Dressing for Success: Buying a Suit for a Job Interview

Buying a suit for a job interview is an opportunity to start building the wardrobe that will take you up the corporate ladder. Don’t think of an interview suit as a one-time investment that you won’t see a return on—your interview suit can become a power suit.

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Dressing for Success: Deciphering the Dress Code

Company dress codes are rarely written down in the professional world. While it’s common sense not to wear flip-flops and board shorts to the office (unless you would for a surfboard company), the rest is left for you to decipher.

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Men’s Spring Fashion Trends

Belisi Look of the Week

That 70s Guy

While leisure suits are thankfully still only appropriate for 70s theme parties and Halloween, suits and fashions are decidedly more 70s inspired for Spring ‘08, especially for younger suit wearers. One notable difference is that you won’t see bell bottoms with these slimming suits. For an urban, edgy look that says you’re hip and fashionable, try these styles on for size:

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What to wear to a meeting

_e5h9877 After college you thought all you had to do was get a suit. End of story. That may have done the trick for your first entry level job but now the stakes are higher. If you want to climb the corporate ladder, you have to dress the part.

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Eire-ttitude: Look of the Week

First things first. Eire is short for Eireann, which means Ireland (as in 'Éirinn go breá).

If you’re not used to saying words like trousers, tweed or herringbone, you’d better brush up on your early 20th century vocabulary. There are many looks popular this fall and winter but one of the most distinct is the early 20th century style inspired by our fair Irish friends. We’re not suggesting that you suit up in knickers but you might consider picking up a few plaid, tweed, wool and herringbone pieces to add to your wardrobe.

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Men's Fashion: Are you hot or cold?

Brooks Brothers or Ralph Lauren? Dior or Prada? When it comes to suits, you want to make the right choice, consideriBlacksheep_vng you could spend hundreds or thousands of dollars on one. Most guys want to look their best but may not feel comfortable asking other guys their opinon on what they wear. And single guys may not have a significant other at the ready to cast a vote. Men.Style.com has a way for you to get others’ opinions on the hottest fashion without having to take your buddies to the fitting room with you.

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The Power of Color in Fashion and how to make it work for you

_e5h9054 You can’t help it. When a woman in a red dress walks into a room, or a man in a striking black suit wearing a vibrant red tie, you turn and look. Or how about how relaxed you feel in a green room? Color is all around us and has more influence over our moods that you might think. When it comes to fashion, color is a powerful way to send non-verbal messages about your confidence and ability.

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Gifts guys will love: Belisi Gift Guide for Father’s Day and all year long

Whether the dad in your life is a rough and tumble kind of guy or prefers Armani suits to t-shirts and jeans, there’s a gift out there that will show him how much you appreciate all that he does for you. Whether he’d rather spend the afternoon improving his handicap or playing video games, there’s something in this Father’s Day gift guide for your dad, husband or significant other. We’re skipping some of the more obvious big-ticket items like TVs and grills. Instead we’re giving you some fresh and creative ideas. And if that special guy isn’t a dad, he’ll love these items too!

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Belisi calls Ties the versatile men's accessory

Palmbeach_3Who doesn't love getting the most out of their investments? Two-fers, double-downs, whatever you want to call them, we all like getting a little something for nothing. Men's ties, while they seem to only have one look for one purpose, the truth is, neckties are a versatile accessory. You can wear them to the typical places: work, the opera, church but you can also wear a loosened tie for an afternoon event or Sunday brunch--on a warm summer night to a dinner date. Wider knots, tighter knots or loose around the collar, ties add character and personalized style to suits and casual button-downs, plus you can wear them with or without the accompaniment of a blazer or pocket square.

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Fall Springs Ahead: Men’s fashion heads in a new direction - Belisi's guide to the fall

007, ethnic print, futuristic military, bold colors, retro, geometric shapes, metallics. Previews of men’s fall fashion covered the gamut, from sleek and polished to reworked traditional and preppy to vampy and 70-80s inspired. While the direction seems scattered, one trend is consistent: men’s fashion is taking a decidedly retroactive/futuristic and more feminine direction, with sleeker, narrow lines, geometric patterns and bold colors and prints.

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How to Date Out of Your League (or Just Look Fabulous for Any Occasion) by Belisi

Style Cues from April Masini, author of “Date Out Of Your League”

Before we look at some fundamentals of every well dressed man's wardrobe, let's talk about why clothes are so gosh darn important to us women. Let's get into women's philosophy of clothes.

Just kidding! You don't have to worry in the least about why we like clothes. Nope. All you have to know is that we do.

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Belisi Fashions - All Tied Up

What does your tie say about you?

While they may have disappeared for a few years, pocket squares are making a big comeback. Given their minimal presence in the past, knowing how to wear a pocket square may require some guidance.

"When it comes to sporting a pocket square with a tie, pick up on a subtle nuance in the selected tie, such as the least present color and use that as a focus in the pocket square," said Rosenfeld. "It's best when the tie and square are not too matching and when the geometry or other patterns are incongruous. This adds more dimensions and adds expression."

A pocket square can seem innocent enough„but should never be thought of as an after-thought. "When wearing a pocket square one can look very well dressed, dignified and confident. On the other hand, a wrong pocket square could reflect the opposite. A wrong pocket square can reduce a beautifully tailored suit and fine neckwear to something that looks second-hand. But when we see an authentic handmade linen pocket square properly folded with four beautiful points it lends a quiet dignity to the beautiful silk neckwear."

