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Vest with lapels but no collar?

Ben W

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I'm having a new 3-piece suit made.I have two items I'm considering doing differently with the vest this time.

1. I asked my tailor about doing lapels on the vest. He said they certainly can do so, but he recommended not doing a collar on it because it makes for too many layers of fabric on the back of the neck. Has anyone seen/done this?
2. I'm currently planning on having this vest made with the back the same as the front, rather than with liner.

Any opinions on either of these points?
 

DJCon93

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I don't recommend it. If you plan on wearing the vest without the jacket - which I assume you would - it won't look as good without the full collar. Just a personal opinion, but it looks cheesy to me and reminds me of a magician's vest.

Your second point will still look good and will likely breathe a bit better depending on what kind of lining you have.

Good luck!
 

maxalex

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Unless you are channeling Prince, I don't recommend lapels or collars on a vest. Or for that matter making the back out of the suit fabric. The traditional back fabric, today usually bemberg but possibly silk, isn't just to save money on woolens; it will help the jacket drape properly. The operating principle is that vests are only meant to be seen publicly from the front, under a jacket; the rest is a private matter. What happens in the back stays in the back. That said, it's not as private as underwear. Should you decide to toss your jacket across the dance floor at a wedding and twist in your vest, no scandal will ensue. Keep your trousers on.
 

Phileas Fogg

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Sorry, but what’s the point of the vest?

It’s archaic. It’s superfluous and serves no purpose. If you’re having the suit custom made, then opt for an extra pair of slacks.

Wearing the vest as a stand alone item is ridiculous. Wearing it as part of a 3 piece ensemble will have people wondering if you’re Daddy Warbucks and asking as to the whereabouts of little orphan Annie.
 

Ben W

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I appreciate the advice. The only suit I currently wear is a 3-piece, and nobody has ever given me a funny look for it. If anything, I've gotten a few compliments. I also feel more comfortable with a vest. It gives me the "suit of armor" feel, which I don't get without one, and is a confidence booster for me. If I ever feel differently, I can easily leave the vest in the closet and wear the suit as a 2-piece. I was already planning on getting a second pair of trousers. At this point I'm leaning toward ditching both options mentioned in the OP.
 

Verve

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I’ll disagree with some of the responses on this thread. Ever since I’ve been upgrading my suits about 1.5 years ago, all I purchase are 3-piece suits. It gives me more flexibility with whether I want to wear the jacket only, vest only, or 3-piece (which gives me additional outfit looks). IMO, any 3 of these options look great, and I’ve received many compliments on all options.

My initial choices started with conservative business suits for work with later options leaning towards casual fabrics. I get many clients admiring and complimenting the new wardrobe.

As for my vest options, I have all versions: bemberg lining on the back, full fabric on the back, lapels (no collar on back when there is bemberg lining); no lapels, and I will be receiving a full fabric vest with lapels in a week or 2. I love all versions, but if I had to do it over again, I would choose full fabric on all my vests instead of bemberg lining.

Here’s a recent pic of a linen/wool fabric that my wife took when it was a very warm day a month ago or so. Yes, it’s a monochromatic look, and I like it.
FAEECDB6-8E02-4B45-AE96-058AD3728E68.png
 
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Ben W

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I would choose full fabric on all my vests instead of bemberg lining.
What about it makes that your preference, if you can pinpoint it?

no collar on back when there is bemberg lining
Do you happen to have any shots of how this looks? And I presume this means you do a collar with the full fabric back? Do you find the collar on the vest makes for what feels like a lot of material at the back of the neck?

Thanks for chiming in.
 

Verve

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What about it makes that your preference, if you can pinpoint it?
It’s a couple of reasons:
1) When wearing just the vest without jacket, the full fabric looks “complete” vs the more common bemberg lining on the back.
2) I think the lining on the back of vest is the more common option when people own vests, at least the sample viewing among my colleagues. Thus, the full fabric looks nicer when wearing the vest alone, IMO.


Do you happen to have any shots of how this looks?
I’ll try to post some pics of the side and back of vests from my pic library.

And I presume this means you do a collar with the full fabric back? Do you find the collar on the vest makes for what feels like a lot of material at the back of the neck?
Actually, none of my vests have collars on the back after just checking them all. I’m assuming this is the default because it would cause problems with the jacket collars. I’ll have to ask next time I talk to my tailor.

Here’s the one I’ll be receiving shortly:
28B6CC01-640B-4CB4-B960-DDADEEED1789.png


Another IRL pic of vest only.
61CA8A34-E7AA-4115-A347-44CCE21F096D.jpeg


Here’s one pic of back:
EA947243-D529-4DD5-A8A5-87B213B141B8.jpeg


Side:
C15A7B78-DCB5-4618-B43B-AEBED5CDFABB.jpeg


One with lapels:
1EC14BC7-D93E-4D85-B0E6-9E0A39BA2A84.png
 

Ben W

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You've been incredibly helpful! Thank you!
 

Verve

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You’re welcome.

I forgot to add another disclosure: what’s a great feature with 3-piece suits is that you don’t have to button the jacket of SB suits when wearing the vest and jacket together because it still looks cool. Huge bonus that I enjoy.

28984F07-CEE6-4ABF-840A-A98E13933F53.png


A9DB3761-B60F-439F-8317-77C3BBFE946E.png
 

Verve

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Ben, I’m curious what you finalized for your vest options? I’m sure you’ll like whatever you selected.
 

Ben W

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Waiting on a call from my tailor to finalize things but after viewing your pictures I'm leaning toward going with my original gut feeling and doing the fabric back and lapels with no collar. Hoping we touch base tomorrow to finalize the order. Will update this thread after, and also when I have the suit.
 

Ben W

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Got the order form from my tailor. Going with the fabric back and notch lapels on the vest. 👍 Firming things up with him tomorrow.
 

Verve

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I just received my full fabric vest with lapels today. It’s a cashmere blend… really nice. I’m excited to wear it tomorrow for work.
 

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