How Long Should My Clothes Be?

oversized suit

Whether you’re tall or short matters not in the world of fine tailoring. What really matters is your clothes, and most importantly, that your suit fits just right.

While many say it’s all in the shoulders, and it is to a certain extent, there’s also the not-so-small matter of length that is often overlooked.

A bit of extra length is not necessarily a bad thing, right? Well, if we’re talking socks or scarves, then go right ahead, but when it comes to formal wear, the right length is a matter of sartorial life and death.

The Trousers

With or without cuffs – Cuffs are the small band around the bottom of your trousers, which can add a classic look to your suit. They tend to make men look shorter and, for this reason, are best avoided if you’re not the tallest of the bunch.

It’s all in the break – the break is where the trousers fall on your shoe creating a horizontal crease. Depending on the length of your trousers, you can have way too much or the exact opposite.

We prefer the happy middle ground of no break, which is great for elongating your legs and adding height to your silhouette. Those of you with ankles to die for might prefer the uber short style that stops just above your ankle, but be warned, this is only fitting for skinny suits on men with lean figures.

The Shirt

Sleeve length – Such a simple rule that is all too often broken is the sleeves should come all the way down to the base of your wrist. Any more and it’s too long making you look shorter, any less and the cuff will get lost in your jacket sleeve.

How much cuff is enough? – When wearing your jacket, you’ll want to be able to see about half an inch of cuff, no more, no less.

Tuck it in – Need we say that your shirt should be tucked in on formal occasions (unless you’re dressing down that tuxedo). And as such the length should be enough that no matter what maneuvers you try out, your shirt stays tucked in.

The Jacket

Sleeves – To avoid the kid in dad’s suit look, your sleeves should fall only to your wrist and allow for that half inch of cuff to show. They should never come down over any part of your hand.

Jacket length – If you know how to dress for your body shape, then you’ll know the jacket length relies on the trouser crotch length and your height and width. So with no two men being the same, the old rule of thumb that it should line up with your thumb knuckle (pardon the pun) isn’t really true.

Remember you’re not ten anymore, and you won’t grow into anything, so get the length right by having it tailored right and you’ll look the part no matter what the occasion.

That’s where BBespoke Apparel can come to your aid. Schedule a private consultation for some one-on-one advice or pop into our showroom at your convenience. Either way, we’re ready to help you suit in style so you look damn good!

How To Dress For Your Interview At The Law Firm

Gavel, scales of justice and law books

The Steve Jobs and Mark Zuckerburgs of the world proved long ago that success and formal dress code need not go hand in hand. And so, many industries adopted a more relaxed attitude toward office attire. However, if law is your chosen line of work, those polo shirts may never see the warm glow of a fluorescent office light.

Traditionally a conservative industry, the law firms of the world have yet to realize that casual attire doesn’t actually impede your ability to present a case or plumb the depths of legal history for precedents.

So what should you wear to that interview at the law firm?

The short answer is to suit up to the nines.

The Suit

A neutral color is a given but rather than sticking to the black/grey/charcoal uniform of legal interns the world over, try a navy blue suit. It’s not too much of a style innovation to ruffle any feathers, but it is a slight break from the norm and is as acceptable in a legal office as it is in any boardroom.

However, we will caution you to avoid anything slimmer than a regular fit. Tight-fitting clothes are not particularly popular in this traditionalistic industry.

The Shirt

This is where we would usually suggest an alternative to the classic white business shirt but in such a conventional industry it’s best to stick to the rules. After all, the law is the law. So it’s a white business shirt tailored to a regular fit with buttoned cuffs. We’d like to think the interviewer will remember you because of your personality and competence rather than a nice pair of university cuff links, so no need to accessorize.

The Tie

Yes, we’re sticking with our ‘play it safe’ modus operandi. A plain color such as blue or red is ideal but so too is a classic stripe. However, be sure to choose a stripe that does not inadvertently hint at an allegiance to or membership of a club or society. Not knowing the secret club handshake the interviewer is alluding to could leave you red-faced.

The Shoes

Nothing but the best in leather will do. A classic Oxford or wingtip in black or dark brown is ideal, but they must be in immaculate condition. Take them to a professional if need be, but whatever you do make sure they shine. You should also buy new calf-length socks in a shade that matches your suit trousers and test them out first to ensure that no skin shows when you sit down.

