit in the bathroom and leave the shower running hot for a few minutes and you'll usually steam out any wrinkles you picked up while you were traveling.

Also, see: http://www.esquire.co.uk/2010/12/the-ma ... it-jacket/

03121202698008
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Re: OCI/callbacks/etc Men's Clothing Mega-thread

Postby 03121202698008 » Tue Aug 16, 2011 11:44 am

Element wrote:Any advice on traveling with a suit? I'm reluctant to check baggage when I'm flying out for a one-day CB interview. Are recommendations on a decent carry-on garment bag?


I've worn the suit onto the plane and had the stewardess hang my jacket for me before... If your flight isn't real long, maybe do that and steam when you arrive.

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Re: OCI/callbacks/etc Men's Clothing Mega-thread

Postby barrydukakis » Tue Aug 16, 2011 11:46 am

.
Last edited by barrydukakis on Fri Sep 16, 2011 3:18 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: OCI/callbacks/etc Men's Clothing Mega-thread

Postby TatteredDignity » Tue Aug 16, 2011 11:59 am

To everyone who responded so thoroughly to my question- thanks so much! The suit I'm looking at looks very similar to the pic posted by beach_terror. A couple followup questions based on the conversation above:

Would a gray/silver tie be ok with the charcoal suit and a white shirt? Or is it best To stick with blue? When would it ever be ok to wear a black tie? Is it ok to buy ties from express? (I have a few good coupons).

Thanks again.

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Re: OCI/callbacks/etc Men's Clothing Mega-thread

Postby Aqualibrium » Tue Aug 16, 2011 12:00 pm

Aqualibrium wrote:I'm honestly not a fan of the "only solids" suggestion, but I'm admittedly a bit of a "fashonista." My two favorite suits are pinstriped, and I wore them extensively throughout the interview process.

Also not a fan of black shoes and a suit EVER (unless of course you're wearing a black suit, which you shouldn't be doing unless you're going to something extremely formal/a funeral). I think it's a myth that you need to have black shoes, and I mean that in the context of life, not just OCI. Again though, I'm kind of a fashion snob.

LOL I'm sensing a trend here, but I'm also not down with the "conservative tie" suggestion. I've worn my bright purple, orange, yellow, bold red, etc... ties to callbacks and gotten compliments several times.

In the end though, if you aren't someone who is into fashion/dressing well all the time, I'd agree that you should er on the side of being conservative. You need to feel comfortable in whatever you're wearing so that you can perform your best. If you aren't a suit guy or someone who is comfortable with a little flash, being conservative may do that for you. I personally didn't go overboard, but also didn't let my personal flare and style be stifled. At work and in interviews, I was comfortable in my bright ties and my pinstripes or my bow ties with my pattern shirts and did very very well when it came to jobs. Comfort is the key.


A "fashionista" that doesn't believe in solid suits or black shoes? Anyone who's "into fashion/dressing well all the time" will have a broad selection of solid suits and black shoes. A solid navy suit is not just "conservative," it's one of the best looking items a man can wear. Although a navy suit (outside of OCI) should be worn with brown shoes, a charcoal or especially a medium gray suit looks excellent with black shoes and belt. A well-dressed man will regularly don a solid suit and black captoes, especially when he wants to make a strong first impression.

The same can be said of "conservative" ties. Red and blue pindot and houndstooth ties are timeless power ties. Every man should have them in his wardrobe. Ultimately, someone who is into dressing well knows how to wear a more flamboyant ensemble as well as he knows how to wear classic men's attire.[/quote]


I feel like you didn't really read my post or the post I quoted...

