fit clinic / by laurel

Okay, fellas. We're about to get a bit uncomfortable with the subject I'm about to bring up. Not uncomfortable because I'm talking about bodily functions. I'm not. You'll be uncomfortable because you'll read what I'm about to say and think, "Well, she's not referring to me, so it's ok..."

But yes, I am referring to you. To you, and you can't convince me otherwise, because nearly every guy* I know has done this, currently does this, or will do this in the future. You'll shrug and laugh and think, "She's crazy, she doesn't know what she's talking about."

I do. Believe me, I do know what I'm talking about. So please, open your minds, and accept the fact that you do, in fact, fall into the category of men at whom this post is directed. It's cool. We're obviously still friends in spite of it, so you can breathe a little easier. However, once you've read what I'm about to say, you'd be remiss if you did not take action.

So, Guys. My guy friends. Readers of this blog who are dudes. 

WHAT'S with all the baggy dress pants?

I know, I know, you're all rolling your eyes right this minute, thinking, "I'm stylish enough. I could care less." Or, "Fashion is for idiots. I care so much more about things that matter, like Darfur. And Cancer." But I think it would behoove you to listen up and pay attention, because the Baggy Dress Pant (BDP) epidemic is one that afflicts nearly every 20-something dude I know. And you know what, fellas? I'm not the only girl who notices. In fact, I was just discussing the matter with Jen this morning ("Men are so clueless and buy such boxy ugly BAGGY suits!" That's a QUOTE, guys). And if not her, then dozens of girls before that. Trust me. We notice.

You are young. You are in the best physical shape you're probably ever going to be in from this point forward. Trust me. Your metabolism is speeding along now, but come your mid-40's, that won't always be the case. In general, you project an attitude of cool indifference with everything else you wear, and I must say, you wear it well. The jeans? Dig. The shoes? Love. The tees? The vintage? Boy friend, you look great 99% of the time. 

But then comes the time where you have to cast your Cons aside, ditch your denims, and toss your tees in favor of...dress clothes. Sigh. I know. Guys in general don't dig dressing up. I get that. It's not as comfortable, it's more expensive, blah blah blah. Listen, don't whine to me because I've been teetering around in sky high heels since I was old enough to walk in them (so, about two years ago). 

So I have to ask: Who taught you to dress that way? Voluminous, billowing trou with pleats? Was it MC Hammer? If the answer is no, then you shouldn't be wearing Hammer Pants. Pants that crunch and bunch around your ankles, pants whose crotches hang free and loose like a hippie in '69. Was it the 67-year-old Suit Salesman at Macy's? 'Cause I have to say, fellas, you don't want to dress like you're in the late autumn of your life. Know what I'm saying? 

I know, I know. Not all of you have girlfriends to shop for you. And some of you do, and yet you still persist with the BDP, in which case, either ur gurl isn't up to sartorial snuff, or you're not listening to her pleas against pleats. In which case, I'd suggest couples therapy instead of retail therapy. 

Do you know how a well-tailored, well-fit, slim-cut pair of dress pants can make you look? It can make you look amazing. Seriously. And people will notice how amazing you look. And then they'll compliment you on it, and you'll feel elated, and see how this is a great cycle to fall into? 

Now I know some of you are visual. Hell, all of you are visual if what they say is true, so I'm about to show you exactly what I'm talking about. GQ had a fantastic article in their May issue about upgrading the way you dress to reflect a better fit. Note that a better fit doesn't mean you have to spend tons of money on something frivolous. Rather, it's about knowing how to buy pants and shirts that fit your frame so you don't look like you're playing dress up in Uncle Don's suit closet again. 

Check out the before and after:

You see that? If you saw a little glimmer of yourself in the before pictures, don't sweat it. Just buy slimmer cut trousers, ok? And then maybe someday we can approach the subject of putting the whole outfit together.

Guys, I'm glad we had this little chat. I hope that you'll take heed and think next time you take those BDP's out of your closet for a lap around the corporate track. Trust me. They should stay buried in the back of your closet for a thousand eternities to come. 

*Adam and Jon: You will be thrilled to know that you are the ONLY exception. Huzzah. Your tailoring is impeccable.