Every man, even those with the tiniest amounts of ambition should own a few suits and at the very least, have a few blazers. If you're just starting out in the world of employment, particularly if you're aspiring to make it in the business world, a tiny percentage of your budget should be allocated to building up a suit collection (think interviews). Whether you're Mr. Wall Street or a Road warrior, both suits and blazers are essential staples.
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We are very aware that these items can require a hefty financial commitment. Due to this pertinent fact, we decided to put together a small guide of places you can count on to add dress jackets and suits to your collection without breaking the bank or requiring you to bag bottled tap water and peanut butter and jelly sandwiches to work for a few months. Every item on this list resides in the sub-$150 range. Are we ready gents?
They aren't being recommended because they're H&M, but rather because they release an extensive blazer collection every season, and the lion's share is almost always less than $100 (though this is changing). I've purchased many blazers from there and they always averaged at about $69. The colors available generally coincide with the time of year. For example, at this time of writing, most mass merchandisers are releasing their Spring collection, so expect lighter colors.
H&M Has A Large Collection Of Affordable Blazers & Suit Jackets
At H&M, you can find regular and slim fit jackets starting at 32S. Materials go from wool to twill and polyester blends. Their cuts generally seem cutting edge and trendy which is perfect for the urban look. H&M does sell full suits, but of course you can opt for just the jacket alone. You can always alter jackets, but be very cognizant that those alterations can get pretty expensive depending on which portion of the jacket you alter.
Express clothing tends to be on the higher end of "mid priced" for all of the clothing when compared to H&M, but if you sign up to be on their mailing list, those seasonal (read: once a month) $30% and $75 off coupons will come in handy and create opportunities for amazing steals.
Express For Men's Blazers Are Pricier, But Nothing Their Discount Cards Can't Fix
While I'm not privy to their selection compared to what you can get elsewhere, like H&M, colors depend on the season. Spring and Summer usually yields sharp primaries, pastels and plaid prints. That said, their twill and linen patterns can't be beat for this price range. Jackets typically end up in the $100-$149 range, but with those coupons boy..... You'll save big time. On the other hand, full suits will set you back a pretty penny.
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Don't laugh. If you know your exact measurements (and if you don't, get someone to measure you or go to a men's suit shop), you can make a killing by browsing through the thousands of eBay stores, especially those based in Asian countries (since at the moment, their men tend to be smaller on average). At best, you can find styles that haven't made their way to the states yet. Even if those styles don't make it here, their trendy appearances will have you on the cutting edge with people frequently asking "Where did you get that?".
All Of The Blazers Pictured Above Are Selling For Less Than $35 on eBay!
I once managed to pick up an excellent quality two piece bespoke blue pinstripe Dillard's suit for $125 total including shipping. Blazers from Dillard's typically start at $250. Thus, this suit was most likely overstock, or a clearance item and priced to go. Nonetheless, it looked like it cost four times as much.
Below are examples of Linen Blazers which start at just $13 from a Chinese vendor. At that price, don't expect to look like a celebrity, but if you want to add variety to your collection, eBay is a great place to browse. Of course, the more you spend, the more options you have. Be sure to research vendors and carefully review their feedback and ratings before purchasing
You may think this is an insane recommendation, but their Stafford brand can be a hit or miss, and if you need to pick up something basic in a hurry, they can't be beat. If you catch them during a sale, you can pick up a full three piece suit for less than $150. On average, blazers can be had for $89.
JC Penny Frequently Has Clearance Sales On Blazers & Suit Jackets
Styles are usually plain at best with solid colors which lean more toward the most formal of settings. You will occasionally find tweed patterns. Jacket sleeves tend to be a bit longer than you'd expect, which of course can be fixed with an alteration. Quality is debatable, but if you need something right now and your options are limited, then they are worth a look. I have been complimented on my JC Penny suit purchases, most of which took place when purchasing clothing was not a top budget priority.
These guys are newcomers and while I haven't purchased any of their items, they look very promising. According to their site, all of their Blazers are priced in the $60-$90 range. Colors are what you would expect to find and the available patterns run from solid to pinstripe to bird's eye and herringbone.
Most of their Blazers are made from a wool blend. All items are customizable with respect to size and are shipped within three weeks of purchase. One thing that stands out is their "made to fit guarantee". If the product they send doesn't fit, they will cover the cost of alterations to ensure that your product fits perfectly. We should point out that most of their suits are in the $100-$200 range. Sweet.
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On That Note
There are a myriad of other places where you could find Blazers, Sports Coats and Jackets at amazing prices. These items are must haves for very obvious reasons. Outside of the sales floor, boardroom and office, how you wear you wear them can say a lot about you and create opportunities for stimulating fashion conversation.
We are curious to know where you find your deals and any experiences you've had with shopping at the above places for the said items. Be kind and share them with us in the comments below!
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