The poster I quoted implied the you should ONLY wear solid suits. I said, I don't think you have to do that. The poster I quoted implied ONLY conservative ties. I said, I don't think you have to do that. As far as the black shoes thing goes, to each his own. I don't wear them with my suits...I've never had a problem making a strong impression, and have been routinely complimented on my dress both at work and outside of work. Anyway, my whole point was that you shouldn't suppress who you are to follow silly rules; if you like a subtle pinstripe suit, and you think you look good in it, wear it. I also conceded that if you aren't a person who is in to that sort of thing you should just be as conservative as possible so that you can be comfortable and have one less this to worry about. Being comfortable is always going to be the most important thing; a man can put on a million dollar suit, but if he doesn't think he looks good in it, then he'll look like shit.
Last edited by Aqualibrium on Tue Aug 16, 2011 12:05 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: OCI/callbacks/etc Men's Clothing Mega-thread

Postby beach_terror » Tue Aug 16, 2011 12:03 pm

Aqualibrium wrote:I feel like you didn't really read my post or the post I quoted...

The poster I quoted implied the you should ONLY wear solid suits. I said, I don't think you have to do that. The poster I quoted implied ONLY conservative ties. I said, I don't think you have to do that. As far as the black shoes thing goes, to each his own. I don't wear them with my suits...I've never had a problem making a strong impression, and have been routinely complimented on my dress both at work and outside of work. Anyway, my whole point was that you shouldn't suppress who you are to follow silly rules; if you like a subtle pinstripe suit, and you think you look good in it, wear it. I also conceded that if you aren't a person who is in to that sort of thing you should just be as conservative as possible so that you can be comfortable and have one less this to worry about.

My advice obviously wasn't intended to be the end-all of suit advice. For OCI, you cannot go wrong with what I said. However, it's possible to go wrong with what you said. Therefore, my advice is a "better" starting point for someone looking to get ready for job interviews. If someone can pull off a riskier wardrobe, then they probably wouldn't be asking the Men's Warehouse sales staff for advice.

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Re: OCI/callbacks/etc Men's Clothing Mega-thread

Postby Aqualibrium » Tue Aug 16, 2011 12:12 pm

beach_terror wrote:
Aqualibrium wrote:I feel like you didn't really read my post or the post I quoted...

The poster I quoted implied the you should ONLY wear solid suits. I said, I don't think you have to do that. The poster I quoted implied ONLY conservative ties. I said, I don't think you have to do that. As far as the black shoes thing goes, to each his own. I don't wear them with my suits...I've never had a problem making a strong impression, and have been routinely complimented on my dress both at work and outside of work. Anyway, my whole point was that you shouldn't suppress who you are to follow silly rules; if you like a subtle pinstripe suit, and you think you look good in it, wear it. I also conceded that if you aren't a person who is in to that sort of thing you should just be as conservative as possible so that you can be comfortable and have one less this to worry about.

My advice obviously wasn't intended to be the end-all of suit advice. For OCI, you cannot go wrong with what I said. However, it's possible to go wrong with what you said. Therefore, my advice is a "better" starting point for someone looking to get ready for job interviews. If someone can pull off a riskier wardrobe, then they probably wouldn't be asking the Men's Warehouse sales staff for advice.



I didn't say you were wrong. In fact, I conceded that for most people, you were right; you certainly have to crawl before you walk, and if you try to skip a step you'll be awkward and uncomfortable.

I suppose it is my fault for not being clear. I should have said this: Beach Terror's advice is generally right for most men; solid, well fitted suits and conservative ties will allow you to look the part and have one less thing to worry about. However, if you're a person who is a somewhat experienced dresser, don't feel the need to suppress your individuality. I personally very often do xyz, that's my style and I'm comfortable in it. Because I am comfortable in and smart about my pairings and selections, I feel good and am often told that I look good. In the end, the two worlds of flash and conservatism can coexist, just be smart and wear what makes you comfortable.

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Re: OCI/callbacks/etc Men's Clothing Mega-thread

Postby NoleinNY » Tue Aug 16, 2011 1:07 pm

Pufer wrote:
NoleinNY wrote:$549?? For TWO Brooks Brothers suits? Or did you mean $549 EACH? If the former, I am hauling ass to the Camarillo Outlet Mall this weekend.


Sounds too good to be true, right? Well, that's because it is. Hell, a 346 suit isn't entirely wool.