The Hair

Yes, so conservative is the world of law that we’re even going to go so far as to recommend a hairstyle or perhaps lack thereof. You see, partners in a law firm care not one bit for trends or fashion so while a side parting might be ideal, one shaved into the side of your head is not.

Keep it short with no hair touching your collar. Use hair products minimally or not at all if possible and for the love of Zeus trim your beard, so it is short and neat. Better still, go for a clean-shaven look.

To be perfectly honest, an interview with a law firm is probably one of the easiest interviews to dress for. Like the industry itself, everything follows a rule, and with regards to dress that rule is one of business formality. Keep it formal and keep it tidy and let your skills and personality win you that position.

If you’d like some personalized advice for dressing for that all-important interview. Our owner, Bijan Zamanian, is personally involved with every new client to make sure nothing is left to chance.  We will even come to your place at home or office in New Jersey or New York (Consultations by video outside of our NJ & NYC travel area).

Questions? Please contact us and discuss your vision, your event, and your needs today.

How To Dress For Your Interview In Sales And Marketing

There are very few industries where your appearance is as important as it is in the world of sales and marketing. From client meetings to presentations, the occasions when you must look your best are many and so when you step into that interview, you want to make a killer first impression.

No matter what anyone tells you about casual attire, an interview in any industry calls for a plan of action with regard to your outfit so here are a few tips to set you on the right path to sales and marketing success.

Do Some Research

Not all companies have the same attitude or policy towards dress codes so a bit of research is in order. Check out the company’s Instagram feed or their about page on their website. See what the current staff members are wearing on a day-to-day basis, and there’s where you’ll find your starting point.

However, if your spy work uncovers a gaggle of hoodie and jeans-wearing employees, don’t presume that this is acceptable for the interview. They will still expect to see you dressed somewhat formally but if the dress code in the office is extremely casual, then it might be possible to dress down your suit a tad by removing certain items such as your jacket or tie.

The Suit

Unlike more traditional industries such as law and finance, sales and marketing allow a little more freedom of expression when it comes to your sartorial preferences. Black, grey, and navy suits are all perfectly acceptable once they are tailored to fit you perfectly and are not too tight. You are selling yourself as a fit and proper representation of the company and not necessarily as a fashion-forward male, so play it safe and avoid skinny fit suits.

The Shirt

Whether you’re a classic white business shirt man or you’re partial to pale hues, your choice of shirt is down to personal preference. However, we will recommend that you try to choose something that isn’t too loud or distracting. You want the interviewer to remember you as ‘the guy who answered that tough question’ and not ‘the red shirt man’.

The Tie

We’re fond of the term ‘don’t let your clothes wear you and it is perfect advice for anyone who is preparing for an interview. The focus must remain on you at all times, and neckwear is often the main cause of distraction. Choose a simple tie with a stripe or a plain block color.

If the job is with an agency that has a polo shirt-wearing CEO who spends a lot of time posting selfies on social media, then you might actually consider an open collar tieless look.

The Shoes

Your choice of shoes depends on your suit color but, and we can’t stress this enough, they must be leather, and they must be polished. Nothing cheapens a suit or outfit more than a scuffed and beat-up pair of shoes, so don’t be that guy that forgot to get the polish out.

Be On Trend

Okay, so this might seem to contradict our earlier advice about not wanting to seem overly style conscious but the fact is that sales and marketing professionals should be on point when it comes to current trends. Wearing colors and styles that are in vogue instills a belief in the subconscious mind of your interviewer that you are a man with your finger on the pulse. But we’re still going to say no to skinny fit suits.

A position in sales and marketing requires the ability to sell and market a product or service to a potential customer and let’s face it, what else are you doing in an interview only trying to sell yourself?

So give yourself the best start by presenting your product (you) in the best way possible and take great care in choosing your outfit. Give us a call to schedule a one-on-one consultation to get some personalized advice on creating your perfect interview-ready look.

3 Casual Clothing Tips For The Perfect Dress-Down Friday

We all enjoy casual Friday at the office but does it really have to mean trundling out the old faithful plain t-shirt and worn jeans?

Surely we can still remember how as teenagers we expressed ourselves through our clothing. And why should now be any different? So let’s forget the band merch and retro t-shirts and see what better ways there are to liven up your style for the next dress-down Friday.

