First, a confession. Well, until very recently this would have been a mere statement of fact—not a confession. But it feels like one now. Here goes: I own two J.Crew gingham shirts. One long sleeved, one short sleeved. And both are blue. There. I said it.
To offer a mostly inadequate defense, I stopped wearing them both a year ago—after I rode the train to work one day wearing one, and two other guys were in my car had on the exact same thing. Two of them. It felt like a tipping point. But that's beside the point.
The important question: Where do we go from here? I'm not going to lie, it stings a little bit to learn that you dress like every other guy in the world. The concept of "J.Crew Déjà Vu" isn't a new one, but now that @thatjcrewginghamshirt has outed me and so many other stylish fellows as menswear lemmings, what do we do?
The Instagram account is actually a reminder of why this pattern is so popular: It's classic, eye-catching without being too flashy, and looks great on most everyone. Sometimes terrible things are popular ("Mambo No 5," anyone?). In this case, something universally stylish is popular. What's wrong with that?
Another possible avenue for guys who want to give this pattern a break, and make sure not to run afoul of the Instagram style press: Pick wardrobe pieces that are easy for others to forget. That way you can wear them multiple times, maximize their worth, and not end up as a trend piece snapshot. When in doubt, just invest in a few white oxford button-ups.