346 isn't sold in actual BB stores, only the outlets (indeed, many of the outlets will never see a single item of BB clothing found in an actual BB store; it's really pretty shady). It's a little bit like when Chrysler was owned by Daimler. Yeah, the same corporate overlord made both the Mercedes S-Series sedans and the Dodge Caravan, but that didn't make the Caravan a Mercedes. Don't be that guy who would say, "OMG! You mean they're made by the same company? And I could buy four Caravans for the price of one S-Class? If so, I'm hauling ass out to the Camarillo Dodge Auto-Mall this weekend!"

None of this is to say that 346 suits are terrible or anything, just that they're not really Brooks Brothers suits. They're a base-model Dodge Caravan with a wildly inflated sticker price, having nothing at all to do with the named partner's S600. Further, also similar to the Caravan, while they'll perform their function admirably, they're neither the cheapest nor the best option at their price point.



*Sigh* C'est la vie. Fair enough. I'm still going to check out the Outlets, but I'll be looking at the other brands equally instead of rushing to BB. I am aware that a lot of clothing stores do provide different stuff in different places (like these sweaters I bought from the Banana Republic a while back). I didn't think Brooks Brothers did that practice as well. Good to know.

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Re: OCI/callbacks/etc Men's Clothing Mega-thread

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Aug 16, 2011 1:18 pm

I would like to once again reiterate to the average law student on these forums that the amount you spend on your wardrobe has no bearing on how you will fare at interviews. Hearing people speak so often about buying 500 BB suits is fine and all, but I feel like it may give the wrong idea to the impressionable student that such things are necessary (or even helpful) for purposes of getting a job. It is important to stress that it doesn't matter how much you spend, as long as what you wear is relatively conservative, neat, and well-tailored.

I have a few slightly expensive suits. I also have a pretty cheap suit I got for like 120. I've gotten more callbacks wearing the cheap one than I have wearing the expensive ones. Both are tailored nicely and no one is paying attention to what brand your suit is. From the perspective of long-term durability, more expensive shoes and suits are likely a good idea since you are paying for the quality. But even a cheaper suit can still be made to look very good in the beginning of its life, so the difference doesn't manifest itself for purposes of interviews. Just wanted to highlight this point.

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Re: OCI/callbacks/etc Men's Clothing Mega-thread

Postby Blumpbeef » Tue Aug 16, 2011 1:29 pm

beach_terror wrote:Don't get pinstripes, get a solid navy or solid charcoal, wear a white shirt and a fairly conservative tie. Wear black shoes and a black belt.


Navy suit and black shoes? I was told to go brown shoes and red tie.

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Re: OCI/callbacks/etc Men's Clothing Mega-thread

Postby kaiser » Tue Aug 16, 2011 1:32 pm

dhrizek wrote:
beach_terror wrote:Don't get pinstripes, get a solid navy or solid charcoal, wear a white shirt and a fairly conservative tie. Wear black shoes and a black belt.


Navy suit and black shoes? I was told to go brown shoes and red tie.


Whichever you feel matches best. As long as it looks neat and relatively conservative. And you can totally wear a thin pinstripe without a problem. Obviously you don't want to look like something out of a gangster movie, but a thin pinstripe is absolutely acceptable, though a solid navy suit is obviously fine as well.

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Blumpbeef
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Re: OCI/callbacks/etc Men's Clothing Mega-thread

Postby Blumpbeef » Tue Aug 16, 2011 1:36 pm

I was just curious about this comment though,

Although a navy suit (outside of OCI) should be worn with brown shoes, a charcoal or especially a medium gray suit looks excellent with black shoes and belt.


Is there a reason not to wear brown shoes to OCI? Does this apply to all kinds of interviews?

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Bronte
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Re: OCI/callbacks/etc Men's Clothing Mega-thread

Postby Bronte » Tue Aug 16, 2011 2:38 pm

dhrizek wrote:I was just curious about this comment though,

Although a navy suit (outside of OCI) should be worn with brown shoes, a charcoal or especially a medium gray suit looks excellent with black shoes and belt.


