Does Everyone Need a Style Formula?


yrmama’s brother (technically yruncle, I guess) told us about the moment when he learned that his dress socks should match his dress pants rather than his dress shoes. He’d been doing it all wrong. Then J.M. shared his personal journey from always wearing a tie to work to now wearing sport coats and colorful socks instead.

My daughter said, “so socks and a jacket equal a tie?”

yrmama said, “I don’t have a formula for getting dressed. But I also don’t want one.”

yruncle, “ah, but I’m sure you do, even if you can’t articulate it.”

J.M., “Creativity blossoms within boundaries.”

Just this morning I read an article on Man Repeller about Larry David’s formula for getting dressed and was struck by how intimately it spoke to me.

Larry David

In short, Larry apparently believes he should only wear one “nice” piece of clothing at a time. More than that and he’s “too dressed.” If that is his “fashion theory,” then maybe I have one too. Mine is based on the realization that I win more when I wear one interesting thing at a time.

For example, today’s ensemble as seen above. We see the Old Navy jeans again, a pair of very sensible black Dansko boots and a plain, old, navy blue, v-neck t-shirt. See what I did there? A dark, sober, unremarkable backdrop for the real point of the whole exercise, a vintage sailor sweater! Yay! My mobile carbon dating system puts the sweater’s origin at right around 1983. It is a dense cotton knit lined to encourage maximum sweating, with metal buttons and was probably the top half of a suit. When I discovered it there were eNORmous shoulder pads that I unceremoniously cut out and threw away. Presto, from monstrosity to a quirky “find” just like that.

I think Larry David and I have discovered the secret to having just enough fun getting dressed while being relatively aged. He always looks pretty good. He is also relatively more aged than I. But I still think with the passing years I look more like I fell into a pile of laundry if I have too much fun getting dressed.

Remember, restraint my dears, but not too much. Do you have a formula or is it just a free for all?