Whether it’s a pair of red shoes or a brightly colored polo shirt, everything you wear tells your peers something about your personality. So don’t stick with the same three colors you wear religiously day in and day out. This may, of course, be fine for your office wear, but when it comes to casual clothing, it’s better to step out of your comfort zone and inject some life into your outfit.

Mix Up Your Colors

Colors are perhaps the ideal way to express yourself through your clothing. In fact, you can even let people know what kind of mood you’re in just by your choice of shirt. For this reason, it is best to avoid colors that are too dark. Otherwise, you may look a bit unapproachable.

Bright shades and hues give you an air of liveliness and fun, which makes you the perfect person to strike up a conversation with at the bar. However, don’t go overboard; leave the luminous yellow for vis-vests. Just remember; if you don’t need to turn on the light to find it, then it shouldn’t be part of your casual Friday look.

Ditch The Jeans

While jeans are a great look, and everyone should have a few decent pairs in their wardrobe, they are quite uniform in appearance. Don the denim and you’re just fitting in with the crowd.

Take a bold step by trying a pair of purple or green chinos. They are a complete break from the norm and will most certainly set you apart from the other guys in the office. It’s a look that may take some getting used to, but hey, who said vibrant colors were for your top half only?

If you really can’t bear the thought of ditching those jeans, then at least mix up the colors a bit. Avoid blacks and blues and try light grey denim or even white. If you can find a shop that stocks other colors, then get adventurous.

Embrace Patterns

When it comes to patterns, don’t fear the stripe or the check. A great way to choose patterns in your casual clothes is to always go with your first reaction to an item. If you like it immediately, then buy it. If on the other hand, you have to convince yourself to purchase it then you probably won’t wear it so leave it on the rack.

Stripes and checks are always a safe bet, but try and choose something that contains only two or three major colors. Any more and you might look like a kid’s TV presenter.

We also recommend that you avoid branded t-shirts if possible. A small Polo or Lacoste patch is fine, but brand names emblazoned across your chest are just unstylish free advertising for the label.

The truth is men’s shirts, t-shirts, and even pants have come a long way in recent years so we now find ourselves spoiled for choice regarding styles, colors, and fabrics. So be a little adventurous when choosing your next casual look and try to adopt some of our recommendations above. But when doing so, remember the one golden rule of casual clothing; there are no rules!

How Men Should Dress For An Interview

Dressing for job interviews can be stressful. Should you always wear a suit? Are jeans ever OK? Do you have to wear a tie every time?

You want to make the best impression you can from the moment you walk into the interview. Depending on the job type and level you are interviewing for, you’ll likely need to dress business casual or business formal. Generally speaking, you don’t want your clothes to be distracting: too tight, too loose, too old, or offensive.

Read below for tips on how to dress for all types of interviews, from internships to executive-level positions.

What qualifies as appropriate interview attire?

Black, navy, gray, or khaki suits, dress pants, blazer, and jackets are always acceptable interview outfits. White shirts are the norm, but you could get away with shades of blue or striped dress shirts. Ties shouldn’t be too loud or outrageous for an interview, either. But, what qualifies as business formal or casual?

Business Casual: 

If you are interviewing in a business-casual setting, you can get away with a lot more than business formal. A sweater over a button-down shirt with slacks, a button-down with slacks and open jacket, or a polo shirt with slacks all classify as business casual.

Business Formal: 

Business formal is typically only a three-piece suit with a tie. You should stick to a black or navy suit with a solid-colored tie.

Jeans, t-shirts, graphic or offensive language/prints, torn clothing, and smelly cologne are all huge interview outfit no-nos. Accessories should be very minimal — watches are an example of something acceptable. Shoes should look clean, shiny, and dressy.

For creatives or artists, you can have a bit more color or flare, but don’t go too far. You could include a more creative tie or brighter shirt, but the other rules apply.

What job interview outfit should you wear in every situation

Internships

Business casual is totally acceptable for internships. While a lot of internships are less than business casual, you want to show the company and hiring managers you are professional and serious about your impending career. Dressing in business casual attire can show them you are ready to join the workforce and take the opportunity seriously.

