Author Topic: I hate corporate clothes  (Read 11369 times)

Money Badger

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I hate corporate clothes
« on: April 23, 2015, 08:10:02 PM »
I need a drink!   In the few pathetic years of corporate America I hopefully have left, public speaking and visiting customers requires sports coat/slacks recently and I hadn't gone "corporate" shopping in a long time...   The audacity of spending $300 for a sports coat made me physically ill at Men's Wearhouse (2 for 1 special was their big draw, but $300 is a chunk towards my retirement so I walked out... QUICKLY).   

While I wished to try Goodwill next, I relented due to my unusual jacket size and stored up my coupons to go to Kohl's...   After the "baseline sale price" plus some Kohl's cash stored on my "app" on my phone plus a discount coupon, i now have a swanky jacket for $70 and a bonus "winter weight" version that was on the clearance rack (it was a return but exact right size) for $45.   Both supposedly were "retail" price around $200 which of course is just a fantasy price to make me feel good.   Hoping $115 for 2 jackets sets me up to retire (in style)!!


Rezdent

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Re: I hate corporate clothes
« Reply #1 on: April 23, 2015, 09:46:16 PM »
I hear you and offer you a virtual bottle of Angry Orchard Apple Cider.
You are bucking up against The Costume.
As if, somehow, the clothes make a difference in your expertise, knowledge, or credibility.

I know my stuff.  Whether i am kicking back in sweat pants or wearing the suit, it doesn't matter.
To be honest I would probably work for fun if it didn't involve the stupid costume that is out of sync with Texas weather (oh, plus the insane hours).  My clothes turn into something sinister around May - it's inhumane.  Why?  Why should I wear a suit in the Texas summer so that some shallow customer thinks me an expert?  Dammit, I know my stuff, already.
FWIW...
If you pick a neutral color for the main stuff you can eventually build a mix/match wardrobe with second hand stuff that is cheap and good, even if you are an unusual size.

I go with a similar color scheme for everything...black.  I'm female, so that means black skirts and jackets (and shoes).  These aren't always  easy to find at thrift stores  - but persistence can really pay back.  I add a different color shirt/accessory as needed.
My boss has mentioned several times that I wear a lot of black.  My comeback is that "my skin tone" works best with "jewel tones" and these need a lot of black to "pop" when I do presentations. YMMV.
My boss is the only one who has mentioned it - I don't see it as a big deal, because I KNOW my stuff.  If you are middle of the pack in your field, you might need to work harder on the the costuming until you are established.
/rant.

velocistar237

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Re: I hate corporate clothes
« Reply #2 on: April 24, 2015, 08:02:05 AM »
1. Figure out your measurements.
2. Buy on ebay.
3. ...
4. Reduce expenses!

tarheeldan

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Re: I hate corporate clothes
« Reply #3 on: April 24, 2015, 08:13:46 AM »
You can find great deals online, most do free returns and you can also have first tried stuff on at the store to find your size.
http://dappered.com/  is a good resource

CheapskateWife

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Re: I hate corporate clothes
« Reply #4 on: April 24, 2015, 08:26:35 AM »
I go with a similar color scheme for everything...black.  I'm female, so that means black skirts and jackets (and shoes).  These aren't always  easy to find at thrift stores  - but persistence can really pay back.  I add a different color shirt/accessory as needed.
My boss has mentioned several times that I wear a lot of black.  My comeback is that "my skin tone" works best with "jewel tones" and these need a lot of black to "pop" when I do presentations. YMMV.
My boss is the only one who has mentioned it - I don't see it as a big deal, because I KNOW my stuff.  If you are middle of the pack in your field, you might need to work harder on the the costuming until you are established.
/rant.

I think a more appropriate comeback would have been "You seem to wear alot of pants"  :D

misschedda

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Re: I hate corporate clothes
« Reply #5 on: April 24, 2015, 08:37:51 AM »
I share your hate of corporate clothes. Ugh.

big_slacker

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Re: I hate corporate clothes
« Reply #6 on: April 24, 2015, 02:13:31 PM »
Add me to the list of corporate clothes haters. I don't own a tie, but do have slacks and dress shirts as I'm a IT consultant and can't show up to most client sites in jeans and a T. Ross and Marshall's have been good to me, as is costco for shirts.

And IMO someone who is fit from exercise and eating right looks better in off the rack discount stuff than a fat guy in a nice suit.

