How To Button A Suit?

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by Patrick11, May 16, 2005.

  1. Patrick11

    Patrick11 New Member

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    I have a three piece suit, and I was wondering what buttons do I button and what do I leave unbuttoned. There's five buttons on the vest and two on my jacket. Do you leave your jacket on at dinner with a three piece suit or just unbutton and the same with the vest. Thanks for all your help ahead of time.
     
  2. bachbeet

    bachbeet Senior member

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    I don't wear 3-pieces anymore, but the basic is to leave the bottom button undone on the vest. As for the jacket, in a 3-button model, I think the best is to only button the middle one. You might see the top two buttoned in ads, but I don't think this looks as good. In fact, I rarely button jackets and prefer the unbuttoned look.
     
  3. Jim214

    Jim214 New Member

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    On a three button suit I've alwys buttoned the middle button, but see ads and store displays showing the top two buttoned. Some of these are from the better stores. Can someone explain this?
     
  4. briancl

    briancl Senior member

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    i think some 3 button's look fine with the top two buttoned. some don't. it depends on the lapels and some other characteristics. if you can't discern for yourself and need a rule.. then just leave the entire thing unbuttoned or go for just the middle.
     
  5. Alias

    Alias Senior member

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    Leave the last vest button unbuttoned.

    You can leave your jacket on during dinner if you want, but you won't lose any points for taking it off. Hardly anyone will care.

    But do leave the vest on, and buttoned until the last button. I think that will look much better than having your jacket off and your vest open and flapping around. But hey, whatever works best for your comfort; be comfortable and enjoy your dinner.

    With three-button suits, either button the middle or the top two, never only the top, all three, the last two, or only the bottom. (I've seen them all. Bleah.) Whether or not you button the middle or the top two depends on the lapel: If it's pressed flat, button the top two. If it's not pressed flat, button the middle. "Pressed flat" is pretty self-explanatory.
     
  6. retronotmetro

    retronotmetro Senior member

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    Some people *will* look down their nose at you for removing your coat at a meal. Whether or not that bothers you is something else entirely.

    On a three-button suit I don't think "pressed flat" is quite the right way to state it--sometimes you will see three button suits with the lapels rolled to the middle button, but with lapels that lack a graceful roll and appear to be pressed flat. In that case you would not button the top button (you wouldn't be able to). The real key is whether the roll/fold of the lapel is above or below the top button. If it is below the top button, leave it open. If it is above the top button you can either leave it open or button it.
     
  7. medwards

    medwards Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    (Patrick11 @ May 16 2005,15:29) I have a three piece suit, and I was wondering what buttons do I button and what do I leave unbuttoned. There's five buttons on the vest and two on my jacket. Do you leave your jacket on at dinner with a three piece suit or just unbutton and the same with the vest. Thanks for all your help ahead of time.
    A gentleman would not remove his coat nor his waistcoat during dinner nor would he unbutton either. The proper fastening -- the middle button on the suitcoat and all but the bottom button on the vest -- have already been addressed.
     
  8. Alias

    Alias Senior member

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    That's awesome and applicable at those really upscale places full of servers with the previous generation's mentality. If you happen to be at one of those, by all means, keep your jacket on. Or coat. Whatever.
     
  9. ernest

    ernest Senior member

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    Stay in t-shirt, you will avoid to soil your shirt.
     
  10. ATM

    ATM Senior member

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    Lot of replies for three-button suits but the original post said a two-button. For two-button jackets, just button the top button.
     
  11. johnapril

    johnapril Senior member

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    (Patrick11 @ May 17 2005,00:29) I have a three piece suit, and I was wondering what buttons do I button and what do I leave unbuttoned. There's five buttons on the vest and two on my jacket. Do you leave your jacket on at dinner with a three piece suit or just unbutton and the same with the vest. Thanks for all your help ahead of time.
    Stay in t-shirt, you will avoid to soil your shirt.
    Check your Hotmail, stay off the fries you eat whenever here comes the best part.
     
  12. Alias

    Alias Senior member

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    Oh snap, you're right. I wonder how that happened.
     
  13. ct2272

    ct2272 Well-Known Member

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    For a 2 button suit, you would button the top button only.

    For a vest, you would leave the bottom button undone. This is a satorial salute to one of the English kings, but I am unsure which. In order to judge fit, the bottom button should be inline with your belt buckle or the top hinge of your pants. I learned that the hardway ordering a MTM vest too small for my 3 piece suit.

    For a 3 button suit, you should button the middle button. I personally button the top and middle though. I have found that only buttoning the middle allows my chest to spread the gorge out wider than I like. It's hard to explain and maybe a result of the jacket being too small (but I don't believe it is).

    What is with some of these news anchors buttoning all of the buttons on their suit. I did a doubletake when observing Stone Phillips/US-NBC doing this.

    Regards,
    CT
     
  14. odoreater

    odoreater Senior member

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    I always thought you're supposed to unbotton your jacket when you sit.
     
  15. Bergdorf Goodwill

    Bergdorf Goodwill Senior member

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    (medwards @ May 16 2005,22:14) A gentleman would not remove his coat nor his waistcoat during dinner nor would he unbutton either. The proper fastening -- the middle button on the suitcoat and all but the bottom button on the vest -- have already been addressed.
    I always thought you're supposed to unbotton your jacket when you sit.
    No, it's way better to rumple your jacket horribly. If you unbutton anything, you'll really piss off the group of 170 year olds dining adjacent to you.
     

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