Barney Stinson, a character from the popular American sitcom played by Neil Patrick Harris in the 2000s, popularized an iconic style of donning suits or as he liked to call it, “suit up” for every possible occasion. In earlier times, men only wore particular types of suits and that too, quite infrequently; only on special occasions and functions. But today, things have changed. Men wear suits quite frequently, and they own different styles and fits of suits to match the context of different occasions. Some even wear them every day as a part of their jobs, making them an essential part of their wardrobes.
A suit is nothing less than a fashion statement today. Wearing a well-tailored suit always gives man an elegant aura that attracts eyes and admiration. It can make a man look commanding and powerful at a business meeting, instantly dressing up the look to a perfect level of sophistication. Knowing that you are looking good makes you feel confident so that you can fearlessly be yourself and express your personality as soon as you step into the room. Every man would want to wear the perfect suit that helps him form a good first impression before he starts to speak. Wearing the correct suit can truly impact your image and open doors to success for you.
However, finding the perfect suit that fits you to the T is easier said than done. Choosing the perfect suit for yourself and mastering the way you wear it is truly an art. But if you feel a little lost when it comes to fabrics, patterns, and fitting, this article is the perfect place for you! Read on to find about the different do’s and don’ts of wearing a suit that can change your life and guide you through everything you need to know before you don that perfect suit!
1. Choose a suit according to your body type
Irrespective of other secondary things like fabrics and patterns that you like, the first thing you must ensure, is that you pick up a suit that matches your body type well. Even the most expensive and fashionable suit can look quite shabby if it is not tailored correctly to suit your body shape. Men come in all shapes and sizes, and the perk of the situation is that so do suits. Hence, the first step when it comes to donning the perfect suit is to find one that is fitting to your body type.
Lean: If you are slim, then you should go for a relatively tightly fitted suit such as a skinny fit or a slim fit that fits you like a second skin. It should sit flatly on your shoulders and not stretch in any part of your body. Get a tightly tailored suit in your own size. Do not just go for a smaller sized suit under the misconception that it will give you a tighter fitting as that will just make you look shabby. This will provide you with a longer appearance and enhance the shape of your body.
Short: If you find that you are little vertically challenged, do not feel conscious about how you will look in a suit because you will look excellent as long as it fits you correctly. Go for a more linear look with high waisted trousers so that your legs look longer. A shorter jacket with a more in-depth, v-shaped neckline would look better on you. Instead of belts, you should try suits with pinstripes that are not too widely spaced. Extra shirt cuffs and slimmer lapels, and a solid structure can work for you in terms of the style of the suit.
Tall: You should wear trousers that cover your ankles well to make sure that it does not appear as though you grew out of them. Your jacket should be long enough for your shirt to not show below the second button when it is buttoned up. Big checks might suit you in terms of patterns. It is a great idea to separate your upper and lower clothing and mixing and matching when it comes to trousers and jackets can help you with that. A statement belt can also do the trick while also looking elegant.
Large: A good option for larger men would be to prefer tailored suits instead of readymade ones. In terms of patters, narrow pinstripes are much more preferable than more extensive checks. Choosing a darker base colour can also help you with your silhouette. Go for a two-button jacket and avoid thick fabrics like wool and tweed, which will only make you look bulky. High waisted trousers will look great on you and do not make the mistake of going for a baggy fit as it will hide your shape and drown you in fabric.
2. Wear a darker tie
Most men prefer to wear a dress shirt in lighter tones under their suit jackets. In this case, it is always better to choose a tie in a darker colour to wear along with it. This helps you add a bit of contrast to your outfit. Some classic colour combinations are a dark navy tie with a pale blue shirt and a burgundy tie with a soft pink shirt. You can even experiment a little by mixing up complementary colours on the warmer and cooler end of the spectrum, such as a purple or an olive green tie with a blue shirt.
3. Tie the tie right
Even the most elegant tie that goes beautifully with your suit can look quite shabby if you do not tie it correctly. Make sure that the length of the suspended end of the tie is appropriate and that it falls down to end somewhere near the buckle of your belt. There are many types of knots for you to choose amongst and you just practice knotting the tie until you learn how to do it just right. There are many ways to learn, and the easiest and most convenient one is just to ask Google or watch a YouTube video tutorial for the same.
