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The state of white tie

blueberry7

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Looks very promising!
Since you mention that this tail suit is intended for competition dancing I am interested in how you have addressed movability with regard to the cut.
Any adaptions compared to a 'normal' tail suit?
Shoulder construction seems to be the obvious area for modifications.
 

The Chai

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Looks very promising!
Since you mention that this tail suit is intended for competition dancing I am interested in how you have addressed movability with regard to the cut.
Any adaptions compared to a 'normal' tail suit?
Shoulder construction seems to be the obvious area for modifications.
Gone a different route from how actual competition tails would be constructed as I wanted versatility. Extended shoulders (so you're right re shoulder construction) and added both front and back drape (think 80s styled armani drape in a tailcoat). You sacrifice nice lines, and the somewhat clean back but more room in the embrace when dancing as I rather the comfort and the mobility rather than a tight hug.
 

blueberry7

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Thanks for the insights.
Yeah if I compare it to my old competition tails (ballroom, from many many years ago) yours certainly has a much more relaxed and non-exaggerated look if I may say so.
Shoulder and sleeve head look classic (I mean construction). Mine does not seem to have any shoulder construction as such, it was tailored around the raised-arms pose so that it would create a very straight line from neck to elbow.
In Tango Argentino I suppose you wouldn't need to raise the arms that high so I see how that would work.

Why I am going on about this topic is because I am contemplating having a tail suit made again for me, one day.
And I don't want it to be so sporty but with proper nice shoulders when standing (and being able to lower my arms all the way to the sides). However I'd still like to be able to do some dancing in it - I should be wearing it to balls obviously.

So your project is very interesting to me and quite helpful in forming some ideas of how to approach my future commission.

Since you mentioned the back, would you mind sharing a picture of how it looks, if you had one taken? Interested to see if your tailor kept it in the classic style or made changes to the back construction to allow for more room.
Thanks!
 

The Chai

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Thanks for the insights.
Yeah if I compare it to my old competition tails (ballroom, from many many years ago) yours certainly has a much more relaxed and non-exaggerated look if I may say so.
Shoulder and sleeve head look classic (I mean construction). Mine does not seem to have any shoulder construction as such, it was tailored around the raised-arms pose so that it would create a very straight line from neck to elbow.
In Tango Argentino I suppose you wouldn't need to raise the arms that high so I see how that would work.
Yes and no (re raised arms pose) but I supposed it is all relative. The style of tango I dance has an exaggerated higher raised arm pose (think ballet hands in fifth position) as a default but...I would say unlike the general ballroom dances, the raised arm position is more dynamic in tango compared to static.

In say the Viennese Waltz, you'd probably keep your arm in one static position say 90% of the dance whereas the arm position in Argentine Tango is constantly moving rather than staying in one place. I may start off high but it will shift with in line with rhythm and melody of music but then go back to my original position as a default. In competition, the judges for Argentine Tango do not really place that high of a priority on the clean lines as in ballroom competition.

Why I am going on about this topic is because I am contemplating having a tail suit made again for me, one day.
And I don't want it to be so sporty but with proper nice shoulders when standing (and being able to lower my arms all the way to the sides). However I'd still like to be able to do some dancing in it - I should be wearing it to balls obviously.

So your project is very interesting to me and quite helpful in forming some ideas of how to approach my future commission.
I have been working with my tailor for several years trying out different cuts and constructions for the purpose of having a suit tailored for dancing. In my opinion, a drapier top cut with excess fabric for front and back drape (+nipped waist) allows for the comfort and silhouette. Especially helpful if you bulk up more on the top. I had these tails (and all my suits and sports coats) designed for normal wear and dancing.
Since you mentioned the back, would you mind sharing a picture of how it looks, if you had one taken? Interested to see if your tailor kept it in the classic style or made changes to the back construction to allow for more room.
Thanks!
There are some changes. We had some back drape put in...so excess fabric under the back armhole area. Will post pics once I receive the final product.
 

The Chai

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Gonna debut as a backup dancer in a ballet performance...back pictures in tango pose as requested
20231004_181925.jpg
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blueberry7

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Gonna debut as a backup dancer in a ballet performance...back pictures in tango pose as requested
Thank you for taking these pictures. Much appreciated!
I can see what you were going for.
Although this is not the esthetics I am after, this was very helpful.
I hope the performance went well!
 

The Chai

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Thank you for taking these pictures. Much appreciated!
I can see what you were going for.
Although this is not the esthetics I am after, this was very helpful.
I hope the performance went well!
Are you after the classic ballroom cut? I think they way they achieve that is to rotate the sleeve so when your arms are raised you have the clean line...cons of that are when your arms are in resting position it looks messy
 

blueberry7

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Are you after the classic ballroom cut? I think they way they achieve that is to rotate the sleeve so when your arms are raised you have the clean line...cons of that are when your arms are in resting position it looks messy
Yes, within limits.
As mentioned, I do own a tail suit that was tailored for my younger self.
It does not have any of the 'normal' shoulder constructions. I would even say it does not have a constructed shoulder at all as the sleeves connect directly to the coat's body in the raided arms position. Very small armholes also. It creates a beautiful clean line when the arms are raised (just horizontal). But you can't really let your arms hang down (at first. with some wear and stretch it is possible but it is not a relaxed fit).
So what I am after is something in between I guess. I won't be raising or extending my arms as much anymore. It would be worn to social events, not competitions. But I'd still like to be able to assume a somewhat correct dancing position without the coat riding up too far or the shoulder 'edge' (e.g. the roping or what have you) shifting and becoming the focus point in the shoulder line.

