Becoming a Sharp-Dressed Man

Photo by Barton Glasser

Photo by Barton Glasser

If a picture is worth a thousand words, what commentary does your style “picture” tell? ZZ Top knew its importance, and no one’s ever written a song about a mediocre dresser.

I discovered the importance of successful dressing when I transitioned from dairy farmer to insurance agent. My appearance needed to change, but I didn’t know how to go about it. So I sought the advice of a peer, and his wisdom stayed with me throughout the years: “Go to a large city, sit in the lobby of an expensive hotel, and see who catches your eye. Take notice of their style in great detail, and copy it.” After that, every plaid flannel shirt was donated to Goodwill, and I’ve never looked back!

The good news is, even a little attention to your wardrobe goes a long way.

Following are my four top tips for successful styling:

1. Be different. You don’t have to dress like your friends! Dare to stand out. Are you a boring dresser? With a bit of effort, you could be an amazing one. What colors are in your favorite patterned shirt? Instead of pairing it with your go-to blue jeans, try white or red ones, for example. Or wear a shirt that has contrasting cuffs with jeans. Believe me, they aren’t as flashy as they sound, and the compliments you’ll receive will far surpass any awkwardness you may feel at first.

2. Take some time. Don’t wear wrinkled clothing. If you don’t know how to iron, ask an older practitioner of this dying art. They’ll be overjoyed to give you a lesson.

3. Step up your dress, and your attitude will follow. There’s something about knowing you look good that feeds your confidence.

4. Be open to female opinion. Let’s face it, most women have an innate fashion sense — and they are probably dying to share it with you. Ask their opinion.

If you want to stand above the crowd in personal, business, or social situations, pay attention to your appearance. Others are paying attention to you.

Rob RehbergStyle