The first step to figuring out which shops you should frequent is determining your budget. Are you down to drop a few stacks or are you looking to make the most of the graduation money your grandmother gave you? To help, I’ve placed my go-to stores into three categories that will make the process a bit easier.
Where to shop if rent and student loans are making you nervous:
- Cotton On is great for textured t-shirts and short-sleeve button-ups. I’ve owned a printed button-up shirt from Cotton On for years that frequently makes an appearance in my summertime wardrobe.
- H&M is known for their basics. If you decide H&M is the place for you, don’t leave without picking up a few long-sleeve button-up shirts and a pair of crisp black trousers.
- Kohl’s is a great place to shop for shoes on a budget. They have great deals on everyday leather basics like boots, dress shoes, and sneakers that you can wear with almost anything.
- Target surprisingly has a fantastic menswear section that is constantly changing. When you’re there, make sure to check out their slim-fit trousers and pullover sweaters.
- Uniqlo's plain t-shirts are life-changing. My suggestion is to purchase a few black, navy, and white shirts to mix and match with throughout the week. They’ll give you the foundation you need to create inventive, yet appropriate outfits.
Where to shop if you need a few key pieces to take your wardrobe to the next level:
- ALLSAINTS has fantastic leather goods and amazing statement shirts. Depending on how casual your office environment is, ALLSAINTS may be the perfect place for you to spruce up your closet and get some London-inspired pieces into your wardrobe rotation.
- Frye is the name in shoes when you’re shopping within this market sector. I’ve purchased Frye boots for years and I can’t imagine investing in any other brand of leather footwear.
- Gant is by far one of my favorite mid-market stores. Almost my entire professional wardrobe from my grey suit to my brown loafers are made by Gant. I suggest purchasing several long-sleeve button-up shirts and a few pairs of trousers to compliment your new statement shirts and leather footwear.
- J.Crew is the store that carries everything you will need to take your wardrobe to the next level. Odds are, you probably own a shirt or two from J.Crew, but if not, make sure to pick up a few on your way to their accessories department, which is far superior to others I’ve seen.
- Scotch & Soda taught me that perfection is in the details. All of their garments are beautifully sewn and have the right amount of personality to wear week-in and week-out.
Where to shop if you’re ready to invest in luxury clothing:
- Barneys New York carries some of the best menswear collections in the United States. If you’re not sure exactly what you’re looking for, head to Barneys, you’re sure to find something there.
- Burberry is the only luxury brand that I have purchased from multiple times. If you’re looking for expert tailoring and classic pieces to add to your wardrobe, look no further.
- Gucci is a brand that I can’t say enough good things about. Alessandro Michele, Gucci’s Creative Director, has a way of creating fantastical, yet wearable pieces. If you’re going to purchase one Gucci item, go with the loafers, they’re divine.
- Mr. Porter is the easiest way to purchase must-have luxury pieces online. If brick and mortar stores aren’t for you, log onto Mr. Porter to find everything you’ll need to live up to your interview promises.
- Thom Browne is the epitome of luxury fashion. He’s my favorite American designer because he has a way of creating one-of-a-kind pieces that once seen, you can’t imagine living without.
While these are just a few of my favorite stores, there are thousands of others out there. The most important thing to remember when you go to one of these stores is to stay focused and remember the decisions you made from reading From College to Career: How to Transition Your Wardrobe to Make the Right Impression.
Stay tuned for my next article where I'll show you what to buy to live up to your interview promises!