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The end-all thread regarding suits/pleats/vests/etc.

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by Mr. Moo, Mar 12, 2009.

  1. Mr. Moo

    Mr. Moo Senior member

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    "Men's suits - I had the privilege to chat with Kim Johnson Gross, co-founder of Chic Simple Ltd and former fashion director of Esquire and Fashion Editor of Town & Country. Kim has also written monthly columns in InStyle magazine, and appeared on numerous television and talk shows as a leading consumer authority. During our conversation I thought I would present to her questions I have received from readers on the subject of men's suits and this is the result of our conversation.

    Do you know where the "top 2 buttoned buttoned, lowest button undone" style originated and why?
    Edward the VII was too large for his vest so he unbuttoned the bottom button and since he was king, all followed in his footsteps. This is one of the first known references to this trend. However, it is also a designer thing and personal preference.

    If you are shorter, unbuttoning the top button versus the bottom will give the illusion of being taller.

    What is the case for a 4 button suit? Is the 4 button suit in style any longer?
    Four button suits are not seen much these days and certainly aren't a suit one would buy their first or second suit. It is more of a fashion suit, not a classic style. Also keep in mind that four button suits really look best on those that are tall and slim.

    Does a man have to be a certain age to wear a double breasted suit?

    No. But unless it is really your style, stay away from the double breasted suit. Again, not an appropriate first or second suit.

    Are suit vests a thing of the past?
    Suit vests are for dandies, but also seen in English, western, and evening looks. Not really seeing suit vests otherwise.

    Are suits with no vents in the back a dated look?

    Vents are definitely more European and shapelier. They are also a symbol of better tailoring.

    Are pleats on trousers a bad idea?
    First thing is that flat fronted trousers are always more flattering no matter what your size and age. Pleats bring attention to that area of the body.

    A general note regarding suits:
    Invest in a good suit"‚ÄĚthis is where your wardrobe dollars are best spent. Choose neutral colors like navy or gray. Browns and olives can be tricky and black suits had their moment, but are still great for evening or formal occasions. Also, suits should be comfortable, drape well, and move with you. And always keep in mind that richness in fabrics and good tailoring never go out of style."
     
  2. voxsartoria

    voxsartoria Senior member

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    I give Kim's answers about 0.8 out of 10.

    Maybe - 0.7 out of 10.


    - B
     
  3. NakedYoga

    NakedYoga Senior member

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    I give Kim's answers about 0.8 out of 10.

    Maybe - 0.7 out of 10.


    Also, suits should be comfortable, drape well, and move with you. And always keep in mind that richness in fabrics and good tailoring never go out of style."

    An 0.7/0.8, even with that tidbit?
     
  4. porcelain monkey

    porcelain monkey Senior member

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    Not really seeing suit vests? Has she picked up a men's fashion mag in the last year? It may be a passing thing, but when Banana Republic markets a three piece suit, you can be sure it is having a moment right now.
     
  5. embowafa

    embowafa Senior member

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    and another 'official', 'final', 'end-all' thread sinks to the bottom of the SF ocean.
     
  6. voxsartoria

    voxsartoria Senior member

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    An 0.7/0.8, even with that tidbit?

    The range was negative 0.7 to positive 0.8.

    And that's before deductions.


    - B
     
  7. mafoofan

    mafoofan Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    "Men's suits - I had the privilege to chat with Kim Johnson Gross, co-founder of Chic Simple Ltd and former fashion director of Esquire and Fashion Editor of Town & Country. Kim has also written monthly columns in InStyle magazine, and appeared on numerous television and talk shows as a leading consumer authority. During our conversation I thought I would present to her questions I have received from readers on the subject of men's suits and this is the result of our conversation."

    All critical demerits.
     
  8. harry2quinn

    harry2quinn Senior member

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    Atrocious comments - suggesting that it's remotely admissible to unbutton the top vs bottom button; recommending that you stay away from DB suits (admittedly not a good first or second suit, but still); implying that suit vests aren't all the rage right now; implying that black suits can be great for evening occasions.

    Unbelievable. What is this guy doing in the business?
     
  9. Mr. Moo

    Mr. Moo Senior member

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    Atrocious comments - suggesting that it's remotely admissible to unbutton the top vs bottom button; recommending that you stay away from DB suits (admittedly not a good first or second suit, but still); implying that suit vests aren't all the rage right now; implying that black suits can be great for evening occasions.