Is there a reason not to wear brown shoes to OCI? Does this apply to all kinds of interviews?


Navy and brown looks better. But if you have black shoes, it's recommended for interviews even with a navy suit. This is the prevailing advice on TLS, OCS websites, and other style advice sources because it is more muted and conservative.

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Blumpbeef
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Re: OCI/callbacks/etc Men's Clothing Mega-thread

Postby Blumpbeef » Tue Aug 16, 2011 2:41 pm

Bronte wrote:
dhrizek wrote:I was just curious about this comment though,

Although a navy suit (outside of OCI) should be worn with brown shoes, a charcoal or especially a medium gray suit looks excellent with black shoes and belt.


Is there a reason not to wear brown shoes to OCI? Does this apply to all kinds of interviews?


Navy and brown looks better. But if you have black shoes, it's recommended for interviews even with a navy suit. This is the prevailing advice on TLS, OCS websites, and other style advice sources because it is more muted and conservative.


Thanks.

I've already got a navy suit, but I haven't bought shoes yet.

EmVan
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Re: OCI/callbacks/etc Men's Clothing Mega-thread

Postby EmVan » Tue Aug 16, 2011 2:49 pm

Wow! I haven't been on this forum for a while. I can't believe this thread is still going! I remember when it started (like over 2 years ago?).

Anyway, seems like it's been the same old advice being thrown around over and over for the last 116 pages or so. I'd say a few posts have summarized the basics pretty well. I am frankly surprised that we haven't covered such topics as overcoats, overshoes and bags more, and even watches (which were discussed, but not to any crazy extent I guess).

I just bought myself a pair of black Allend Edmonds Park Avenues and a pair of dark brown Cole Haan Cap Oxfords, leather sole, as well as a couple of silk Calvin Klein ties and a Boss watch (got it at a good price and liked the look, needed to update my older more casual watch). For now, I'm still working with the Horst midnight navy with slight pinstripes suit I have, as well as the Sean John solid grey (but not charcoal) one I got. I have a more trendy european cut MTM black suit coming in soon for a wedding I'm attending (interested to see how it fits - ordered off an online store), as well as a couple of white and light blue MTM shirts from the same company (and a couple of 3" ties). Also bought a black leather shoulder strap Coach bag recently with which I'm quite happy with (how come we haven't discussed bags?). Wearing a black leather Perry Ellis belt, though have to find a brown one to match my Cole Haan shoes. Still have to get my suits tailored a tad (mostly sleeve length), to get that crisp fit. I don't particularly feel like it (budget is not happy), but I may get myself a solid charcoal gray suit before my interviews swing by this winter.

Question, since I live in Montreal (Canada) and my interviews will be in the dead of winter (February/March), what are some good guidlines as far as overcoats go (style, look, material, color, fit, etc)? I guess scarves should be thrown in as well (what about gloves?). Also, what's the concessus on overshoes, and how should I go about treating my shoes for winter salt and snow?

Here's the Boss watch I got btw:
Image

Good to see the thread is still going strong!

Cheers!

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Pufer
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Re: OCI/callbacks/etc Men's Clothing Mega-thread

Postby Pufer » Tue Aug 16, 2011 3:35 pm

EmVan wrote:Question, since I live in Montreal (Canada) and my interviews will be in the dead of winter (February/March), what are some good guidlines as far as overcoats go (style, look, material, color, fit, etc)? I guess scarves should be thrown in as well (what about gloves?). Also, what's the concessus on overshoes, and how should I go about treating my shoes for winter salt and snow?


My own advice would be to suck it up on the overcoat unless it's sleeting or something. I've had a lot of interviews where there is no place to put a jacket, and I don't think I've ever had an office interview where they didn't walk me out (it would be awkward trying to keep a conversation going while trying to yank on overshoes or something). Similarly, I've never had to wait more than a few minutes for an office interview, no matter how early I was. If you're there, they'll come up with someone to talk to you, and that someone will be annoyed if they have to wait in the reception area while you finish removing your jacket, scarf, gloves, knit cap, and executive grade balaclava.

