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The Rules of Dress



It’s a disgrace. I know stereotypes are a bad thing and labeling should be a way of the past, but really when you think of fashion experts do you usually award this title to a guy? Generally the answer is no, and everyone knows that besides male fashion designers typical males usually can’t even dress themselves let alone critique others. Every single one of my guy friends wears the same pair of shoes and pants everywhere we go, regardless of whether we are attending a concert, a party, or going to McDonalds. They have never heard the concept of not wearing black and brown together or even considered matching their belt to their shoes.

With all of this in mind imagine my surprise when one of my particularly hideously dressed guy friends began giving me a lesson on fashion. Interesting, especially considering I’m going to college on a full ride scholarship to get a degree in Fashion Marketing. Apparently that meant nothing to him as he proceeded to diss one of my favorite outfits. He himself has been known to wear outfits that would fall under the category of “creative” more than fashionable; actually ugly would be more an appropriate description.

After spending weeks noticing more than usual how blind guys are to such things as clothes I realized that my automatic judgment may not be quite right. One of my female friends has always had trouble putting clothes together, but it’s never really been a big issue with any of us in my group of friends. We’d just make fun of her, and her unique sense of style and continue on with our lives. Then one day it all came out in the open. She committed the biggest fashion crime that any woman on the face of this earth could possibly do. She wore open-toed sandals with nylons. Not just any nylons, but the particularly ugly ones that have a reinforced toe that draws unnatural attention again and again to the person’s feet. Worst still, she didn’t know that this was an unspoken rule.

These incidents along with other sights my eyes have been prone to see as of late stirred me into realizing the world needs some serious aid in the fashion department. So in order to educate the girls and boys of this world who are fashionably blind I made a small list of fashion ‘Do Nots’.

1.) In all circumstances possible avoid wearing black and brown together.

2.) Same as number 1, but with dark blue and black.

3.) Never wear two clothing items made of corduroy material. Such as a jacket and pants. It looks horrible.

4.) No flip-flops with socks. Yes I have actually seen people do this.

5.) You can wear white pants, but please, for the sake of humanity, know when too tight is just too tight.

6.) Do not wear a tie with a wife beater. No one wants to look like Avril Lavigne, so avoid it at all costs.

7.) Do not wear those mini purse backpacks. It is not 1993 anymore, let it go.

8.) Do not wear two different colors of jean together. This makes me physically ill, so if you ever do this and someone is ralphing in a garbage can next to you, it could very well be me.

9.) Do not wear the shirt of the band you are going to see. If you need a reason for this rule you need more help than this article can give you.

10.) Purposely let your thong hang out of your pants. We made a club at school over this issue. It was called the Scissors Club. Use your imagination.

11.) Do not wear all white K-Swiss shoes. Every time I walk down the street and see a guy wearing these I laugh. They are the ugliest shoes ever.

12.) If the sleeves of a shirt hang down past your waist, it probably isn’t practical, and most probably unsightly. So don’t wear it.

13.) If Britney Spears has worn it, don’t.

14.) If Lil’ Kim has worn it you would have to be crazy to consider wearing it. Stop reading this and go to therapy.


15.) If you feel stupid wearing it, you look stupid wearing it. Just because something is in “style” it doesn’t mean it’s your style.

Although my dream for the world is to have people dress with a hint of style I know not to expect too much. If only everyone in the world could follow these easy steps it would be such a beautiful place. Unfortunately, I know tomorrow I will wake up and at some point during my day I will probably see reinforced toes or those awful K-Swiss shoes. But a girl can always dream right?

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The Rules of Dress Pt. II: A Guy’s Guide

A few easy tips that will have the ladies dropping at your feet and complimenting you on your choice of clothing without hindering your masculinity.



Living in the Pacific Northwest is much like living a top a large mountain. The vast majority of the population dress as if they just came barreling down Mt. Rainier. Everywhere I look there is a sea of Columbia jackets and hiking boots. The bulk of these hiker-looking people are males. In fact, my guy friends seem to always inspire me most when it comes to informing the public of important fashion knowledge. A friend from Oregon, who shall remain nameless, wears lovely outfits that include hot pink ties and blue shirts, or ski outfits that are each a different shade of green. My girlfriends, although not the snazziest of dressers, can in fact hold their own. I’ve always figured this was because they cared about their appearance while the guys were happy wearing the same clothes they’ve had for the last five or so years. For the most part this probably is a true statement, but imagine my astonishment when one of my guy friends crossed the line to fashionable.