    Unbelievable. What is this guy doing in the business?


    It's a woman... [​IMG]
     
  10. JFKJean

    JFKJean Senior member

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    It's a woman... [​IMG]


    Ooppsss.....
     
  11. polar-lemon

    polar-lemon Senior member

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    I expected worse. It's not great, but it's not terrible either.
     
  12. idfnl

    idfnl Senior member

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    I give Kim's answers about 0.8 out of 10.

    Maybe - 0.7 out of 10.


    - B


    Shocked at your generocity. She actually discussed how to wear a 4 button suit... [​IMG]
     
  13. texas_jack

    texas_jack Senior member

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  14. 83glt

    83glt Senior member

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    All critical demerits.
    What about the fact that she's a woman?
     
  15. jmix1

    jmix1 Senior member

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    What about the fact that she's a woman?

    I think many here would agree, even if they wouldn't admit it, that many women know very little about men's style. Kim seems to be one of them.
     
  16. polar-lemon

    polar-lemon Senior member

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    I think many here would agree, even if they wouldn't admit it, that many women know very little about men's style. Kim seems to be one of them.

    I wouldn't go that far. I'd say many women are caught up in trends, which are much more prevalent in the woman's high fashion industry than on here. As a result, women will look favorably upon designer goods while people on this board favor quality. Woman thinks D&G suit is tops, men here know better.
     
  17. idfnl

    idfnl Senior member

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    I wouldn't go that far. I'd say many women are caught up in trends, which are much more prevalent in the woman's high fashion industry than on here. As a result, women will look favorably upon designer goods while people on this board favor quality. Woman thinks D&G suit is tops, men here know better.

    Many of us here agree that, while not meant as a compliment, the highest compliment we can get is often 'you dress like an old man'... ah, how I love to hear that. The fact of the matter is, most women wear cheap, trendy clothes that are basically disposable. Ask a woman if she'll wair a pair of shoes or a jacket or coat in 20 or 30 years and watch their look of 'huh?' -- but, many of us here look forward to a day when we can proudly pull a 25 year old Kiton jacket out that would be perfect for some occasion.

    We're on different planes, which explains why she talks the way she does, she is dressing a man like a woman would: cheap, trendy, disposable.
     
  18. Kempt

    Kempt Well-Known Member

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    What about the fact that she's a woman?

    Even bigger of a demerit. I think people not in the know are under the impression that whatever a woman tells you regarding men's style is gospel when in fact they usually know jack shit. The only thing I ever trust from women regarding my dress is color balance.

    I have a book with random "Pearls of Wisdom" from style/fashion icons along with other style advice. Some classics

    Giorgio Armani:

    "Always take the advice of a woman over that of a man, Always"

    "There is a French phrase, nostalgie de la boue. It means to romaticize low culture - literally, 'nostalgia for mud'. That is probably what is going on with Hollywood style these days. Young people always want to dress down, I say, why not?"

    Michael Kors beauties:

    "All men should own a black cashmere turtleneck, a high-quality tropical weight black suit..."

    "I won't wear a bow tie with a tuxedo...I think you have to be really skinny or really fat"

    Donna Karan

    "There's nothing sexy about trying to be 'established.'"

    "There are no rules anymore. God knows I've dressed enough men to know. Why can't a man wear a skirt? Why does a man have to wear a tie with his suit?"

    "Men shouldn't have too many clothes. He should have a leather jacket, a black coat, a nice suit, some crisp shirts, a cool belt, and some old T-shirts."

    I could go on, but I would make it a point to almost NEVER listen to someone claiming to have a handle on men's style when they really only belong in the realm of men's fashion.
     
  19. Zenny

    Zenny Senior member

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    *insert puke emoticon*
     
  20. polar-lemon

    polar-lemon Senior member

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    Many of us here agree that, while not meant as a compliment, the highest compliment we can get is often 'you dress like an old man'... ah, how I love to hear that. The fact of the matter is, most women wear cheap, trendy clothes that are basically disposable. Ask a woman if she'll wair a pair of shoes or a jacket or coat in 20 or 30 years and watch their look of 'huh?' -- but, many of us here look forward to a day when we can proudly pull a 25 year old Kiton jacket out that would be perfect for some occasion.

    We're on different planes, which explains why she talks the way she does, she is dressing a man like a woman would: cheap, trendy, disposable.


    I agree, except for the cheap part. I know many women who spent 30k-40k each year on their wardrobes.
     

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