Style Scenario: Splurge Worthy (and Cheaper Alternatives) Smart Casual Cozy
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What are you going to wear? Sometimes it’s good to look at a few suggestions then add your own tweaks and ideas. That’s what these are for. Don’t worry, we won’t be doing this often. But I think a lot of us are guilty of NOT wearing our “nice stuff” enough. Especially during our down time, which is precisely when we’re almost certainly among the people and other living creatures we care the most about. So, treat yo self, and wear your nice stuff whenever the heck you want to. They’re just clothes. All splurge items are shown below, but less expensive alternatives are offered in the text.
The Sweater: J. Crew Wallace & Barnes Wool Cable-Knit Shawl-Collar Cardigan – $106.80 w/ GOBIG ($178). The Wallace & Barnes Line from J. Crew seems to have dodged most of the struggles that their regular line has been going through. So paying a bit of a premium here isn’t too off base. This is NOT the cardigan in the image at the top of the post. That’s an old, cheap, cotton J. Crew Factory shawl collar, which is now out of stock.
The Cheaper Alternative: Try this cotton option from GAP for a cheaper, but still textured option.
The Watch: Hamilton Khaki Pilot Pioneer – $520 ($1045). Could look great on a NATO strap, does more than juuuuuust fine on that stainless steel bracelet. 41mm. Interior rotating bezel. Sapphire crystal. 100m water resistance. On big-time sale (still) at Nordstrom Rack, so, should have a real warranty since Nordstrom has to be an authorized retailer.
The Cheaper Alternative: I think Dan Henry’s 1963 Pilot, on a black nato, would look great here.
The Shirt: Ledbury The Blue Hudson Pinpoint Oxford Dress Shirt – $98. No, I’m not arguing that you need to wear a button down all the time on your down time, but the phenomenon known as “UNEXPECTED COLLAR!“ can keep your brain (and significant other) on their toes. Enclothed cognition folks. It’s real. Ledbury’s shirts are, in a word: incredible. They’re also expensive. But this is from their new, less expensive line! Yes, $100 for one shirt is still pricey. Totally understood.
The Cheaper Alternative: The $25 OCBD from Goodthreads would do just fine here too.
The Sunglasses: Ray-Ban 54mm Polarized Wayfarer Sunglasses – $75. There is no better bang-for-buck ration in sunglasses, than these Italian Made Ray-Ban wayfarers from Nordstrom Rack. I’m shocked they still have them for $75.
The Cheaper Alternative: Cheap wayfarers aren’t too hard to find (although they’ll feel cheap, because they are).
The Bag: Banana Republic Suede Tote – $178.80 when 40% off ($298). In case you’re headed out for a long weekend, or just the store, or a farmer’s market, or to watch your kid’s soccer game (if you have kids, and they play soccer). It’s an investment, but it can be had for 40% – 52% off if you play your cards right and you’re patient. Got one during the last fat sale for under $150. And it’s really nice.
The Cheaper Alternative: B.R.’s nylon totes go for around $35 on sale.
The Belt: Suitsupply Brown Suede Belt – $79. Ships and returns for free since it’s Suitsupply. If spending $80 on a belt seems dumb to you (I’m in that camp myself), then…
The Cheaper Alternative: UNIQLO has a brown suede option for $30.
The Boots: Dalton WEATHERPROOF Wingtip Boot – $329 ($475). One of the bigger stars of the big Rediscover America sale that AE is running. For a cheaper option, I mean, you still have JC Penny Camlins laying around, don’t you? No?
The Cheaper Alternative: Try these $100 boots at Nordstrom Rack.
The Jeans: Bonobos Premium Stretch Jeans in Atchison Medium Wash – $148. Really, really nice jeans. Which makes them really, really expensive.
The Cheaper Alternative: For more than $100 less you could always hit up Old Navy.
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