Why can't i have a black suit?

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by graphite, Apr 5, 2009.

  1. graphite

    graphite Senior member

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    I'm looking to purchase my first suit in the upcoming months.


    numerous times, i've read on these forums as well as other fashion advice columns that a black suit is a no-go. what's with that?


    i figured having a black suit would make a lot of sense, versatility-wise.


    care to enlighten?
     


  2. Sander

    Sander Senior member

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    sapere aude.
    (search function)
     


  3. cgo

    cgo Senior member

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    i'd have at least 1 black suit....a nice one that is
     


  4. ysc

    ysc Senior member

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    These are the reasons usually given:

    1)Black suits in day light (not so much at night) tend to be unflattering to a lot of complexions

    2) Black suits tend to give too high a contrast with coloured shirts and ties making them look garish

    3) You will look like a waiter/undertaker

    For these reasons a charcoal or navy suit is actually more versatile - particularly the charcoal - as they will look better with your other clothes and be more flattering to your complexion.

    in addition:

    5) cheap black fabric tends to look worse than similarly cheap charcoal or navy fabric

    6) A gentleman never wears a black suit in the day.

    I am sure there are more, but are these not enough?
     


  5. David Watts

    David Watts Senior member

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    Long before I discovered this forum, among others, I really wanted a black suit so I could look just like Steve McQueen in The Getaway. It was only until I was older and wiser that I finally realized: a) I'm no Steve McQueen b) Charcoal Suit > Black Suit
     


  6. kulata

    kulata Senior member

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    I have one black suit. Nothing wrong with them IMHO
     


  7. Nicola

    Nicola Senior member

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    Many dark charcoal suits will look black in the right light. So will dark blue. So if you don't want to wear a black suit you shouldn't wear charcoal or dark blue either.

    Some of this is cultural. The anti-black brigade seem to be mostly American. They also seem to have problems with pinstripes [classic business ] and promote grey suits [should only be worn with a cap by people who drive James home].

    [​IMG]

    If you aren't stuck with those sort of limits go black.
     


  8. Ich_Dien

    Ich_Dien Senior member

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    If I see someone wearing a black suit I consider them to be sartorially inept. However I will look at their shoes first, always.
     


  9. Sanguis Mortuum

    Sanguis Mortuum Senior member

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    i figured having a black suit would make a lot of sense, versatility-wise.
    The problem is that a black suit is not versatile. There are virtually zero situations, except for funerals, where a charcoal or navy suit will not look better...
     


  10. JayJay

    JayJay Senior member

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    The problem is that a black suit is not versatile. There are virtually zero situations, except for funerals, where a charcoal or navy suit will not look better...
    +1
     


  11. JFKJean

    JFKJean Senior member

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    These are the reasons usually given:

    2) Black suits tend to give too high a contrast with coloured shirts and ties making them look garish


    Absolutely true, and my favorite thing is when I see a black suiting jacket used in the context of a casual blazer. Talk about garish.....


    The problem is that a black suit is not versatile. There are virtually zero situations, except for funerals, where a charcoal or navy suit will not look better...

    Once again, couldn't agree more and it's something a lot of American men are just not getting. The few times I'll have to wear a black suit, I keeps it simple and super minimal, white shirt, black tie, white pocket square and not even a pop of color with the socks.
     


  12. TEDSgrad

    TEDSgrad New Member

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    In the early 1900's, many pictures have men in black suits. Semi-formal has the black jacket (stroller). As has been said, around the world there is no aversion to the black suit.
    I agree that quality (or lack ) is more easily seen in black. It is a solemn color (or lack of color).
    I'm not a funeral only black suit wearer - I wear mine to church on Sunday every fifth or sixth week or even occasionally out to dinner. I do wear it judiciously, though. I like it.
    If you want one, then buy it. Enter the world of suits and enjoy wearing one. Then you will buy others and come to appreciate color and texture. This harsh criticism of black suits probably turns more people off - who would enter the suit world and grow - than is necessary. This harsh criticism of most people's entry point into the suit world does our community no service. Come on in.
    Formal day wear and the tux is now a costume. This community is trying to fight that, but we are not winning. If the black lounge suit fills the void left, I would encourage your interest and your education. That is how our community will advance, and the world will be a better place for it.
     


  13. Metlin

    Metlin Senior member

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    In the early 1900's, many pictures have men in black suits. Semi-formal has the black jacket (stroller). As has been said, around the world there is no aversion to the black suit.
    I agree that quality (or lack ) is more easily seen in black. It is a solemn color (or lack of color).
    I'm not a funeral only black suit wearer - I wear mine to church on Sunday every fifth or sixth week or even occasionally out to dinner. I do wear it judiciously, though. I like it.
    If you want one, then buy it. Enter the world of suits and enjoy wearing one. Then you will buy others and come to appreciate color and texture. This harsh criticism of black suits probably turns more people off - who would enter the suit world and grow - than is necessary. This harsh criticism of most people's entry point into the suit world does our community no service. Come on in.
    Formal day wear and the tux is now a costume. This community is trying to fight that, but we are not winning. If the black lounge suit fills the void left, I would encourage your interest and your education. That is how our community will advance, and the world will be a better place for it.


    Dude.... seriously?
     


  14. pdial

    pdial Senior member

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    In the early 1900's, many pictures have men in black suits. Semi-formal has the black jacket (stroller). As has been said, around the world there is no aversion to the black suit.
    I agree that quality (or lack ) is more easily seen in black. It is a solemn color (or lack of color).
    I'm not a funeral only black suit wearer - I wear mine to church on Sunday every fifth or sixth week or even occasionally out to dinner. I do wear it judiciously, though. I like it.
    If you want one, then buy it. Enter the world of suits and enjoy wearing one. Then you will buy others and come to appreciate color and texture. This harsh criticism of black suits probably turns more people off - who would enter the suit world and grow - than is necessary. This harsh criticism of most people's entry point into the suit world does our community no service. Come on in.
    Formal day wear and the tux is now a costume. This community is trying to fight that, but we are not winning. If the black lounge suit fills the void left, I would encourage your interest and your education. That is how our community will advance, and the world will be a better place for it.


    WTF are you talking about?
     


  15. emmanuel

    emmanuel Senior member

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    I have worn and would wear a Black suit again. My reasoning:
    These are the reasons usually given: 1)Black suits in day light (not so much at night) tend to be unflattering to a lot of complexions I guess I have one of those complexions that allows me to wear just about anything 2) Black suits tend to give too high a contrast with coloured shirts and ties making them look garish That actually may be true but I am careful with which colors I select 3) You will look like a waiter/undertaker I never wear black and white... unless its a tux For these reasons a charcoal or navy suit is actually more versatile - particularly the charcoal - as they will look better with your other clothes and be more flattering to your complexion. Charcoal and navy are better options but why would I allow that to stop me from having a more diverse wardrobe? in addition: 5) cheap black fabric tends to look worse than similarly cheap charcoal or navy fabric I cant be concerned with cheap fabrics 6) A gentleman never wears a black suit in the day. Ridiculous! I am sure there are more, but are these not enough?
     


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