Fashion, by Toby Oft

Let’s get one thing straight. There are those that say that clothes make the man, I do not believe this to be true. I believe that your clothes are an extension of how you see yourself. It’s a window into how you treat your body and the enormous potential therein. Every day you get up and get dressed - take a look in the mirror and aim to say, “These clothes are a good choice for me today.”
One dream I always had for myself when I was in high school was to dress well someday when I could afford it and that dream evolved eventually into simply having clothes that fit. Truthfully, I don’t enjoy wearing suits all day every day. I love cotton, linen, and a european cut but this is more a matter of personal taste than anything else.
With fashion and exercise, I think we see Hollywood models and we know toes to nose we will never look like the perfection we see in magazines and movies. That needs to be okay. All too often we give up because our version of gorgeous doesn’t fit into a classic mold. This article I’m writing isn’t about getting the trombone community all to look like models in VOGUE or GQ. This article is about fostering a greater degree of self respect amidst a demographic that has given up for the most part. Take care to present to the world the best version of yourself as much as possible. Here are some tips to help:

1. Exercise

Duh! - right? You don’t have to do Taylor Lautner’s work out, just get your heart rate up for 25 minutes every day if that’s all you can muster. Find the work out that you can sustain and let that be enough. This isn’t about perfection, it’s about YOU feeling good to live in your body. It is alarming to me how lucky I am when I start a regular exercise program. Literally luck finds me and I almost don’t know how to handle it. I promise it will find you too!

2. Get a subscription to a fitness and fashion magazine

You don’t have to copy everything you find here, these periodicals like allure, Runners World, Womens Health, Esquire, Mens Heath (the last two being my magazines of choice) are merely a source of inspiration with interesting tips on looking and feeling your best.

3. Only buy clothes that fit you well

Everyone has a few attributes to their figure and appearance and learning how to capitalize on them while still looking professional is a skill you must develop just like lip slurs or articulation. You do not have to buy expensive clothes to have clothes that fit. At every level of budget you only need to have an idea of the fit you are after when you buy. Know what you want to look like before you enter any store. If you can find a tailor you trust, it’s a small matter of a few dollars (literally a few dollars people!!) to alter clothing to make you look fantastic.


I can’t stress this enough - washing your clothes wears them out really fast. Carelessly washing your clothes on “Hot/Cold” wash and then drying them actually changes the fit entirely. Get a drying rack with a fan and your shirts, and especially your jeans will likely fit you as well as they did in the store for as long as you own them.

Look YOUR best, feel YOUR best, PLAY YOUR BEST as an extension of your self respect. People treat you differently when you dress well, and you do not have to break the bank to look great.