If it is sleeting (or any other situation where you would risk getting your jacket wet), I'd go with some manner of professional looking waterproof jacket (I have a Totes waterproof jacket that looks basically like a zip-up black suit jacket and is big enough to completely cover my suit jacket) - the type of thing you could mostly shake the water off once you get in a lobby and stuff into a manageable-sized ball instead of having to wander around with a giant waterlogged trenchcoat or something.

On the shoes, this is the primary reason I think it's worthwhile to have different levels of shoes. I have a pair of J&M Meltons that I never use except for fair-weather interviews. However, if there's a chance of rain or there's hard-packed snow, I bust out a pair of Bostonian cap-toes I got for $40 at the Rack that I wouldn't mind ruining and walk very carefully (to their credit, the things are still going strong after probably a dozen wears through significant snow and rain storms; I dare say that over 90% of interviewers would never know the difference). Bring an extra handkerchief to wipe off any salt/grime from the uppers before you get in the elevator.

If it's in the middle of a blizzard or something, suck it up and go with a pair of rubber-soled dressy shoes, or - even better - some dressy ankle boots that you can tuck your suit pants into (remember to untuck in the elevator). It's breaking with standard interview dress, but it's a lot better than having to fuck around with overshoes.


If you insist on going in with the overcoat, go wool, relatively thick, charcoal or black. Wear your suit jacket to the store (I'd recommend the Rack once the overcoat season starts) in trying them on - it'll have to be a big coat to allow enough room to not wrinkle your jacket. Sleek and uncluttered. Avoid the double breasted looks and looks where you need to deal with some manner of belt or weird button systems. Have some type of collar. Don't have it longer than your knees (and preferably more like mid-thigh length; definitely long enough to cover the entirety of your suit jacket). Thin matte black leather/suede gloves. Skip the scarf. Earmuffs if you must.

On overshoes, they look stupid no matter what you do, so go as cheap as possible. Make them mid-calf high to protect the bottom of your pants. Black.

-Pufer

EmVan
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Re: OCI/callbacks/etc Men's Clothing Mega-thread

Postby EmVan » Tue Aug 16, 2011 3:57 pm

Thanks for the reply! Appreciate it. I honestly would (and usually do) tough it out in the cold when I'm wearing a suit, but it's typically in the 14 to -13 degrees (Fahrenheit, so -10 to -25 Celsius) range in Montreal around that time of year (and that's without the wind chill). Plus it snows pretty intense on a lot of days, or at least we have a bunch of blowing snow or just non-cleaned sidewalks to the knees. I think if the overall idea is to fit in, an overcoat would be the norm. Overshoes, not so sure about though (I've seen with and without). I agree that it's cumbersome, and I would honestly rather do without it, but I'm not sure if it would be the safer bet, specially since I will be taking the bus/metro or cab and be running around from firm to firm (and since they are all within a few blocks of each other, probably on foot). I'll definitely put some thought into it though! Thanks :)

What about bags? Are they typically carried to interviews (to hold extra copies of CVs and what not)? If not, what would be some good bag recommendations for work (after the interview is done with and you have hopefully landed the job)?

Cheers,

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Pufer
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Re: OCI/callbacks/etc Men's Clothing Mega-thread

Postby Pufer » Tue Aug 16, 2011 4:40 pm

EmVan wrote:What about bags? Are they typically carried to interviews (to hold extra copies of CVs and what not)? If not, what would be some good bag recommendations for work (after the interview is done with and you have hopefully landed the job)?


Typically, a simple black leather padfolio is all that is brought to interviews. If you bring a bag to your SA, at least in my experience, they look at you funny. In any event, what bag you go with after you have a job is purely personal preference. Black leather is probably the norm, but it's really up to you.

-Pufer




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