Startup positions

Startup positions should be treated like internships; stick with business casual. The whole company is just starting out, so dressing formally could make you feel out of place and make everyone uncomfortable. A button-up and a pair of slacks or any other iteration of business casual will show them you are excited about the opportunity and can be professional without standing out in a bad way.

Entry-level positions

When applying to an entry-level position, research the company and see if business formal or casual is the best way to go. If you can’t find the information you need, business casual is fine. You want to show you are ready to jumpstart your career but don’t want to seem like you are trying too hard.

Mid-to-Senior level positions

When interviewing for mid-to-senior level positions, you should research the culture of the company to determine the appropriate attire. If the interview is with a company you already work for or you can’t find the cultural information, business formal is best. More than likely you are leveling up in your career, and you want to leave the best impression on the hiring manager; demonstrate that you are ready for the new responsibility.

Management and executive positions

Business formal is always how you should dress for management and executive-level interviews. You’ll be expected to dress as a manager would during your work hours, so you want to make the strongest impression you can. How you dress can convey a lot about your leadership and management mindset and can show hiring managers you are prepared for the added responsibility of the new job title.

Skype or video interviews

You should dress according to the position you are interviewing for during a Skype or video interview. Even dressing business casual for a phone interview will help put you in the right mindset and boost your confidence.

In conclusion, always research the company culture, ask an insider, or visit the business to get a feel for how to dress for an interview beforehand. If none of the options are available, dress according to the above guidelines. You want to go into an interview feeling confident and as comfortable as possible while showing hiring managers you are a good fit for the company and the position. What you wear can say a lot about who you are as an employee, how seriously you take your job, and how professional you are.

And, dressing to impress isn’t as hard or stressful as it can seem. Buying a few coordinating pieces of clothing can have you prepared for many interviews to come. With these tips, you will dress appropriately and leave more time for what really matters — winning them over with your personality and outstanding achievements!

How To Wear a Tie Clip

One question we often get asked is about whether you should be matching your tie and pocket square. The short answer is no. Although it might seem like an easy way to coordinate your outfit, matching your pocket square and tie or bow tie is a definite no-no if you want to consider yourself a well-dressed man.

Instead, the purpose of the pocket square is to complement the rest of your look: either by harmonizing or contrasting with your other accessories. So although some stores even offer matching tie and pocket square sets, our advice is to steer clear of these if you want to be seen to be on top of your style game.

If your pocket square has a pattern or print, for example, then pick a color from that palette to bring your look together and match it to a primary color in your tie such as in the image below. The burgundy in the tie is reflected in sections of the pocket square design.

Equally, you could choose a pocket square that is a shade lighter or darker than the core color of your ensemble. Remember, it’s all in the detail, so don’t be afraid to bring out an accent color on a subtle pinstripe or checked shirt. In the video below, Leah has outlined the simple rules to pairing your tie and pocket square.

Pocket Square Rules

Below is a handy pocket square guide when choosing your pocket square:

  • Choose a secondary color from your shirt or tie as the primary color for your pocket square
  • Don’t overdo the patterns, ensure some articles of clothing are flat colors that will accentuate the colors in your pocket square or tie
  • Don’t directly match your tie and pocket square
  • If you are wearing a silk pocket square make sure it is over 40cm x 40cm (16 inches) as anything smaller, the fine material is likely to slip down into your pocket.
  • Match your fold to the occasion. For formal occasions stick to the flat fold or one or two-point folds, for more casual occasions use some more flare with the classic puff fold or one of the more flamboyant folds.
  • White pocket square rules; for the most part, there are no rules. White squares work with every jacket and tie combination and color so you can never really get it wrong.

Luxury Pocket Squares Vs Low Priced Squares

We are always huge advocates for quality. Pocket squares are possibly one of the best products for price vs lifetime value in clothing pieces that you can buy. If you think about it, pocket squares are not subjected to the wear and tear of most clothing pieces and never need to be washed. This means if you invest in quality, the best mulberry silk, long-lasting ink that penetrates the silk on both sides, and hand-rolled edges, you really do have a product that will last a lifetime and can be passed down to the future generations. Imagine one of your grandchildren wearing one of your squares at their graduation that you’d purchased 50 years earlier. Pocket squares fall into that special little category of small family heirlooms such as pins, watches, scarves, rings, etc. that over time can offer that extra layer of sentimentality.

