Black suits

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by Classic, Feb 5, 2004.

  1. General Koskov

    General Koskov Well-Known Member

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    They ('they' being the fashion arbitors) say that midnight blue (true navy blue) looks blacker than black under artificial light. And I wholeheartedly agree that a navy/midnight blue dinner suit is much more elegant than a black one which will look greyish.

    However, I have seen (on TV and in some men's style books) some pretty black black suits. There was no hint of blue, but the black looked rich and beautiful. So is this just expensive cloth? Or what? Yes, in the brightest studio lights, you could see some greyish, but it was a shimmering grey and fit very nicely. Perhaps someone could tell me if black can be black if done in the right fabric?

    And for the record, I think that a black suit is just as good as a grey or blue one. More formal of course (as a morning coat is often black and it is the most formal garment), but certainly in this day and age a little formality is needed now and again.
     


  2. The Dandy

    The Dandy Active Member

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    I may be in the minority in saying this, however, I am definitely firmly opposed to black suits. In my opinion, black suits are something best reserved for funeral directors and chauffers. The look is very severe and not at all flattering. Of course, the effect is magnified when men try and do the "Reservoir Dogs" wardrobe. The black over white theme makes it seem as if the man in question is simply too clueless to wear/own a proper dinner jacket.
     


  3. ernest

    ernest Senior member

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    Black = after 6 PM

    Most people wearing black suits in the day do not enven know this rule...

    If you know but do not care that is not very important as you must apply other rules.

    If you do not this rule = you must not know any rules and so you have no taste
     


  4. Downtowner

    Downtowner Active Member

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    To suggest that someone has "no taste" because he doesn't know a rule (which, once someone mentions that it is a rule, he will know and choose whether or not to follow) is absolutely absurd.  It should be obvious that knowledge of a rule (or even all the rules in the proverbial book) and taste have absolutely nothing to do with one another.  Taste is more than the knowledge of rules.
     


  5. johnnynorman3

    johnnynorman3 Senior member

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    What would you suggest the groom wear to an afternoon wedding then, assuming that a tux is out of the question (no cutaways either)? Is a black suit appropriate then?
     


  6. Ambulance Chaser

    Ambulance Chaser Senior member

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    I think a wedding is a widely accepted exception to the "no tuxes before 6 PM" rule.  You're the one who's going to be looking at your wedding pictures 20 years from now, so wear what you like and to hell with the rules.
     


  7. johnnynorman3

    johnnynorman3 Senior member

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    To be honest, ambulance chaser, I'd rather wear a dark charcoal suit with some subtle yet dashing pinstripe. But after some subtle hints to the bride that I didn't want to wear a black suit, she said she wanted black SUITS. No tuxes -- I am in agreement with this (it is not a matter of the 6 pm rule per se; I just think it doesn't fit with the style of our wedding).

    So, now I'm left in this position -- is a black suit a "stylish" thing to wear as the groom?
     


  8. kalra2411

    kalra2411 Senior member

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    I feel that in the buisness environment black suits certainly look out of place. However, for evening wear I think that it is has to be the other way round, and I must disagree with the Italian (sorry to call you that but I can't remember your name) a navy suit for a formal (Dinner Jacket - as it were) function would simply be outlandish.
     


  9. Classic

    Classic Senior member

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    I am sometimes amazed at the extend that we will go to try and fit in with all the "rules" that have been created. What ever happened to the art of self-expression, the creativity that we so like to talk about, but then try to repress with all these "rules" of fashion?
    IMO, if you wish to wear a black suit to a wedding, then go for it. Black suits are indeed very stylish. Accessorize the suit properly, and you will make a "classic" and quite favourable impression that will stand the test of time, that is to say will still look good when you look at pictures 20 years from now. It is your wedding. Make the most of it. Worry more about enjoying the day and occasion and less about the so called "rules" of fashion. (but don't go crazy)

    Classic
     


  10. General Koskov

    General Koskov Well-Known Member

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    No black before six is BS.  No evening dress (formal or informal) is, however, a real rule.  Cases in point: Morning coats are often black, and evening coats are often midnight blue.  In fact, informal evening coats (dinner jackets) are often white in hot weather.

    Low-grade black fabrics seem to be greyish and very unflattering, whereas high-quality black fabrics have a richness to them.  Look at some people on TV--I saw Conan O'Brian with a richly-black three-button suit t'other night.  Navy blue looks 'blacker than black,' only in artificial light--in daylight it looks good, but a nice black suit is also stylish.

    I've never understood the exactly-matching-bridal-party idea. If you can afford it, get a rich-black suit made purely because it's a nice garment. But I honestly don't see why the bride should have the veto in wedding dress for the groom. Sure she can pick a shirt and tie, but I think it's time we men had equal status.
     


  11. The Dandy

    The Dandy Active Member

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    For a wedding during the day, I would suggest morning dress as the appropriate option for the groom. For an evening wedding, white tie would be the norm.

    I think wearing a black suit as the groom to a daytime wedding has funerary conotations, particularly if paired with some variation of a black tie and white shirt.

    Additionally, I concur with the General, letting your spouse dress you is not always the wisest decision. While you are getting married, women aren't always the best arbitrators of men's style, and, if your fiance, however well meaning, is already telling you such things as what to wear, you may be preparing for many years of concessions.
     


  12. LA Guy

    LA Guy Opposite Santa Staff Member Admin Moderator

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    Corollary: If you talk about style in terms of inviolable "rules", you really need surgery to remove the pickle before it causes severe constipation and probably toxic shock.

    Yes, traditionally, director's suits are worn for morning and afternoon weddings, and tails (or, if you are a dashing young buck, a dinner suit) for evening affairs.

    Protestations from arch-conservatives notwithstanding, black suits are very stylish. They were at one time associated with funerals and mourning, but pretty much every modern designer and nearly all of the traditional clothiers make black suits, which because of their cut and hue, are meant for a variety of occasions. If your bride to be is really against tuxedos and other formal wear, wear a black suit. The gesture will show her that you care about her feelings (it is her day, after all) and show yourself that you are not anal retentive.
     


  13. kalra2411

    kalra2411 Senior member

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    I do not mean to sound Pessimistic LA Guy, but I guess it's my Oxford education wearing off on me. Only a fact can be notwithstanding. Never a living being. Sorry if I am sounding rude or anything, I only mean it in good faith. [​IMG]
     


  14. rayk

    rayk Senior member

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    Grammarian I'm not, but are protestations (formal and solemn declarations of objection) not facts?  To my mind, LA Guy's statement that "protestations [excise clause: "from arch-conservatives"] nothwithstanding...", is not a solecism, because the author isn't implying "arch-conservatives [living beings....or then again, maybe not [​IMG]] notwithstanding", but "protestations...notwithstanding". If I'm in error, I promise to sit quietly like a good pupil and learn my first of grammar   [​IMG]
     


  15. kalra2411

    kalra2411 Senior member

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    Actually Rayk that is a very good point, and I too considered that very same thing, perhaps you are right, but in my opinion LA Guy was, more so implying arch-conservatives that have protestations. Perhaps not, perhaps I have finally found a flaw in the English grammatical system.... (Oh what an inferior language we speak, simply look at Latin, Sanskrit or Greek, such greatness...)
     


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