I agree with Manton on black suits as unsuitable for *most* businesswear (besides, they are impractical - it is much more difficult to match shirts and ties with black rather than navy or charcoal and medium grey suits). Â The exception being in creative fields, of course, where black suits are standard. Â That being said, and although Manton may disagree with them, the really influential mainstream designers who *really * influence what men wear in the workplace, have decreed the black suit as indispensible - the suit to have. Â It is one of Donna Karan's basics for men, and Calvin Klein and Kenneth Cole have made similar statements. Â Whether you think these designers make garbage is irrelevant, they, and not Flusser, and not Manton, and not those old dudes sewing away at Kiton, really do dictate the menswear landscape in America to a large degree. Â You might not like it; but thems is the facts.
To take this a step further, seanandnik, let me add that clothing choices are not dictated by facts (historical or otherwise), but rather by taste. No one tells me what I may wear; I'm a big boy with my own developed sense of taste. Therefore, I honestly don't give a rat's ass what Manton, Flusser, or Donna Karen think about black suits, and neither should you. Do what you wish. Now, knowing what affect your choice of clothing will have on others is a different matter. If you're highly conscious of what others think, then examine those around you and how progressive they are in their fashion senses. If very progressive, go with the black suit; if staid and traditional, shy away. But if you're okay with the occasional glance of disapproval while you're out at the club (which may or may not happen), then I reiterate: do what you wish. (And remember, folks, he did indicate that this would be primarily for attire to clubs, not business meetings.)