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Changing my 'everyday style' to that of the Golden Era?

Hugh Beaumont

One of the Regulars
Messages
171
Location
Fort Wayne, Indy-ana
Well, if we want society to get back to being better dressed, it begins one person at a time.

I have been wearing 50's shirts for 20 years. I normally mix vintage with modern just so I don't look completely out of place. I am one not to go back in time, but take the look of yesteryear and modernize it a bit without losing the look. The rockabilly community has done it very successfully.

I think the costume designer did a great job with Steve Martin with the classic look, modernized in TRAINS, PLANES, AND AUTOMOBILES. He wore a nice suit, a classic business fedora and a nice trench coat. It didn't look like he was trying to hard.

George Clooney can also pull it off. I think he is changing the way men dress. He proves you can dress in a classic Hollywood style without looking dated. You should check out his Martini commercials.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F3PdIxTZ0EQ

As I get older, and graying, I am excited to embrace a classic look as Clooney does so well, but I won't be wearing much vintage. I will try to look for updated versions of classic designs.

Just wear what you enjoy and buy what you can afford. You will be amazed at how fast your collection grows. To avoid being laughed at (if that truly bothers you), then as I have said, try to mix vintage with modern.
 

Mid-fogey

Practically Family
Messages
720
Location
The Virginia Peninsula
Well...

...I don't think there is any point in making yourself miserable. I think you can start to change your style in a few small ways and express yourself without making yourself uncomfortable. I mean, if you started doing a full on 1930s thing, your friends are going to think you've gone around the bend.

For instance you might want to look at how some celebrities are using vintage. I've noticed that some of them wear fedoras with the brim turned up (frequently done in the in the golden era). You could wear very vintage sunglass styles (there is thread here on them). Mix it up with what you would do anyway. Have fun.
 

Mr. Turner

New in Town
Messages
25
Location
Minnesota, USA
Well, yes, of course I'd have to start small. I'm not really frightened of people laughing at me, just that they wouldn't be accepting, which disturbs me more than anything (I enjoy tolerating people, 'cept those whom are horribly rude and obnoxious, lacking tact and decorum...but that's a rant for a different time)

From the time that myself and Riley Dee have been here, I've greatly enjoyed the style that he's pulled off, that is exactly what I'm looking/trying for. (If you happen to read this Riley Dee, I hope you don't mine my attempt to emulate the style that you've...umm...emulated.)

If anyone happens to know some online merchants who are inexpensive (not exactly 'cheap', but perhaps more whole-sale and the like), it would be greatly appreciated, I will of course check the local thrift shops and living relatively close to the Mall of America helps a bit.
 

happyfilmluvguy

Call Me a Cab
Messages
2,541
Does your school allow the students to wear hats on campus? Unless it was a school baseball cap, mine didn't. You do not have to go with suits and ties. People wore a variety of things, and even in high school, students probably didn't even wear suits.

You could start with button down shirts and kaki pants. You could start out with an argyle sweater http://www.flickr.com/photos/88296737@N00/406035359/ and dress or dickies pants. You could wear a sport coat with jeans and no tie. There are a lot of items that you'll find at the department store down the street that'll give that "golden era" look without being from the golden era or emulating the gangster look.
 

Edward

Bartender
Messages
23,704
Location
London, UK
If you have a good eye for detail (in my experience, most folks who get into the vintage style clothing in a big way do!), then looking ta as many period movies and photos as you can is a good idea. There's nothing wronmg with wearing a suit, but as is suggested above, folks back then also wore a wide range of different clothes in different situations. It might be that you might find it easier (socially and financially ;) ) to begin with by looking for something quite casually vintage style.

Happyfilmluvguy's suggestions are great - I've been wearing a sportcoat with jeans for years, it's a look that can really work as a smart-casual thing (especially if you add some details like a nice shirt, maybe a cravat, pocket square, and well shined leather shoes). A big bonus here is that you can often find real bargains on OFAS or in charity / thrift shops on "sports coats" that are actually the jackets from suits, the trousers of which have worn out long before the jacket.

