• Dan Gardner

The Dos & Don'ts on Wearing a Suit

We all want to look our best, especially when wearing a suit, don't we? Of course we do! Stupid question!.. But you might think it's just too much effort to look your best every time you put on a suit and tie! Well, not really. With whatever suit & accessories you have to work with, whether that be a luxury silk pocket square from Drakes, a nice three-piece suit from Next, or a cheap neck-tie from Primark - we can all look our best by just following some simple DOS & DON'TS...

Here are some of Dan's 'Dos & Don'ts' to take note of when wearing a suit + accessories!



Different tie & pocket square: When wearing both a tie & pocket square with a suit, keep them a slightly, if not a complete different colour or pattern to one another, a different fabric as well (if possible). Keeping your tie and pocket square different will give a statement for them both, as well as giving you opportunity to enhance other colours or patterns elsewhere. The pocket square is an elegant finishing touch and deserves it's own identity within your outfit. Think of your pocket square as a complement to your shirt or tie - choose it wisely, as at times it can make or break a quality outfit.

The right tie width: When selecting a tie to wear, try and match (as best you can) the width of your tie to the width of the lapel on your jacket. It helps balance the jacket & tie combo nicely without anything looking out of place. Although this would mainly apply to jacket lapels that are either noticeably thin, or noticeably thick! For example, wearing a skinny tie with a jacket featuring wide pointed lapels won't be your best look!

Proper trouser length: The end of your trousers should "break" on top of your shoes. This means your trousers skim the tops of your shoes creating a small crease. If there is no crease at all, it's likely your trousers are too short! However, if there is a deep crease, or several creases, it's a strong sign your trousers are too long and people might expect you to throw up gang signs and start rapping at any given moment!... Don't be that guy.



Don't rock that sockless style: That's right I said it! Shoes without socks (or with "invisible" socks) is a no-no! You will either strongly disagree with me on this, or be right on side (like a normal person)! If you disagree then it might be that this strange modern world of fashion has brain-washed you into thinking that showing off your ankles when wearing a suit actually looks cool and is acceptable...

A suit is a well respected attire and personally I dislike anything which dilutes that. To me the 'sockless style' seems a very desperate attempt to try and "improve" or "modernise" how a suit can be worn, when in truth it doesn't need improving or changing. Call me old fashioned, but I like socks. I don't think its particularly appropriate getting your ankles out as a man in the formal settings you'd usually be wearing a suit, if anything I think it's a bit weird.

I'm sure some would argue that it is more comfortable, more 'fresh', or less sweaty without wearing longer socks, but quite frankly - I don't care! You wouldn't lose your tie to prevent a sweaty neck would you? Or maybe you would?.. You psychopath!

All that being said, I would in fact make one exception to going sockless (or wearing "invisible" socks)... and that is when wearing a casual suit (or just a shirt & trousers) whilst attending a beach type event or wedding. I found myself in this situation at my brothers wedding over in Turkey last year, where I was forced to wear shoes without long socks as part of the groomsmen 'look'. Although I wasn't pleased about this at first, I must say that looking back at photographs, it didn't look too insane wearing shoes with no socks on a beach!.. But that's it, okay! Unless you're on a beach or in the privacy of your own home, put your ankles away!

Fitted suits - not skin tight: I know... it's all the rage at the moment. Skin tight suits, no socks, huge beards, tattoos on your face!.. The world has gone mad! Apart from the beard part - I've got nothing against beards... As long as your beard isn't so long that it covers your tie completely, because then we might have a problem... because I really love ties... probably more than I love beards... so it just wouldn't work... we couldn't really be friends... because you'd like beards more than ties, and I'd like ties more than beards... we'd have different priorities in life and we'd always argue about it... it would be an actual nightmare!!

So anyway, your suit should be fitted, NOT skin tight. A tailors job is to adjust a suit so that it fits the shape of your body, with still room for comfortable movement. Your suit shouldn't restrict your natural movement and shouldn't create major creases when you go to shake someone's hand, for example. When you sit down your trousers shouldn't rise so much that your calves are on show. When you bend down to tie your shoe laces the stitching on your jacket or your trousers shouldn't feel under great pressure. It's simple really, buy a suit (or get your suit tailored) to fit you properly.

Don't over do it: Avoid over-accessorising and wearing too many colours or patterns. Trust me, it's harder than you think at times! If you're anything like me you have your go-to pocket square, your favourite lapel pin and that tie bar you just really want to wear all the time!... It's difficult sometimes to not attach all of them to your outfit and then convince yourself in the mirror that you look like an absolute gangster! When in reality you look more like a confused peacock whose just gone a bit mental at the boot fair!

If you over do it with too many colours and extras it can make you look like you're trying too hard and will ultimately kill the whole look of your outfit in an instant! So if you're already wearing a pocket square and a tie bar for example, you'll probably want to reconsider that favourite lapel pin of yours.

So there you have it! Some important dos and don'ts on wearing a suit.

Do you agree? Disagree? Or have some advice of your own? Feel free to comment them below...

Thanks for reading.

- Dan

#menswear #fashion #pocketsquare #lifestyle #tie #advice