How to Select and Wear a Suit

Many things have changed about fashion in business over the years. College students tend to dress more casually compared to previous generations. However, virtually every college graduate is going to need to don a suit at some point; whether it’s for an interview or for meetings with clients, there are some simple guidelines to keep in mind to avoid trouble.

Buying a Suit

Color - If you’re just starting your collection and need to go with one suit color that can serve many purposes, go with gray or charcoal. You’ll be able to wear this suit for both business meetings and social events. The next most versitile suit is a navy blue one.

Fit - You want the right fit from head to toe. When positioned on your waist properly, your trousers should be long enough to reach the tops of your shoes when standing (modern look), or they can even be a bit longer, covering part of the laces of the shoe (conservative look).

As for the jacket, you want the shoulder pads to end at the same spot as your shoulders. Additionally, it should be long enough to just cover your pants zipper and backside. In terms of sleeve length, you want to have about ½-inch of your shirt cuff exposed.

Wearing Your Suit

Once you’ve made your selection, and you get ready to wear your new threads, keep the following in mind as you round out the ensemble.

Suit Jacket - When wearing a suit jacket be sure to follow these simple rules. If you are wearing a 2-button jacket, only button the top button. Never button the second one. If you are wearing a 3-button blazer, only button the two top buttons.Whenever you sit down, unbutton your jacket. You’ll have a better fit while you’re seated, and it won’t put as much strain on the coat.

Ties - Skinny ties, wide ties, there are a lot of options out there. Your jacket lapels will tell the tale; if your jacket lapels are wide, go with a wider tie, if they’re thin, go with a thinner tie. In terms of the length of the tie, you want it to touch or come close to the top of the waistband of your trousers.

Shoes - With a mid-tone grey suit, wear dark brown leather shoes. For a charcoal colored suit wear black leather shoes. If you wear a navy blue suit, get yourself some tan brown oxfords to start with. And guys... please don't forget to match your belt color to the color of your shoes.

Accessories - You don’t have to go overboard on accessories, while there are a lot accessories from which you can choose. From tie bars and tie tacks to cuff links, pocket squares and lapel pins. These items should accentuate rather than dominate your ensemble. The rule for tie bars is that they should not be wider than the width of the tie, and pocket squares can be a great addition. However, avoid them being the same pattern or fabric as your tie, rather, embrace the contrast.

Miscellaneous - Some see socks as utilitarian, and many others use them to make a statement. Whatever your sock strategy, make sure they are long enough that when you sit down and your pant leg rises, no part of your skin is exposed. When it comes to wearing an undershirt, be strategic in terms of understanding how much you perspire, the climate that you’re in, as well as recognizing if the style of undershirt is going to be noticeable underneath your dress shirt, which you want to avoid.

Tying the Knot

There are a variety of knots that one can use, and the factors that go into choosing the knot include the tie width, shirt collar, and often the formality of the occasion. The Windsor and Half-Windsor are classics, but keep in mind that there are other choices, including the less-formal Four-in-Hand.

The Four-in-Hand is an easy knot to learn to tie. It’s not the most formal look, but it works well with a button-down collar or a narrow spread collar, as well as with skinny-to-medium width ties.

The Half-Windsor looks like a triangle when tied correctly and it is symmetrical, making it more appealing for business purposes or formal events. The Half-Windsor goes well with medium-width spread collars.

The Full-Windsor works well for formal occasions because, while the shape is similar to the Half-Windsor, the knot is larger. Due to the size of the knot, a spread collar and a longer, wider tie is necessary to get the most out of this look.

Tying different knots isn’t difficult, but it takes practice, so don’t hesitate to check out diagrams or tutorials to get in plenty of training.

There are a lot of different variables to keep in mind when purchasing and wearing a suit. If you’re getting ready to enter the job market or you have a big event coming up, you want to make sure you put the best foot forward when it comes to your style. Recognizing that suits can be expensive, we’ve gathered several different options for places in Rotterdam where you can get a high-quality suit for a good value, as well as the service to back up the sale and make sure your first impression is the right one.

  • Suit Supply, Rodezand 9, 3011 AM Rotterdam, €, great service, tailoring available.
  • John Edward, Coolsingel 97, 3012 AG Rotterdam, €, great service, tailoring available.
  • OGER, Kruiskade 63-65, 3012  EE Rotterdam, €€, higher quality suits, excellent service, but if cost is an issue, you may want to hold out for a sale.

 

Suit up!