If you do want to adopt a more 'period' look, think too about what era you would like to emulate. You may have a distinct preference for a different decade's styles depending upon occasion. For instance, for me for full formal wear the 30s can't be beaten; 40s are equally good as 30s for lounge suits, and 40s casual styles are great for those occasions where a suit or maybe even a tie aren't quite right but nevertheless jeans and t shirt are too dress-down. I really like the 50s rockabilly look (and the modern psychobilly take thereon) for fully casual events. It may be that a fifties look would suit you too - due to the size of the rockabilly community in recent years (plus the interest in some fifties styles within the psychobilly and goth communities), it's not too hard to find new and affordable clothing cut to a more fifties style. Much easier than a 30s look, for certain. A rockabilly look is easier to find modern bits and pieces that will fit in too - especially in relation to trousers, as it's much easier to find a fifties style, natural-waist level pair of trews than the much higher waist of the 30s and 40s.

All just my opinion - feel free to treat with the contempt that it so often richly deserves!
 

Sertsa

One of the Regulars
Messages
195
Location
Ohio
The acceptance part can be tough, especially in your environment. It sounds like you already have quite a bit of nice clothes, but I think you can wear them and others to look nice and classic. I think that's the tough part: appearing classic and not costumed. How about starting small like, say, showing up wearing a nice pair of trousers and dress shirt, tucked and neat, with the bomber jacket? People might give you some grief, but I suspect you'll also get a type of attention they'll wish they had.
 

Feraud

Bartender
Messages
17,193
Location
Hardlucksville, NY
I think this would be a good thread for our younger vintage aficionados to state their opinions and experiences. We older folks can talk all day long about peer pressure but are not in the same situation.

You seem have the necessary outwear for your desired style. Take a small step and add a button down shirt with jeans or khakis. Chambry is a good choice for a school environment.
Add whatever style overcoat and cap is in your collection and you are good to go.
 

cowboy76

Suspended
Messages
394
Location
Pennsylvania, circa 1940
Mr. Turner said:
Well, yes, of course I'd have to start small. I'm not really frightened of people laughing at me, just that they wouldn't be accepting, which disturbs me more than anything (I enjoy tolerating people, 'cept those whom are horribly rude and obnoxious, lacking tact and decorum...but that's a rant for a different time)

From the time that myself and Riley Dee have been here, I've greatly enjoyed the style that he's pulled off, that is exactly what I'm looking/trying for. (If you happen to read this Riley Dee, I hope you don't mine my attempt to emulate the style that you've...umm...emulated.)

If anyone happens to know some online merchants who are inexpensive (not exactly 'cheap', but perhaps more whole-sale and the like), it would be greatly appreciated, I will of course check the local thrift shops and living relatively close to the Mall of America helps a bit.


I'm assuming that from the posts you are looking at the 1930s era?? (please corect me if I'm wrong!!!!)
To begin with I'm a younger guy,...31,...and used to work as a substitute teacher. Worked with kids often,....in school, Boy Scouts, etc....even was an Eagle Scout actually. So, I'm not to old to give some very relative advice.

First off, (and this is a cornerstone element!!),... look at how fellows of your AGE dressed back in the 1930s, and then dress your age. Do not shoot for an overly mature look,...even that could get you laughed at back in the 1930s-40s, etc! That's just common sense! Dress for the occasion and place circa 1930-1939,....you wouldnt have worn a suit to a diner, don't wear jeans and a t-shirt to a dance or high-end restuarant. Do not mix vintage eras, you'll just end up confusing others and yourself. History will take a back seat, and you wont be true to anything but a tasteless array of utter cluelessness!! 70s polyester,...30s-40s gabardine,....dont mix! Wearing big chop sideburns with a
goat-tee makes you LOOK like you are just trying to be something you are not! Do NOT be a Poser! If you want to dress this way, ask yourself why? At some point in your answer history should play a good sized role for you...if it doesnt than you can never truely do yourself justice wearing vintage. Everyone has such promise, but some loose their way somehow...don't fall into that pack.

