Chocsosa has been a Styleforum member for a long, long time. Over the years, he’s had time to hone in on an impeccable – and classic – personal style – no small feat when you’re 6’8. Here, he talks about the early days of hiding his frame, as well as what encouraged him to start down the road to where he is today.
My style has definitely changed over the years. In my earlier days, it was more urban stuff – I was a product of the 90’s. So, for me it was gear like Karl Kani, Tommy Hilfiger, FUBU, polo sweaters, and oversized champion sweat shirts. It was easier then for me. Everything was bigger and baggier and that worked for my frame. I was 6’8 (still am) and probably a buck 85 soaking wet. I felt the oversized clothing helped hide my frame. So, for me it was interesting when I had to purchase my first suit. It was for prom and the salesman could not find anything long enough, inseam wise. I ended up getting a suit that was three times my size just to get the inseam right. It was barely tailored, but that worked for me because the goal was to be in and out of this “monkey suit” within a couple hours, so I didn’t sweat it. Lucky enough, there are no prom pictures out there, because I can only imagine how crazy I looked.
College was no different. It was the late 90’s and I still was comfortable in the baggy clothing that was still in style then. I was a poor college kid on academic scholarship without two pennies to rub together. So for the most part I was still rocking the gear from high school. I think the only thing I added at this point were some butters (Timberland’s), some Nike Air Force Ones (all white) and some old retro Jordans that were gifted to me from a brother of a friend who wore the same size shoes that I wore, worked the streets and had more shoes than he could handle. I had one white button down shirt and a wide striped tie that I wore to college functions when dressing up was required. The clothing was important because I did not have much but I was able to blend in (as much as I could) when I was in and out of college. I was a student athlete that was trying to make it through. Between all my honors classes my freshman year and the strenuous responsibilities of basketball, I did not have much time to dedicate to my wardrobe when there was no money available.
After college was when I started my sartorial journey to where I am today. At that point I had added some pea-coats, dress shirts and slacks but I still had no idea what I was doing. I needed to dress well for work as I was in a client facing role, so I was trying to look as put together as possible. I researched everywhere. I found some good beginner information from the GQs and the Esquires of the world, but it was not enough – even though they gave you an elementary education on how some stuff should fit there was still a lot of information lacking, I felt. It was on a tip from the Style Guy column from the late Glenn O’Brien (R.I.P) that I googled Styleforum and ended up on its doorstep. It was earth shattering to me because there was an answer to any sartorial question I ever had right at my finger tips. 10 years in and I’m still here, and I still find it a valuable resource and an inspiration almost every day.
My style now is more based on structure than pattern mixing. I like a clean garment with very little pulling, moderately structured shoulders, a nipped waist, open quarters (not aggressively so), higher rise (not aggressively so) and two inch cuffs (where I can find them). I am not a loud pattern guy, but I do like more subdued colors and palettes that mix well together. In my casual gear I wear a lot of outerwear and blazers that are cut slim with slim chinos or denim and boots or loafers. I find myself always coming back to those choices all the time and my wardrobe purchases reflect that.