Jakejake

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Re: I hate corporate clothes
« Reply #7 on: April 24, 2015, 07:32:42 PM »
I'm lucky to work at a school where even the principal wears blue jeans sometimes, we're casual. Our 457 folks came in to speak at a staff meeting recently and had the whole corporate suit thing going on, one guy had so much sweat rolling off his head, by the end of his presentation it looked like he had just come in from a rain storm. I felt really bad for him (and happy for myself that I can just peel off layers to a tee shirt or tank top and nobody cares).

ender

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Re: I hate corporate clothes
« Reply #8 on: April 25, 2015, 07:34:20 AM »
I bought four pairs of "like new" dress pants (seriously, people must have worn them only a few times) and three dress shirts for I think $21 at Good Will.

I shudder to think what those would have cost new, even if I only wear a few of them consistently I come out way ahead.

nazar

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Re: I hate corporate clothes
« Reply #9 on: April 25, 2015, 07:48:39 AM »
Last year when my mega corp announced casual dress every day I was thrilled.  I can choose to wear jeans or khakis every day except those occasions where business attire is necessary such as forays in the outside world or other public contact/events.  If I stick it out here I may never spend another dime on clothes I wouldn't choose to wear myself.  It really makes sense - enact a policy that cost nothing and makes people happy. 

We've come a long way from mandatory closed toe shoes, pantry hose  and matronly skirts, baby!

Kashmani

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Re: I hate corporate clothes
« Reply #10 on: April 25, 2015, 10:03:40 AM »
Sheesh - I am an attorney with a highly unusual frame (99.9999th percentile) and have to wear suits every day. Try spending $3,500 on three tailored suits and six shirts every two years, and that's the travelling tailor, made in China, version, not the one produced locally in North America. Plus six ties at $50 each plus a paid of dress shoes at $200-250. and the budget is a minimum of $2,000 a year just for business clothes, without any allowance for casual clothes yet, or allowance for periodic dry-cleaning of said suits.

[Yes, I know, I also have to walk through the snow, uphill, three miles each day...]


MrSal

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Re: I hate corporate clothes
« Reply #11 on: April 25, 2015, 11:09:23 AM »
Honestly, buying off discount suits and such are not worth it in my opinion.

I already went that route and every single year due to use and wear the fabric would start to rip or the suit would start getting sheen which looks really bad on a suit.

I rather nowadays pay a good tailor to make suits which will last a lifetime. Sure they are more expensive than off the rack but not only they fit better and are custom made but they last a lifetime instead of just 1-2 years.

Good suits will last longer than you will! - We still have a lot of suits that came from my great grandfather and they are all pristine and super high quality - 100% fine cashmere and such! They would probably cost nowadays thousands upon thousands Honestly I would wear them if they were my size.

OSUBearCub

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Re: I hate corporate clothes
« Reply #12 on: April 27, 2015, 08:51:39 AM »
When I managed restaurants (high-end steak houses) we had to wear a suit every day and that suit had to survive frequent walks into the kitchen.  Grease, sauces, red wine mishaps, often sweaty while running around - it was a war zone.  But our corporate clientele expected us to look our best since they were all in immaculate suits for business lunches and such.

We all went to K&J Fashion Superstore (like a VERY cut-rate TJ Max) and would pick up suits for right around a hundred bucks.  I'm an odd size so I would spend about $40 on tailoring at the dry cleaner.  Quite a few independent cleaners have on-site alteration services.  Off the rack, the suits looked like crap but a little tailoring went a long way.  And when Mr. Toodrunktofunction spilled a glass of red on one, it wasn't the end of the world.

velocistar237

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Re: I hate corporate clothes
« Reply #13 on: April 28, 2015, 08:01:51 AM »
My attitude toward corporate/fancy/dress-up/whatever clothes is shaped by how little I knew about clothes while growing up. I knew almost nothing, and I remember being insecure about how I looked. Now I like my clothes. They fit, they match okay, I know something about why things look the way they do. It feels good. I even like wearing suits, though I might not if I had to wear them every day.


No one else has echoed the idea, but I was serious about ebay.

I occasionally wander into Goodwill, and if I find anything nice that I don't need or that doesn't fit, I'll sometimes buy it anyway and sell it on ebay. Listings usually contain detailed measurements. A tailor can measure you, and you take what you buy to get altered, within limits. I took an alterations class, so now I just do it for myself.

Take a look at an example listing (scroll down). This suit retails for $2000+, and it sold for $144.

