The State of Black Tie: Your Observations

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

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  1. TimelesStyle

    TimelesStyle Senior member

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    Have they suggested you do same? And if so, would you go with a true Western style boot or perhaps pair a high-gloss Chelsea with a tux (which I've actually seen my dad do and he pulls of quite well).
     
  2. RSS

    RSS Senior member

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    The last black tie affair I attended was a dinner in a private residence in New York City. It was held on the Friday before the beginning of Lent. In all sincerity I didn't pay excruciating attention to dress as I was there to honor the host and to see friends. But I knew all six couple attending and if my memory is correct all six men wore black tie ... all wore SB (don't recall venting) dinner coats ... all with black bow ties ... 5 cummerbunds / 1 vest (yours truly) ... 2 pairs of calf pumps (including yours truly), 1 patent pump, 3 patent Oxfords. But again I knew everyone there and I may be remembering what they wore on some other black-tie evening.
     
  3. RSS

    RSS Senior member

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    I regularly attend a couple of event weekends in Texas. Boots are seen, particularly at some of the more egalitarian events. Those wearing them are NOT in the majority. Although I see more today than I did in past years. For most of the men wearing them, I think it's akin to style without content.
     
    Last edited: Mar 25, 2013
  4. Moloch38

    Moloch38 Senior member

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    I'm guessing Colt Single Action Army Revolvers probably with lots of hand engraving and a custom leather holster.

    Agree on the boots, you'd never catch me doing it, but when in Rome...
     
  5. throwbookatface

    throwbookatface Member

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    I think you're elevating the function of black tie to a bit of a myth here, at least with regards to footwear. In this thread there are already instances of opera pumps, Belgian slippers, and non-black-tie footwear being "acceptable" in a pinch, to say nothing of the contentiousness of traditional black patent bluchers or the odd colored velvet jacket. I'd hardly call any of these understated or simple.

    I don't see why the Lucchese boot below would be "extremely harsh" or ruin anything except the most sensitive of sartorial temperaments:

    [​IMG]

    Polish up the toe and, assuming one's trouser's don't fit like a teenager's skateboarding jeans, the shaft fits easily under any pant leg. I don't foresee anyone's day being ruined by the support stitching or the fact that one's silk socks can't be appreciated.

    I'd never do it myself but I find a notch-lapel or vented tuxedo many times more abhorrent.
     
  6. gegarrenton

    gegarrenton Senior member

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    That would be inline with my experience.
     
  7. aravenel

    aravenel Senior member

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    I want to see someone wearing a dress gun. I mean, that's way cooler than boots with a suit/tux.
     
  8. JLibourel

    JLibourel Senior member

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    As to the matter of the "dress gun," I asked my good friend Garey Hindman about this whole business. He is a lifelong Texan, his family having migrated from Germany to Texas around 1850. For much of his life he was also a gunsmith of considerable renown. So was his father Ace Hindman, who, in collaboration with Gun World's Dean Grennel, developed the useful .45 Super conversion for .45 auto pistols. Thus, I figured he would know about these matters better than anyone else I know. I stressed this was not a cowboy-costume wedding where it might be appropriate for the male guests to come a-packin' their sixguns.

    He stated that the practice of wearing boots with black tie was very common in Texas. However, he had never in his long life (he's got a few years on me) heard of anyone wearing a dress gun to a black-tie wedding.

    The term "dress gun," he informed me, was synonymous with "barbecue gun," which term I had heard. Basically, it means any very flashy sidearm ("pimped out" was the term he used) meant to be publicly displayed. These days it is perhaps more often a 1911-style pistol than anything else. Features are predictable--engraving or bright metal finishes; ivory, faux-ivory or mother-of-pearl stocks (ruby eyes are popular for the classic steer's head carvings on the stocks, he mentioned). I assume the eponymous barbecues are large costume-ish public events, not some friendly backyard grilling.

    As a matter of interest, he told me that the great wearers of dress guns until the past couple of decades were the Texas Rangers. Although they were never a uniformed agency, for much of the 20th century they dressed uniformly: tan suit, highly starched white shirt, bolo tie, tooled-leather cowboy boots, straw Western hat and a dress-gun 1911 in a tan leather holster. They were very easy to spot. FWIW, the most famous 20th-century Ranger of them all, Captain Frank Hamer, typically wore dark business suits, neckties and dress shoes.
     
  9. Kent Wang

    Kent Wang Affiliate Vendor Dubiously Honored Affiliate Vendor

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    You mean all hat and no cattle.
     
  10. landshark

    landshark Senior member

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    As a lifelong Texan, I can tell you that dress guns are not the norm and would actually be illegal since open carry of handguns is against the law.

    I have been to several black tie events (although, no weddings) and I can say that most men clean up and present themselves pretty well. I dont remember the shoes people were wearing, but if there were nice black ostrich or other leather boots (e.g. Lucchese) then it wouldn't gain a second glance or be out of the norm. Day to day, I see businessmen wear boots ALL the time (I have an office in downtown Austin) and it's just business as usual.
     
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2013
  11. Locke42

    Locke42 Active Member

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    That just doesn't seem right in Texas.
     
  12. Moloch38

    Moloch38 Senior member

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    Yep sounds about right. I've heard of BBQ guns (usually 1911s) for private events, a few Mil ones.
     
  13. RSS

    RSS Senior member

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    B-I-N-G-O!
     
  14. SkinnyGoomba

    SkinnyGoomba Senior member

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    Foo, I've been coming around to these and found a vintage set being sold in 14k yellow gold with gum drop Amethyst.
     
  15. ThinkDerm

    ThinkDerm Senior member

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