Put A Signature Spin on Your Black Tie Attire
Photo Credit: blog.prestonbailey.com
If you have an upcoming black tie event and have no idea what is appropriate to wear, then you’ve come to the right place. Below is a guide with examples to give you ideas to ensure that you show up at your event looking dapper, smart, and modern.
Gold Standard Look
The gold standard of black tie attire is what most people think of when they imagine what to wear, something very similar to the look in the above image. Traditionally the gold standard includes the following:
• A black single or double breasted wool jacket (with peaked, notched, or shawl collar)
• Matching trousers with a satin braid on the side to match lapel
• White shirt
• Black self-tie bow tie made of silk
• Black patent leather shoes
• Gold or mother of pearl cufflinks • Black suspenders (or cummerbund)
• A white pocket square
This is traditionally what is worn, however we want to update and spruce up the look so that you can stand out from your peers in a positive and innovative way. The following three looks have been put together to show you the classic, the edgy, and the fashion-forward approaches to dressing in black tie.
Subtle Simplicity Look
This look is for the modern man who doesn’t want to stray too far from tradition but wants to stand out from the crowd in a subtle way. The key to doing this is all in the accessorizing. You’ll want to focus on the accessories that you add to the outfit to give it a sense of your individual style. This black single-button suit by Maison Martin Margiela goes along with the Gold Standard of black tie dress but has a more contemporary fit. Here we went for a pin dot silk bow tie by Drake’s rather than the classic solid black. This adds dimension to the the cut of the suit. The velvet rose lapel pin by Lanvin compliments the bow tie while giving the outfit richness. We went with a classic tuxedo shirt for this look to add even more texture while still staying true to tradition. Finish the look by adding a pair of classic gold cufflinks and high-shine leather lace ups.
Edgy Chic Look
This look is for someone who’s a bit more adventurous with style and isn’t afraid of challenging the rules. Velvet blazers have become a more acceptable alternative to the Gold Standard look. This fabric looks amazing in any kind of light, has a luxurious feel to it and will be sure to catch everyone’s attention. We chose this Dries van Noten velvet tuxedo jacket because it has one key feature that makes it unique: a shawl collar. Because there are so many strong design details in the jacket, you want to keep the rest of your outfit simple (which means do not wear matching velvet pants or loud accessories.) We paired the jacket with a pair of Fendi dress pants with an unfinished hem because the sheen of the fabric brings out the satin trim on the shawl collar. The slightly shorter length of the pants also gives it a more youthful feeling. We chose a simple white Theory button-up shirt, a black pin dot Ralph Lauren pocket square (polka dot is acceptable as well,) a standard black bow tie and gold cufflinks from Bows N’ Ties, and finally a pair of tuxedo dress shoes from Hugo Boss.
Midnight Alternative Look
This looks is for someone who does not want to be seen in another black suit in a room full of people who are also in black suits. This look is a great alternative for the modern man because it is becoming more acceptable to choose a dark midnight blue suit over a black one for an event. If it’s an evening event, most people probably won’t be able to tell it’s not black because of the lighting but it feels great because you know. This look is the most “fashion-forward” in terms of black tie attire. You may even recognize it if you saw the James Bond film Skyfall, where Bond himself has a similar outfit that he wears in the movie poster. This midnight blue smoking suit by Sandro is amazing. The black satin shawl collar is a great detail and gives it that “black tie” prestige. The tuxedo shirt has an awesome detail in the collar as well, allowing you to thread your bow tie through an encasing around the back of the neck. A traditional tuxedo shirt would work as well, but the featured shirt gives the look an unexpected twist. Since this is a midnight blue suit, you want to coordinate and go with a midnight blue bow tie, as shown here with one from Band of Outsiders. It is smaller than your traditional bow tie, which makes it more contemporary. Don’t worry about being too “matchy” with the color because with this particular jacket, the black satin collar gives a visual break from the suit and tie. Since this look is a cool blue color, we switched from gold to silver and mother of pearl cufflinks from Bows N’ Ties to match the outfit. The silver compliments the midnight blue. We completed the look with another acceptable shoe option: the tuxedo oxford. One more thing you could add to this outfit that’s optional is a white silk scarf since that’s becoming more and more acceptable.
Remember that all of these looks should be worn with black socks.
All of the items featured were found on the below websites:
Sincerely, Your Ties-Necktie Team