David Coggins is a well-known writer in the menswear space. His Substack, The Contender (great name), is an excellent read.
Among the many gems is a post containing his golden rules for menswear.
But here are rules that are iron-clad—there’s nothing wishy-washy here. It’s invigorating to stake out a claim and declare what’s right and what’s wrong. I’m enjoying this moment of clarity. I'm sure you’ll parse this and try to find an exception—then we’ll have to agree to disagree.
- If the shirt is bold make the tie subdued.
- The knot of your tie should be smaller than your collar.
- Something worn out from love is good, from negligence: not so good.
- Beware buying hats on vacation.
- If you love something and wear it often then buy another before you need it.
- You don’t need to own black socks.
- If something doesn’t fit get it altered, otherwise give it away.
- It’s worth indulging on shoes and a good overcoat.
- For most men, made-to-measure is as good as bespoke.
- Don’t wear something because an actor wore it (unless the actor is Fred Astaire).
- A sport coat should cover your seat.
- “Slim-fit” does not make you look slim.
- Try the suit on before the big event—things sometimes “shrink” in the closet.
- A black suit is not a tuxedo.
- Have one dress shirt you genuinely like (probably light blue).
- Somebody will always notice your shoes, choose them accordingly.
- Know what color suits you.
- You can get away with a daring scarf.
- There are no funny t-shirts.
- Try a pocket square, start with a white one if you’re timid.
So many gems.