or Connect
Styleforum › Forums › Men's Style › Classic Menswear › The Casual Suit vs. Odd Jacket and Trousers
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

The Casual Suit vs. Odd Jacket and Trousers - Page 3

Poll Results: Casual Suit or Odd Jacket and Trousers

 
  • 40% (25)
    Casual Suit
  • 59% (36)
    Odd Jacket and Trousers
61 Total Votes  
post #31 of 59
Quote:
Originally Posted by archibaldleach View Post

I agree that there are few to no events where a tie should be worn but a suit would be inappropriate. There are, however, events where a suit is not required but a fair number of people will still show up wearing an odd jacket and maybe a tie. Some men will ditch the jacket and tie in almost any circumstance where they do not need a suit, while others will continue to dress with a bit more formality. Once you move outside business formal, things are a lot more discretionary these days (you might see dress shirt and trousers, some with jackets, some with ties, and maybe the odd suit at some events). I agree that the middle level of formality has definitely become less important, but rather than thinking of the old middle level of formality as a requirement or dress code, I think it helps to think of it as an option that one may choose. I think odd jackets fall into this discretionary category and casual suits probably do too.

One example that comes to mind: A few restaurants still require men to wear jackets. A suit would not be inappropriate here, but showing up in an odd jacket and tie or a casual suit and tie would both work very well. Of course one could just default to a dark worsted suit and tie (given that this is SF, perhaps I should have added this as a poll option...).

Ummm yea...

I wasn't doubting the fact that an odd jacket + tie is an option.

My point is that, for some people, it shouldn't be. The look has become a bit dated now and - for the group I mentioned - you'd often be better off in suit & tie or an open collared suit.
post #32 of 59
...
post #33 of 59
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ivar View Post

As has been pointed out, the suit and the sports coat need to be made of the same cloth for the comparison to be meaningful. Under this assumption, I have a slightly different take on this from most people. I think of suit pants as a magnifier, which, depending on the formality of the cloth, either increases or decreases the outfit's formality. Take for instance a houndstooth tweed cloth. Most people would agree that -- all else being equal -- a houndstooth suit is less formal than a houndstooth sports coat plus, say, mid-grey pants. But they would equally agree, I think, that a navy suit is more formal than a navy sports coat plus mid-grey pants. The same argument holds for brown suits vs. brown sports coats, linen suits vs. linen sports coats, and so on.

I see where you're coming from, but I think that the cloth has to be pretty casual for the full suit to be more casual than the cloth worn as an odd jacket with odd trousers. One also must consider the trouser that would likely be worn with a particular odd jacket as casual odd jackets can also be paired successfully with more casual trousers (e.g. corduroy, moleskin, etc.). So it's possible that a casual tweed odd jacket with mid-grey flannels could seem more formal than a full casual tweed suit, but this may not be the case when the same jacket is paired with something like moleskins.

Also, if I'm understanding you correctly, the houndstooth tweed cloth is the one you're using as an example of something that can be more casual as a suit than as an odd jacket and you're using brown and linen suits vs. odd jackets as things that are comparable to your navy suit example?
post #34 of 59
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cantabrigian View Post

Ummm yea...

I wasn't doubting the fact that an odd jacket + tie is an option.

My point is that, for some people, it shouldn't be. The look has become a bit dated now and - for the group I mentioned - you'd often be better off in suit & tie or an open collared suit.

Sounds like your position is that since the middle level of formality has mostly gone away, if you're going to something where a tie is a good idea, you should just wear the suit and not bother with some middle ground even if a suit isn't necessarily required. It kind of sounded like that from your first post, but this may be a case of us being products of our own (different) experiences and having some different frames of reference which we use as talking points.

I'm not sure I agree that the odd jacket and tie look is dated (I see a fair amount of odd jackets where I am), but it's entirely possible that this is a result of our living in different countries. If it was as dead of a look here as it sounds like it is in the UK for young men, I'd probably agree with you. Still, I do get the appeal of just wearing the suit. It will always look good and makes life a bit simpler.
post #35 of 59

I, too, like the flexibility and variety that sport coats and odd trousers offer. In the most formal of situations, nothing but a suit (or the blue and grey, imo, a half step down in formality) will do, but for everything else, a sport coat and odd trouser ensemble allows for some very beautiful outfits. So much so, that I often have people tell me how much they like my "suit"...
 

post #36 of 59
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cantabrigian View Post


Ummm yea...

I wasn't doubting the fact that an odd jacket + tie is an option.

