I knew it was trouble one page in when the bubble beside the style heading said "How to look richer than you are".
It's about keeping up with the Jones. Dressing for the position you want, and dressing richer, are two distinctly different things.
Granted, there was some good standard advice in there for men and women, like: "Not too big, not too small and not too trendy. Invest in a neutral colour purse, with subtle to no branding." That's decent advice, it's just too bad that it was in approximately a size 6 font, and in size 20 font was "Style beyond your tax bracket" suggesting that placing a $400 cricket bat in your office "will make you look both mysterious and sophisticated".
I'd be laughing, except I know that out there is someone looking to make an impression who is taking this advice seriously. The advice that is being laughed at, a 43 page employee style guide issued by UBS bank in Switzerland (which gets a small nod in the article), is one that people should actually be taking seriously!
The part that really got me though, was their suggested spending:
"ALWAYS think about clothing as an investment. Your wardrobe should be 5%-10% of your annual salary - or, if you're dressing for the job you want, the same percentage of your desired one"
Imagine trying to fit that into a 50-30-20 budget. Lets say you make $60,000 a year and you're trying to get promoted into a job where you'll make $70,000 a year. For math's sake we'll say your income tax is 40% right across the board, so you take home $36,000 a year. Your annual "wants" category would be $10,800. According to their recommended clothing budget, you would be spending $3,500 to $7,000 a year on clothing. If you spent the full 10% you would be left with $3800, or $316.67 a month, for vacations, gifts, entertainment, eating out, TV, internet, and all the other little wants that crop up.
In theory its doable. I just have a hard time foreseeing someone who pays almost $600 a month (every month) on clothing turning down coffee or lunches out with their colleagues for the sake of their finances.
What do you guys think? How much do you spend a year on clothing? How much do you think is a reasonable amount?