The other day I am speaking with a friend of mine. He’s a regular guy, a plain spoken guy like me. He is unpretentious. He likes to enjoy his life, yet at the same time he does not like to waste money.
Like me, my friend needs suits, dress shirts, ties and shoes, for what he does. Sure, on a certain level, dress has become more casual in society, yet in certain endeavors, we still need to put on suits on a pretty frequent basis.
Anyway, my friend dresses pretty much like me. Business meetings mean a suit and tie. However, on his free time, he’s a jeans and t-shirt type of a guy. So, he tells me he is searching online for a casual jacket or down vest for the fall, something to throw over a shirt when it gets a bit cool.
Now, this is not something that would usually generate a conversation. Except, this time, in looking for what he wanted, he came across something that he was confounded by. And when he pointed it out to me, so was I.
Apparently, a well-known clothing store was selling leather aprons. Please let me add quickly, that these aprons were not, so far as I could tell, meant for a Dad on barbeque duty on Memorial Day, the Fourth of July or Labor Day. I mean, they did not say, “Kiss Me, I’m the Chef.” The model in question was apparently a fashion apron, whatever that is. It certainly did not seem to be meant as something heavy duty to be used in a workshop. This was not something for a guy working with a hammer, tongs and an anvil. As a matter of fact, these aprons were listed with things like down vests and jackets. Strange.
Perhaps the most outlandish thing about this leather apron was the price, $1,895. Almost two thousand dollars for an apron? What on earth?
This got me to thinking about the difference between style and fashion. Fashion is trendy, it comes and it goes. Who knows, maybe on the runways of Paris or Milan, a leather apron is just the thing to look fashionable, at least this season. I don’t know. Maybe, someone wants a fancy leather apron when they throw their barbeques or to use in their workshop. I suppose it is possible. However, what about fitness for purpose? What about value for money? How many times will someone use a fancy $2000 leather apron? Not many, I suspect. It is a nothing more in my mind than some wasteful whimsy.
Style is said to be timeless. Unlike fashion, a garment in a classic style, made of good material, can be used year in and year out, not just when the mavens of fashion sitting alongside runways deem it to be “in.” I do not believe it a stretch to say that a classic blue blazer will see a lot more use than a leather fashion apron.
Anyway, how do style and fashion apply to investing? Well, think about it. There are financial products of the moment. At times, either owing to markets moving up or down, a financial product or class of products may move into our out of favor. And, there are products that are more fashion than style, meaning, that they might seem good at one point in time but later on they just do not seem to give you good value for money.
Consider than, that one important consideration when it comes to your own investment portfolio is to choose investment components that will serve the test of time.
I doubt I have very many, if any, clients who have a leather fashion apron in their closet. And hey, if you do, and if you like it, more power to you. However, I would suggest that certain more basic components of your wardrobe get more use and have turned out, over the long run, to be a better investment.
Talk to an investment professional about your portfolio. Work to make sure it has good basic components that will always be in style. Make sure that the financial products you choose to build a beautiful financial mosaic will stand the test of time. Do not acquire something that is in fashion today, but that cannot stand up over the long term. Look before you leap, as they say.
A good, well balanced financial portfolio is like a well-coordinated wardrobe. It has everything you need and nothing you don’t.
Have vision. Find a professional to work with. Make a plan. Take action!
Scott McGimpsey August 10th, 2016
This material was prepared by Scott McGimpsey and does not necessarily represent the views of the presenting party, nor their affiliates. All information is believed to be from reliable sources, however, we make no representation as to its completeness or accuracy. Neither Summit Brokerage Services Inc. nor Scott McGimpsey is engaged in rendering legal, accounting, or other professionally services. If such assistance is needed, the reader is advised to engage the services of a competent professional. This information should not be construed as investment, tax or legal advice and may not be relied on for the purpose of avoiding any federal, state, or municipal tax penalty. Moreover, a diversified portfolio does not assure a profit or assure protection against loss in a declining market. UNIFIED PLANNING GROUP is an independent firm with securities offered through Summit Brokerage Services Inc., Member FINRA, SIPC