What are you going to wear? Sometimes it’s good to look at a few suggestions then add your own tweaks and ideas. That’s what these are for. To the long-time readers of this corner of the web… a tieless suit is pretty familiar. But just because it’s been done before doesn’t make it the wrong play. If you’re headed to a dressed up affair, whether it be a work holiday party or New Year’s, one way to look more dashing (while dashing through the snow) and less like you just walked out of a job interview, is to lose the tie. Balance that lack of a tie with either a lightweight scarf (yes really, more on that in a sec) or a pocket square with a little seasonal color to it. Not comfortable w/out a tie? Wear one that’s solid w/ some texture.
The Suit: Suitsupply Napoli Blue – $399. Or, whatever your favorite navy or medium to darker blue suit happens to be. This one isn’t a super deep, dark navy. There will be plenty of charcoal, dark navy, and even black suits at a dressed up holiday party. Stand out, quietly, with something that’s a bit richer in color.
The Shirt: Nordstrom Smartcare Trim Fit Dress Shirt – $55. Fair price. Nice fabric that’s not itchy or scratchy. Free shipping and free returns. Hard to go wrong with that. The ideal shirt for tieless? Ledbury’s fine twill, with that slightly lowered second button. What’s not ideal about Ledbury is the steep asking price. $145. For a shirt. Yikes. Meanwhile, here’s the obligatory reminder about good collar stays. Don’t forget some alloy collar stays. Put a slight bend in em’ to keep your collar crisp and at attention all night.
The Lightweight Scarf: J. Crew Lightweight Wool/Silk Scarf in Sherwood Green – $34.99. So here’s the risk. Lemme make this clear. DO NOT WEAR AS AN ASCOT. Just drape it around your shirt collar, then put your suit jacket on. Don’t wrap it. Don’t tie it. It’s just an extra bit of pattern and texture. And isn’t that all a necktie is anyway? It’s not an easy look to pull off, but when it works, it works. Takes some onions. But it’s pretty holiday appropriate. But if it’s just not gonna work for you, then skip it.
The Pocket Square: The Tie Bar “Floral Blackmore” Double sided Pocket Square – $10. Not down with the scarf idea? Throw a patterned pocket square, in seasonal greens and blue hues, into that breast pocket. Plaid for the less adventerous, and the floral pattern will work for those who are up for something with a bit more flash.
The Watch: Tissot Visodate Automatic – $379. A classic, automatic, Swiss made wristwatch with that slick retro Tissot logo. Usually north of $400.
The Belt: Banana Republic “Liam” Italian Leather Belt in Burgundy – $35.50 ($59.50). To match the shoes. And no, if you don’t want to drop extra cash on a burgundy leather belt, you don’t have to. A dark brown belt would do fine here too.
The Shoes: Nordstrom Calibrate Cusano in Bordeaux – $130. It’s a party. Not a staff meeting. So the sober, cap to laceups can take the night off. Work in some chelsea boots or monk straps instead. These are from one of Nordstrom’s house lines, and the brand new shade of “Bordeaux” is perfect for a fancy winter’s eve. Full review of this model can be found here.
The Socks: Nordstrom Over The Calf Wool Blend Socks in Navy – $14.50. Always. Forever. Some of the best socks on the market. The over the calf length helps keep your socks up all night. Super strong merino wool blend. And remember, match your socks to your trousers instead of your shoes. It makes your legs look longer, and therefor, you look taller.
The Gloves: Polo Ralph Lauren Quilted Nappa Leather Gloves – $88. A perfect blend of dressiness, insulation, and sport style. Was just going for 40% off, so, sit tight and you could get em’ for a nice sized discount.
The Topcoat: J. Crew Factory Thompson w/ Thinsulate in Charcoal – $149. Probably the most balanced coat this season. Meaning = the price is right, there’s some insulation there, but it still looks and moves like a nice dress coat.
Coming up tomorrow: A style scenario for a smart-casual party. Not quite as dressed up. Then we’ll move on after that to a much more dressed down/laid back style scenario for a holiday get together… Top Photo Credit: Luca Sartoni