Style File: One man’s look is another man’s pocketbook


(U-WIRE) DEKALB, Ill. Clothing companies pay celebrities and athletes millions of dollars a year to persuade people of all cultures and ages to buy their clothes, shoes and other merchandise.

These companies appreciate consumers because we can market their clothes without even being asked, saving them millions of dollars a year. We advertise their clothes by walking around with their names all over our clothes.

How many times have you bragged to someone about the latest Timberland boots, DKNY purse, new Air Jordan basketball shoes or Kenneth Cole and Tommy Hilfiger clothes you just bought? Have you ever thought about how this behavior might have influenced someone to purchase what you are wearing? This influence is powerful if people decide to go out and buy something after seeing you wear it. The next time you don’t have any money, add up how much you paid for your clothes that you have on. You’ll be surprised what the total amount comes to.

The interesting thing about this is that the fashion designers get the last laugh all the way to the bank, while some people end up writing bad checks and charging up their credit cards just to impress a friend or two because of what they’re wearing.

I often wonder about the fascination most of us have with wearing something that an athlete or celebrity wears. In high school, everyone hated to wear the same shoes, pants or sweaters. Now, when I go to the Rec or attend classes, I see seven or eight people with the same shoes or clothes on. Well, I guess things change over a period of time.

People need to realize that just because a person has on expensive clothes and good-smelling cologne or perfume doesn’t mean that the person is intelligent and outgoing. I’d rather have my money in stocks and investments than try to keep up with the latest gear.

I’m not saying don’t buy expensive clothes. I’m not saying buy expensive clothes. All I am saying is that the next time you decide to buy expensive clothes, think about why you’re buying them. Are you buying them because of quality? Or are you buying them just because you want to show off what you have to people?

One day, I’m going to come out with my own clothes and I hope that everyone buys them. My advice for anyone who’s trying to cut back on how much they spend on clothes because they want to put the money toward tuition and parking tickets is this: One day get a sheet of paper, write down how much money you make for one year, then on the side write down the total amount you spend for every piece of clothing you bought for that year. You’ll be surprised.

Please, before you do this, give me enough time to purchase some stock in some of your favorite companies. Remember the next time you spend $100 on a pair of shoes, $80 dollars on a purse, $200 on a coat or $40,000 on a car, I just might be making money off of you. I would like to thank you, and I’ll send you an appreciation letter from my summer home.