My point is that, for some people, it shouldn't be. The look has become a bit dated now and - for the group I mentioned - you'd often be better off in suit & tie or an open collared suit.

Are you seriously professing wearing a suit with no tie? It's the worst kind of business casual there is, and should be banished from a company's dress code.

post #37 of 59
Sure.

It's fairly common nowadys. Doesn't strike me as inherently better or worse than an odd jacket sans tie.
post #38 of 59
Quote:
Originally Posted by bourbonbasted View Post

The versatility of odd jackets and trousers is unbeaten. I find they offer a lot more flexibility, particularly when talking about ties, shoes and patterns. And, let's face it, 99% of the world views odd jackets and trousers on the same level of formality as a suit.

+1
post #39 of 59
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cantabrigian View Post

I'm coming to believe that odd jackets are, for me and those like me, not very useful.

For a younger guy in an urban center, there doesn't really exist an event to which you should or can wear a tie but where a suit is inappropriate.

That middling level of formality seems to have disappeared. So I think odd jackets are best used in either a decidedly casual way - with khakis or even jeans - or as basically outerwear.

It can look good but I think the allure is too often what YRR mentioned - the magic of multiplication of outfits.

It's true -- the gap in formality between odd jacket with tie and casual suit is not a meaningful one anymore. The utility of odd jackets is, for me, tied to tielessness.

 

EDIT: A casual suit without tie also strikes me as fine, but a city suit without tie is only cool if worn with a loucheness borderline inappropriate for business. Otherwise, it's boring and incomplete.

post #40 of 59
Quote:
Originally Posted by YRR92 View Post

It's true -- the gap in formality between odd jacket with tie and casual suit is not a meaningful one anymore. The utility of odd jackets is, for me, tied to tielessness.

EDIT: A casual suit without tie also strikes me as fine, but a city suit without tie is only cool if worn with a loucheness borderline inappropriate for business. Otherwise, it's boring and incomplete.

This leaves me to wonder how many people who are not cognoscenti of menswear are going to be able to descry the features that differentiate the casual suit from the city suit. After all, it has been mentioned several times in this thread that a great many people regard an odd jacket and tie ensemble as a "suit." And can't certain suits be on the border? My latest suit is made from a suiting hopsack rather than smooth worsted, and it has a ticket pocket, both features to pushing in the direction of "casual," but it is still conservative enough, I think, to be worn in any situation that demands a conservative suit.

I might mention that I, too, will wear an open-necked shirt with my casual suits but not my more conservative suits.
post #41 of 59
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cantabrigian View Post

My point is that, for some people, it shouldn't be. The look has become a bit dated now and - for the group I mentioned - you'd often be better off in suit & tie or an open collared suit.

As a member of the group mentioned (under 30, living in a major city), this makes me sad.

post #42 of 59
I am a newbie in these kind of discussions so I enter with much trepidation...

My personal preference is a casual suit. I like the simplicity and I don't think I sacrifice wrt tie or shoe options relative to odd jackets and slacks (maybe some less options in patterns but I am not sold on that either). In my estimation a casual suit is much easier to get right than an odd jacket and slacks (but maybe I am just lazy shog[1].gif).
post #43 of 59
Quote:
Originally Posted by Claghorn View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cantabrigian View Post

My point is that, for some people, it shouldn't be. The look has become a bit dated now and - for the group I mentioned - you'd often be better off in suit & tie or an open collared suit.

As a member of the group mentioned (under 30, living in a major city), this makes me sad.


If true, makes me very glad to be outside both the age & location criteria. biggrin.gif

post #44 of 59
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by pinkpanther View Post

I am a newbie in these kind of discussions so I enter with much trepidation...

My personal preference is a casual suit. I like the simplicity and I don't think I sacrifice wrt tie or shoe options relative to odd jackets and slacks (maybe some less options in patterns but I am not sold on that either). In my estimation a casual suit is much easier to get right than an odd jacket and slacks (but maybe I am just lazy shog[1].gif).

I don't think it's harder to pair one or the other with shirts and ties for the most part; it's more what we prefer when we're not dressed to the point of maximum formality (obviously excluding formalwear). Most odd jackets worth owning go with medium grey flannel or medium to light grey tropical wool or fresco if you're truly lazy, though.
post #45 of 59
Quote:
Originally Posted by Holdfast View Post


If true, makes me very glad to be outside both the age & location criteria. biggrin.gif

Wait - did Cantabrigian just prophesy the death of the sport coat?
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Classic Menswear
Styleforum › Forums › Men's Style › Classic Menswear › The Casual Suit vs. Odd Jacket and Trousers