Gentleman’s Guide To Black Tie
Providing that you are not sixteen and on your way to the prom, let’s just assume that a nobleman already owns one great-fitting tuxedo for those formal occasions. Is a tuxedo the only option for a black-tie event? The answer is no… Times have changed. A gentleman now has more options than ever before, and probably for the better.
THE DINNER JACKET
Consider a dinner jacket for your black-tie event. It can be paired with your existing black tuxedo pants, and is available in various colors, textures, and lapel treatments. Be the bold nobleman and wear that white dinner jacket to your next black-tie affair, and prepare to be the life of that party.
Black tie doesn’t mean black tux. Tuxedos are now available in various colors, such as the ever-so-popular navy, seen most recently on the likes of distinguished men such as Ryan Gosling and Bradley Cooper. (Tom Ford Black Twill Windsor Tuxedo $5,620 available at Neiman Marcus Fashion Island)
The customary shoe for the tuxedo has been the patent leather lace up for nearly a century and will continue to be the trend for a gentleman’s formal look. However, there are plenty of options and styles of tuxedo shoes available—depending on how unconventional a nobleman wants to be. Whether you are attending a wedding, a charity gala, or an award show, the most important thing a nobleman should remember is to be a gentleman, have fun, and be impeccably dressed.
(John Lobb, Elm Patent Shoes $1,665 John Lobb Boutique South Coast Plaza)
Finish your look with the right accessories. Start with a beautiful silk white pocket square for a more traditional look, or add a dash of color like red for a fun. Cufflinks are available in many shapes, colors, and materials; we suggest wearing heirloom cufflinks you inherited from your great-great-grandfather. The cummerbund and suspenders are the only accessories we would consider optional. Tuxedos don’t have belt loops and are fitted by your tailor to be perfect around your waist, yet they are equipped with buttons along the inside of the waistband for attaching formal suspenders. The cummerbund becomes a bit more of traditional style, there is no right or wrong answer, but if you do wear it, make sure it fits you properly.
(John Hardy, Mens Classic Square Cufflinks with Black Sapphires- $695 Bloomingdales Fashion Island)
AN ELEGANT WATCH
The right watch says a lot about you. It sets the tone for your whole outfit. The selection of the right timepiece is an important component of formal wear. A sports watch can ruin even the most sophisticated look. Simple, smart, and elegant– these should be your criteria when selecting a watch to pair with your tuxedo.
(Vacheron-Constantin, Traditionelle Tourbillon Collection, Price upon request Vacheron-Constantin Boutique South Coast Plaza)
Words by Oscar Munoz
Photo of Luke Ditella by Melissa Ditella