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Coming back to suits after several years. Some Qs regarding "rules".

Merlin Coryell

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So fashion rules are mostly stupid, with no basis whatsoever, and many of them are thrown out or rewritten with every fad. Suits are no different, but there are a few classic rules that I have to question the practicality of now. Any insight is greatly appreciated.

These are "rules" I have heard from various sources, I make no claim to the validity of the ideas.

Waistcoats/Vests and Belts: So the classic deal is if you have a vest, you should have suspenders and no vest.
I did it both ways back when I was younger, not as if you can see the belt anyway. These days it seems harder to go beltless because unless you are spending a fortune on your clothing, its a bit rare to find 3 piece suits that have the buttons for suspenders. Is it now perfectly fine to wear the Wal-Mart clip-ons, or am I supposed to sew in the buttons myself? Otherwise, Ill keep the low profile belt and the secret will be ours.

Brown with Blue: I was always told with regard to shoes/belts, Black = Black, Blue = Brown, and Grey = Either.
But I see more and more Blue suits paired with black and I actually think its a little sharper and more modern looking. Is this totally a taste thing?

Trenches/Overcoats: Even though the name suggests they go over the suit, my parents instilled in me that when you put on the coat, you take off the jacket so it doesnt get scrunched up underneath.
Always seemed impractical as my suit jacket was then at the mercy of whatever weather if I didnt have a bag handy. I figure the point of a trench is to protect the suit, so if I get to work with a few wrinkles, thats what my travel steamer is for, right?

Linked Cuffs: Are these no longer allowed unless you are a prince or a douche?!
I like a variety in my shirts, and the occasional linked cuff is no different. I keep low profile and classy links. Like with my ties, I dont go for novelty or flash, I prefer simple and sleek. But it seems that because of a few people wearing them all indie-rocker style with either stupid, elaborate links, or none at all, French cuffs and the like have been labeled for stupids. I cannot abide by this rule, as this seems to just be plain old fad-in, fad-out crap and Ill keep what I like.

Sizing/Oversizing: Are suits supposed to fit you, or fit you when you are doing Yoga?
Out of the several mid-level retailers Ive gone to lately, more than a few keep sizing me up to clothing that seems too loose or too long. (Enter Sean Jean reccomendations...) They all claim that modern suits are supposed to allow me movement and flexibility. When did this happen, and will anyone expect me to look like I snuck into my dads closet when I was in High School to borrow his suits? No thanks.... But seriously, what is going on here?

Thanks for the opinions, tips or laughter ahead of time.
 

edmorel

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Originally Posted by Merlin Coryell
So fashion rules are mostly stupid, with no basis whatsoever, and many of them are thrown out or rewritten with every fad. Suits are no different, but there are a few classic rules that I have to question the practicality of now. Any insight is greatly appreciated.

These are "rules" I have heard from various sources, I make no claim to the validity of the ideas.

Waistcoats/Vests and Belts: So the classic deal is if you have a vest, you should have suspenders and no vest.
I did it both ways back when I was younger, not as if you can see the belt anyway. These days it seems harder to go beltless because unless you are spending a fortune on your clothing, its a bit rare to find 3 piece suits that have the buttons for suspenders. Is it now perfectly fine to wear the Wal-Mart clip-ons, or am I supposed to sew in the buttons myself? Otherwise, Ill keep the low profile belt and the secret will be ours.

Brown with Blue: I was always told with regard to shoes/belts, Black = Black, Blue = Brown, and Grey = Either.
But I see more and more Blue suits paired with black and I actually think its a little sharper and more modern looking. Is this totally a taste thing?

Trenches/Overcoats: Even though the name suggests they go over the suit, my parents instilled in me that when you put on the coat, you take off the jacket so it doesnt get scrunched up underneath.
Always seemed impractical as my suit jacket was then at the mercy of whatever weather if I didnt have a bag handy. I figure the point of a trench is to protect the suit, so if I get to work with a few wrinkles, thats what my travel steamer is for, right?

Linked Cuffs: Are these no longer allowed unless you are a prince or a douche?!
I like a variety in my shirts, and the occasional linked cuff is no different. I keep low profile and classy links. Like with my ties, I dont go for novelty or flash, I prefer simple and sleek. But it seems that because of a few people wearing them all indie-rocker style with either stupid, elaborate links, or none at all, French cuffs and the like have been labeled for stupids. I cannot abide by this rule, as this seems to just be plain old fad-in, fad-out crap and Ill keep what I like.

Sizing/Oversizing: Are suits supposed to fit you, or fit you when you are doing Yoga?
Out of the several mid-level retailers Ive gone to lately, more than a few keep sizing me up to clothing that seems too loose or too long. (Enter Sean Jean reccomendations...) They all claim that modern suits are supposed to allow me movement and flexibility. When did this happen, and will anyone expect me to look like I snuck into my dads closet when I was in High School to borrow his suits? No thanks.... But seriously, what is going on here?

Thanks for the opinions, tips or laughter ahead of time.



vests - any dry cleaner can add suspender buttons, don't wear clip ons, if you like your belt, wear the belt.

brown with blue - wear what you think looks good. Black shoes go with pretty much everything.

trench/overcoats/wrinkles - wrinkles are a part of life.

linked cuffs - fine last time I checked with the cuff link committe.

sizing - most stores, particularly mid level stuff (Brooks) will have salesman that put you in too large a suit. By what you feel comfortable wearing, do not listen to the salesman. Or go MTM/bespoke.
 

Manton

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I will dissent a little bit. First, I would never wear a belt with a vest. Second, it's often not enough simply to add buttons to any pair of pants. Suspenders only look good (and work properly) with high rise trousers, IMO.
 

edmorel

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Originally Posted by Manton
I will dissent a little bit. First, I would never wear a belt with a vest. Second, it's often not enough simply to add buttons to any pair of pants. Suspenders only look good (and work properly) with high rise trousers, IMO.

I agree with the high rise trousers, they do not look good with the low rise stuff.
 

Despos

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Your list sounds more like preferences than rules to me. You have free reign.
 

scurvyfreedman

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Brown with Blue:
Black shoes are acceptable with nearly any color other than brown. However, with a blue suit I always wear burgundy colored shoes. With grey I almost exclusively wear brown shoes, but I'll sometimes throw in burgundy. I rarely wear black shoes at all.
 

Merlin Coryell

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Thanks for the responses. Glad to hear these are more personal taste things that wont set off any bosses that know the difference. Im slowly but surely pointing myself in directions to rise up in our modest company, and while I want to look nice, I dont try too hard to impress. On the otherhand I dont want to do anything taboo to piss off the wrong stuck up exec.

Do people really even pay attention to this stuff outside of high society or fashion shows? Rationality tells me that as long as my suit fits, and is well kept, no one will notice/care that I dont have fancy stitching or that I use a Half windsor regardless of collar style. (Nevermind that most of my shirts and ties come from Ross or TJ Maxx anyway.)
 

Manton

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Yes and no. Most of things on your list they won't care about. Vests and suspenders are noticed though. Vests are considered anachronistic, suspenders Wall Street/80s costume. At least, some people think so.
 

Merlin Coryell

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Originally Posted by Manton
Yes and no. Most of things on your list they won't care about. Vests and suspenders are noticed though. Vests are considered anachronistic, suspenders Wall Street/80s costume. At least, some people think so.

I dont really like suspenders as it is, no Gordon Gekko looks for me. But I think that sleek and tall vests are timeless and I love them.
 

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