Helping you dress to impress
No need to break the bank
It’s not necessary to spend a lot of money to have a solid wardrobe, according to Shaun Moniz.
He believes a few suits, five or six shirts and a variety of ties is all anyone needs.
“If you rotate the suits, ties and shirts, people may not notice that you only have a few pieces,” he said.
“You could wear the same suit for two or three days but if you have a different shirt and tie on every day they may not notice because you look completely different.
“Throw in a different pocket square. It is not really that expensive because you are using a limited number of pieces, very smartly.”
Are you one of those guys who wears baggy suits and clashing patterns? Do you want to dress a little more professionally?
Shaun Moniz wants to help.
The 32-year-old used to be one of those men in the baggy suits. Last year, he started Island Gentry, a lifestyle blog and YouTube channel that offers tips on everything from men’s fashion and grooming to character development.
Most of what he knows, he learnt on the internet. He also gained insight from StyleCon, a men’s conference in Atlanta in 2015.
“The biggest fashion mistake I ever made was wearing clothes that didn’t fit properly,” he said. “I’m a bit short, so finding a suit that fits right was annoying.
“Often the shoulders would be too broad or the arms or legs too long. Sometimes I’d have to roll up the cuffs of my suits.”
He had to up his game when he applied for a job as a regulator with the Bermuda Monetary Authority five years ago.
“Things were a bit more casual at my last job but at the BMA, everyone wore suits.”
He started following men’s fashion and discovered a slim-fit Italian- cut suit might be more flattering for his body type.
“The first time I put one on, I felt like James Bond,” he said. “It was on a shopping trip to New Jersey.
“I felt courageous and powerful. A well-fitting suit helps you stand up and stride more confidently, simply by the way it is made.”
He wore a black suit, turquoise shirt and a striped turquoise tie to the BMA interview.
“It was a little too loud,” he admitted. “I was still learning what is acceptable. But they hired me.”
Today, he’s confident enough to advise others.
“Wear a navy or grey suit. Black is a bit too formal. Wear a white shirt and a blue or red tie. Keep it simple; nothing flashy.
“You want the focus on you, not what you’re wearing, unless you’re going for a job in the fashion industry.”
He buys most of his suits off the rack, and has them altered. His dream is to one day own a couple that are custom-made.
“When the suit is tailored for your body, it doesn’t get any better than that,” he said. “It is expensive, so I have one custom made blazer.”
He has a particular love for Bermuda shorts, and has about 15 pairs in his closet.
“On the Real Men Real Style Facebook group I posted an outfit where I wore a blazer, pink Bermuda shorts, blue socks and a tie that brought it all together,” he said.
“The group has 43,000 members. About 60 per cent of them just tore my outfit apart.
“Most of the members didn’t know the cultural significance. Where they are from, shorts are not acceptable businesswear.”
Mr Moniz said the hardest thing about running Island Gentry is just finding the time to produce the content.
“It takes time to edit and film,” he said. “It takes time to set up and create the ideas and to be able to speak it fluently in a way that is understandable, fun, entertaining and challenging.”
He doesn’t think Bermuda has a big enough market for him to set up shop as a professional stylist, but he does a little on a freelance basis.
“Bermuda has more of a laid-back style culture,” he said. “People enjoy looking nice, but I don’t think people would go to the extent of paying a personal stylist, when it is already expensive enough here to buy clothing.
“If someone approaches me looking for advice on an outfit, then I can do that.”
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