My clothes problem began when I overheard a conversation in the men’s toilet of my work.
Two of my collegues were talking about another member of staff. Not one to walk away from a bit of gossip, I sat in my cubicle and listened eagerly to their conversation.
After a few minutes of chat, I was still no wiser as to the identidy of the target of their bitching. They simply referred to him as that guy with that always turns up to the office wearing the same brown jacket and same old pair of slip on scuffed brown leather shoes. I began to feel some pity for their ‘victim’.
They left the toilet and I emerged from my secret listening post to wash my hands. Standing staring back at me in the mirror was the person they had been talking about… it was me!
Brown jacket, brown shoes.
It seemed I no longer required a name, as a vague description of my choice of clothes would instantly inform someone of who I was. I went home that night and thought it through. I was upset with them, but more so with myself. It seemed I had turned into a cliche.
Time For Change
That night I went late night clothes shopping. I purchased a variety of shoes, shirts, trousers and jackets. My new look would follow a theme, but would be mixed up a little daily. I spoke to the in-store male fashion advisor in one shop, who was more than helpful and not at all pushy. I left with a lighter bank balance, but also a higher sense of self esteem.
The following morning I dressed in a white shirt, smart blue blazer and dark trousers. I still love brown shoes, so put on my new shiny full stitched leather brogues. As I walked to my car, I put ‘yesterdays’ shoes and jacket in the bin.
Walking into my office, I could feel the gaze of my collegues as I walked to my desk. It felt good. I even caught a few joke wolf whistles from them lol. Throughout the day people commented on my new look and this did wonders for my self esteem.
Sure, I might not always get the look right every day, but the old cliche of ‘him with the scuffed shoes’ has gone. I had gotten into the habit of simply dressing in automatic mode every day. It took a rude conversation to shake me up, but I’m glad it happened. I now choose my outfits carefully the night before, and make a point of updating my wardope a few times a year.
My wardrope change tips:
- Chuck out anything that is worn, threaded or done
- Polish your shoes (women always check out shoes!)
- Speak to fashion guides / in-store advisors
- Create a budget for buying new clothes
- Only buy good quality clothes, but shop around
Also, don’t be afraid to ask a stranger where he bought his clothes. If you see someone with a look that you love… chances are they will be only too happy to help you out.