Hudson says that strong styles for ties are English stripes, regimental stripes, elegant paisleys and eye-catching motif patterns. So, what if you have a navy silk tie with small gray unicorns with a yellow horn repeated throughout the fabric? He recommends a properly folded, light butter yellow or Navy colored Irish linen pocket square.

If you want to simplify your wardrobe, white is an acceptable color for pocket squares. "White is safe is because it goes with every color combination," Hudson said. "If a colored pocket square is worn it must pickup a color in the necktie. One has to be careful here. Burgundy or wine is not red. Ecru is not white. There are many shades of blue."

If the pocket square color palette seems overwhelming, stick to this simple mantra: when it doubt, wear white. If your pocket square gets dirty, freshen it up with Woolite and then iron very lightly with a cool iron.

No substitutions please

Say you're out shopping and spot a great-looking tie, or so you think. You like the style and pattern. You flip it over and check out the label: Polyester. Maybe no one will notice„it looks okay. First of all, the people you want to impress always know. Secondly, even if the tie looks okay, think about what it will look like after you've worn it a few times. If you don't mind frays, pilling fabric and faded colors, go ahead and buy the Polyester tie (did you hear the collective tisk tisk of fashion stylists everywhere?)

The experts agree there is one highly regarded fabric for ties. "The fabric of choice is 100 percent silk," said Bill Hudson. "Preferably a nice 50-ounce twill weight, which knots and drapes beautifully. However, in the first half of the year, Spring/Summer neckwear can be more casual with acceptable fabrics such as summer linen in solids and simple patterns along with Madras cottons in plaid patterns. But 90 percent of the business is silk."

While you're guaranteed a longer wearing life with silk, there still will come a day when it, too, will go the way of the circular file. "When a silk tie becomes even slightly stained, throw it out," Hudson said. "If you are going to wear a tie and dress for success, then do it."

Ring around the collar

While it's easy to dish advice about how to buy and wear a tie, you may need help actually coordinating ties with complimentary shirts and matching them to your skin tone. Fortunately we aren't telling you to sink or swim. There are personal shoppers, stylists, image consultants, and store associates who can help. If all else fails, there's Mom and possibly a sister, cousin, female friend or significant other. It's better to ask for help than send the wrong message with the wrong tie.

When it comes down to it, you're the person who has to wear the tie, so ultimately it should please you. Don't let the proposed "rules" frighten you. Just keep about 15-20 ties in your collection that you really like. "Love every tie," Hudson said. "Have no ties that you wouldn't buy again. Never purchase ties because they are on sale. Purchase a tie because you love it and can't wait to wear it. Visualize the ties as you shop with your shirts and suits and blazers. Don't just have 3-4 favorite ties, have 15-20."

Neckties According to Peter Belisi

As a long-time tie collector, even before I started my business, I realized the power a tie could wield. Working in the service industry in fashion-conscious Palm Beach, I wanted to make the right impression every time I entered a room or greeted a new client. At one point my tie collection was my most valuable material possession, and given my current line of work, it is still something I hold near and dear. My advice is to never underestimate the impact a tie can have on not only an outfit but also how others perceive you around you.

Believe it or not, the ties you wear reveal a lot about your personality. Driving a tan Cavalier or a Canary-yellow Mustang is about as revealing as wearing a tie with gaping Bass on it or a subtly hued, 100-percent silk tie.

To view a tie as a garnishment undermines the power of the tie. A tie is the focal point of a polished, put-together ensemble. Done right, a tie reflects a confident image, done poorly and you could send the wrong message. Proper neckwear is not just about fabrics, styles and colors it's also about presentation and accessorizing.

Tying it all together

An ill-fitting, cheaply made tie is an abomination on its own. Add mismatched or obnoxious and botched deals and social misfires should come as no surprise. Joseph Rosenfeld, Men's Image Mentor and the only male Certified Image Professional in the US, tells his all-male clientele that if they're wearing a tie, it is literally meant to "tie" the outfit together. The tie should compliment the suit or sport coat as well as the shirt. Colors should be complimentary to a man's natural coloring of hair, eyes, and skin tones.

"Woven ties continue to be very popular amongst men who are modern traditionalists," said Rosenfeld. "Neckwear with smaller printed patterns tends to appeal to a man who wants to express his easy-going and gentle personality. Solid neckwear, typically in cooler hues, is right for the modern man who wants to display austere elegance."

It sounds pretty straightforward but if you thought you were getting off easily, think again. Just like women's fashion, there are seasonal considerations for men „and that means ties too. "Ties were once worn season after season, year round, and in the same colors," said Bill Hudson. "Now there are two seasons: Spring/Summer and Fall/Winter. Vibrantly brightly-colored neckwear for Spring and Summer, serious, deeper shades for Fall and Winter."

Fortunately this news is not cause for widespread panic. If a style changes, you can gradually ease into it without having to replace your entire tie collection.

"When neckwear changes widths, slowly replace your collection," Hudson said. "In the 60s ties were 1-2 inches, then in the 70s they were very wide, up to 4-5 inches. Current neckwear is about 3-4 inches."

Keep your look fresh by never wearing the same tie to meetings, especially weekly meetings held in the office, says Hudson. "Change it up, be the best dressed. There is nothing that presents a better first impression than a beautiful suit, shined Oxford shoes, the right shirt, silk neckwear and Irish Linen pocket square. The combination works every time and any time."

Go ahead be square