My Stylish Son – or How to Dress Like a Man

When my son was a little boy, I bought him lots of adorable clothes. Sweet little striped t-shirts, denim overalls, teeny-tiny high-top sneakers, and little zip-up jackets that made him look so cute that I could barely stand it.

dressing my little boy, clothes for children, getting dressed, dressing toddlers, changing wardrobe of boys, my son growing up, fashion, fashionista, midlife, empty-nest, baby boomer

Rockin’ the sweater vest. I could melt.

That doesn’t happen anymore. But I suppose that makes sense, since he IS 20 years old.

My son’s wardrobe has been a longtime thorn in my side. As with many young men/overgrown boys his age, he has chosen, over the past, oh, I don’t know, 8 years or so, to wear this nearly every day:

  • basketball shorts
  • solid colored t-shirts from the 3 for $10 store
  • running shoes or worn out Topsiders
  • a hooded pullover sweatshirt on cooler days
  • the occasional pair of Levis

Since he’s been living at home this semester, I have on many (hundreds of) occasions commented that, maybe, just maybe, he would look a little more, well, adult if he wore something that was a little more…adult.

Needless to say, he didn’t care to listen to what I had to say – until he discovered Kohl’s.

It was as if the fashion gods had opened a window to the possibility of looking like a grown man.  Suddenly, my son, who bought those 3 for $10 t-shirts (they’re pretty well-made, to be honest)  by the dozen every few months and called it a wardrobe, found his inner fashionista – fashionisto? Collared shirts, button downs, sweaters, even a beautiful coat.  Color me shocked.

But wait! It doesn’t stop there. Next, he ventured into Nordstrom Rack – and oh my, the shoes. Who knew? He was finding his footing (bah-dum-dum).

I had bought him a pair of (wait for it) Hudson jeans a couple of weeks ago, and I am happy to report that he likes them. And wears them. And there are a couple of pairs of cords that he’s wearing, too. And shorts…that aren’t made of nylon.

Day-um, that boy is looking good.

well dressed 20 year old, fashion, fashionista, young men's fashion, looking good, my son, my well-dressed son, out to lunch, midlife, empty-nest, baby boomer

Not too shabby!

Is he doing this because we nagged him and hassled him and made him change his clothes before we went out for dinner more than once? I don’t think so.

I think he’s just growing up.

Buh-bye, basketball shorts. Your time has passed.

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19 Responses to My Stylish Son – or How to Dress Like a Man
  1. Ginger Kay
    December 6, 2012 | 7:27 am

    Nice looking boy you have there, Sharon! It’s a milestone, isn’t it? I think I need to do a better job of recognizing the milestones in my almost grown children’s lives.
    Ginger Kay recently posted..Will there be a red-haired heir?My Profile

    • Sharon Greenthal
      December 6, 2012 | 7:34 am

      Thanks! The milestones as they get older are a little more subtle, aren’t they?

  2. Carpool Goddess
    December 6, 2012 | 7:27 am

    Sharp dressed man! How nice that your son is home this semester :) My son’s school let out early for the holidays and it’s been wonderful having him home. He actually went to the mall the other day to buy some shoes and shirts, without my prompting him. And, he picked out some really cute stuff. Yep, they’re growing up!

    • Sharon Greenthal
      December 6, 2012 | 7:33 am

      Isn’t it wonderful to see them becoming “real men”? My son will be returning to U of A in January and I’m going to miss having him around.

  3. Grown and Flown
    December 6, 2012 | 7:30 am

    I get not being able to stand what our messy boys are wearing sometimes but I have to say (three sons) when they were in high school I was so grateful for the drama that did not go on in my house around clothing!
    Grown and Flown recently posted..Christmas Traditions – Somewhere Between the Old and the NewMy Profile

    • Sharon Greenthal
      December 6, 2012 | 7:32 am

      Three sons is a lot of basketball shorts! In high school I didn’t really care, as long as he was clean.

  4. mindy
    December 6, 2012 | 7:42 am

    Both of my boys have now entered the world of The Sartorialist. I never thought it would happen, but when they visit…we go shopping!
    mindy recently posted..Best Articles 2012: The 25 Pieces That Should Be Required Reading For Women – The Huffington PostMy Profile

  5. sue
    December 6, 2012 | 10:49 am

    As I was reading I thought that you were going to say a girl was in the picture now, LOL. It must be so wonderful to see how he is changing each time he comes home from college.
    sue recently posted..Cozy Corner Beach Cottage In Laguna, California For SaleMy Profile

  6. Haralee
    December 6, 2012 | 12:30 pm

    First the wardrobe then the internship, college finished and knock on wood clothes for a job! Way to go!
    Haralee recently posted..WelcomeMy Profile

    • Sharon Greenthal
      December 6, 2012 | 1:02 pm

      Let’s hope so! He seems to be moving in the right direction!

  7. Amy Ruhlin
    December 6, 2012 | 12:59 pm

    Sharon so funny. Kohls was my sons first intro to clothes too and he has become quite the snazzy dresser. It’s fun to watch them make this shift isn’t it?
    Amy Ruhlin recently posted..The Best Christmas Gifts I Have ReceivedMy Profile

    • Sharon Greenthal
      December 6, 2012 | 1:02 pm

      Yes it’s great! I look forward to seeing what comes next…

  8. Helene Bludman
    December 6, 2012 | 3:27 pm

    He’s a handsome young man, Sharon! And he was an adorable toddler.

    • Sharon Greenthal
      December 6, 2012 | 6:48 pm

      He was the cutest, Helene – if I do say so myself! Thanks so much.

  9. Sweet Sarah
    December 6, 2012 | 4:06 pm

    I love this post! And Kohls has been known to bring out the inner-fashionista/o in many. I love their prices!


  10. Bob Hirschhorn
    December 11, 2012 | 3:09 pm

    I like the cute pic of 3-year-old Adam. That’s the guy I taught how to swim…….kicking and screaming! As 4 the B-Ball shorts……..I’ve got 4 pairs that I rotate in on a near-daily basis. Combined with an eclectic collection of hooded sweatshirts and my ever-present flip-flops, I’m always good to go! Still pullin’ off @ 63. Happy Hanukah to a great family……….RBH

  11. Chapman Bags
    December 19, 2012 | 10:02 am

    Your son looks very nice! Sometimes all young men need is a little push in the right direction, and then they see what a great reaction they get to a polished look. We like to recommend our men’s shoulder bags as a very smart accessory to a grown-up style. Thanks for a great article.

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