1. Welcome! Please take a few seconds to create your free account to post threads, make some friends, remove a few ads while surfing and much more. ClutchFans has been bringing fans together to talk Houston Sports since 1996. Join us!

Questions about suits/business casual

Discussion in 'BBS Hangout' started by kaocsaephan, Sep 17, 2011.

  1. kaocsaephan

    kaocsaephan Member

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2007
    Messages:
    1,269
    Likes Received:
    26
    Hey guys,

    I would like clarification regarding business attire and am hoping you guys can give me a pass here. I have questions about dressing "business casual".

    Here are a few of my questions. Please answer them as you see fit (no pun intended).

    1) Is it possible to a tailor 38L to fit me if I wear 38R or 38S?
    2) Do you have a particular place/tailor you recommend? Does any place offer a discount if you have multiple items you need tailored? I have never done anything like this before so I've no experience. Recently talked to Burlington Coat Factory and for what I need done it's about $80 per jacket.
    3) Are skinny ties ever appropriate for work/office environment?
    4) Are there vests that aren't so loose? I'm a thin person and most of the vests I've tried/bought don't fit me so well.
    5) I have a few jackets needing pants to match. Some I bought individually and some came with pants that I feel are too uncomfortable/big. Is there a website/store that I can visit to get the corresponding pants?
    6) Any place to get some nice/comfortable dress shirts for cheap? Any brand/style you recommend?

    Anyway, these are what I can remember to ask (for now). Thanks for all the answers/help. Please keep in mind that I am a college student (about a year from graduation) on a budget so $300 pants isn't exactly what I'm looking for. Also, let me know if you have any advice!
     
  2. dharocks

    dharocks Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2003
    Messages:
    9,032
    Likes Received:
    1,969
    I think I can answer some of your questions.

    Yes, and for obvious reasons it's always easier to go from a L to a S than vice-versa

    Depends on where you work, but it's generally something I'd avoid (even though they're in right now). I certainly wouldn't wear one to an interview or something like that. If you do decide to go with a skinny tie, make sure that your shirt collar is appropriately sized.

    I would suggest you just get your vests tailored.

    After Christmas I believe Brooks Brothers does a semi-annual sale where a lot of their stuff is 40% off. I think Jos. A Bank does something along the same lines.
     
  3. SpiffyRifi

    SpiffyRifi Member

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2006
    Messages:
    929
    Likes Received:
    22
    For cheap suits, ties and shirts I'd go to K&G. They have a lot of dress shirts for low prices. You could also go to the outlet mall and go to Van Heuesen. Although I've never done it, I know people who have successfully bought good shirts and even suits on ebay. It sounds like you're just getting started and need a lot of "business" clothes fast. While these suggestions aren't necessarily the greatest ones for growing your wardrobe long term, they are a good way to buy some decent stuff quick.
     
  4. arkoe

    arkoe (ง'̀-'́)ง

    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2001
    Messages:
    10,370
    Likes Received:
    1,587
    Jos A Bank seems to have a sale every other week. Including this week: Jos A Bank advertisement.
     
  5. Voice of Reason

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2009
    Messages:
    223
    Likes Received:
    23

    When companies use the term "business casual", it just means you don't have to wear a suit and tie, but you still have to look professional. If you wear a suit and tie, you will be overdresses. If you wear a T-shirt and jeans, you will be underdressed.

    For business casual, most guys will wear a good pair of dockers and a dress shirt.
     
  6. subtomic

    subtomic Contributing Member
    Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2000
    Messages:
    4,031
    Likes Received:
    2,386
    Jos A Banks always has a sale going on - I'm on their mailing list and get emails from them daily. That being said, I would not recommend them if you are very skinny and want a "fitted" look - all of their clothes (even the "slim" line) tend toward the roomier.

    Brooks Brothers offers an extra slim size dress shirt that fits me really well (I'm also pretty skinny) but I don't know if they offer anything similar in their suits and slacks. There quality is very good.

    For tailoring, there are many good tailors around Houston. I've used both the in-house tailor at the River Oaks Jos A Banks and also Martin Tailors (right off Shepherd at Feagan, I believe - it's next to the red Mexican restaurant), and had good service at both.

