By Guest Contributor Antiq Hawk
We must first be clear with our terms. When we say custom made we do not mean bespoke. Bespoke clothing is made over the course of weeks to months by a professional tailor who brings you in for several conversations and fittings. It is the apex of men’s fashion and it is always expensive. When we say custom made, we mean a wardrobe that you customize yourself, a wardrobe that in rotation and mix/matching provides you upwards a bare minimum ten days of different looks. A ten day wardrobe is a long enough time-frame to establish your style without giving off a vibe of repetition. The feeling of repetition must be avoided at all cost. Repetition is the polar opposite of versatility.
Basic Elements Of A Custom Wardrobe:
It is true the best suits are bespoke, suits made around you by a tailor’s hand. However it is possible to purchase an off the rack suit and have it customized to better fit your form. A blue suit is suggested as a starting point for the blue color has the greatest reach across look and color spectrums. It is rare that anyone’s skin does not look good in a blue suit.
The range of fabric, style, color and design of a dress shirt gives us our greatest point of variation. A collection of dynamic dress shirts will make a wardrobe of three suits feel like seven. The suit draws visual attention to the center and upwards to the face. We can take advantage of the draw and choose shirts that are rich in texture and unique in color.
We have suit jackets and then we have jackets and blazers. Jackets and blazers are not as constrained in what they can be worn with as suit jackets. A suit jacket is always business, always formal. It always makes a hard line in the room. But a good jacket, a hip blazer, these reveal more dimensions of the individual and they can be worn with casual wear to either enhance the feeling of ease or to spruce it up a bit and nod towards the suit.
The purpose the tie is to provide a line of emphasis. Its obelisk shape lets the eye track vertically. When we and a pocket square into the mix, then we have something of an isosceles triangle moving along the torso and this geometric pattern greatly relaxes our mind.
Belts are no longer a matter of utility but are rather an accessory which enhances the accent marks of an outfit. The best rule in belts is to match the color with the shoes.
The more handcrafted the better, the more coordinated to the color and fabric the better. There is a delightful trend, particularly in the west coast, to wear sneakers with suits. While purists decry this, as a trend, and it is truly a trend, there is little harm in going for casual footwear to make the occasional iconoclastic statement.
This post comes courtesy of Michael Deval Snell, founder of GvS Custom Clothier www.gvsclothiers.com. Michael is a Bespoke Tailor of Gentlemen vs Swag, LLC and is President/Founder of Gentlemen vs Swag Academy Inc for young men (ages 8-16).