Even if men don’t need to wear a suit for work, most men will have cause to wear one at some point in their lives, be it for a wedding, a funeral, or a job interview.
Those who choose to put together an outfit that both fits well and looks good, will notice it can have a curious effect on the wearer. Simply dressing differently to how you normally do can cause a change in how you feel about yourself, and a suit can do just that.
Here are ten things to consider when thinking about buying a suit, suggested by online suit retailer Dobell:
You don’t need to spend a fortune to look good, you just need to choose the suit well. Does it compliment your body shape? Does it fit at the shoulders, at the sleeves, at the ankles, and the back?
It makes you feel confident – research indicates, and anecdotal evidence would seem to agree, that rightly or wrongly, dressing in a smart suit imbues the wearer with new levels of self-confidence – whether that’s approaching someone at a bar or leaving your mark at a networking event.
Buy from a specialist, rather than a High Street clothing store which stocks suits as well as a range of other menswear items.
Appropriate accessories come and go – you’d be hard-pushed to find anyone wearing a white scarf with a tuxedo at anything but the most formal of formal occasions nowadays, if in doubt, keep it clean and simple.
Black suits are best left for weddings or funerals. Charcoal grey, or dark blue, are good alternatives. You’d struggle to find a shirt or tie that won’t go with one of those colours.
Sometimes the best occasion to wear a suit is when no-one else is. For example, if you’re just on a night out with friends — if you’re going bar-hopping and you want to make a splash, try a suit with an open-necked shirt.
There are a thousand-and-one rules for how to correctly wear a suit depending on the occasion, the type of suit, or where you are in the world. They are all worth listening to, but if you try and obey them all, you’ll never get dressed in the morning. If you’re not sure what’s right, think conservative, understated and classic.
Your pocket square is the ideal way to add a flash of colour to a conservative suit, but it should never match the tie exactly in either pattern or colour. Stripy tie? Plain or spotted pocket square. Dark blue tie? Red or white pocket square.
If you’re unsure about suit protocol – from what colour shoes to wear with a black suit to how to sit down properly while wearing one, there are lots of resources available online.
But if you’re still in doubt, the most reliable source of information on suits, is usually just to watch the most-recent James Bond film.