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Elizabeth Landers | Campus Chic Report

The Fine Young Gentleman

Published: Monday, November 5, 2012

Updated: Monday, November 5, 2012 06:11

Though I am an avid fashion consumer, menswear is not my area of expertise. I can tell you what looks good on a man and what doesn’t, but I quickly get lost in any specifics. Cue the friend to the rescue, Justin Jeffers aka The Fine Young Gentleman. Based in New York City, Justin humorously and tastefully blogs on the world of menswear. To help me fill my knowledge gap in this department, Justin agreed to an interview. Below, he answers questions on menswear and offers some tips for building a wardrobe.

Elizabeth Landers: How did you become involved in men’s fashion blogging?

Justin Jeffers: When I graduated college and was preparing myself for the real world — in my case, auditing — I consciously decided I wanted to dress in a professional and presentable manner. So I started doing some research into how things should fit, where to shop, how to judge quality, the history or men’s clothing, etcetera. However, I did not come across any blogs, books or magazines that really spoke to what I wanted on a regular basis, which was advice on how to dress for a professional setting. So I decided I was going to start my own blog on the subject.

EL: What is a good staple for a college-aged male?

JJ: A navy blue blazer is the first thing that comes to mind. But a solid navy suit is more versatile, as the jacket can be worn separately in any situation a navy blazer can be worn. You never know when you’ll need a suit for an interview, meeting or event.

EL: What is the best store for reasonably priced clothes for men in their early 20s?

JJ: It all depends on what you are looking for. ... First, avoid JoS. A. Bank like the plague. Just trust me on this one. For suits and shirts, I advise to always go custom [or] made to measure, which these days are quite affordable. It will last longer, look better and bring better returns. Remember, the most important thing is that something fits you well; quality is second. For suits, check out some made to measure operations like My.Suit, Black Lapel, Indochino and Knot Standard; they all can outfit you with a properly fitting suit for around $500. For shirts, check out all the above suit makers, as well as MyTailor and Luxire for custom and for off-the-rack shirts check Charles Tyrwhitt and Suitsupply

EL: What should every guy have in his wardrobe before he graduates?

JJ: I think there is a very basic set of essentials that every guy should have, regardless of age. A custom solid navy or charcoal suit; a navy blazer; one pair of brown dress shoes and one pair of black dress shoes, with dress belts to match; a solid white and a solid blue dress shirt; a white cotton pocket square; two or three nice ties.

EL: What are your thoughts on womenswear versus menswear?

JJ: Menswear is more concerned with rules, history and heritage. Almost everything we see now is just a reincarnation of something that has already been done. Menswear serves more of a practical and functional purpose. Womenswear is nearly rule-less. It is more artistic.

EL: If you had to wear one thing for the rest of your life, what would it be?

JJ: My Black Watch tartan tuxedo, because life is more fun in a tux.  

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Elizabeth Landers is a senior majoring in political science. She can be reached at Elizabeth.Landers@tufts.edu.

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