In contrast, cheaper pocket squares in the market are generally printed on inexpensive silk or a mixed cotton fiber content base. Additionally, the printing is often not crisp and the color generally doesn’t bleed through to the opposite side for the premium appeal, limiting how you can fold it in your pocket, and giving you fewer styling ways to wear it.

The final key difference between luxury pocket squares and cheaper versions is the hand-rolled edges. We feel that the precision and care taken by our skilled artisans give each square its own unique character, finish and feel.

To create the finest rolled hems, the edge of the silk must be softy turned over with a handheld needle and then small stitches are inserted approximately one-half to one centimeter apart around the edge, creating a supple yet prominent border. This plump border helps give the square structure and makes it possible to do pointed folds.

Conclusion

In short, we at BBespoke believe that the pocket square offers an incredibly versatile accessory option; allowing modern men to express themselves and vary their look without having to invest in different suits and outerwear.

Book an appointment online today. Our clothiers will curate accessories specifically for you and make great gift ideas for the man that has it all!

How To Match Your Suit Color To Your Shoes

Business dress is more relaxed now. Gone are the days when you had to wear black shoes.

But now you’ve got more options… you’ve also got more chances of screwing up.

Pairing your suit with the wrong color dress shoes can completely ruin your look. At best, you’ll look sloppy. At worst, you’ll look incompetent.

So what are the right combos? In this article, we show you how to perfectly match your dress shoes and suits.

What Color Shoes Match With A Navy Blue Suit?

Navy blue goes comfortably with black, brown, and burgundy. 

Blues, by nature, can convey trust, wisdom, and responsibility. They give off a tranquil, calming effect when people encounter you.

Any touches of black, brown, or burgundy tend to “blend in” well with a larger amount of blue – without being distracting.

That explains why companies incorporate some form of blue in their logo design. And interior designers often use a hint of blue in planning the layout of corporate offices. Blue seems to encourage productivity.

Since it’s easy to coordinate a navy blue suit with most leather shoes – it’s the safest option for attending a job interview. It’ll help you look confident and level-headed right off the bat.

The only thing to remember is there are subtle ways in which the leather color affects the “attitude” of the entire outfit:

  • Black = formal, “getting down to business”
  • Brown = more relaxed or flexible
  • Oxblood/burgundy = more playful or creative

What Color Shoes Match With A Gray Suit?

Gray suits are less formal than navy blue suits, but they’re equal in terms of flexibility. You can pair them effectively with all three shoe colors.

They’re not ideal for proper business wear (since they’re rather light). But they’re actually fine in office setups where suits are worn with a “relaxed” dress code.

Specifically, for medium-gray suits – black would be the best choice for your shoes while wearing a white dress shirt with a tie.

Brown and burgundy shoes turn it into a casual/social look – and work best when the shirt has some pattern.

And then we have light gray suits, which work really well for spring/summer wear. The lighter the shade, the easier it is to apply patterns (such as checks or herringbone) into the suit – since they’re more visible.

Light gray is also the most casual shade of gray – so you can use it to break up the monotony of the usual suit colors when you’re attending parties or events during the warmer months.

What Color Shoes Match With A Charcoal Suit?

Here’s the first “must avoid” to take note of – charcoal gray suits with brown shoes. The reason behind it isn’t that clear-cut.

Charcoal gray is a color that’s almost as versatile as navy blue – but it tends to add a little more maturity to the wearer (not “oldness” per se).

On the other hand, navy blue suits make a young man look even younger, giving him the freedom to choose among all three shoe colors.

It’s slightly different for charcoal gray suits. Brown leather shoes don’t match as well. It’s because brown is naturally less formal than the other two – and the contrast created between brown and charcoal gray (which is similar to black) is quite stark.

Plain black shoes are the best choice in this case. However, a deep burgundy also does a great job for a charcoal gray suit that’s “relaxed” but still classy overall.

What Color Shoes Match With A Brown Suit?

Brown suits go with most brown shoes.

You need a visible difference between the shades of the shoe and the suit. If both browns appear identical, the whole thing will look off.

In general – it’s better for the brown shoes to be darker than the brown suit (which helps keep the eye from being drawn downward).

But the single most important thing is a clear contrast. And that’s what oxblood or burgundy shoes provide more easily.

