Thursday, March 8, 2012
Show a little cuff, stuff a handkerchief in your breast pocket, tie your own bow tie, cover your waist. There really is nothing to black tie.
In my opinion, where stylists, those men and women who dress celebrities for their public appearances, go wrong these days is in their search for something different to justify their existence. It is a search that is totally unnecessary. For, at every event, the men who stand out are the handful that dress the way Mr. Grant dressed in Notorious. And he did it for himself.
It is difficult of course for men who need the stuff but rarely to justify the investment in a dinner jacket and proper shoes. To them I say, do not do things half way. Either spend what is necessary or eschew evening dress altogether. There is no shame in a navy suit, black oxfords, white shirt and a satin four in hand; indeed when done well that combination looks better than the clothing seen on most men at the typical black tie optional event in North America. But placing one foot on either side of the line demarking black tie and the lounge suit is a recipe for failure. Besides, doing it right is easy.