Which of the 3 ensembles works the best for cocktail attire?

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by aratnam, Jan 20, 2013.

  1. aratnam

    aratnam Member

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    Guys,
    First time posting here. I work for a consulting firm and we are having an evening winter celebration which is calling for black tie optional/cocktail attire.

    I am trying to pick an ensemble for the event and I picked the following three combinations from my wardrobe- which of the following in the link below do you like the most? I am trying to strike the right balance between being conservative and slightly edgy.

    Thanks a lot!



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  2. unbelragazzo

    unbelragazzo Jewfro Dubiously Honored

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    Is the suit striped? What's the color of necktie 1? Do you have a plain white pocket square?
     


  3. Claghorn

    Claghorn Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    The first by far.
     


  4. aratnam

    aratnam Member

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    Suit is navy in faint chalk stripe and the necktie is olive green and I will be wearing black ferragamo oxfords. I do have a plain white pocket square but would like wearing a bit of color.

    More opinions?
     
    Last edited: Jan 21, 2013


  5. mktitsworth

    mktitsworth Senior member

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    Trying to be clever and edgy in dressing for a cocktail party is like trying to be clever and edgy when you're 16 and trying to get the girl you like to snog you. I'm not saying it never works, but more often than not you end up looking like a damned fool who outfoxed himself. Go with the white pocket square. Then pick a good tie as the centerpiece. Feel free to post them and people can give you opinions. If you are so inclined, you can currently still get an extra 40% or so off items from Neiman Marcus Last Call, in whose clearance section you can find ties by the likes of Kiton and Isaia.

    This is your path of least resistance.
     


  6. unbelragazzo

    unbelragazzo Jewfro Dubiously Honored

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    Do you have any other options on suits? I'm not sure where this stands on the opinion/accepted wisdom continuum, but to me color in evening wear is to be almost entirely avoided. It always comes out looking tacky. The most non-black-white-or-dark-navy I'd accept under ideal circumstances would be garnet studs and/or links, or VERY dark maroon socks.

    Frank Sinatra famously enjoyed wearing orange pocket squares with his tuxedo, so clearly there are famous dressers who disagree. On the other hand you're probably not as good looking and charismatic as Frank Sinatra (no offense).

    At the least, I'd recommend keeping it simpler this time and adding something more colorful after you have mastered the basics. If you maintain an interest in clothing, you will likely look back at any of these three outfits as a youthful indiscretion. If you decide you just have to do it anyway, no kittens will die because of it though.

    I agree with Clag that of the three, the first is definitely the best. We can toss out the third immediately as the tie and pocket square are just not good together, and possibly no good under any circumstances. In number two, the tie and PS seem nice separately, but are terrible together. Patterns are too close in scale and the color combination is not good at all. That suit and tie are begging for a white pocket square. Put on a white pocket square, and it's fine. But add a white square to the first fit, and it's better than the second, mainly because that is an evening necktie, and so turns this into an evening outfit, rather than a business one, which is a good thing for a social event that takes places at night.
     
    Last edited: Jan 20, 2013


  7. Varmant

    Varmant Well-Known Member

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    Agreed.
     


  8. aratnam

    aratnam Member

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    You guys are amazing- I am seeing things in a new light.

    All right- off with the colors and on with the white pocket square. Here are my next set of options- obviously all of them carry a certain level of acceptability since the white pocket square levels the ground, but which one would you pick?


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  9. aratnam

    aratnam Member

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    This great advice- thanks much, unbelragazzo and mktitsworth!

    Now which of these do you like? With the white pocket square, all of them now seem to carry a certain level of acceptability, but the question is which one would work best for the event I have in mind?

    Sorry the knots aren't great- I uploaded full sized shots (click on the images) so that you can see detail.

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    Last edited: Jan 21, 2013


  10. Claghorn

    Claghorn Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    I'm liking the second.

    Edit: Is that the same tie from the first picture under better lighting?
     
    Last edited: Jan 21, 2013


  11. aratnam

    aratnam Member

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    Correct, the second tie (bottle green) in my latest post is the same tie on the first picture of my first post.

    Also, the first tie (blue with white pattern) in my latest post is the same as #2 on my first post.
     
    Last edited: Jan 21, 2013


  12. unbelragazzo

    unbelragazzo Jewfro Dubiously Honored

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  13. Diaz

    Diaz Member

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    #4 is the most formal tie, though it looks like a wedding ensemble. But I like it the most.
     


  14. aratnam

    aratnam Member

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    Interestingly enough, I just got the seal of approval from Andy Gilchrist on my original #2. Before I give up on color and go with the simple green and white ensemble, can you guys give this one a shot? Last one, I promise.
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  15. unbelragazzo

    unbelragazzo Jewfro Dubiously Honored

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