4. Match your shoes and belt
Rocking a suit is all about harmonizing colours, patterns and styles and conformity in the same across different parts of your outfit can help you achieve that snatched look. For this, you should try to match whenever possible. In this light, matching your shoes with your belt, if you are wearing one is a great way to finish your outfit while also making it look quite cohesive. Also, invest in a good pair of shoes, lest your beautiful outfit is ruined by a minute imperfection such as shabby, old mismatched shoes.
5. Choose opposite colours for pocket squares
If the jacket of your suit has a pocket square, you must make sure that its colour directly contrasts with the colour of your suit. This means that if your suit is in a lighter tone, the pocket square should be darker, but if your suit is in a darker tone the pocket square should be lighter. It is also advisable to stick to the same side of the spectrum while choosing both tones.
6. Make sure you go for the best quality
A suit is a treasured garment, and you are going to wear it over and over for many years in your lifetime. It is a one-time investment, and for it to look elegant, you must make sure that you do not compromise on the quality just to save a few bucks. Also, make sure that what you are buying is worth your money. Just because a suit is expensive and has a designer label, does not necessarily imply that it is the best possible quality you can get at that price.
7. Choose a tie with a thinner width
Wide ties were surely the fashion at a point in time, but that was probably back in the eighties. Stick to thinner ties, especially if you have a thin chest and a narrow torso. Around 2.25 to 2.75 inches is the ideal width for an elegant tie. However, if you are a bit bigger and have a broader chest, you can up your size, since a slightly wider tie will look better on you.
1. Do not skip the undershirt
If you are likely to sweat or are will be in a hotter environment, then skipping the undershirt is an absolute no. This especially holds in situations where you will be in a crowded place and have direct and close contact with other people around you. So, you can go for a sleek undershirt that will stay hidden and not interfere with your outfit, while also protecting your dress shirt from sweat stains that have the potential to ruin your entire look. It will also reduce the odour caused by sweating, which can otherwise be quite aversive and ruin your appeal.
2. Do not wear too loud a tie
While a certain amount of boldness makes for a statement look, be careful not to go overboard and choose a combination that attracts the eyes away from what should be the main focus of the occasion: your suit. Colours that do not harmonize with each other can completely ruin the aesthetic of your look and so can dissimilar and disproportionate patterns. Avoid risky colour combinations such as yellow and green, purple and green, blue and red and mismatched patterns.
3. Do not wear short ankle length socks
Your pants are likely to ride up each time you move or sit down. In this case, the hems might end up lifting up, which can expose your ankles. If you are wearing ankle socks, your legs will be visible in such a situation which can ruin your look by appearing shabby. Hence, it is more advisable to wear matching long dress socks so that you are always a picture of elegance, even when sitting down with your pants hiked up. White socks are disfavored since they give a gym sort of look that can spoil the look of the suit.
4. Do not forget to unbutton your jacket before you sit
Always remember the golden rule when it comes to suits: button-up when you are standing and unbutton when you sit down. This is because keeping the buttons closed while you are standing looks classy and enhances your silhouette and shows off the fitting of the suit. But if you try to sit while wearing a tailored suit, you will look unnatural and are at risk of ripping off the buttons due to the fabric scrunching up.
5. Do not wear suspenders and belts simultaneously
Sometimes, your body shape may have slightly altered, which can affect the fit of your favourite suit. For instance, if you lose some weight, your pants are likely to slip down, and you can always use a belt or suspenders to fix that minor issue instead of buying a whole new pair of trousers. But always remember that in such a case you may only use either suspenders or belts. Using both might look strange and if you are wearing suspenders, make sure to choose a pair with thinner straps.
6. Do not over accessorize
It is always commendable to be bold with your fashion choices and use accessories to dress up your outfits. But a suit is already a very fancy garment, and overloading on the accessories might just steal away the elegance it represents and the attention that it deserves. Go for a more minimalistic look, and try not to exceed two as the number of accessories you choose. Keep it simple and let your suit do the talking for itself.
7. Be careful when choosing patterns
Going for patterns on a suit can always be a good idea to stand out and make your suit look unique but be careful when you choose to do so since clashing patterns can end up making the outfit look mismatched. Mix patterns in shirts and ties that complement each other, such as a polka dot tie, pinstriped shirt, and so on. Trying to mix different colours of the same patters such as a stripy tie on a stripy shirt usually calls for disaster.