Here are some potentially helpful posts:

http://putthison.com/post/318472789/clothesshoppingonebay
http://putthison.com/post/11184350961/if-youre-looking-to-buy-suits-or-shoes-on-ebay
http://putthison.com/post/7807163078/q-and-answer-how-much-can-my-clothes-be-altered

There's also consignment stores.

Blonde Lawyer

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Re: I hate corporate clothes
« Reply #14 on: April 28, 2015, 08:52:21 AM »
What I hate even more is spending the money to dry clean my corporate clothes.  I definitely get many wears out of them before I send them off to be cleaned but in a dual corporate household the dry cleaning bill can be staggering.  We have shopped around and found the cheapest that doesn't add much time to our ride.  They also have a rewards program so I get some good discounts here and there but it is still ridiculous.  According to Mint we spent $570 on dry cleaning in 2014.  That's getting things cleaned way less than we should.  I also wash in the machine anything that can survive it but I'm not willing to try it with the suits. 

I'll hang my head in shame though that we haven't mastered my husband's dress shirts.  They come out so much better from the dry cleaner.  Home ironing/starching just doesn't get it right and takes a fair amount of time.  Maybe I'll give it a go again next time we have a batch saved up.  We can never get the collars just right or the pleats or the spaces between the buttons . . .

Elderwood17

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Re: I hate corporate clothes
« Reply #15 on: April 28, 2015, 11:22:05 AM »
In my last job, our corporate culture shifted to business casual so my corporate wardrobe faded away.  But then I started this new job and it is very formal suit and ties five days a week.  Yech.  I take advantage of the big sales at Joseph A Banks (buy one get three free.  Who buys them at full price?) or online. I am lucky I can buy off the rack sizes, my wife can hem the slacks, and I rarely get things dry cleaned.  Nonetheless it adds up but I look at it as part of the cost of doing business and a necessity for my job which provides a much larger than average salary, just like keeping my certifications current is a cost of doing business in my field.

Blonde Lawyer

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Re: I hate corporate clothes
« Reply #16 on: April 28, 2015, 11:53:01 AM »
In my last job, our corporate culture shifted to business casual so my corporate wardrobe faded away.  But then I started this new job and it is very formal suit and ties five days a week.  Yech.  I take advantage of the big sales at Joseph A Banks (buy one get three free.  Who buys them at full price?) or online. I am lucky I can buy off the rack sizes, my wife can hem the slacks, and I rarely get things dry cleaned.  Nonetheless it adds up but I look at it as part of the cost of doing business and a necessity for my job which provides a much larger than average salary, just like keeping my certifications current is a cost of doing business in my field.

The bolded part is a great way of looking at things. My dry cleaning bill is really small when I look at it as a percentage of my generous salary.

latinlover77

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Re: I hate corporate clothes
« Reply #17 on: April 29, 2015, 06:19:37 PM »
Corporate clothes suck and I usually change to my street clothes after work.

I really dont care too much about style for my work clothes as a man. If it decently fits, its good. Ive saved money that way.

For street wear, I buy stylish quality jeans and wear interesting t-shirts found at my local thrift shop. My fav one is a "dumb starbucks" shirt I found for a buck;)

Flynlow

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Re: I hate corporate clothes
« Reply #18 on: April 29, 2015, 08:17:10 PM »
Nonetheless it adds up but I look at it as part of the cost of doing business and a necessity for my job which provides a much larger than average salary, just like keeping my certifications current is a cost of doing business in my field.

I have a similar philosophy as you. :)

It amused me when a younger friend of mine (just out of college) posted a story to their Facebook about how, "I'm a Millennial, I'm different than you corporate sellouts, I'll never wear a suit, and if that means different choices, so be it!"

When I was 22, I thought similarly, and then I realized that a suit is like a Halloween costume, or for you RPG enthusiasts, a piece of equipment that grants you +50% salary ;).  I have seen a marked increase in respect and reward due to "looking the part".  It amuses me to no end, because I think it's ridiculous, but no one said the world has to make sense.  The way I figure it, I can either complain about the rules, or work them to my favor.  So as long as suits will give such a nice benefit, this is me:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CiweaZQ8g5U&noredirect=1


Also, enough said:

« Last Edit: April 29, 2015, 08:20:40 PM by Flynlow »

DrowsyBee

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Re: I hate corporate clothes
« Reply #19 on: April 29, 2015, 09:46:58 PM »
Just to speak for the other side here, I am starting to love corporate clothes. Late last year I was turning up to work in shorts and flip flops because it was just....hot outside. But then I started finding corporate clothes on sale that fit well, and I just genuinely liked how I looked in them.

