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  • Writer's pictureHinton Magazine

Sartorial Elegance: A Deep Dive into Men's Suit Fashion

Men's suits, a symbol of elegance, professionalism, and style, have seen an evolution that spans from the flamboyant designs of the 18th century to the sharp and sleek tailored pieces of the 21st. This article will navigate the history, nuances, and trends of men's suit fashion, offering insights into the ever-evolving world of male sartorialism.


Men suit being made

The Historical Suit Evolution 18th Century: Originating from the elaborate court dress, the first semblance of the modern-day suit was seen. It comprised a coat, waistcoat, and breeches, often accompanied by stockings and a tricorne hat. 19th Century: The introduction of the two-piece suit in the Victorian era saw a more functional and less flamboyant approach. The tailcoat, morning coat, and lounge suit became popular, defining social status and occasion specificity. 20th Century: Post World War I, suits became more streamlined. The 1920s brought about wider trousers, double-breasted jackets, and the iconic pinstripe pattern. By the 1950s, single-breasted suits with thinner ties took over, leading to the bold colours and broad lapels of the '70s, eventually paving the way for the power suits of the '80s.

Understanding Suit Components Jackets:

  • Single-breasted: Typically with one to three buttons, offering a modern streamlined look.

  • Double-breasted: Overlapping front flaps and two parallel rows of buttons, exuding a more traditional and formal style.

Trousers:

  • Pleats: Folds that allow more comfort and room, suitable for more traditional settings.

  • Flat-front: Sleek and without pleats, ideal for a contemporary, slim silhouette.

Lapels:

  • Notch lapel: A standard lapel, appropriate for business and everyday wear.

  • Peak lapel: A bolder style, typically found on double-breasted jackets or formal-wear.

  • Shawl lapel: A smooth, rounded lapel, primarily seen on tuxedos.

The Fabric Matters Wool: The most popular suit fabric, wool offers versatility, is breathable, and suitable for both cold and warm climates. Linen: Ideal for summer, linen suits are lightweight but prone to wrinkling. Cotton: A middle-ground between wool and linen, cotton suits are breathable and less formal. Silk and Cashmere: Luxurious choices, they offer shine and unparalleled comfort but come with a steeper price tag.

Colours and Patterns Classics: Navy, black, and grey have remained perennial favourites for their versatility. Patterns: From pinstripes, checks to houndstooth, patterns add personality to suits. However, they also tend to be more specific to occasions and personal style.

Customisation: The Rise of Bespoke and Made-to-Measure Bespoke tailoring, where suits are handcrafted from scratch for the individual, and made-to-measure, where existing patterns are adjusted, have seen a rise. Men now seek exclusivity and a perfect fit over off-the-rack options.

Accessorising Your Suit From ties, pocket squares, cufflinks to shoes, the right accessories can elevate a suit. The recent trends see a mix of traditional elements like brogues with modern additions like sneakers.

Future Trends The modern work environment, combined with global cultural shifts, has influenced the acceptance of more casual suit styles. Hybrid suits, suitable for both formal meetings and casual outings, tech-integrated suits with functionality for devices, and sustainable fabrics will dictate future fashion.

Men's suit fashion has not just been about aesthetics; it's a reflection of societal shifts, economic statuses, and personal expressions. While the essence of the suit remains consistent, its adaptability to change ensures its timeless position in the world of fashion. Whether you're a traditionalist or a trendsetter, there's a suit out there that's stitched with your story.


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