    You are going to have a hard time matching a new set of slacks to old jackets. It's best that you either get the old pants tailored or (if that's not an option) just get a new suit (you can always take the old jacket to a resale shop and get a little cash).

    Of course, you can always have slacks that don't "match" the jacket, but compliment it. However, I wouldn't wear such a combination to a job interview.
     
  7. Dairy Ashford

    Dairy Ashford Member

    Joined:
    May 20, 2002
    Messages:
    14,503
    Likes Received:
    1,831
    Keep in mind that a full suit isn't necessary to look formal. You could probably get away with a blue/black blazer/pant combination, a darker blue shirt and then a dark solid or striped tie.

    I don't exactly know what skinny ties are, but you should just go to Men's Warehouse, Macy's or Dillard's and just pick one from the big tables.

    You really don't need to get suit-cut vests for any reason at all. Waste of time and money. A matching, light sweater vest (Dillard's Clearance at West Oaks), on the other hand, could concievably replace a blazer.

    K&G and JC Penney's website are probably your best bet for inexpensive suits, I don't know if Suit Mart still exists but you could go there also. There might be some decent tailors/suit stores in black neighborhoods; if you can find stuff that's not an unconventional color, a wierdly shaped lapel or has too many damn buttons you might get a deal.
     
  8. pippendagimp

    pippendagimp Member

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2000
    Messages:
    27,021
    Likes Received:
    21,246
    1) 38L to 38R may work, but probably no 38L to 38S. ideally though, you want to find your exact size off the rack since proper fit is the most important aspect of any biznass suit
    4) a loose vest is very easy for any tailor to alter since it's a simple taking in of material on the back seam
     
  9. Rashmon

    Rashmon Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2000
    Messages:
    19,220
    Likes Received:
    14,419
  10. shutkip

    shutkip Member

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2008
    Messages:
    109
    Likes Received:
    8
    Also note that a 38L is longer in the torso too, not just the arms, than at 38R or 38S
     
  11. Astro101

    Astro101 Member

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2002
    Messages:
    2,068
    Likes Received:
    2
    Seconding Martin Tailors, really good service.

    Regarding skinny ties, they probably aren't workplace appropriate if too skinny. If it's a conservative place, then I would advice against it. Though there is extra skinny and just narrow...I'm a skinny guy, so I wear narrow ties that are 2.75" across, but it matches my suit lapel width and my body so it's just really proportionate. If you're trying to look like Justin Timberlake or whatever, it might not fly.
     
  12. DonkeyMagic

    DonkeyMagic Contributing Member
    Supporting Member

    Joined:
    May 22, 2006
    Messages:
    21,543
    Likes Received:
    3,382
    Like someone else mentioned, business casual does not mean a suit and tie. You can throw on a sport jacket though with no tie.

    If you wear a 38R i don't know why you would tailor a 38L, but yeah, always tailor down if you have to...not up.\

    Skinny ties...save that for social events, not work. I guess it depends what you do as well, but a corporate environment, i'd stay away from that.

    Don't try to match color for color a pant and a jacket if they are bought separately. Also, to wear pants and a jacket, you don't necessarily have to match the same color, especially for business casual. I mean, if you have a blue jacket, you don't have to get blue pants to match. You can easily go with a tan slack. For gray pants, you can pair that with a black jacket, etc etc.

    Jos A banks is a good place for sales...but personally i'm not a huge fan, however it would get the job done. You can always try dillards or macy's or something like that. Brooks brothers was also mentioned and they do have decent sales from time to time.

    Vests... tailor. Vests should not be loose. Vests are also not business casual, fyi.
     
  13. RocketDonut

    RocketDonut Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2010
    Messages:
    698
    Likes Received:
    98
    Going from a long to a regular can be done but should be avoided. Someone mentioned the torso being a different length then on a regular and also the buttons on the sleeve would be effected. The buttons are either functional or decorative (probably decorative) but it will probably not look too great to see the buttons so close to the cuff.

