HalfLegend

Active Member with Corp. Privileges
A bit of background. I just turned 17 and I'm a junior in high school. That being said, obviously there is no dress code for our school as in uniforms or even a dress code on casual clothes. Because of that T shirts and cargo's have taken the place of any enforced uniform. I personally think this is in poor taste so I try to step it up, but due to a limited budget polo's seem to be the best I can do so far.

I've read over the forum and noticed that OCBD's seem to be a valid choice for casual wear as well. Unfortunately, my budget is limited and I don't have the pocket to spend over $50 a shirt or even $30 dollars on a new BB or PRL shirt.

Does anyone know of any alternatives I should look into?
What kind of clothing should I look for and where would be a good place to start?
I like cardigans and sweaters and stuff, definitely beats the hoodies and sweatpants look, but most I see are upwords of $40.
Also, how does one find an OCBD that can be worn untucked, my dad has a few from PRL from the early 2000s but they all look like dresses on me...

Many thanks to those who answer!
 

The Rambler

Honors Member
HL: regularly check the exchange for khakis, sweaters, bd shirts. You'll be amazed at how far your money will go, and nearly everything on it is plenty tradly.
 

DocVenture

Active Member with Corp. Privileges
Though others may have better suggestions, given your limited budget I'd recommend finding some good thrift stores and exploring their selections. A friend of mine shops almost exclusively at such places and has managed to put together a number of snappy outfits.
 

Charles Saturn

Senior Member
Register at Lands End and watch for sales, sometimes they do a 25% off anything and free shipping and you can get a Hyde Park ocbd when on sale for about $30 that way, which is a pretty good deal. (Not a fan myself for a casual shirt, second button is too high. Get one and see if you like it.) Also, try Marshalls and TJMax for polo ocbd's. Also, polo does some year end sales and offers a good many shirt for sale at about $40 I want to say. Few oxfords though, mostly poplin/broadcloth. Also, watch the exchange here, or Ebay, do some thrifting on your own, that's probably the cheapest source. For untucked ocbd's look at the Canvas line at Lands End, most are designed with that in mind.
 

palmettoking

Active Member with Corp. Privileges
I'm on a student budget as well so I know what you're going through. Hit up thrift stores like someone else suggested. Keep an eye on lands end sales because they make a pretty decent OCBD and they always have a sale or overstocks or something along those lines. Ask for nicer stuff for your birthday/christmas etc. Parents love giving these kinds of gifts, as opposed to a video game or money in my opinion. And don't forget ebay too.
 

WindsorNot

Senior Member
Post a new open thread asking for donations in your specified size. I'm sure forumites would be thrilled to donate their gently used items that have fallen out of rotation to the cause. If budget is a consideration, shop Land's End exclusively. You will not get better value, period. Good luck, and godspeed.
 

Wisco

Senior Member
The biggest thing you can do is buy clothes that fit. The Dayton Mall or places like it will have a Gap, J.Crew and all the other Mall stores that you can peruse the sale racks. If you're slim, these Mall brands have a reasonable selection of chinos and other slim fit pants. NEVER buy at full retail and follow the suggestions of finding stuff here and other places that offer quality used stuff. Speaking of that, are there re-sale shops near Oakwood? When my family lived in Dayton, I remember a lot of affluent trads in Oakwood. Maybe you could profit from their thrift-store donations? Finally, don't worry about labels or buying the ultimate quality. You're young and perhaps still growing... uh I gained 20+ pounds from a HS Senior to College graduate... too many late night pizzas :).
 

DoghouseReilly

Senior Member
+1 to Lands End. They have periodic sales and you can find some good deals in their On the Counter section. See retailmenot.com for coupon codes.

Also, +1 to thrifting. Try your local Goodwill and eBay. You can find some nice clothes and it has the added benefit of being a hobby.

If you are swimming in your button down shirts, you can take them to a seamstress and ask to have them tapered. My seamstress charges $8 a shirt. Do the math: Find a $3 shirt at Goodwill, get it tapered, and you have an $11 shirt that fits better than anything you can buy OTR. Good luck!
 
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MrZipper

New Member
If you are swimming in your button down shirts, you can take them to a seamstress and ask to have them tapered. My seamstress charges $8 a shirt. Do the math: Find a $3 shirt at Goodwill, get it tapered, and you have an $11 shirt that fits better than anything you can buy OTR. Good luck!
Speaking of which, how far can a shirt reasonably be tailored down? The most recent batch of shirts I tried to pick up fit great in the neck and shoulders, but the chest was insanely huge, and looked ridiculous in the back when I tried to tuck them in. Can something like 4in be taken in, or does that start to mess with the rest of the shape of the shirt?

-MrZ
 

Sir Cingle

Super Member
If you want a cheap, casual, and slim OCBD, you may also want to check in with Rugby.com. The Rugby stuff invariably goes on sale, and you can get a slim-fitting casual OCBD for ca. $19.99. I wouldn't get one at regular price, but at sale price they are pretty decent. Lands' End also has some tailored-fit options, though not enough, in my humble opinion.
 

