Life throws up a series of important occasions and big moments where only a suit will do. Don’t fear, however – just a few basic styles can cover all bases; you don’t need a dozen suits lined up in your wardrobe to look the part.
The Job Interview
In an interview environment it’s important to create the right impression – ideally as soon as you walk into the room. Black is a power colour but considered a no-no for a job interview; as this guide from GQ states, ‘unless the job is at an undertaker’s, don’t wear a black suit’. You can’t go far wrong with grey, either light or charcoal. It offers a professional, clean and classy look.
A funeral is a formal occasion, where sombre respect takes precedence over fashion and trends. ‘A funeral is not a place to show off your personal style, make a fashion statement or grab attention,’ writes The Fine Young Gentleman. ‘You are there to pay respect to the deceased and his/her love ones’. Keep it simple, and classic. Dark-coloured suits are always suitable but black is the traditional choice. Important: keep the accessories conservative, too – white shirt, black tie, black shoes and socks.
Seasonality comes into play when it comes to weddings, as does the setting of the ceremony and reception. In a country venue during the autumn or winter, a tweed suit would look superb; in the large marquee in the grounds of a smart hotel during the heart of the English summer, a lighter coloured linen suit works well. For an all round safe bet, however, go with navy blue. It’s a hugely versatile colour and look, and can be made formal with a blue tie and black shoes, or freshened up with an orange tie and tan brogues. Check out the range from Dobell formal wear for inspiration.
The Evening Ball
It’s fair to assume that, at some point in early adulthood, there’ll be an invitation to attend an evening ball – a prom, a college graduation ball, a charity event, a formal dinner. If this invitation stipulates ‘black tie’, there’s really only one option and that means a tuxedo or dinner jacket. There are supposedly strict rules for what to wear and how to wear it – read this guide from the Telegraph if you want to follow the dress code to the letter – but otherwise, a sleek black tuxedo with white shirt and black shoes is required. The only real dilemma is whether to go for a black bow tie or a traditional black tie – whatever you choose, it must be black and do not go for anything remotely novelty.