And as previously mentioned – brown is considered less formal than its darker counterparts. So if a charcoal gray suit wouldn’t go with brown shoes, neither would a brown suit go with black shoes. Those pairings “clash” a little too much (in terms of feel and perception).

How To Dress For Your Body Type

Ever see a picture of an amazing outfit and then try to replicate it?

You carefully buy the clothes, piece by piece. You take care to copy the colors and style. And after all that effort, you try your new outfit and realize you look nothing like the guy in the picture.

The chances are, that you overlooked a small but important factor – body type. You probably don’t have the same body type as the guy in the photo. The result? What works for him doesn’t work for you.

In this article, we’ll teach you how to avoid this mistake in the future by showing you how to dress for your body type.

Body Shape #1 For Men – Triangle

Most men are predisposed to being larger around the waist and hips in relation to the top part of their bodies, especially as they get older. This creates a natural triangular shape with the base at the waist and the tip at the face.

Having a triangular body shape does not mean you are in bad shape, but it presents a challenge in finding clothes that make your entire body appear proportional. Most men’s clothing is designed with the opposite effect in mind – broad on top and narrower at the waist.

Creating balance and shape with your clothes is a key consideration for you.

Clothing For Men With Triangle Body Shape

  • Tailored patterned blazers: Wear checked blazers and fitted waistcoats with solid trousers. The mix of prints and solid colors will create the illusion of shape and take the focus away from the larger waist.
  • Vertical stripes: This pattern creates a streamlined effect that elongates and slims down the upper body. Horizontal stripes are preferred only if they are visible from the chest upward.
  • Jackets with structured shoulders: Slouchy shoulders on jackets (bomber jackets, for instance) will exaggerate your already sloping shoulder line. Structured shoulders (on a topcoat, for instance) square off your frame.
  • Single-breasted suits: Instead of going for double-breasted jackets which bulk to the waist, opt for a single-breasted jacket to allow for a more relaxed and slimming fit. Get your jackets tailored for a structured fit on the top but with extra room around the waist.
  • Brighter color panels: Patterns and detailing across the chest and shoulders help broaden the narrow upper torso. Wear jumpers and crew neck tees with color panels across the chest but a slimming darker color like gray, navy, or black around the mid-section.

Body Shape #2 For Men – Inverted Triangle

The shape of this body type is a big triangle with the base at the shoulders and the point at the belly button.

Your well-developed chest and shoulders are significantly broader in comparison to your waist and hips. You probably spend hours at the gym every week working up an enviable muscle pump. Hectic training sessions in the gym result in accentuated shoulders and thighs and a narrow waist.

Clothing For Men With Inverted Triangle Body Shape

  • Horizontal stripes: Especially from the chest down, to broaden your comparatively narrow waist.
  • Slim-fit shirts: You can wear shirts to show off your incredibly fit body but remember to size up. You want to hint subtly at your fitness, not scream it by wearing figure-hugging costumes.
  • Slim cotton polo shirt: A spandex mix will allow stretch across a broad set of shoulders and chest while creating a tailored look around the waist.
  • Regular V-neck T-shirts: The collar shape has a narrowing influence on your chest and draws the eye down and away from the broadest part of your torso. Stay away from plunging V-neck t-shirts.
  • Straight-leg trousers and jeans: men’s skinny jeans will accentuate your chicken legs. Slim-fit pants will do just fine. Wearing patterned pants, camo shorts, or checked trousers distracts from your comparatively broad upper body.
  • Trousers with larger seat drop: Athletes have the common problem of finding pants that are roomy around the groin area. Look for a larger drop measurement between the waistband and the crotch seam.
  • Jackets: Slim-fit jackets that follow the natural line of your silhouette, with a bigger difference between the width of the torso and the width of the waist.

Body Shape #3 For Men – Rectangle

Men with a rectangular body shape usually have a tall and thin frame. Their shoulders are roughly the same width as their waist and hips.

Clothing For Men With Rectangle Body Shape

Use clothing to widen the shoulders and add the effect of a subtle taper from your top-down. You’ll need to create an illusion of structure.

Creating a nipped-in silhouette across the middle of the body is both key and easy to achieve.

