So do regular tailors make capes or do you have to find a cape maker? A couple weeks ago my British Warm was insufficient for the cold and I actually was wondering if having a cape for another layer would be nice.
For evening events:
Winter variants depending on formality
Navy DB suit, white shirt black knit tie
velvet blue coat, grey flannel pants, striped blue shirt, navy knit tie
Navy tropical wool vs blue mohair suit, white shirt, black knit tie, +/- Montecristi hat
Looks like you have a bolt of the cloth. One option is to drape the bolt of fabric across your chest and shoulder, mimicking the path of the lapel, and see how it looks in the mirror. you can also try it with various shirt an tie combos if you have the time and inclination.
The Young Fellows Ball at the Frick Collection is coming up again next month and is quite nice. Here are some pictures from last years event.
Pics from the Met Apollo Circle Gala last year.
I don't think you can get out of Charvet at $600 a shirt unless the euro really falls compared to the USD. Duties are indeed very high, at least 20-25%. I was warned about it when I ordered the shirts. My Demi-measure was around 350-400 euros per shirt at the 2 lowest price points, excluding VAT but not including US duties. Grand measure will certainly be more.
In NYC I heard about a friend of a friend who only drives Über when it is raining or the weather is bad. I was out one Saturday night when it was raining hard. Über was 7x normal price. Apparently he made $1-2k that night.