What to look for in a dress belt, Blazer etiquette, & More – The Mailbag

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Some questions are better answered publicly since others might be asking the same thing, or, one of you has the perfect answer. If you’ve got a style tip, question, or anything else you’d like to pass along, you can send those in here. If you’d rather your question not be featured in a future mailbag, just go ahead and say so in your email. Feel free to hit the comments with other options for answers to this most recent batch of questions. Top Photo Credit:  Tracy O.


Q: Out-of-Town Wedding Style: Drag along a suit? Or blazer + chinos?

travellin suit

I’m 26 years old and I’m headed to out of town to a wedding next month. I originally planned on picking up a suit, but don’t really feel like dragging one all the way there, so I figured a blazer & chinos might be easier? But I really think a suit just seems more appropriate for the occasion. Which should I go with? Ideally, I’m looking fo something that is versatile and can be worn for more than one of the four seasons. – Rich

Dragging it all the way there? Is it a suit of armor? Just kidding Rich. We men under the age of 40 unfairly look at suits like something we’re not supposed to wear… until we absolutely have to. Sounds like you want to wear a suit to the wedding. Consider wearing half of it while you travel to cut down on the dragging-it-all-the-way-there factor. Try a lighter worsted greyThat’s my own personal go to on the road. Light grey suit jackets look much better with jeans  (proof above) than charcoal or navy jackets, so they’re much more versatile on the road. Alternatively, you can also wear the trousers with a black polo and loafers. You’ll be the sharpest travelin’ man on the road. You’ll have to iron the pants and maybe gently iron the jacket (low setting, go easy) when you arrive. And if it’s a not too stuffy wedding, consider tieless. Travel safe, and enjoy the open bar. There’s an open bar, right?


Q: Looking for a moneyclip and card case combo…

money clip card case combo

I’ve been trying to switch over to the card case and money clip combination, and I’ve been keeping my eyes peeled for attractive options. It looks like most of the products from Dappered’s previous post on this topic are no longer on the respective websites. Could we get an update? – Yashu

Here’s a suggestion of parameters: Shoot for a made in the USA card case and a vintage money clip. There are a number of small, domestic, leather-goods craftsman cranking out incredibly good looking wallets and card cases right now. The Old Calgary “alpha” line comes to mind. So does Chester Mox and Guarded Goods. Once you find a card case that suits your taste, hit etsy for a moneyclip. You’d be surprised what you can find on there. Otherwise, wait for the next 25% off Coach sale, and consider their Bleeker moneyclip. Expensive? Yeah. Overpriced even? Probably. But, it’s all kinds of right.  (Shown above: the current personal setup… a vintage sterling money clip, and a no longer in production “brogue” card case from Chester Mox.)


Q: When wearing a blazer at work, should I take it off when I sit at my desk?

poor neglected blazer

I work in a business casual office (khakis and button ups) but I want to start wearing more blazers. My question is do I remove my blazer when I sit at my desk or simply unbutton it and leave it on?.
– Chris

NOBODY PUTS BLAZER IN THE CORNER. Some guys are going to take it off and hang it up, some guys are going to leave it on. I personally leave mine on because I get up and down quite a bit, and don’t like partially dressing/undressing all day long. I also don’t mind a few wrinkles. To me, clothes are supposed to be lived in. Even if that means sitting at a desk.


Q:  What to look for in a dress belt?

pleather belt

What’s your recommendations as far as dress belts go for suits? I saw the one article on the target dress belt. Any other options? What should I be looking for? – Matt

It can be surprisingly difficult to find a dress belt that meets the three following criteria:

  1. The buckle can’t be enormous.
  2. A matte or brushed buckle is preferred over a chromed out reflector.
  3. A little bit of rounded off edging at the corners of the belt would be appreciated.

Those three details usually make for a belt that’s seen, but not heard. A belt should be mainly ignored when you’re in a suit. And despite that Target dress belt being pleather (gasp) it’s still going strong… 9 months later, BUT STILL. As far as where to shop for actual leather belts? Try discount stores like Ross, TJ Maxx, or Nordstrom Rack.


Q: How slim should my topcoat fit?

Express topcoat

What do you think of this slim fit top-coat from express? I love that it’s cut slimmer so it can be worn without a suit underneath. – Bill

That’s a mighty fine looking topcoat there Bill. Shades of Billy Reid… but on a budget. The only question is: how’s it going to feel when you are wearing a suit coat or blazer underneath? Finding a winter coat or even a trench that you can layer comfortable over a suit jacket or blazer, yet still hugs the body without… that’s no easy task. Just look at 007 at the end of Quantum of Solace. You’re just not going to look as tailored, even if it’s a tailored fit. The thing you want to avoid is buying a coat so small that it looks great without a jacket underneath it, but you can barely get it on when you are in a suit. Got some personal experience with that one. That Express coat has serious potential though.


Q: Mirrored shoes?

mirrored shoes

Long time reader, first time submitter. These were just too good to not send along. “Mirror metallic oxfords”. From J. Crew no less. – Sam

They’re women’s shoes? Not that guys would want to wear them but… pair those up with one of these and perverts everywhere are trembling with guttural giggles.


Q: Can our ad agency write for your website?

HQ content


Got a question or a style tip? Send them in here. Additional answers to the above questions can go in the comments.