Suiting, dated in the eyes of some, is still the most powerful attire for the modern man. Although the overarching trend of contemporary menswear tends to lean away from suiting and runways across the world are limiting their formal showcase. I don’t care what the fuck you say, suiting is still the center of the elevated man's wardrobe.
However, like any traditional trend, it needs to adapt to stay relevant to changing times. The origins of suiting stem from formal attire that transitioned into the corporate norm in the modern era, while millennials are pushing for a more relaxed work attire, you cannot deny the attention a sharp suit demands when you walk into a room. You walk with a sense of purpose and an ’I mean fucking business' attitude. While I love a good suit, I hate wearing it on a daily basis, so when I suit up I make sure it’s for the right occasion and I’m pulling the most contemporary look I can craft. Suiting has transformed into a more modern drive and many guys are falling behind on the best way to suit up for a more woke occasion. We are here to help and give you a guide to the modern dress code for all things suiting.
‘What the fuck’ is the thought that comes to mind when you say sneakers and suits, but if you have been paying close attention to the runways of recent seasons, sneakers and suits is a massive contemporary focus. I'm not suggested you get your chunkiest pair of new balance sneakers and lace them up with a three-piece suit. This combo needs to have careful consideration before you step out into the world. It can easily turn into a fucking disaster if the match is not carefully selected. When I say sneaker I mean Fashion Sneaker, not joggers or runners, but a designer high-end sneaker. Ideally something on the contemporary side, well-structured and a simple design. Raff Simmons, Paul Smith, Dark collection, KOIO, APC, Acne, M Gemi and common project are all great labels to hit up for a fresh sneaker drop. Your safest selection is a crisp white sneaker combined with socks and solid suit color. If you want to experiment, keep the matching simple. If you're wearing a patterned or textured suit keep the sneaker a solid color and look for a pair with detailed panel work to add another layer to the look. If you're moving towards a solid suit color you can be more adventurous with your shoe choice. Avoid high-tops, light fabric sneakers and anything resembling a runner. Leather sneakers are the best selection to make, always.
Believe it or not, the fit styling of suiting is always changing. Every season silhouettes change depending on what trends hit the runway. While the margins for innovation are small, fit dramatically affects the overall look of a suit. You only have to glance at Trump, drowning in his ill-fitting suits, to realize that silhouette plays a big part in creating a polished look. Let's be honest Trump looks like a toddler dressed as a man in the shit he wears and so could you if you don’t know what to do with fits. Trends and designers will dictate how silhouettes will change over time, but we are talking about the contemporary look of current times. Personally, I believe a contemporary look is somewhere between a tailored and modern cut, shaped to the body but not too firm. Here is a rundown of the main fit features to focus on.
A comfortable fit through the shoulder and waist, with a slightly higher cut armhole opening. You want a small taper at the waist to give shape to the body and the sleeve to hang clean off the shoulder with no wrinkling of the fabric at the shoulder point. Now construction … the construction is all about avoiding pulling and bulging, they are the enemy of a prominent fitting suit. The aim is to have the fabric sit smoothly against the body when you’re standing straight and with arms by your side. If there is pulling in the waist, shoulders, back or chest it's a sign that the fit it too tight and more room is needed in these areas. On the flip side, if there is bulging or excess in the same areas it’s a sign the shape is too large and the fit needs to be tightened.
Finally, length, this can be personalized based on the look you want to achieve, but there are some fundamental rules to follow. These rules apply mainly to sleeve and jacket length. The jacket length should always hit the center of your hand when your arms are relaxed by your side or alternatively if your arms an abnormally long the jacket should sit at the end of the pant pocket opening. The sleeve length will end at your wrist. At least an inch of a shirt should show under the sleeve opening and if you're wearing a watch it should be partially exposed.
There is a lot more to learn about the fit of a suit, check out GQ for a detailed run down of suit fitting.