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Looking back, the suit has essentially come a long way since the infamous “Dandy” dressing days of the early 1800’s. Playing an intrinsic role in the importance of ones appearance, social status and success; it is inevitable that this classic piece continues to evolve.
The formality of the suit has retained its grandeur over time, yet in the present day the requirement for this staple has diminished slightly. With style choices in modern times, dictated by a profession, occasions, hobbies and lifestyle.
Here at MFM, we are of course a big fan of the signature suit. It’s a wardrobe staple every stylish gent should have in their armour, and today we cover all bases when it comes to the modern day suit.
Modern Day Masters
Lets face it, a suit is as traditional as a style can get. It carries history, and an original craftsmanship that’s hard to transform. In today’s industry, the availability of suits and suit designers is vast, but there’s a few that stand out for us when it comes to modern day suiting.
Richard James, the highly reputable tailor on London’s iconic Savile Row, has now celebrated 21 years of business. Dubbed as the newest and youngest on the block, Richard James’s contemporary approach to menswear combines the perfect harmony of traditional elements with bold unexpected gestures.
With a nod to the traditional take on the suit, Richard James focuses on being timeless with cuts. Introducing eclectic fabrics such as plaid, velvet and shearling in the AW13 show made the collection modern and adaptable.
Richard James takes the essence of suiting to a whole new level, proving that your style and formality don’t have to be compromised.
Henry Poole & Co
Henry Poole & Co, another Savile Row establishment has occupied the street since the early eighties. Founded in the early 1800’s and passed down five family generations over the years, Henry Poole & Co leads a bespoke legacy.
Boasting succession and an extensive list of international clientele, Henry Poole & Co were the first of Savile Row to take tailoring to Japan.
Historically the business has issued warrants to a fantastic list of Monarch’s including HM Queen Victoria and The Emperor Napoleon III. Considering style, design and process, Henry Poole & Co capitalise on the traditionally relaxed aesthetic of bespoke tailoring.
David Gandy is a huge fan often seen sporting the signature Tuxedo at press events and awards ceremonies. With even a House Check fabric, Henry Poole & Co timelessly continues to inspire gentry classics with a nod to modern day trends.
Modern Takes On The Street
Universal street style continues to shape the quintessential image of the suited and booted modern man. Adapting to trends within seasons, the suit has become a versatile and very wearable statement piece by all. There really is something for everyone.
We’ve taken 4 street style looks, which all offer a different take on the suit. For each look, we break them down and offer tips for style inspiration.
Looks 1 & 2
Look 1: (On the left) Retaining the traditional details of the Dandy this young gentleman (Fashion Blogger La Touche) has nailed the iconic 3 piece incorporating a contrasting waistcoat and tie to keep things interesting.
Finished off with a Bowler hat, a contemporary leather satchel and brogues, this smart look is incredibly transitional. A wool or tartan scarf can be added to keep away the winter chill.
Look 2: (On the right) With winter on our doorstep, layering is the key to dressing these days. It can be manufactured in a smart sense, selecting basics that will compliment your look and carry you through the coldest of days.
For a relaxed look, a polo or turtleneck jumper can be worn with a suit, instantly modernising it yet keeping it formal. Tailoring in a lighter contrasting shade and of a wide looser cut, can be much more comfortable throughout the day; not to mention dapper. Layered under a trusty warm winter coat, the suit is versatile and worn at ease.
Looks 3 & 4
Look 3: (On the left) Colour blocking is still rife as ever, giving a bold reputation to accessories, bomber jackets and now suits. Not for the faint hearted, this orange shade is quite outlandish in colour and cut- a slim cigarette style leg trouser.
Giving a new perspective on coloured tailoring, a winter jumper can be worn to give the option of contrast or harmony. Leather hiking style boots, give this suit a relaxed vibe whilst also practicality.
Look 4: (On the right) Mis-matching jackets, trousers, shirt and tie can be a fun task, but you don’t want to overdo it. This guy is effortlessly cool down to a t. Choosing a classic shade of navy, a white shirt and paisley tie, the print of the tie really stands out against the neutrals.
The Tartan trousers compliments the navy double-breasted suit jacket extremely well. Teamed with a fur collared duffel coat and vintage looking brown leather monk shoes, this look has unique and contemporary feel.
There really is a huge market for suits right now, and it often becomes a daunting task to buy one. Different prices, different cuts, fabrics, colours and brands, all leave the modern day gent confused on his hunt to achieve elegance.
We’ve made it easy for you, highlighting some of our favourite modern day suits below:
In today’s article, you’ve seen a variety of takes on how to style the modern day suit. Whether it’s a traditional, tailored look you’re after, or you’re looking to create a statement with colour and relaxed tailoring… the opportunities are endless.
The suit is a staple piece in any mans wardrobe, but the styling options really are vast.
Here is a small guide of 3 suit looks for you to consider, with 3 very different styling options for inspiration…
Look 1: Coloured Tailoring
If you want to stand out for the right reasons, invest in a colourful suit like this Paul Smith Teal Slim Fit Wool Suit. With a fantastic shade, cut and style; you will certainly be ahead of the fashion pack! Add it a more classic piece, toning the look down with the crisp white Formal Stretch Shirt from French Connection.
You can opt in or out with a tie, this Canali one will add a touch of monochrome to your look. Keep the look on trend with a pair of double strap monk shoes, and keep the tan running through with this Roamer Limelight Watch.. If you want to tone the look down, layer over the Navy Overcoat that will act as a neutraliser for the bright colour.
Look 2: Mismatch
Pairing eclectic fabrics together can be a great way of creating a unique ensemble, it also means you can swap jackets and trousers freely; as long as you get it right.
This ACNE Corduroy jacket is a fantastic staple that will carry you through so many different looks. Its sumptuous quality will look great teamed with this Blue Foulard Print Shirt and for contrast add the ACNE Slim Fit Wool Suit Trousers. A subtle printed Houndstooth Cashmere scarf from Brioini adds another layer, along with chocolate brown hand finished brogues and Mulberry satchel bringing up the blues.
Look 3: Keeping Things Traditional
It’s a-ok if you’re a conventional kind of guy… but it’s always nice to add further detailing once in a while. This Burberry London Suit is a great example of exquisite tailoring, slim fitted and cut from a high quality virgin wool fabric. A Ashbury Shirt from All Saints will add some subtle print, and it can be toned down with this Dolce & Gabbana satin tie. Finish this sharp look off with a classic pair of Ted Baker Chelsea Boots, adding that autumn/winter element to the look, alongside this beautiful Our Legacy Overcoat. Prepare for the weather, and top the look off with a London Undercover Umbrella.
To Finish Up
So there you have it… tonnes of suit inspiration. It just goes to show that this staple doesn’t have to be formal, you can play around with your style options. Adding a bright or contrasting accessory to your suit will instantly add a modern twist.
You can always tone bright or light tailoring with all black accessories to create a sharp statement. Whatever the weather, season or occasion you can always rely on your suit… stay timeless, with a nod to modern trends.