Your clothing back then (and almost any era untill recently) has A LOT to do with where your geographical location is. Farm boys, the soda jerk, burger joint worker, diner cook, etc.What your parents did for a living, etc. Rural area versus small town or even big metropolis. Your area ALWAYS played a large part denoting what you were wearing. I have several high school year books here that I picked up a few days ago. Inisde you can see how the boys wore their clothes and exactly what they wore,..a vast array of clothing to be honest. Dont go by the "class picture" because for that you often times wore the best you had because as Ma always said, "you're getting your picture taken, wear something nice!" So the everyday clothing might not have been worn.

In addition, and this is VERY important, you will be percieved within the way you present your personna.

If you are flagrant and boisterous, you'll attract attention to yourself and your clothing. If you go about your business and ignore everyone, they may think you are a pretentious, snob....(aka Ass-H#$)! However, if you can just be level headed, friendly, and a good sport, you'll go about your way and after some time of high school redicule here and there from possibly the jocks or punks, you'll find your happy medium.
Of course, keep in mind,...the theater kids always got picked on when I was in high school,...whether you were just an average guy who loved acting in plays and drama,...or you were (30s slang) "light in the loafers". Hey, I played the part of Jacob Marley's Ghost and some other parts with a pretty gal by my side,...but that didn't mean I didnt get my share of the ridicule, lumped in with certain assumptions in that field! Of course I'm sure you already know all of this,....I'm just sayin'...clothing can highten the way you are percieved but has a lot to do with the way you conduct yourself. This is something that MANY, MANY people do not understand due to a lack of education or just plain lousy upbringing!

Here's a picture of a coach with some students in 1937, (Indian School in Pipestone, Minnesota). Note the student on the desk with jeans on, note the clothing, not to far off from "SOME" of the more "preppy" looks of today, but with some defferences.
wrest69.jpg


Also, here's a very cool site that's the cat's pajamas! You may be able to find some visual help:
http://www.old-yearbooks.com/mn/index.html

Also, important to keep in mind that with the dawning of the 1940s, many styles crossed right on over into the early 1940s as they did with every new decade! People were not well-off, most of them anyway, so they were not flashy wearing the best of the best around school.
Note how many guys are wearing neckties for instance in this photo,...not many,...maybe half?
1935%20swanton%20ohio12.jpg


Here, you'll note the simplicity of the dress,....trousers with a shirt and tie under sweater,..or no tie,..or no sweater,....This is 1936.
1936%20greenville%20penn33.jpg


Here's another page from a 1932 yearbook,.....note the fact that the pant legs are wide, note the way the clothes are worn,....
belvedere-il-1932-040.jpg


I'm trying to pick my brain as to where I might send ya for clothing, etc. from the 1930s (if that's the era of style you're looking to emulate). I'm trying to figure on where I might know of anything,....I sure am coming up shorthanded on that!! If I can think of anything I'll send the info to you.
 

Miss Neecerie

I'll Lock Up
Messages
6,616
Location
The land of Sinatra, Hoboken
The thing I think is most important...is incorporating parts of vintage dress that you actually -like-...slowly.

If you like hats..wear them..if that feels to -costumey- right now...start with something else....because nothing invites the whole scrutiny of peers like -your- attitude about how you are dressed...if you feel costumey...they will know.

Start slow..pick one thing...do that for a while...then slowly add other other elements as you get comfortable.

This has the added advantage of letting you find bargains on things...as you arnt trying to do it all so fast.
 

Mr. Turner

New in Town
Messages
25
Location
Minnesota, USA
I thank all of you for your input. I'm sure I'll find something that fits me. I'll keep my eye out for clothing that fits well together, without going overboard. (Probably a mixture of decades/amounts of glamour presented for the occasion)

I'm thankful for everyone being so gracious with their input and allowing their time to be presented to me to assist me in figuring out 'my style'. It just might take some time, but as my collection grows, I'll start posting in the 'What did you wear today' thread, so keep an eye out! (If any of you dress in a style that you find particularly fitting for one in my position, feel free to post it in here, or point it out in the other threads.)