Not sure if the above makes sense to anyone but me.
But I think I gained some valuable insights and will have to discuss possibilities with my tailor when I'll be ready to start with this project.
Not within the next few years though.
 

The Chai

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Yes, within limits.
As mentioned, I do own a tail suit that was tailored for my younger self.
It does not have any of the 'normal' shoulder constructions. I would even say it does not have a constructed shoulder at all as the sleeves connect directly to the coat's body in the raided arms position. Very small armholes also. It creates a beautiful clean line when the arms are raised (just horizontal). But you can't really let your arms hang down (at first. with some wear and stretch it is possible but it is not a relaxed fit).
So what I am after is something in between I guess. I won't be raising or extending my arms as much anymore. It would be worn to social events, not competitions. But I'd still like to be able to assume a somewhat correct dancing position without the coat riding up too far or the shoulder 'edge' (e.g. the roping or what have you) shifting and becoming the focus point in the shoulder line.

Not sure if the above makes sense to anyone but me.
But I think I gained some valuable insights and will have to discuss possibilities with my tailor when I'll be ready to start with this project.
Not within the next few years though.
Yeah I don't know if you can really get something "in-between". Discussed this with my tailor and he said it was not really possible because then you get the half worsts of both worlds...
 

Testudo_Aubreii

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Yes, within limits.
As mentioned, I do own a tail suit that was tailored for my younger self.
It does not have any of the 'normal' shoulder constructions. I would even say it does not have a constructed shoulder at all as the sleeves connect directly to the coat's body in the raided arms position. Very small armholes also. It creates a beautiful clean line when the arms are raised (just horizontal). But you can't really let your arms hang down (at first. with some wear and stretch it is possible but it is not a relaxed fit).
So what I am after is something in between I guess. I won't be raising or extending my arms as much anymore. It would be worn to social events, not competitions. But I'd still like to be able to assume a somewhat correct dancing position without the coat riding up too far or the shoulder 'edge' (e.g. the roping or what have you) shifting and becoming the focus point in the shoulder line.

Not sure if the above makes sense to anyone but me.
But I think I gained some valuable insights and will have to discuss possibilities with my tailor when I'll be ready to start with this project.
Not within the next few years though.
I'm glad Chai revived this thread. Not sure I understand what "sleeves connect directly to the coat's body" means. The dance tailcoats I see on the web have set-in sleeves, not raglan or something else. They have no shoulder padding, a very tight, high armhole, nearly skin-tight sleeve, and appear to be made of a cloth with lots of stretch. As from here. There are parallels to Regency tailcoats (swallowtail coats), which could also be quite softly constructed in the shoulders,
Two-buttons-on-the-back-of-a-tailcoat.jpg
with tight sleeves.
Regency-tailcoat-with-a-simple-single-breasted-waistcoat.jpg
(Both From GG). Fred Astaire, who knew a lot about movement in tailored garments, went for this in his dress suit when young: Shoulder very extended and constructed; sleevehead roped; armhole quite high and quite fitted front-to-back; sleevehead doesn't seem very wide front-to-back, but does have some fullness around the outer edge; chest draped.
Astaire-in-white-tie-with-single-shirt-stud-and-three-waistcoat-buttons-840x1030.jpg

Fred-Astaire-in-white-tie-note-the-single-pearl-stud-large-carnation-boutonniere-basket-weave-...jpg
Both from GG. I'm guessing Chai's sleevehead is a bit fuller front-to-back? And of course the shoulders are narrower. Also much straighter; Astaire's have a pagoda.
 

The Chai

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I'm glad Chai revived this thread. Not sure I understand what "sleeves connect directly to the coat's body" means. The dance tailcoats I see on the web have set-in sleeves, not raglan or something else. They have no shoulder padding, a very tight, high armhole, nearly skin-tight sleeve, and appear to be made of a cloth with lots of stretch. As from here. There are parallels to Regency tailcoats (swallowtail coats), which could also be quite softly constructed in the shoulders,
with tight sleeves. (Both From GG). Fred Astaire, who knew a lot about movement in tailored garments, went for this in his dress suit when young: Shoulder very extended and constructed; sleevehead roped; armhole quite high and quite fitted front-to-back; sleevehead doesn't seem very wide front-to-back, but does have some fullness around the outer edge; chest draped. Both from GG. I'm guessing Chai's sleevehead is a bit fuller front-to-back? And of course the shoulders are narrower. Also much straighter; Astaire's have a pagoda.
Mine have extended shoulders but everything else you said is correct in detail 😁
 

Testudo_Aubreii

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Mine have extended shoulders but everything else you said is correct in detail 😁
Glad to hear it. Splendid suit, by the way. Your tailor knows what they're doing. Enjoy. It resembles Leonard Bernstein's, although his sleeveheads have no/much less roping, and his shoulders look a touch more extended. Though not as much as Astaire's. Hard to get shoulders like Astaire's now. A. Caraceni, Joe Morgan, Sexton, Cifonelli, and maybe Gordon Yao can still do it...?
 

The Chai

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Glad to hear it. Splendid suit, by the way. Your tailor knows what they're doing. Enjoy. It resembles Leonard Bernstein's, although his sleeveheads have no/much less roping, and his shoulders look a touch more extended. Though not as much as Astaire's. Hard to get shoulders like Astaire's now. A. Caraceni, Joe Morgan, Sexton, Cifonelli, and maybe Gordon Yao can still do it...?
I need to get some photos or videos of me dancing in them to see how the tails look in movement...
 

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