In a sea of crisp and clean dress shirts with expertly matched ties, there is one wacky and eccentrically dressed outlier in Dallastown’s male teacher population.
Anybody who has traveled through the 400 wing has most likely seen Mr. Gottloeb outside of his room greeting students or playing the guitar. The thing people most often notice first, however, are his colorful and mismatched suits.
For many, dressing more formally comes with adulthood or the onset of a new job, but for Gottloeb it was a more sporadic decision.
“In the summer of 2011 I woke up one day and decided I wanted to wear suits every day,” he said. “I felt like I was putting half the effort in when I wasn’t wearing a suit.”
He didn’t always dress to impress, in fact, he spent most of his teenage years thinking quite the opposite.
“Ten years ago when I was a teenager, I only wore shorts and a t-shirt and it bummed me out to get dressed up,” he said.
The inspiration for his new style came from sophisticated, classy, and well-known TV show characters like Dr. Who and the Joker.
For those wondering, many of Gottloebs suits have come from Banana Republic, J-Crew, and Men’s Warehouse. While shopping, there are a few key rules that he tries to follow to ensure the best buy.
The first rule revolves around a thrifty mindset, some luck, and an eye for patterns.
“The key here is the sale rack,” he said. “I have a price point in mind, usually I try to get a whole suit for $100. That’s how I get the crazy patterns because they’re always the ones left behind and just happen to be in my size.
The second rule focuses on piecing together his new outfits.
I do my best not to match. I’ll pick a shirt with a different pattern than the suit, and tie with a different pattern as well. I try to make sure that they’re all different colors too” he explained
The one thing that you will never catch Gottloeb slipping up on are his matching shoes and belts.
“The only rule is that black shoes go with a black belt and any other shoes go with a brown belt, it’s the only rule and it absolutely can’t be broken” he noted.
All together, there are 30 suits in Gottloeb’s crazy collection; some of which were added during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“During the shutdown, I bought 8 suits because Men’s Warehouse had a sale,” he added.
People describe Gottloeb’s suits as eccentric, but he finds that his way of dressing often reflects his mood. He associates wearing a suit with a positive mood and a good day.
“I feel really good all the time. I dress the way I feel and I don’t often have bad days, so I feel like I should be wearing a suit all the time,” he said.
Gottloeb’s new and improved style hasn’t only improved his mood, but it’s gotten him something even better.
“I dressed in suits to impress my wife and I guess it worked because I married her,” he said.
Mrs.Gottloeb was clearly impressed and is very supportive and appreciative of his formal wear.
“The suits are an outward expression of his personality. They definitely caught my eye and I love both. Why be ordinary?” She said.
There was one last detail that Mr.Gottloeb ensured himself to include. This small detail is something that he feels is essential to his day and helps him to define “work” and “home.”
“As soon as I go home I change into something else and that’s important to me,” he said. “If I stayed in the clothes I was working in, I wouldn’t feel like I have transitioned to the next part of my day.”
This idea was taken from his love for his childhood TV show Mr.Rogers Neighborhood. At the beginning of every episode, Mr.Rogers would come home and he would change into a new outfit to tell his story.
There was one more important piece of advice that Gottloeb mentioned.
“You gotta find the clothes that make you, you,” he said. “You should be inspired by somebody, but don’t copy them.”