A reader asked me to write the follow-up to last year's piece on how a man might put together a professional wardrobe on a budget of $5-7,000 annually. In the first year, I recommended purchasing a medium-weight suit, a blazer, and an odd jacket with accessories, and then planning to focus on lighter weight clothing the second year.
Again budgeting about $1,000 for a suit or a jacket and trousers combination, in the second year acquire a navy blue suit in a ten month cloth, a light gray tropical weight suit and a discreetly patterned lightweight odd jacket with a tan ground as well as a pair of light gray tropical wool trousers. This provides a total of three suits for warm weather wear, as well as a blazer and two odd jackets for less formal occasions.
It is a little harder to be specific about accessories in this and future years since it is difficult to predict the rate at which things wear out and need to be replaced, but, barring disaster, all of last year's clothing should still be serviceable. Add a pair of cordovan colored monkstrap shoes with matching belt to the purchase list and take last year's shoes to a cobbler for new heels. The repairs will extend their life.
Next, re-visit a shirtmaker for another half dozen button cuff dress shirts, half of them for year-round wear and half in lighter weight cloth. Pick up a couple pair of wool and a couple pair of cotton dress socks to extend that part of your wardrobe. Ditto for underwear.
Finally, pick out another half dozen neckties if you are wearing them at least two days a week. And that will take care of the budget for dressy clothing.
Looking ahead to year three, the focus should be adding three more mid-weight suits so a different one is available for each day of the week.