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Brands I like and recommend

May 29, 2013

shirtsFrequently, I have conversations with people telling me about wonderful clothes they acquired. More often than not, they mention the brand as a descriptor. Why? What does the brand have to do with it? Is it a symbol of status? Has the brand gained much recognition and a “cool” image? Too many people get caught up in one brand or another – whether a polo shirt displays a polo player or an alligator. Status should not factor into your decision to choose a brand.

I am not saying brands hold no relevance. In fact, it may present you with the best clues as to quality, durability, and style. I like to think of it as a quality seal of sorts. I know when I see a particular brand on a shirt such as Hugo Boss, it will possess a superior construction and fabric. Further, I know a pair of Bruno Magli shoes will last longer and look better than shoes of lesser artisan appeal.

Truthfully, you can dress great with unknown brands as well. Who says you have to be tied down to a particular designer? The logo or name should not define you, label you, or fit you neatly into some “category.” So, free your mind of this restriction binding you to only a certain number of brands. Be free. Explore. Try new designers. When you do, make sure to keep the primary principles of fashion in mind. If you need a refresher, try reading my article Where do I start? Tips for launching your fashion journey.

So, I am sharing with you a simple top of mind list of five categories with five suggestions for each (in no particular order). I purposely limited myself to five as I did not want to overwhelm you. And, don’t let the expensive brands scare you off. With the right planning and bargain hunting skills, you can find their products at great prices too. So here you go:

Moderately priced clothes:

Ralph Lauren

Kenneth Cole

Calvin Klein

J Crew

Banana Republic

More expensive clothes:

Hugo Boss


Michael Kors

John Varvatos

brown shoes

Moderately priced shoes:
Polo Ralph Lauren

Kenneth Cole



Sperry Top Sider

More expensive shoes:
Salvatore Ferragamo

Hugo Boss

Bruno Magli

To Boot New York

Cole Haan

Stores I like:
Saks Fifth Avenue




Notice I did not include a “Cheap clothes” or “Cheap shoes” category. Stay away from those as they will not last as long and will look like they sound – Cheap! Look for great quality at great prices. Lastly, don’t get caught up in logos for status. Stick to the principles and look great no matter the brand. However, use the brands to establish those styles you prefer. And, employ them to mark the best sources of quality apparel. Now, get out there and go shopping!

For a list of articles about bargain hunting, click here.

For a list of articles to help you get started in your fashion journey, click here.

7 Comments leave one →
  1. May 29, 2013 12:42 pm

    Salvatore Ferragamo. Hugo Boss and Bruno Magli – does beautiful shoes for us ladies too … I understand that you chosen them. Have all of them … in my closet.
    Great post and it’s easy to only state expensive brands .. but you have also chosen high street.

    • May 29, 2013 1:15 pm

      There are so many great brands. Tough to decide on only five for each category. Thanks for the input.

  2. May 29, 2013 4:03 pm

    When we buy cheap anything it’s easy to think that we are saving money. But better quality does last longer and the price is more efficient in the long run. The old cliché pay now or pay later is true. But with cheap it’s pay now AND pay later!

  3. May 30, 2013 2:46 am

    You actually make it seem so easy with your presentation however I find this topic to be really
    one thing which I believe I might never understand. It kind of feels too complicated and very wide
    for me. I am having a look forward on your next submit, I will try to
    get the hang of it!

  4. June 8, 2013 2:50 pm

    Agree with the brands, if you can afford why not !
    Thank you for stopping by my blog

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