Griswold Lorillard. Sounds familiar? In 1886, a gentleman, son of the Tuxedo Park founder, clad a jacket to a fancy party in New York that would revolutionize formal attire- the tuxedo. From this single moment, tuxedos have since made a splash from the 19th century onwards, leaving an impressionable footprint and not just in the fashion industry. As the British would nomenclate it, the dinner jacket has grown from a James Bond signature piece to a wedding season staple and now an empowering unisex wardrobe statement; we've seen it all. Today tuxedos are making an appearance in every social setting sporting striking prints and bold colors, a significant diversion from the traditional black and white tuxedo.
A definitive guide to picking the perfect tux
Fascinating as it may be, shopping for tuxedos can be intimidating. All the details that go into tailoring these classic satin embedded pieces call for so much thought. You're looking at quite an inventory to navigate, from color considerations to material choices and style options. More often than not, we find ourselves standing at the mercy of the Clothing Store assistant hoping to get it right; however, wouldn't it be great to get a handle on your tux purchase? Ahead we break down five factors that'll land you the perfect tuxedo for any occasion.
The higher the formality, the darker the tone; although true, this statement isn't rigid. Traditionally, dark-colored tuxedos were designated for formal occasions, but it's 2022, and there's no fun in following the rules. Tuxedo tones are now more flexible and liberating; the key is matching your dinner jacket with the season. Summer occasions, for one, accommodate playing around with light and vibrant colors. Autumn events, on the other hand, are well complemented with pastels, but if you're all for maintaining that classic appeal, then you could never go wrong with black, gray, or navy blue, especially in the winter.
Tuxedos like suits come in a diverse range of materials. Ideally, most clothing store tuxedos lean more towards wool because of its breathable quality, making it the perfect all-year-round fabric. However, this is not to say that there isn't room for a bit of diversion. You can still customize your tuxedo to a material of your liking, say polyester or rayon. The chief concern is taking into account the climate you'll be wearing your tuxedo in; this goes for the dress shirts and vests as well. Trust us; you don't want to be packing on heavy fabric for that Hawaii wedding.
Are you scouting a formal or laid-back attire- This should always be the first consideration to check on your list. Black tie events call for dark-colored tuxedos, whereas informal settings work perfectly with lighter tones. The distinguishing feature of formal tuxedos is their make; they're often less tapered, sporting pleated fronts, shawl lapels, no vents, and triple buttons for a clean silhouette. Alternatively, casual tuxedos are cut to flat front pants, single vents, fewer buttons, and a notched or peaked lapel. Additionally, informal events tend to be more open-minded and creative, leveraging a switch to bold prints and textures.
All outfits ultimately come down to one thing- styling. How your pair up and accessorize your dinner jacket will either dress it down or sharpen the whole look, so we've gathered a few styling tips for tuxedos. As a rule, you can never miss out on the satin action; that's to say, the jacket construction should have satin on the lapel. Deux, vest or no vest, a dress shirt is a must-have. Third, pairing a tuxedo with a belt is an offense to Griswold; try a cummerbund or suspenders instead. Fourth, a crisp pocket square never hurt anybody. And finally, going bowtie or necktie is a matter of preference.
Buying a tuxedo is an investment, so why not go for a fitted tuxedo to get the most bang for your buck? Tailored and custom-fitted tuxedos are more flattering and neater than ready-made ones. You don't want your pants riding too high, nor do you want your jacket looking like you copped it from your nephew; that said, the fitting should be a priority. Working with a professional garment-maker guarantees you clean cuts, a seamless fit, and comfortable wear regardless of the style you're eyeing. Our personal favorite is the basted fitting.
Whether you're a groom in the throes of wedding planning or a nostalgic fashion enthusiast shopping for that fancy black-tie event in your calendar, we're all bound to find ourselves tasked with tuxedo shopping at least once in our lives. Obliviously walking into a clothing store is one way to go about it, but chances are you won't be satisfied with your tuxedo purchase. We usually encourage pre-meditating what you're in the market for, especially when you're about to spend so much money on that tuxedo. Take your time to learn the ropes.