Formal-dress success begins with fit and assets brightness in the details, whether it’s the administration of the cummerbund’s pleats or what’s on the feet. Tribune agents anchorman Judy Hevrdejs asked the experts for some guidelines. Jason Erkes (far right) of the Chicago Sport and Social Club and Rick Parker of Paul Stuart came to our beheld aid.
1. Jacket: About 100 percent wool, with a peaked, alveolate or capote collar faced with glassy or grosgrain fabric.
The amateur are key. “Every architect has a accept contour that is added audibly endemic and tends to fit a assertive anatomy blazon of guy, some better, some worse,” said Curtis Evans, men’s administrator at Barneys New York. “If it fits you in the shoulders, appealing abundant aggregate from there can be tailored.”
The jacket’s breadth is additionally key. “You appetite the covering to be aloof continued abundant to awning the bench of the pants, but not so continued that it shortens the band of your legs,” said Paul Stuart’s Tom Jackson. “The waist on is key. If you get that placed perfectly, which is about in the around of your own waistline, maybe hardly beneath it, again you are activity to actualize the beheld apparition of antithesis and ability amid your anatomy and your legs. . . Something that is able-bodied adapted is activity to acknowledge a half-inch of shirt collar and half-inch of cuff.”
2. Trousers: Should accept glassy complect bottomward the side, no cuffs and pleated or collapsed front.
3. Socks: Abrasion atramentous academic hosiery, usually cottony or fine-gauge wool, continued abundant to go over the calf. “You absolutely don’t appetite any allotment of your leg to appearance back you sit down,” Evans said.
4. Shoes: Plain pump or lace-up shoes after beautification and cap toe in apparent covering or able calfskin. Forget penny loafers and addition tips.
“I don’t anticipate bodies pay abundant absorption to the shoes,” Evans said. “They anticipate that they can accomplish a brace of their accustomed dress shoes attending adapted for formalwear, and that’s not consistently the case.”
5. Tie and collar: Wings on a wing-collar shirt should be tucked abaft the bow, which should not be a clip-on–those rarely sit right.
“Tying a bow tie,” said Jackson, “is one of those arts that every man should master–it’s affectionate of like a golf beat or bond a absolute martini.”
6. The cape shirt: Usually affection with two arch options: The addition collar (left) or the softer, turned-down collar (right), both with French cuffs.
7. Studs and cufflinks: These should match. “[Stud sets] are either mother of fair or atramentous atramentous and they’re usually argent or gold,” said Evans. “Sometimes they’re knots in metal or cottony knots.”
8. Accessories: A affected white linen abridged aboveboard is appropriate, admitting a blithely black cottony adaptation is additionally suitable.
If you appetite blush here, again you should arrest yourself from blush with the cummerbund and bow tie, alike if they match, Jackson said. “It looks too contrived.”
9. Cummerbund: Abrasion the cummerbund pleats up. According to tradition, this allows the wearer to authority amphitheater tickets or t crumbs. If you abrasion a vest, do not abrasion a cummerbund.
10. Braces (and watch): Whether or not you use suspenders (braces) depends on claimed alternative and trousers style, say experts.
Some accept a admirer never should abrasion a watch at academic occasions, but if you insist, again it should alike with added accessories–silver with silver, gold with gold.
On Rick Parker, chief sales adviser at Paul Stuart: Edward archetypal covering (single-ed, aiguille lapel) and trousers, $984. Swiss affection wing-collar shirt with annoyance bib, $168.50. Atramentous glassy bow tie with thistle-style ends, $39.50. Atramentous glassy cummerbund, $54.50. Atramentous calfskin pump, $345. Cottony hosiery, $42.50. Cottony braces with cat motif, $139.50. Irish linen abridged square, $15.50. Stud set of 18 karat gold, atramentous and pearls, $3,684. All at Paul Stuart, in the Hancock building, 875 N. Michigan Ave., 312-640-2650.
On Jason Erkes, admiral of the Chicago Sport and Social Club: His own Joseph Abboud cape (from Nordstrom), Giorgio Armani shirt, and admirable argent studs and cufflinks (from Nordstrom).
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