I'm pretty clueless when it comes to dressing -- but I want to look at least semi-cool. Is there someone in a store I can count on to help me look good?
Unfortunately, there aren’t too many career salespeople anymore, so finding one who can give you good advice takes a bit of trial and error. Start by looking for a salesperson who’s in your age range, who’s wearing something -- say, a shirt-and-tie combination -- that appeals to you but has a certain flair. (If he reminds you of your dad, that’s probably not the person for you.) It’s like any relationship: There should be a little spark of something, a little chemistry. If you’re shopping for something to wear to the office or an interview, he should offer tailoring and be able to guide you: how much cuff should show under a suit jacket, where a tie should hit, where your pants should sit, how much of a break you should have, whether to cuff or not. These are the common sartorial questions. Guys hate to try things on, but very few men can wear things off the rack and have them fit perfectly -- so you need to put in the time. And don’t get anything altered while wearing a T-shirt and sneakers: A good store should give you a dress shirt and a pair of proper shoes to wear.
About the Expert
Expert Michael Macko is the fashion director of Details magazine.
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