My first menswear book was ‘Dressing the man, mastering the art of permanent fashion’. It’s an incredible useful book for someone that is just starting out. At the same time it’s also a book that really stood up to the test of time. The focus is definitely business wear. There is a small section that talks about business casual. If you want to learn more about how a suit/dress shirt should fit and the reason behind it you should definitely get yourself a copy.
This book is famous because it is credited to have a reviving effect on the lounge suit in the modern age of dress. I don’t know if that statement is true, but I totally see why people would say that.
The in-depth analyses of the diferent fits really struck me, because I had to purge my wardrobe of ill-fitting suits and shirts. The innitial cost of the book is cheap, because Alan Flusser helped me to prevent some costly mistakes I would have made. So in the end this book saved me a lot of money and bad purchases.
There is one con to Alan Flusser’s book. it’s written in the eighty’s. At that time there wasn’t a lot of information around. With the advent of online sources you have the ability to get much more information. If you like to get a more in-depth perspective to menswear you can search for: catalogue scans, period photographs and period magazine illustrations. I encourage you to first read ‘Dressing the man’ and then go on the web to look at those illustrations. That way you get a lot more information from the illustrations, because you know where and how to look.
As a beginner wanting to dress better is the first step. The second step is actually learning the rules, and the last step (that will keep you busy for the rest of you life) is knowing what you like and stick with it. Sometimes you have to bend or even break the rules set by Alan Flusser in his incredible knowledgeable book. Remember that it’s just clothing, so do have some fun with it!