OK - I admit I'm not as in tune with the style world as ADG or Chris. But I try to dress nicely and always have clean cloths on when I go out of the house.
I do NOT wear sweats/workout gear out in public with two exceptions:
1 - I'm actually going to or from the gym or the running/walking trail
B - I'm taking the dog out early in the morning or late at night.
Even on weekends I "dress up" as some would say. Usually it's a polo shirt from the Brothers Brooks or and actual Polo from Ralph and if the weather is warm shorts and if not trousers of khaki persuasion. I rarely wear jeans - just a personal choice nothing against denim. Yes, I do yard work and what not around the house in them. The pants may be frayed around the edges but still quite presentable and usable.
Over the last few days I've seen several people wearing what looks like sleeping togs out and about. A few I'm hoping have just been to the gym or are on their way from it.
Example: (I wish I dared take pictures)
Middle aged woman - hair in a pony tail with a sweat band around her head that just happen to be the same cloth as the VERY tight VERY short shorts she was wearing and a T-shirt. If it was not for the fact that it was around 1:30pm (I take late lunch) and the overpowering smell of Chanel No. 5, I would have said she was going to or coming from the gym. It was the grocery store! To be specific it was a Wegmans. You can get everything but the kitchen sink and when they had the home improvement chain you could buy that too.
Another was a pregnant woman. Now I understand that being pregnant can be very uncomfortable and the clothing choices are limited but come on.... We were shopping for a Bat Mitzvah gift for a friend of JLPTG's when across the parking lot plodded this woman in flannel pants, T-shirt and I'm pretty sure they were not Belgians but actual slippers. Belly hanging out under the T-shirt. I looked at my wife and asked if they no longer made maternity clothes - she said "Oh - don't get me started."
OK - so enough of the ranting and those aren't very good examples but my point is that one can go out in public, be comfortable and look good. Clothes don't have to be expensive be nice. One of my best polo shirts came from the second had store - butter colored Brooks Brothers and cost me all of $4.99.
Wait for the end of season sales or look for deals online. Everyone can take some hints from our man G to look good and not spend a lot.