HalfLegend

Active Member with Corp. Privileges
Well first of....wow! I post at noon and by 2 o'clock im swimming in 11 posts of amazing advice! This forum is great! After seeing just about everyone say Lands End I think i'll look into that. When doe they have their best sales? And how is the fit on their shirts? Im not quite fat but Im on the athletic side of pudgy.

Post a new open thread asking for donations in your specified size. I'm sure forumites would be thrilled to donate their gently used items that have fallen out of rotation to the cause.
Windsor, I looked through the Thrift Thread and found a lot of things that look great, but I don't have a PayPal at the moment... I thought about asking for stuff that people said will just go back to the thrift store if not sold but didn't want to run the risk of sounding like a beggar/leacher. How hospitable is the forum to something like this. I really don't want to seem like I'm here to mooch but I would love some good quality second-hand clothes.


@Patrick, solid advice my friend!
The biggest thing you can do is buy clothes that fit. If you're slim, these Mall brands have a reasonable selection of chinos and other slim fit pants. NEVER buy at full retail and follow the suggestions of finding stuff here and other places that offer quality used stuff. Speaking of that, are there re-sale shops near Oakwood? When my family lived in Dayton, I remember a lot of affluent trads in Oakwood. Maybe you could profit from their thrift-store donations? Finally, don't worry about labels or buying the ultimate quality. You're young and perhaps still growing... uh I gained 20+ pounds from a HS Senior to College graduate... too many late night pizzas :).
Oh a fellow Daytonian! What part did you live in? And yes, Oakwood is fairly 'trad/preppy', that is a good idea stopping by one of their thrift stores.

And as for size, I don't see myself growing much. My father is 3 inches taller than me and 20 pounds heavier and my weight and height has been pretty constant since 15. Unfortuantely, his casual wardrobe consists of just Tshirts, old blue jeans and faded glory polos... gives me very little borrow ;).

As for things like khakhis, sweaters, cardigans and the like. Is Lands End also a reputed seller? I bought two original khakhis from The Gap outlet on a trip out to Chicago a year back and love them, best fit I've seen in a while, but theyre starting to get frayed and worn out after almost daily use between the two. Any other suggestions?


Thanks Again!
S.
 
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WouldaShoulda

Suspended
In 1978 I had 4 Lacoste shirts in red, white, blue and yellow, Levis, Sperry AOs and 6" Maine hunting shoes.

It wasn't the only thing I wore but it seemed like it!!

Couldn't buy cool things on the web then of course...

But Lands End and LL Bean are still around.
 

HalfLegend

Active Member with Corp. Privileges
Ah I do love Lacoste's polos, but at $30 a pop even at TJ Maxx, who can afford to stock a decent wardrobe with them? But looks like we have another +1 for LE!
 

jean-paul sartorial

Active Member with Corp. Privileges
Blazers and suits jackets will be more expensive, but you can get OCBD's, merino wool V's and crews, cardigans, chinos, polos and anything else you want at Old Navy for under $20. Target has cardigans and merino wool sweaters in their Merona line. I've seen Merino wool sweaters and Fair Isle sweaters at Costco.
 

Valkyrie

Active Member with Corp. Privileges
Another place to remember is the American Living section at Penney's. It is Ralph Lauren designed and, especially on sale, very affordable. The logo may give you pause but for things like khakis, it represents an opportunity. In high school, you may be able to even live with the logo.

The other thing is details: the argyle socks ($2.50 at Target), the surcingle belts, the ribbon watch bands, leather soled shoes. You can get the perfect watch on eBay for not much and the watch bands are 5/$30 at Central watch.

Half of success (and half of the fun) is just making the commitment not to look like a slob.
 

DoghouseReilly

Senior Member
If you want a cheap, casual, and slim OCBD, you may also want to check in with Rugby.com. The Rugby stuff invariably goes on sale, and you can get a slim-fitting casual OCBD for ca. $19.99. I wouldn't get one at regular price, but at sale price they are pretty decent. Lands' End also has some tailored-fit options, though not enough, in my humble opinion.
I agree about LE tailored fit. It isn't nearly enough.

Never heard of Rugby.com. I'll have to check it out. Thanks!

Speaking of which, how far can a shirt reasonably be tailored down? The most recent batch of shirts I tried to pick up fit great in the neck and shoulders, but the chest was insanely huge, and looked ridiculous in the back when I tried to tuck them in. Can something like 4in be taken in, or does that start to mess with the rest of the shape of the shirt?

-MrZ
I am a sartorial novice, so someone else will have a more academic answer, but my tapered shirts look fine to me. The only thing that looks a little odd is that she doesn't do anything with the sleeves, so they look fuller when the shirt itself isn't so full. I haven't looked into whether or not the sleeves themselves can be modified or not, but it doesn't seem outside the realm of possibility.

Blazers and suits jackets will be more expensive, but you can get OCBD's, merino wool V's and crews, cardigans, chinos, polos and anything else you want at Old Navy for under $20. Target has cardigans and merino wool sweaters in their Merona line. I've seen Merino wool sweaters and Fair Isle sweaters at Costco.
I've tried the Target sweaters and I didn't care for them. The fit wasn't very flattering even when I weighed a bit more. I like the Club Room v-neck wool sweaters from Macy's better. 100% wool and you can get them for under $20 when on sale.

I like where this thread is heading. Its like a guide for the frugal Trad :)
 
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