Before I begin, let me drop this one. I take back what I said in my previous post about taking a break. I just realized I needed some breathing space, not a total break from blogging. Apparently, you can’t kill passion; what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger, just like what Nietzsche said. A weekend with the special someone, coupled with good ol’ retail therapy, were the kick-starters I needed to get me back on track. I guess I just need to enjoy the moment and not let the numbers dictate everything. If people don’t like what I post here in this blog – it’s not my problem; the Back button in browsers exists for a certain reason.
Besides, as Kevin Yapjoco of Bespoke Man put it in his Twitter account:
Don’t care/sweat/comment about the small stuff. Take something you’re interested in and pursue it. I’m not apologizing for my earlier rant, nor taking down my previous post. I’ll just be more stringent this time—especially with foreigners. On a side note, many thanks to Wannie of Wax’s World and Sab of it’s a mustard world. Now, moving on.
Dress your age.
Mom once told me that after seeing my clothes; oftentimes, my clothes are described as old-fashioned. Regular-fit jeans, polo shirts, and classy shoes like brogues and chukka boots. I’m not a fan of hoodies, skinny jeans, casual shirts, and b-ball kicks. I prefer bomber jackets, straight cut pants (baston in Filipino), long-sleeved flannel shirts, and lace-up shoes. Anything—just not loafers or slip-ons.
I’m only 24 years old, but I look like a man in his 40’s when it comes to my wardrobe—that, based on the things I mentioned above. I’m sure the young’uns—the fashionistas, the hipsters, and the cool kids—will say oh, this guy’s tacky for wearing old-school stuff. But if you look at it, there’s some good in wearing timeless pieces. You know why?
First, timeless clothes don’t go out of style. Why follow fashion trends that simply cycle one after another? Popular yesterday, tacky today, one of these days it’s popular again. Stick to the classics as they say; it will still be in style, regardless if the fashion season is spring / summer or fall / winter. The individuality aspect remains with old-school dressing; you don’t get caught on the fashion bandwagon.
Second, you have to have a certain degree of discipline to wear classic, old-school clothes. You really have to put extra effort in caring for these so they last a long time. Let’s use a pair of shoes as an example. The shoemaker strove and put all his efforts to create a masterpiece, requiring a degree of discipline from the wearer so that its beauty is maintained.
Applying shoe polish and brushing the pair till they shine, wiping it dry and applying saddle soap after exposure to rain, and putting shoe trees in the shoes when they’re not in use—time-consuming for some, but not for me. This is because these steps guarantee that I always have a pair of dandy shoes that I can use. I remember when Dad asked me to shine his shoes. I always did it right, bringing the habit into adulthood. Even up to now, he still admires how serious I tend to be when shining my shoes.
The same applies to clothing. I do iron my clothes every Sunday and fold them neatly afterwards. You can’t slack off when polos, dress shirts, khakis and chinos, and Caruso handkerchiefs need ironing. And with a steam iron which does not burn clothes, there’s no excuse.
Lastly, timeless old-school pieces symbolize one’s embracing of adulthood. Let’s admit it, we’re not getting any younger as the days pass. I personally find it ridiculous to dress like the youngsters of today, something a few men of my age do. Why dress in a lazy and sloppy manner, when there’s the option to level it up notches higher? Timeless pieces are versatile and work both for formal and casual scenarios. If I didn’t step up the way I dressed, I wouldn’t have a girlfriend right now. Trust me, putting that extra effort in your clothes will be worth it.
So, will I be dressing my age now? Nope. I’m not gonna be a lazy slob, and I’m still dressing up like an old soul whether people like it or not. This is my fashion sense, this is how I show the world that I am still part of a group of gentlemen who take time and exert effort to make themselves look presentable and respectable. I’ll quote Sting to end this post, specifically his 1988 hit “Englishman in New York”. The song was originally about English gay icon Quentin Crisp, but I believe it also applies to everyone.
It takes a man to suffer ignorance and smile;
Be yourself, no matter what they say.
Until the next post.