  • Horizontal stripes: Especially across your upper torso (short and long-sleeved Breton tees), as they’ll add width to your slight frame.
  • Structured tailoring: Once you’ve found structured blazers and suit jackets that add size to your shoulders, have your tailor take them in slightly at the back to emphasize your waist.
  • Layered looks: A button-down shirt and fine-gauge crew neck jumper is a no-fail pairing that’ll add instant bulk to your frame.
  • Scarves: A neatly tied or draped scarf is an easy way to add a point of difference to your look, as well as flesh out your upper torso.
  • Prints, color pops, and detailing: Pops of brighter colors up top or details like epaulets will expand the dimensions of your otherwise slim frame.

Pocket Square Rules And Etiquette

Pocket sqare detail

One question we often get asked is about whether you should be matching your tie and pocket square. The short answer is no. Although it might seem like an easy way to coordinate your outfit, matching your pocket square and tie or bow tie is a definite no-no if you want to consider yourself a well-dressed man.

Instead, the purpose of the pocket square is to complement the rest of your look: either by harmonizing or contrasting with your other accessories. So although some stores even offer matching tie and pocket square sets, our advice is to steer clear of these if you want to be seen to be on top of your style game.

If your pocket square has a pattern or print, for example, then pick a color from that palette to bring your look together and match it to a primary color in your tie such as in the image below. The burgundy in the tie is reflected in sections of the pocket square design.

Equally, you could choose a pocket square that is a shade lighter or darker than the core color of your ensemble. Remember, it’s all in the detail, so don’t be afraid to bring out an accent color on a subtle pinstripe or checked shirt. In the video below, Leah has outlined the simple rules to pairing your tie and pocket square.

Pocket Square Rules

Below is a handy pocket square guide when choosing your pocket square:

  • Choose a secondary color from your shirt or tie as the primary color for your pocket square
  • Don’t overdo the patterns, ensure some articles of clothing are flat colors that will accentuate the colors in your pocket square or tie
  • Don’t directly match your tie and pocket square
  • If you are wearing a silk pocket square make sure it is over 40cm x 40cm (16 inches) as anything smaller, the fine material is likely to slip down into your pocket.
  • Match your fold to the occasion. For formal occasions stick to the flat fold or one or two-point folds, for more casual occasions use some more flare with the classic puff fold or one of the more flamboyant folds.
  • White pocket square rules; for the most part, there are no rules. White squares work with every jacket and tie combination and color so you can never really get it wrong.

Luxury Pocket Squares Vs Low Priced Squares

We are always huge advocates for quality. Pocket squares are possibly one of the best products for price vs lifetime value in clothing pieces that you can buy. If you think about it, pocket squares are not subjected to the wear and tear of most clothing pieces and never need to be washed. This means if you invest in quality, the best mulberry silk, long-lasting ink that penetrates the silk on both sides, and hand-rolled edges, you really do have a product that will last a lifetime and can be passed down to the future generations. Imagine one of your grandchildren wearing one of your squares at their graduation that you’d purchased 50 years earlier. Pocket squares fall into that special little category of small family heirlooms such as pins, watches, scarves, rings, etc. that over time can offer that extra layer of sentimentality.

In contrast, cheaper pocket squares in the market are generally printed on inexpensive silk or a mixed cotton fiber content base. Additionally, the printing is often not crisp and the color generally doesn’t bleed through to the opposite side for the premium appeal, limiting how you can fold it in your pocket, and giving you fewer styling ways to wear it.

The final key difference between luxury pocket squares and cheaper versions is the hand-rolled edges. We feel that the precision and care taken by our skilled artisans give each square its own unique character, finish and feel.

To create the finest rolled hems, the edge of the silk must be softy turned over with a handheld needle and then small stitches are inserted approximately one-half to one centimeter apart around the edge, creating a supple yet prominent border. This plump border helps give the square structure and makes it possible to do pointed folds.

Conclusion

In short, we at BBespoke believe that the pocket square offers an incredibly versatile accessory option; allowing modern men to express themselves and vary their look without having to invest in different suits and outerwear.

Book an appointment online today. Our clothiers will curate accessories specifically for you and make great gift ideas for the man that has it all!

The Do’s and Don’ts of Professional Business Attire

When it comes to men’s professional business attire, it may seem that we’ve been in a safe territory for a long time.