Any more input would be greatly appreciated and accepted.
 

metropd

One Too Many
Messages
1,764
Location
North America
Let me say that when I was in high school I wore a suit and a fedora to school every single day from 10 grade up.
Every one wore skater clothing but they acceppted me, why because I was comfortable with myself. I managed to hang out with many diffrent groups and always had a friend to be with. This was a high school of over 3,000 kids.;)
 

metropd

One Too Many
Messages
1,764
Location
North America
Miss Neecerie said:
The thing I think is most important...is incorporating parts of vintage dress that you actually -like-...slowly.

If you like hats..wear them..if that feels to -costumey- right now...start with something else....because nothing invites the whole scrutiny of peers like -your- attitude about how you are dressed...if you feel costumey...they will know.

Start slow..pick one thing...do that for a while...then slowly add other other elements as you get comfortable.

This has the added advantage of letting you find bargains on things...as you arnt trying to do it all so fast.


:eusa_clap :eusa_clap Yes, I started with hats as freshman added ties than suits. By senior year I was wearing Hermes scarves tied as elaborate cravats.
 

EvenOdd

New in Town
Messages
36
Location
Missouri
I have also wondered how best to transition from jeans and t-shirt to something nicer. Like others have said here, the easiest route is to go slacks and a nice shirt. Tie can be added after people get used to the change.

Just be prepared when you begin wearing that classy strip of cloth, the tie. You'll be asked, "What are you dressed up for?" numerous times. I get it at least once a day here in college. I either say I'm dressed up to teach class (student teacher) or I give a smile and say I'm dressed up for life. I'm hoping I can eventually just be known and forgotten as "that guy who's always wearing the tie" so I don't get asked any more. Doesn't help that I started wearing weird ties like skinny flat-bottomed wool knit ties.

Best of luck to you. Take baby steps.
 

GwenLake

One of the Regulars
Messages
250
Location
Józefów, Poland
Feraud said:
I think this would be a good thread for our younger vintage aficionados to state their opinions and experiences. We older folks can talk all day long about peer pressure but are not in the same situation.
Well, so far I've yet to get a negative response, though I imagine it's harder for guys to dress outside the norm. It's also probably got a lot to do with location. Hats are still seen here a little bit, and most people don't even really notice what someone else is wearing.
 

Mr. Turner

New in Town
Messages
25
Location
Minnesota, USA
I'm just sad, but understand the idea, that we cannot wear hats in school. (Respect to the flag and all...)

We can wear them when coming in, or leaving school, but not while class is going on, or between classes. Although, wearing them around town is, of course, accepted.;)
 

The Shirt

Practically Family
Messages
852
Location
Minneapolis
As for keeping the costs down on a limited budget - I see you are from mpls. There are some fabulous vintage stores around town. I don't know how familiar you are with them. Lula has men's clothing and the owner is quite accomodating if you tell her you are looking for something specifically. There's also Succotash and Up Six in St. Paul. Ragstock (warehouse) also has inexpensive finds. Most are what I would deem 40's and 50's era. I know there are plenty of others but I admit I am looking for women's and honestly cannot remember if they have men's attire.

Good luck!
 

jake_fink

Call Me a Cab
Messages
2,279
Location
Taranna
Some looks are... um... well...

... likely to result in many and severe pummelings.

Case in point
belvedere-il-1932-0402.jpg


Good luck.
 

cowboy76

Suspended
Messages
394
Location
Pennsylvania, circa 1940
jake_fink said:
... likely to result in many and severe pummelings.

Case in point
belvedere-il-1932-0402.jpg


Good luck.


BWAAAAHHHHHAAHAAHAHAHAA!!!!lol

That's great! Yeah,...I didnt notice that little guy,....its much more than waht he's wearing though, that's the whole kit-n-kaboodle of "beat me up" right there!!! Poor little guy!:p
 

jgilbert

One of the Regulars
Messages
234
Location
Louisville, KY
I would not worry about what others think. Most are like you and just trying to get though life.

And being just a little different that most is a good thing.

I for one was the only kid in Jr. High wearing wing tips! Did change in to my Chucks for my paper route!

So go for it! And best of luck.
 

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