    Here's a great article from putthison.com

    http://putthison.com/post/283365444/businesscasual

    [​IMG]
    “I love golf.” - This guy

    Q and Answer

    Tyson writes:

    I try to present myself well at work. I iron my shirts, shine my shoes, and try to match. Some people may say, dress for the job you want. What’s the PTO take? I work in a khaki/polo/button down habitat. A suit would be too much. What are some nice styling’s that don’t scream look at my new suit, but still out-class Dockers and a semi-old Ralph Lauren polo.

    Let’s start with the bad news: you can’t really wear a suit in a polos and Dockers business casual environment. When you’re doing business, you always want to look as good as you can without seeming like a dick, and when everyone else is wearing polos, you’ll look like a dick in a suit (even with a tie). Unless you’re meeting with clients that day, you’ll stick out like a sore thumb.

    That doesn’t mean you have to dress like the guy pictured above, though, and it sounds like you’re well on your way to a better look.

    No polos. Don’t wear a polo shirt anywhere you wouldn’t wear shorts. Playing tennis, weekend in the park, wear a polo, fine. Having a meeting? You can handle the five extra buttons and full sleeves on your shirt. (No short-sleeved dress shirts, either, but that should go without saying.)

    Don’t wear a tie without a jacket. This is the fast route to looking like you work at Blockbuster or maybe, at best, are a teller at Wells Fargo. Ties are meant to be worn with coats.

    Watch your fit. Most men wear casual pants like chinos way too long and way too baggy. A trim, clean fit in your pants is key. Buy them the right size and avoid pleats at all costs. Similarly, your shirt shouldn’t pool out around your waist. Buy a slim-fitting shirt, or take your shirt in to the tailor to get the waist taken in - it’ll cost $10 or $15 and make a huge difference. A button-down collar is a nice way to keep your collar in check if you’re not wearing a jacket.

    Wear good shoes. A great pair of shoes will take you from boring to sharp. No Kenneth Cole duckbilled b.s. No corrected-grain leather with a plastic-y finish. Rotate a couple pairs. Wear a belt that matches. No clunky rubber soles. You work in an office, not on a marathon team.

    Wear a sportcoat. Even a quiet pocket square if your office won’t think you’re totally insane. It shows that you care without showing anyone up, particularly since you won’t be wearing it around the office much anyway. A nice cashmere sweater won’t hurt in the winter, either.

    We’re essentially talking, here, about focusing on the fundamentals: wear quality clothes that fit. Dress so that someone looking at you would think you’re someone who they’d trust to work with.
     
  14. RocketDonut

    RocketDonut Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2010
    Messages:
    698
    Likes Received:
    98
    Check out the BEST OF on the right column. Tons of great articles.
     
  15. LANIMIRC

    LANIMIRC Member

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2009
    Messages:
    279
    Likes Received:
    4
    took it right out of my mouth.

    also business casual is not suit and tie. and definitely not a vest.

    but yeah. if you are going to buy an off the rack suit, always size it right. can you shorten a suit? probably. but three things can go wrong. the pockets will end up looking too low. the button stance will end up too low and the suit waist will end up too low and it'll probably make you look top heavy. also never ever ever have anyone try to alter the shoulders.

    if you have a jacket but no matching pants aka blazer, don't even try to match it. just mix it up with some khakis. that way it'll at least look like it was intentional rather than having a slightly off colored pair of pants.

    no to skinny ties. get a medium width instead.

    and finally black jacket/suit is a definite no-no; navy, charcoal and maybe a light grey. also learn how to properly button up you suit...and if you still have that tag on the sleeve, remove it. /snobbery
     
  16. bejezuz

    bejezuz Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2002
    Messages:
    2,772
    Likes Received:
    69
    As others have said, this is all useless if we don't know what you're dressing up for.

    Don't spend 80 bucks to tailor a jacket. A jacket that needs that much tailoring is never going to fit. A good salesman once told me that you should only buy a jacket if it fits well in the shoulders. They can fix the arm length and bring it in or let it out at the waist, but you can't really do anything about the shoulder fit without destroying the jacket.