Especially as I'm in a conservative financial services industry, and I gladly wear tastefully loud clothes that represent my personality, that majorly contrast to those around me.

Maybe it's because I'm on the other end of the spectrum and don't actually have to wear the clothes, so I choose to, rather than everyone else here that is required to and therefore resents it.

EarlyStart

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Re: I hate corporate clothes
« Reply #20 on: May 02, 2015, 10:16:27 PM »
I like everything about them except the cost. I like how I  look in a suit. Interestingly enough, The Motley Fool has no dress code for its employees. There are videos on YouTube where they explain the philosophy behind it. It's something to the tune of, "If we didn't believe your judgement was sound enough to dress appropriately, we wouldn't give you the chance to work here".

BriarRose111

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Re: I hate corporate clothes
« Reply #21 on: May 03, 2015, 11:25:26 AM »
I like the clothes but don't like paying for them.  Also, in keeping with my budding decluttering initiative, I'm noticing alot of coworkers who seem to like to have a large amount of clothing.  They like to wear many different outfits.  Now, I used to be that way too.  But living in a smaller home with tiny 1940's sized clothes closets, having less and sticking to just the outfits I really like has turned out to be my approach.  The plus side of this is that my clothes seem to be more in style and I have only those that fit me.  I don't have space or desire to hang on to stuff to wear just once in awhile or hope something will fit me again if I lose a few pounds.   

If I had a walk in closet, and was still in my pre-MMM mindframe, I'd probably embrace the norm a little more regarding work (and all) clothes. 

Money Badger

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Re: I hate corporate clothes
« Reply #22 on: May 05, 2015, 09:00:40 PM »
Wow, lots of good ideas on denying "the man" the corporate clothes tax...   All except the attorneys who are getting shafted by high "almost mandatory" clothing bills...    (will resist lawyer jokes)

The last 2 days, I got revenge.    I wore 2 button down shirts to visit a customer...  One was a 31 years old "classic" tattersall shirt from LL Bean I received as a gift in high school that amazingly still fits (barely).   Another was $19 shirt from Dickey's bought as a gift from Tractor Supply Company 11 years ago.   I actually received a compliment yesterday from my customer and some snide co-worker remarks today for "pushing the bell curve" of the dress code.   If they only knew...   Bwah, ha, ha, ha...

LiveLean

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Re: I hate corporate clothes
« Reply #23 on: May 06, 2015, 07:13:41 PM »
I had to wear ties in high school, worked in on-air TV in my 20s and early 30s and had a huge wardrobe. Now out of TV and in my mid-40s, I'm in the best shape of my life and recently donated about six suits and 20 sportscoats since nothing fit. Fortunately, I don't work in a suit world anymore. You really can get by with one suit and 2-3 sportscoats.

My goal every year is to go without wearing a tie since it means I didn't have to attend any weddings or funerals. Unfortunately, I've had to attend one of each already this year.

MoneyRx

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Re: I hate corporate clothes
« Reply #24 on: May 08, 2015, 08:40:05 AM »

 or for you RPG enthusiasts, a piece of equipment that grants you +50% salary ;).


LOL

unmetamorphosed

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Re: I hate corporate clothes
« Reply #25 on: May 08, 2015, 02:26:59 PM »
I hear you and offer you a virtual bottle of Angry Orchard Apple Cider.
You are bucking up against The Costume.
As if, somehow, the clothes make a difference in your expertise, knowledge, or credibility.

I know my stuff.  Whether i am kicking back in sweat pants or wearing the suit, it doesn't matter.
To be honest I would probably work for fun if it didn't involve the stupid costume that is out of sync with Texas weather (oh, plus the insane hours).  My clothes turn into something sinister around May - it's inhumane.  Why?  Why should I wear a suit in the Texas summer so that some shallow customer thinks me an expert?  Dammit, I know my stuff, already.
FWIW...
If you pick a neutral color for the main stuff you can eventually build a mix/match wardrobe with second hand stuff that is cheap and good, even if you are an unusual size.

I go with a similar color scheme for everything...black.  I'm female, so that means black skirts and jackets (and shoes).  These aren't always  easy to find at thrift stores  - but persistence can really pay back.  I add a different color shirt/accessory as needed.
My boss has mentioned several times that I wear a lot of black.  My comeback is that "my skin tone" works best with "jewel tones" and these need a lot of black to "pop" when I do presentations. YMMV.
My boss is the only one who has mentioned it - I don't see it as a big deal, because I KNOW my stuff.  If you are middle of the pack in your field, you might need to work harder on the the costuming until you are established.
/rant.

