The Rest – The $1500 Wardrobe Part V
Creating a versatile, sharp wardrobe doesn’t happen overnight. The best course of action is to go slow. But for argument’s sake, let’s say you need a major wardrobe makeover, stat. Over the next week we’ll see what a strict budget of $1500 can do.
Despite prices going up everywhere, we’re still sticking with a $1500 budget. (Which is the budget we started with, six years ago when this experiment began.) The outcome might not impress the menswear snobs, but why care? The goal is to balance quality with affordability, accessibility with versatility. Not every last stitch (like underwear) will be covered. We’re not burning the clothes you likely already have. The goal is to finish with a setup of clothes that can have someone looking great in most situations. The focus will be on affordable goods which can last with reasonable care. Also know that since tailoring costs can vary wildly, those aren’t a part of the final cost.
The Necktie Duo: TheTieBar Grenafaux in Navy ‘ $19 & Black ‘ $19
Black and blue. Or, blue and black. A navy tie and a black tie, both with just a bit of texture, are essentials to have on hand. Even if you don’t wear ties that often, if at all. From weddings to job interviews to the unfortunate case of a funeral. You’ll need a tie. Shoot for a timeless width like 3.” That width should do just fine with lapels of all sorts as you build your wardrobe from here.
The Collar Stays: 40 Stainless Collar Stays – $10.75
While we’re in your neck region, it’s good to remember that collars are key. And while almost all dress shirts already come with a set of plastic collar stays, they’re usually cheap plastic. A good set of metal collar stays is the next level. Not only will you not have to worry about losing a collar stay to the laundry monster (he which gobbles up socks) since you’ll have extra, you can put a hockey stick style curve in em. This keeps your collar looking crisp when going tieless.
The Brown Strap Watch: Daniel Wellington Bristol – $89.99
Dead friggin’ simple. Brown leather band. The “rule” is to match your leathers. So if you’re wearing brown shoes? Wear a brown belt and a watch with a brown strap. Black shoes? Black belt, black watch strap (there’s no belts in the $1500 wardrobe since most guys have serviceable dress & casual belts). True, one stainless band watch could have replaced both of these watch picks for the $1500 wardrobe exercise (strongly considered this Seiko), but not everyone likes the “bling” that can sometimes come with some stainless band watches, or, how casual some dive styles can look.
The Black Strap Watch: Skagen Holst Multi Function – $84.99 ($155)
Unbelievably good looking for the price. Entry level pricing, but punches well above its weight in terms of professionalism. Sleek, so it slides under a shirt cuff super easy. Sub dials give it a classy chrono look, but they actually tell you the day and date, instead of the usual rectangular cut-out window at 3 o’clock. A site favorite. Full review here.
TOTAL COST: $223.73
CASH REMAINING: $5.03
And that’s it! Go get yourself a coffee or a happy hour beer or something and toast to your good style judgement. Stay tuned for examples of outfit combinations you can make from this year’s $1500 wardrobe. As always, thank you for your support.
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