Who says that you have to wear a suit with a tie to look professional? Take a look at how prominent business executives dress these days or perhaps Senator Barack Obama, and you’ll see what we’re talking about. The suit without a tie look evokes the sort of rebellious mystique that used to surround those who wore blue jeans and a black leather jacket 50 years ago. This is new territory for some of you, so we’ll offer up some viable alternatives to wearing a tie and suggest exactly why this look can work for you.
Make sure that the shirt underneath the suit is still a structured dress shirt that looks great on its own. The fact that you’re not wearing a tie doesn’t suggest that you can skimp on the shirts. Quality dress shirts, with impeccable tailoring, are the only thing you should ever consider when thinking about going without a tie; tuck that shirt in, make sure it fits and doesn’t hang off of your frame looking slouchy (as some have referred to Steve Ballmer’s look).
Accessorize the look; this is the perfect opportunity to use a pocket square as it can draw attention away from the fact that you are not wearing a tie. In the office you would still wear the traditional colors (blue, white, grey) that you have always worn, so if you’re thinking about wearing evening colors or experimenting with pastel colored suits, don’t.
Dressing up without the tie implies a formal, yet casual look that isn’t stuffy showing both that you are confident enough in your appearance and in yourself to still deliver a great presentation and sell a client on a solid idea but do not take yourself too seriously to hide behind your uniform. This look allows you the luxury of experimenting with different variations on the same cotton shirts and wool suits you’ve always worn, without throwing convention to the side.
We’re not sure how long this no tie look is going to last, but as with all things concerning fashion, if some of you find your niche you’ll continue with it even after the trend has past.
- Chris Kendalls