    A 38R should not be a terribly difficult thing to find. Ignore the suggestions about Joseph A. Banks or Brooks Bros. until you really need a suit that nice. Their sales are pretty meaningless unless you've got at least $500 or so to spend. For affordable, K&G and JC Penny will get you started. Cheaper options than them are Target and Suitmart, and maybe even eBay.

    Look for a tailored shirt (tapers towards the waist instead of being straight), since you are so thin. JC Penny's runs them on sale once a season for CHEAP. K&G also has them.

    If you can't find a vest that fits, don't wear freaking vests. Otherwise, get it tailored. If you're on a budget, focus on stuff that matters before worrying about vests.

    Remember that you can wear suits multiple times before cleaning them. You don't need a closet full of suits right away. Get a nice neutral gray suit and a nice neutral navy suit (neutral meaning people won't notice how often you wear them) and build up from there. Get a nice navy sports coat/blazer to wear with slacks. I also recommend a tan plaid or houndstooth sports coat. With the tan and the navy blazers, I can wear almost any pant I want. I also mix in a nice brown suit, and that gives me plenty of looks, once you add in shirts and ties. I'm looking to buy a charcoal suit, but I'm not in a hurry, because rarely do I need more than three different suits in a week. Some people go outside of the four basic colors (charcoal, navy, grey, brown) but classic is better for me, at least until after you've acquired at least two each of the basic colors.
     
    #16 bejezuz, Sep 17, 2011
    Last edited: Sep 17, 2011
  17. JCDenton

    JCDenton Member

    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2007
    Messages:
    1,090
    Likes Received:
    261

    I would strongly recommend against this. Everything is going to be off, from the lapel roll and front buttons to the general proportions of the jacket. Why not just get the correct size to begin with?

    LOL, "nice"? Seriously? Jos A Bank and Brooks Brothers?

    You cannot get a nice suit at Jos A Bank. Everything they sell is garbage. Why would you expect to get a nice suit at a place always running "Buy 1 Get 12 free" sales?

    The only somewhat nice suit Brooks Brothers sells is the Golden Fleece line. Most of their suits have glued rather than floating canvas...crap in other words.

    The below are nice suits:

    Oxxford (if you want a sack suit)
    Zegna (stay away from the low end Z-Zegna line that starts at $1200 MSRP. The 15mil15 and Couture suits are nice)
    Purple Label (nice but overpriced for what they are, better to just buy from whoever made the suit since they don't make their own)
    Corneliani (quality suits although I don't like the styling)
    Canali
    Isaia
    Belvest
    Brioni
    Luciano Barbera
    Kiton (probably out of your price range)

    If you pay more than 25% of MSRP, you're not getting a good deal. I'd go to Nieman Marcus to figure out which one is most flattering to your body, then buy it online somewhere.
     
  18. pippendagimp

    pippendagimp Member

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2000
    Messages:
    27,021
    Likes Received:
    21,246
    Errrr, why have the boy splurge on big-ticket retail when you can just send him to the Salvation Army store instead :grin:

    Errrr, wtf :eek:
     
  19. bejezuz

    bejezuz Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2002
    Messages:
    2,772
    Likes Received:
    69
    I know plenty of big firm law partners that wear nothing but suits they get on sale at JA Banks, and I know plenty of judges who have a closet full of ten year old suits they bought at the Brooks Bros. outlet. The brands you listed are definitely beyond the scope of most men who are looking to start a business wardrobe. To me, fit matters so much than the label. Nobody expects a college kid to roll up in a $1500 suit. I wear this stuff everyday, and you don't have to spend an arm and a leg to look good.
     
  20. LANIMIRC

    LANIMIRC Member

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2009
    Messages:
    279
    Likes Received:
    4
    LOL, "nice"? Really? Seriously? Bespoked is the only way to go!
     

Share This Page

  • About ClutchFans

    Since 1996, ClutchFans has been loud and proud covering the Houston Rockets, helping set an industry standard for team fan sites. The forums have been a home for Houston sports fans as well as basketball fanatics around the globe.

  • Support ClutchFans!

    If you find that ClutchFans is a valuable resource for you, please consider becoming a Supporting Member. Supporting Members can upload photos and attachments directly to their posts, customize their user title and more. Gold Supporters see zero ads!


    Upgrade Now