So, you want to get your boyfriend/husband to dress up and attend a vintage dance event but don’t know how. Here is Oscar’s guide to getting him to do that. Men, this post is for the ladies. I wrote a post just for you here.
How to Get Your Man to Dress Vintage and Dance
This is the kind of thing you need to hear from a man as I don’t think women fully understand why their guy doesn’t want to go with them to a costuming event. I mean it sounds fun right? The truth is there are deep seated fears that guys have that also prevent him from telling you why he doesn’t want to go. I know you think it sucks but that is the way we are wired. If you learn the wiring you will be able to work with us and let us keep our ego intact instead of challenging nature and making us feel bad. Your choice. You also have to be completely honest with why you want him to go with you to this event. I have thought about this for a while and it should boil down to you wanting to spend time with him. You want to be seen as a couple and you enjoy his company. Now lets get to some reasons and solutions to help you ask your significant other to a vintage costume or dance event even though he doesn’t want to go or may need some extra persuasion.
Insight 1. He is intimidated by dressing up/dancing
Yesterdays post for men talks about how guys can get intimidated by dressing up/dancing because it calls a lot of attention to them and could put them out of their element. This is fundamentally a fear and needs to be addressed cautiously. Please do not bring the “fear” up if you want a chance at him coming along. Instead, address this issue by being honest. You might be thinking that a great way to convince him is to tell him that he is going to have a fun time and there will be other people there and men look great in costumes etc. The real reason you want him to go is to be with you, to be sharing an activity with you, so be direct with your intentions. Don’t make him feel like you want to dress him up like a doll and parade him around like a sideshow at a circus. That is what he is not liking about this whole thing. Instead, tell him how you really want him to go with you so you can be together and that you are nervous and you want his support. Guys love to be the hero. Make him one.
Regarding dancing: take him to a lesson, or maybe just to watch a dance first, then next time a lesson. Rotate partners. Don’t only dance with him. He needs to dance with other partners, as do you, to learn better. It is too tempting to correct your husband, but another woman will not do that and that’s what he needs most.
Here are some outfit ideas by decade:
1920 mens clothing– easy, classic, sporty, casual and bootlegger approved
1930s mens clothing- Sexy movie star or dangerous gangster?
1950s cool – the era of greasers, Hawaiian shirts, and Rock ‘n roll
1960s men’s mod style– the beginning of hipsters which most menswear is inspired by today
Insight 2. Do not criticize — EVER!
This is a great time to bring this up. My wife and I both have seen women criticize their men in front of other people. Do not ever do this. This is the fastest way to make sure he will never go to any event again. If he does not dance that will give him time to learn. Be encouraging. Don’t gossip to your friends ‘I didn’t realize he had two left feet.’ Everyone starts somewhere and just be happy he tried it at all. Praise him for picking out his own stuff even if it doesn’t look that good or is not that polished or whatever. If he is putting effort into it reward him. Even with dressing up, everyone starts somewhere. It takes a while to put something together that is really polished and he will figure it out on his own. Admire him for how he looks in his clothes and be the kind of woman that inspires confidence in men not the one that hen pecks them to death. If you really want a strong man, try doing this in all walks of life and you will see great results. I guarantee it.
Insight 3. Make planning for the event something both of you do (when he says yes)
Let him see you try on different outfits. At home is better than a store for some reason. I think it has something to do with displaying a manly presence in public. Vintage clothes or reproductions really bring out the best qualities in women and make them real pretty. Guys like pretty girls so he will enjoy seeing you in these outfits. For his clothes – Let him look through pictures and decide what he wants to look like. Do not let this become something where you pick out everything for him and make him do all kinds of stuff. That is the quickest way to make him daydream about playing ‘Call Of Duty’. I do think that deep down all guys don’t mind dressing up. We all did it as kids, just like girls did, only we dressed up as cowboys, firemen, soldiers etc. He probably will want to do something militant, gangster or soldier like. Let him. Don’t make him want to dress up like a dandy. If your wanting him to go is to want to spend more time with him then let him have fun too. If you just want to dress him up to look handsome then this whole idea will fail.
Insight 4. Describe the era in terms of guns
Most guys I know got really excited when they learned about the kind of guns that they could possibly see or use while wearing vintage. It might be civil war re-enactment (Victorian) or cowboy action shooting (Victorian, Edwardian) or even being a gangster (1920s through the 1940s). One thing I was really fascinated to learn was that the 1911 .45 was actually designed in 1911 and it is still a solid gun design sold today (I own one). There will be other guys there (hopefully) who probably know a lot about vintage guns and your guy will love to talk about it. If your guy isn’t a gun guy then that brings up my next point
Insight 5. Describe other vintage guy things – Alcohol
Most guys love alcohol (if your guy is a recovering alcoholic please don’t do this). There are a bunch of great vintage drink recipes that guys would love to try out if they even knew about them. The old fashioned, the mojito, the martini, mint juleps, gin and tonics, single malt scotches and many others. A lot of these drinks were invented during the prohibition era when alcohol was
disgusting and needed to taste better. You know what prohibition means right? Gangsters! Learning some of the histories of these recipes and who drank what could be persuasive. It depends on the event you are going to but some events do have drinks and could be a good starting point. Other guy things that are fun are straight razor shaving, cigars, man food, business and even vintage sports. There should be other guys there who are not only into dressing up but who are interested in other guy things like the ones above. Vintage trains, cars and sports are other good topics.
Well, I think that is about all the reasons I can think of. I think the main one is to be honest and say you want to spend time with him and make it something you both enjoy. You might even have to go to one of his activities in exchange like fishing, bowling or ‘Call of Duty’ night. If even that doesn’t work well then you might have to promise something else (wink wink). When you are doing your research for the event make sure that at least a couple other guys are going. Do not bring him to a tea party with all the ladies on his first time out. That is a quick way to make him feel uncomfortable. ~ Oscar
Thoughts from Debbie:
All of the above tactics do work. I have had several women get their husbands to events, dressed up, and danced just because they asked honestly, made him feel like her hero, appealed to his interests, encouraged him to choose his own look, introduced him to other manly men, and showered him with compliments, encouragement, and intimate rewards. It can work. It does work on most men. However, if your significant other isn’t biting the bait then leave it be and go by yourself. Dance events are full of people who don’t have partners with them (and NO its not for singles only.) Tell your SO all about the fun you had, the great dancers you danced with (makes him jealous, another tactic), and how you hope someday he will join you because you love him and want to share the fun with him. Best wishes on your quest.
Please report back on your success in the comments.