Evening Scarf

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The suit is cleaned and hung, the shirt has been starched, the bow tie neatly laid on the dressing table; all of this perfection is reflected in the dazzling shine of the patent shoes. At this time of year, aside from an appropriate overcoat, there is one more accessory worthy of accompanying the classic evening dress (dinner suit/tuxedo – depending on your nationality) and surprisingly, this is an accessory which does not receive universal … [Read more...]

Density of Pattern

Before you decide anything in the morning about what you’re going to wear, consider density of pattern. Ok, maybe select your suit first. But then, before reaching for the shirt, look at the pattern of your suit and consider it. Is there a pattern? What is its density? How might that density harmonise with, clash with or simply stay a good distance away from other patterns in your outfit? Ok (another backtrack) maybe you wouldn’t obsess … [Read more...]

The Lawyer Background

British lawyers have a penchant for a particular suit/shirt combination that allows them to sport brightly coloured ‘fun’ ties. It’s an object of derision but holds lessons for all of us. A while ago I wrote about the Italian background: the tendency of Italian men to wear a plain blue shirt and dark blue tie as a neutral support to more outlandish suits or accessories. This neutral, conservative combination is an easy fallback for the … [Read more...]

Suited Up

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A reader recently contacted me because as a newly graduated attorney, he wanted some specific advice on what to look for in a suit. He also wanted to hear about a few specific brands. The gentleman indicated that he is based in Chicago and his work environment is a more formal one. That is, he is not asking about those two or three times when he needs to pull out a good suit. Rather, he needs to be dressed for business most of the time if not … [Read more...]

Christmas Presents: Buy the Luxury You Can Afford

Anyone out there trying to find a Christmas present for myself or gentlemen like me should bear two things in mind: buy the best you can afford, and buy pieces that last. No matter how little you have to spend on someone’s Christmas present, you can afford luxury. It’s merely a question of scaling down the size or complexity of the item. You probably can’t afford to buy someone a luxury tie, at least until the January sales – they … [Read more...]