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The State of Black Tie: Your Observations

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by mafoofan, Nov 22, 2011.

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  1. Lensmaster

    Lensmaster Well-Known Member

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    I recently was hired to do photography at a dinner for a local community nonprofit organization. I live in a small city in Michigan, so far from traditional formal society. My boss told me the event was black tie. I didn't see an invitation so I don't know if it specified Black Tie or Black Tie Optional or whatever. I jumped at the chance to wear my tux while working the event. There were quite a few men in some form of black tie, the rest in nice dark suits. I'm not going to quibble about the incorrect details on most of the men in black tie. I was just happy to see so many men make an attempt to fit the spirit of the event in the middle of Michigan.
     
  2. Veremund

    Veremund Senior member

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    I bought silk ribbon off the Internet and turned them into laces. 3 bucks. :D
     
  3. Butler

    Butler Senior member

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    Correct form (to-day):

    You specify the correct dress code for the occasion (day/night etc.) and include a voucher to the local rental place for a free rental (of course the rental place are instructed to only supply correct attire, in case of guests potential requests for coloured bows etc.)

    One includes the cost in the overall wedding budget.

    :bigstar:
     
  4. Veremund

    Veremund Senior member

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    I could not disagree more. If a guest is not willing to abide by a dress code, then they must simply decline the invitation. It's not the host's job to clothe his guests. As men, it is our duty to present ourselves correctly. Proper attire is fundamental to that duty.
     
    Last edited: Jan 24, 2013
    1 person likes this.
  5. aravenel

    aravenel Senior member

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    I have never heard of this in my life. This would literally almost double the cost of the wedding.
     
  6. Butler

    Butler Senior member

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    I should perhaps have mentioned that this procedure mainly applies to the US - we have a different view on this side of the pond. Allthough I agree in principle with you, I must say that when it comes to occasions in Europe where the host, for whatever reason, would like to ensure the formality/elegance originally intended for White Tie functions - and are pretty sure that not all the people he would like to see as guests, are in possesion of full evening attire - this procedure becomes more frequent, and is recommended by etiquette experts such as yours truly.

    It is, alas, no longer a perfect world :bigstar:
     
    1 person likes this.
  7. sugarbutch

    sugarbutch Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    I like this. Thanks for the left-field perspective, Butler.
     
  8. Moloch38

    Moloch38 Senior member

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    Well hopefully this will be a positive influence on some, Mad Men is on its way back:
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG][​IMG]
     
  9. Moloch38

    Moloch38 Senior member

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    I am by no means an expert, but setting aside a voucher for clothing guests who do not own Black Tie, etc is news to me.
    As a southerner, where Debutante and Cotillion Balls are a frequent tradition, I find that many families and folks are far more likely to politely specify and strictly adhere to dress codes for weddings, parties, and events. While we do have many hot weather suiting alternatives like linen and seersucker, black tie has always been a measure of respect to the bride and the wedding families for evening festivities (even in Mississippi in July). I find that most White Tie is reserved for fathers and escorts at Deb balls while most other guests wear Black Tie or appropriate corresponding military formal attire.
     
  10. Veremund

    Veremund Senior member

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    +1

     
  11. musicmax

    musicmax Senior member

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    You didn't get the joke. If I know what the Al Smith Dinner is, I obviously know why it's called the Al Smith Dinner and I know about its bullshit exclusionary policies.
     
  12. musicmax

    musicmax Senior member

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    Apologies for the latter - I was quoting from two different messages and botched your alias when typing it in manually. Or maybe I just prefer Vermont resorts to lesbian tops....
     
  13. musicmax

    musicmax Senior member

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    By default, yes. But it's perfectly acceptable to query the bride or her mother if you don't know enough about the way bride and groom roll to make an informed decision one way or the other.
     
  14. musicmax

    musicmax Senior member

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    Black velvet slippers, sometimes called "Prince Albert Slippers" are a historically-proper alternative to pumps and patent oxfords. There's a famous picture of Cary Grant, sitting cross-legged in a tux with black penny loafers, several pages back in this thread - search for Cary Grant and you'll find it. A well-polished black plain captoe (i.e. AE Park Avenue) or wholecut would likely suffice as well.
     
    Last edited: Jan 24, 2013
  15. mafoofan

    mafoofan Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    Well, I cannot speak to other's social circumstances, but I will say that there's no way this makes universal sense. Of the dozen or so weddings I've been to over the past few years, most have been at night, and in no instance did anyone wear black tie unless instructed to.
     
  16. EriQ009

    EriQ009 Senior member

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    Correct me if I'm wrong, but my understanding is that velvet slippers with formal attire are appropriate only when the event is at one's own home. As in, you are the host and the party is at your house.

     
  17. musicmax

    musicmax Senior member

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    That is the preferred environment; I read an "I don't care if I break the rules" air in the OP's query. The robustness of the slipper's sole will dictate its suitability to domestic or public use.
     
  18. EriQ009

    EriQ009 Senior member

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    Just another example of something that was once de rigeur and has since fallen by the wayside. Whereas men used to don black tie or white-tie simply because it was after 6, one now seemingly requires particular occasion or strict commandment.

     
  19. aravenel

    aravenel Senior member

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    [​IMG]
     
    3 people like this.
  20. unbelragazzo

    unbelragazzo Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    I think even "the rules" allow also for an event at one's club. But it's definitely a casualification, intended for a more familiar environment.
     

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