The first rule of style is to ignore fashion: fashion is about money and status; style is about aesthetics. Fashion gets people to look at you, while style gets people to pay attention to you. Fashion, by definition, will look ridiculous fairly soon, whereas a man in a properly-tailored tuxedo is timeless. (Obviously not really: if you sent George Clooney back to the 1700’s, the terrified and smelly locals would certainly burn him as a witch immediately, even if he had on the classiest tux you’ve ever seen.) Fuck fashion.
The second rule of style is to be attractive, specifically physically. Being spiritually attractive is helpful for starting a cult, but not as much for cutting a bella figura. Tall and slim-hipped, mostly: if you’re tall and slim-hipped, then clothes automatically look 80% better on you than the rest of humanity. There are limits, certainly: you can’t be too tall or too slim-hipped–Manute Bol comes to mind–but that’s the general guideline. This is the unfairness of genetics: hot people look better both naked and clothed than the rest of us. Fuck hot people.
The third rule of style is like what Polonius said to Winston Churchill: Know thineself. For example, some women cannot wear tube tops. This group includes every women that is not currently roller skating along Venice Beach in 1976. You should also be aware of your ethnic background, and realize that while some garments are universal, others are specific, and you will look like a schmuck in them.
(Here’s how to tell whether you’ll look like a schmuck in a certain piece of clothing: if the question even arises in your mind, then you do. That’s your brain telling you that you look like a schmuck, but in a nice way. If you even consider it, you do. Trust me on this one.)
The fourth rule of style is to never wear white after Labor Day; never wear fuschia after Arbor Day; never wear Octarine after Hogfather’s Day. Never wear broaches after Samhain; never wear pedal-pushers after Simchat Torah, never wear togas after Canadian Thanksgiving.
The fifth rule of style is to just have fun with it.
The sixth rule of style is to wear what everyone else is wearing, but a little better. Actually: that’s the only rule. There’s your rule. You’re welcome.