The best-dressed American city?

O. O. McIntyre // It is the claim of style experts that New York has extremely few well dressed men. London far surpasses the metropolis in the elegance of gentlemen’s attire. Hollywood, in proportion to population, is said to be the best dressed American city from a masculine viewpoint.

The theory is advanced that the New Yorker’s wardrobe is never complete. The excuse is made he hasn’t enough closet space. What the New York dandy wears is up to the fashion standard, but it lacks variety and is rarely complete.

According to the best authorities in New York and London, the well-dressed man should have twelve business suits, one braided frock coat to be worn with striped trousers and silk hat, two dinner suits—one double and one single-breasted—and full evening suit.

He should have five overcoats, one for sport and one for evening wear, fifteen pairs of shoes, three house robes, one dozen pair of pajamas, twenty-four daytime shirts, a half-dozen dress-shirts, twelve walking sticks, three dinner and three full dress vests.

Also four pairs of every-day cuff buttons, three mufflers, thirty-six handkerchiefs, twelve suits of underwear—(I’m beginning to feel as naked as a jay bird)—three pairs of hose supporters, a day and evening cigarette case and the same thing in imported lighters.

Nothing is said about the umbrella, so it is supposed a fashionably dressed man is not supposed to go out in the rain. He might know how to get back.

The idea that a gentleman must have such a complete wardrobe is all moist. As one who worries the overdraft department spending more than is necessary for habiliments, it seems to me the neatest and best dressed men are those who make scant but careful selections, but know how to wear them. That is an art men with bountiful wardrobes rarely attain.

Syndicated column, May 3, 1928

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