Black suits constitute one of the three fundamental suits in every man’s wardrobe, the other two being the grey and navy blue suits respectively. Most men think of the black suit as the go-to suit for all occasions, but that’s not the case. However, since black is symbolic of power, sex appeal and mystery, not to mention the slimming effect it creates, we recommend having it on hand. Here we give you the low-down on when to wear a black suit and how to style it for every occasion.
How formal is the black suit?
First of all, the black suit is the most formal suit you can have in your wardrobe. It’s strong, stark and quite memorable and therefore not as versatile as grey or navy blue suits. Plus it looks best away from daylight or fluorescent lighting. These qualities make it more suited for evening wear than for the day. That being said, it can still be styled imaginatively to suit various occasions. Here are a few:
How to style a black suit for work
Black suits are considered too formal for daily office wear, but you can wear them all the same with a bit of imaginative styling.
The classic white shirt and black tie combo works for most conservative offices. You can soften the look with pastel or neutral color shirts. Almost all color ties can be worn with black suits, but opt for low contrast colors so that your ensemble doesn’t look colorblocked. Black Oxford or monk strap shoes will easily complement these office looks. Since black suits are memorable, we suggest you rotate them with other suits.
The one rule of thumb is to not wear a black suit to an interview, since it’s more serious that the occasion warrants.
How to style a black suit for a night out
Black suits look sexy when worn with fitted black, charcoal grey and navy blue shirts. Ties are optional, but try a black tie or one in the same shade as the shirt. Add tie pins, signature watches and cufflinks to glam it up. Complete the look with black dress shoes like Oxfords.
Similarly, you can layer your black suit over pastel or printed shirts and leave the top two buttons unbuttoned for an effortlessly sophisticated look that’s perfect for clubbing and parties. Alternatively, wear your black suit with T-shirts. If you’re going with T-shirt, we suggest completing the look with white sneakers or dark brown leather Chelsea boots.
How to style a black suit for formal or black tie events
Black suits come into their own during formal events, especially those held in the evenings. Though not considered occasion wear, a well-fitted black suit can be a beautiful alternative to a tuxedo.
Pull off another popular black tie look with a crisp white dress shirt, black bowtie and white pocket square. Accessorise with black Oxfords or derby shoes and you’ll fit right in.
As you can see, there’s a reason why the black suit is a wardrobe staple. And just because it’s formal doesn’t mean that it has to be rigid and boring. However, we recommend you buy a made to measure suit in a fabric made of natural fibres so that it lasts for years. We’ve elaborated on the plus points of owning custom clothing in another post, and quality and longevity are two of the many plus points. After all, if you’re going to own only one black suit, make sure it’s one hell of a sexy, well-fitted one, that’ll last for years!