Originally Posted by mafoofan
Well, the wedding was over the weekend and I wore my full get-up. First time ever in 100% correct black tie. A few observations:
1. I f*cked up by ordering my shirt with a two-button collar as on my regular shirts. The bottom button tends to show.
2. A cummerbund is useful even with a double-breasted dinner jacket. When sitting or dancing it's nice to have the option of unbuttoning the jacket.
3. Even though it was a large black tie event (~250 people) at a fancy hotel with generally well-to-do guests, very few men dressed in fully correct black tie. In fact, there were more guys in black suits with long black ties than ones in a proper tuxedo with a bow tie. Most of the men in correct black tie were over 60. Almost all dinner jackets worn were single breasted with notch lapels. Shoes were egregious across the board. It was basically as if people just wore whatever black shoes they happened to have. Lots of brogues. Lots of loafers, too.
4. A surprising number of men, young and old, wore pocket squares. They probably shouldn't have as most were awkwardly tucked in (lots of TV-folded silk) or odd in design.
5. Maybe 1 in 10 men in dinner jackets wore studs. The others were all in regularly buttoned shirts.
6. There was one other guest I saw with shawl lapels and he was easily 70.
7. Single-cuff shirts were nowhere to be seen. Everyone but me wore French cuffs. I didn't notice any barrel cuffs.
8. No matter what anybody says, there is a real advantage to a pique bib front and collar even if not starched. The heavier, highly textured fabric keeps the visible parts of the shirt looking flat and unwrinkled. When you don't have a long tie to cover things up, a regular shirt tends to look too rumpled.