Not entirely ready to retire.

Where does a 40 plus year old bloke shop for clothes? I’m nowhere near ready to abandon the clothes I like and move into M&S or outdoor gear full-time. My recent experience of trying to wedge my shoulders in to a size large shirt which I’m sure would only have fitted a 23 year old Brian May has given me food for thought.
It’s become increasingly unsettling going into some shops (there’ll be a graph plotting the curve of age increase against discomfort in front of shop assistants somewhere), 16 year old neds and wee lassies that look like X Factor contestants versus the old guy is dirty working clothes?  
Some are fine though, H&M is like a jumble sale just before it opens, myriad colours and designs, but still tidy. Although some of the particularly “fashionable” stuff is hysterical and will date before it reaches the outside door and the staff often appear to be on a slightly different psychological plane to the rest of Buchanan Galleries.
My new best friend is American Apparel though. For blokes it’s mainly just t-shirts an’ that in there, but the cut is good, the fabric is good and the colours available are all the colours. Price is fine, and there’s pants to match your mood too.
No doubt the next few years will be a transitional time, with a departure from clothes shops, a movement through the department stores and eventually into mail ordered 38″ waist cords.


11 thoughts on “Not entirely ready to retire.”

  1. Oh no, I’m not 40 yet (not long to go though) and I’ve been shopping in M&S for years. That American Apparel looks too cool and expensive for me. And why is half their gear being modelled by someone trying to look like Francis Begbie?

  2. It’s the “not caring about what you wear” thing that seems to afflict older guys that worries me. I like wearing my George at ASDA beanie, my M&S cardigan, my AA purple t-shirt, German WWII parka… etc
    I want to keep the wide choice and interest way past the point where I can get away with it :o)

    AA’s models are certanly not standard issue!

  3. Well I am over 40 (and then some), but I gave up on M&S years ago (except when they occasionally get some decent sports undies). I find refuge in several of those outdoors brands that don’t quite cut it on the hill – Raichle shoes, Craghoppers Kiwis, Berghaus Tech Ts, assorted hill-retired fleeces. And for something smarter for work or casual, I’m afraid to say it’s the home of innovation-turned-bloated… Rohan! ;O)

  4. I didn’t realise there was an American Apparel shop in Glasgow until a few months ago, used to order everything online. I’ve got a t-shirt from there on just now. They’re a good fit. The only problem when you go in there is trying to decide which colour to buy, there’s that much choice on the hanging rails. And a bonus is you get matching hairbands too, well for us folks with hair :o)

    And no, never go down the mail order cords route…

  5. Matt, I was looking at Rohan combats recently, I was tempted. It’s difficult to get something that’s a bit more relaxed, but still in a decent fabric. I do struggle sometimes for days in the park where jeans will get wet and muddy and the only other option is technical.
    With that in mind I pulled out a pair of Rohans last week, Super Uplanders or Upland Trekkers I think? They’ve got stretch knee and rear yolk panels. Great pants.

    “..decide which colour to guy..” Ange, that’s never an issue :o)

  6. Interesting link Johnny. The American Religious Right speaks I think?
    I think the AA models all look like regular folk, tits-out or not. There’s blemishes, misshapes and the none-too-goodlooking. If that makes sexiness look accessible or possible to the rest of us regular folk I don’t have a problem with it.
    In saying that I’d ban all advertisning as I resent it being imposed on any of my six senses :o)

  7. The fella that wrote the article is a pretty reasonable character. Religious, yes, but he doesn’t ever write about that – just design-related stuff usually.

    I kinda agree with him but I don’t really have a major problem with the ads – if you don’t like it, then don’t buy the clobber. I live in outdoor gear year round anyway, I don’t seem to have much in my current wardrobe which I’ve purchased from a “regular” shop. I’d be quite happy in AA though.

  8. I’m all for free speech and self expression, the difficulty arises when a line has to be drawn. That line is different for everyone.
    It’s one of those back is white debates and like you say the only solution is not to look or listen.
    What worries me now that Holly is here and growing up is how much stuff that I would never have been expoesd to when I was wee in the early 70’s is all over buses, the telly and the rest of it.
    Aye, a difficult subject.

  9. Happy new year to you and all who sail in the PTC blog.

    I have similar dilemmas.
    I dont want to look like ‘mutton dressed as lamb’ or be ‘down with the kids’ but male vanity and Mrs sbrt keep me from the M&S aisles.

    Howies stuff ticks several boxes for me.

  10. Happy New Year sbrt!

    At least it looks as though we can still see what side of the fence we’re on. It’s when I’m 60 and dressed like a skateboearder and haven’t spotted it, that’s where it’ll all have gone wrong :o)

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