In only a day’s worth of shopping, I turned an ordinary guy off the street into one with style. Three hours in a mall and I turned a hater of shopping into a lover. I also taught him the most important lesson a women could ever give a man: retail therapy. My guy friend had a confidence building that only a great shopping trip could do. I can officially refer to myself in terms once reserved for the likes of Mother Teresa; a miracle worker, a betterment to society. I am cleansing the world of bad dressers one person at a time.

My only problem is this: the pace is a little slow for my slightly impatient personality. I’ve already made one guide of what not to wear, but I think it is time for just the men of this world to receive a little advice. My friend who is now gracing with style learned that the way you dress can attract and detract to your best features, and yes, girls do care how you dress. Clothes say so much more about a person than most like to admit. So here it is, a few easy tips that will have the ladies dropping at your feet and complimenting you on your choice of clothing without hindering your masculinity.

This does not include any jeans from Old Navy or any of those carpenter style jeans. Whoever invented those for the masses should realize they are not the least bit attractive and unless you carry hammers around with you on a daily basis, are completely unnecessary. My suggestion is a pair of Seven jeans, they look great on all guys and are less expensive then brands like Diesel. Make sure they have a cool fade, not an obnoxious “someone just poured bleach across my jeans” kind of thing.

Button up shirts are almost always a great pick for any guy, they are dressy without being pretentious, yet complimentary to all types of people. The key to long sleeved button up shirts is to roll up the sleeves. One of a guy’s most attractive features is his forearms so roll up those sleeves.

Okay that doesn’t mean you need to go put one on in the middle of July in ninety degree weather, because frankly that wouldn’t do much to help you. There are really no explanations other than beanies look really good on guys. More than once in my life I have thought a guy was gorgeous when he was wearing a beanie when in reality he was really not that attractive at all.

This is all about showing off your personality. The kind of music a person listens to says plenty about them and depending on what band you proudly wear you’ll attract the attention of people who share the same musical tastes. In addition to this, they look really good on guys if they’re not too baggy or too tight.

Sadly enough, shoes are probably the first or second thing I notice on a person. I know a lot of girls who are like this so if you want to impress someone don’t ignore what’s happening on your feet.

To be completely honest, I hate pretty boys. I know that plenty of women out their love Mr. Abercrombie, but come on. All those guys go tanning five times a week and always seem to be greased up with hair gel and way too many beauty products. The truth is guys look better with their tie undone and sleeves rolled up than they do in a three piece suit. A guy working on a car is more appealing than one who just wafted his “surfer” hair into the perfect coif.

I guess if for some reason you love the store you can keep shopping there, but realize the stereotypes that go along with it aren’t always so favorable (and by the way, you’re being ripped off). The whole buying destructive clothing that’s supposed to look vintage but isn’t, is one of the most absurd things ever created. If you want vintage t-shirts go to a thrift store and avoid the humiliation of wearing something that says “Bob’s Chicken Shack” or some supposedly clever sexual innuendo about Spring Break.

Sky blue corduroy pants with bright green shirts do not look good; neither does anything that requires putting black and brown together in the same outfit. As a side rule you should really just avoid sky blue corduroy pants altogether.


For the most part these types of pants make me want to poke my own eye out. They are hideous. Proceed wearing these at your own risk.

It is almost a given that if you’re in a band you dress good. There are of course some definite exceptions to this rule, but if you look at bands like Yellowcard, Coldplay or my fashion favorites Brand New they all almost always look good but more importantly are comfortable in what they’re wearing. Band guys get chicks because they’re in bands, but their style of dress doesn’t hurt their appeal either.

Before you write off my ten rules for dress, I suggest you try them. You may be surprised at the results of what a few well-placed changes can do. Don’t worry, I accept all forms of repayment, but I prefer concert tickets and gift certificates to Urban Outfitters. However, just know that seeing the world dressing in better fashion is really enough for me.

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