The two-piece suit, or lounge suit to give it its formal name, is certainly here to stay. After a long evolution, it emerged as the standard professional dress around the 1920s and with minor tweaks has been around ever since.

However, times and styles have changed, and even in the professional environment, there’s room for a business casual style. However, this does not mean that styling is any less important than it once was.

Join us on a journey through the do’s and don’ts of professional business attire.

Professional Dress – Dont’s

OK – let’s get the bad stuff out of the way first. We’ve all seen them, but hopefully never worn them.

Here are the absolute don’ts of professional business dress:

Too Tight or Too Short

No ifs, no buts, there is a big difference between fitted and too tight, and you know it. Don’t go there. Buy for the size you currently are, not hope to be. Alterations can be made later if needed.

Another offender is suit pants, jackets or shirts that are too short. This can be a challenge for the taller man but needs to be addressed. See below ‘Get the Pant Length Right’.

Scuffed Shoes

If you want to present a professional appearance, make sure your shoes don’t let you down.

At all times, shoes should be clean, polished, and look their best.

Short-Sleeved Shirts

If you’re reading this article, you’re probably not looking to follow the ‘Walter Mitty’ school of fashion.

They may be comfortable, but short-sleeved shirts of any description have no place in the professional business wardrobe.

Professional Dress – Do’s

Your suit is one chance to make an unforgettable first impression. Here’s how to ensure its for all the right reasons:

Get the Pant Length Right

For pants, aim for the half or medium ‘break’.

That is, the pants sit lightly on top of your laces and cover the upper part of the rear of your shoe. This is a safe look for men of all heights and can be obtained with the help of a tailor.

Get a Tailor Involved

Every man’s body is different and what fits well on one may sag, droop or bulge on another.

Bespoke tailoring ensures that your suit perfectly matches the contours of your body. This allows you to choose a style that flatters you, rather than draws attention to flaws.

If you buy off the rack, consider having a suit professionally altered to achieve the custom look.

Get the Tie Right

The right tie at the right length will set off your suit and give you confidence.

The end of the tie should sit just at the top of your belt. Please note that tucking it in would go firmly in the don’ts category.

Professional business attire staples include bold block colors and diagonal stripes. Avoid anything too busy or whimsical. Narrower styles are currently in and make sure that you nail the knot.

Business Casual – Dont’s

Business casual may have fewer formal ‘rules’ than professional business attire, but don’t let your guard down. A good rule of thumb is it’s less embarrassing to overdress at first, then tone it down.

Here are the definite pitfalls to avoid:

Denim

This could seem like a controversial starter, as some companies will allow denim as business casual. If you’re in doubt, check first before you arrive for your first day at work looking like a dress-down Friday.

If denim is allowed, go for a block color without fade and a smart cut. Offset with the right blazer in a contrasting color, you can still put the business into business casual.

Sneakers

Sneakers come under the heading of ‘casual’.

There’s nothing about them that says business. They’re best left at home for weekends and working out.

Wear Statement Pieces

Like wearing an overly bright tie with a business suit just spoils the look, so wearing a statement shirt or loud pants just won’t cut it when you’re trying to nail business casual.

So consign that Hawaiian shirt to the weekend-only section of your closet.

Business Casual – Do’s

Don’t let the don’ts put you off – business casual is a great look and an easy one to get right.

Smart Pants

A well-cut pair of chino pants will make a great impression, especially if paired with a jacket of contrasting color.

We’ve called them smart because they’re sharp, not because they are suit pants. Cotton pants are fine, but they still need to be clean, well pressed, and in pristine condition.

Simple Tweaks

With business casual, the clue’s in the name. It’s still business wear, but let’s dress it down a little.

First of all, try keeping the suit, but ditching the tie.

Try mixing out your jackets with one of a color that contrasts with your pants, but doesn’t clash.

Don’t be afraid to accessorize with a bright pocket square to add a pop of color without looking garish.

Stick to the Classics

The tried and true formula for business casual is smart pants, a long-sleeved shirt with an open collar, a well-cut blazer or jacket, and smart shoes.

There is no need to try to reinvent this. The key is having good quality pieces, in great condition, that complement each other and your physique.

If you struggle to find shirts that fit well, consider tailor-made custom shirts. You have total control over style and fabric, and you can discuss with your tailor what will go well with your current wardrobe.