The $1500 Wardrobe – Suits & Blazers

Refreshing an entire closet on a strict budget.

Suits & Blazers – The $1500 Wardrobe Part I

Creating a versatile, sharp wardrobe doesn’t happen overnight.  By far, the best course of action is to go slow.  But for argument’s sake, let’s say you have to start from scratch, today.  Over the next 5 days we’ll see how far a strict budget of $1500 can go.  It won’t be easy and some corners will have to be cut, but the goal is to end with a setup of clothes that can have someone looking great in almost any situation.  Remember, we’re playing with a total of $1500 here.  So there will be an obvious focus on real affordable stuff, which can last with reasonable care.  Also, remember that 90% of looking good is fit, so a well tailored $200 suit will look better than an ill fitting $1000 suit every single time.

The Navy Suit:  Suitsupply Sevilla Fit – $399.00

A suit you’ll want to wear all the time.

This is your “I have to look really good” suit.  Suitsupply has gotten plenty of well deserved attention lately, and it seems like every few months they have at least one solid color basic suit in their $399 (their cheapest) line.  This time, it’s a navy blue, which is the foundation for any guy’s suit collection.  The shoulders are soft and the pads minimal.  It’s contoured off the rack but doesn’t wildly dart in.  A half canvas helps the suit last, and the overall construction has been hailed as one of the best values in the suit market.  Almost 1/3 of the total budget, but worth it. Wear it often and feel free to dress it down.
Update:  Looks like over the weekend Suitsupply moved this particular Sevilla fit suit off of their $399 line.  Where it went?  No idea.  They do have a navy plain for $469, but there was a suit with different model shots for $399 at post time.  It very well could come back.  In the meantime, head over here to find even more affordable options.

 

The Grey (but not charcoal) Suit: J. Crew Factory Thompson – $237 when an extra 25% off

100% wool.

There’s nothing wrong with charcoal, but it’s tough to wear when the temps are in the upper 70s to upper 80s.  Meanwhile, are the days of the sub $200 J. Crew Factory Thompson suits gone?  Maybe.  But still hold out for the next extra 25% off (cross your fingers for 30?) J. Crew Factory code.  At under $240, these make a real run at being the best fused suit on the market.  The color is a year round perfect medium to lighter grey, the button stance is a little lower and more elegant, and the lapels are thin but not razor skinny.  Shoulder pads are nice and minimal as well. Full review over here.

 

The casual blazer:  Target Merona Kensington – $39.99

Even rumpled, a well fitting jacket looks sharp.

A lighter, thin striped cotton sportcoat would be ideal, but those are awfully difficult to find around this time of year.  Besides, that grey suit jacket from J. Crew Factory can do plenty of work dressed down with jeans.  But sometimes you just want a totally unstructured, ultra relaxed jacket you can wear when out grabbing a beer or hauling around town on a day off.  The Kensington blazer from Target has no lining, can be easily tailored, isn’t chopped in the tail, and has no shoulder padding.  Four color options to choose from, but going with the blue is a safe play.  Don’t worry, it’ll do fine with jeans.  Could you wear the navy Suitsupply suit jacket with jeans?  Maybe, but chances are pretty good that it’ll look too good with a pair of denim.  Besides, you want a cotton blazer you can beat up.  Get mustard on the Kensington and it’s okay.  Bleed on the Suitsupply and you can add tears to those blood stains.

TOTAL COST: $676.98
CASH REMAINING: $823.02

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