A conversation with a new coworker last month:

Her: Has there recently been a death in your family...?
Me: What? No.
Her: Oh, then why do you wear so much black?

Neutral dominated capsule wardrobe, ftw.
« Last Edit: May 08, 2015, 02:28:32 PM by unmetamorphosed »

Kriegsspiel

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Re: I hate corporate clothes
« Reply #26 on: May 08, 2015, 04:48:32 PM »
I hear you and offer you a virtual bottle of Angry Orchard Apple Cider.
You are bucking up against The Costume.
As if, somehow, the clothes make a difference in your expertise, knowledge, or credibility.

I know my stuff.  Whether i am kicking back in sweat pants or wearing the suit, it doesn't matter.
To be honest I would probably work for fun if it didn't involve the stupid costume that is out of sync with Texas weather (oh, plus the insane hours).  My clothes turn into something sinister around May - it's inhumane.  Why?  Why should I wear a suit in the Texas summer so that some shallow customer thinks me an expert?  Dammit, I know my stuff, already.
FWIW...
If you pick a neutral color for the main stuff you can eventually build a mix/match wardrobe with second hand stuff that is cheap and good, even if you are an unusual size.

I go with a similar color scheme for everything...black.  I'm female, so that means black skirts and jackets (and shoes).  These aren't always  easy to find at thrift stores  - but persistence can really pay back.  I add a different color shirt/accessory as needed.
My boss has mentioned several times that I wear a lot of black.  My comeback is that "my skin tone" works best with "jewel tones" and these need a lot of black to "pop" when I do presentations. YMMV.
My boss is the only one who has mentioned it - I don't see it as a big deal, because I KNOW my stuff.  If you are middle of the pack in your field, you might need to work harder on the the costuming until you are established.
/rant.

A conversation with a new coworker last month:

Her: Has there recently been a death in your family...?
Me: What? No.
Her: Oh, then why do you wear so much black?

Neutral dominated capsule wardrobe, ftw.

In South Texas, no less. Very ballsy.

unmetamorphosed

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Re: I hate corporate clothes
« Reply #27 on: May 08, 2015, 10:12:14 PM »
I hear you and offer you a virtual bottle of Angry Orchard Apple Cider.
You are bucking up against The Costume.
As if, somehow, the clothes make a difference in your expertise, knowledge, or credibility.

I know my stuff.  Whether i am kicking back in sweat pants or wearing the suit, it doesn't matter.
To be honest I would probably work for fun if it didn't involve the stupid costume that is out of sync with Texas weather (oh, plus the insane hours).  My clothes turn into something sinister around May - it's inhumane.  Why?  Why should I wear a suit in the Texas summer so that some shallow customer thinks me an expert?  Dammit, I know my stuff, already.
FWIW...
If you pick a neutral color for the main stuff you can eventually build a mix/match wardrobe with second hand stuff that is cheap and good, even if you are an unusual size.

I go with a similar color scheme for everything...black.  I'm female, so that means black skirts and jackets (and shoes).  These aren't always  easy to find at thrift stores  - but persistence can really pay back.  I add a different color shirt/accessory as needed.
My boss has mentioned several times that I wear a lot of black.  My comeback is that "my skin tone" works best with "jewel tones" and these need a lot of black to "pop" when I do presentations. YMMV.
My boss is the only one who has mentioned it - I don't see it as a big deal, because I KNOW my stuff.  If you are middle of the pack in your field, you might need to work harder on the the costuming until you are established.
/rant.

A conversation with a new coworker last month:

Her: Has there recently been a death in your family...?
Me: What? No.
Her: Oh, then why do you wear so much black?

Neutral dominated capsule wardrobe, ftw.

In South Texas, no less. Very ballsy.

Fire cannot kill a dragon.

MM_MG

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Re: I hate corporate clothes
« Reply #28 on: May 09, 2015, 12:52:50 AM »
I view it like this…

If you need to wear a suit for your given career, just spend the money and get a few nice suits.  As mentioned above the J A Banks buy 1 get 3 free is a great option.  If your clothes help you make money than you shouldn't worry about buying them.  $1000 spent for a $100,000+ return in income is money well spent in my mind.  If you are lucky enough to be one of the people who can buy 2nd hand clothes or suits and look professional, go for it.  I've worked on many multi-million dollar deals and have never heard a single person talk about the clothes worn by anyone.  :)