Formal wear is necessary to have for a variety of occasions. While women seem to locate formal wear easier than men, the fact is that these types of outfits are widely available for both genders. Since shopping isn’t a favorite activity among men, there is a misconception that finding formal menswear is both difficult and that the pieces are hard to come by. Instead of focusing on the shopping process itself, focus on your specific formal wear needs so you can get it done quickly and easily.
What’s the Occasion?
The first thing to determine is the occasion you need your formal outfits for. This will ultimately help you figure out how formal you should go. While a tuxedo is appropriate for some occasions, you may be able to get away with a fancy pair of jeans and a quality jacket for others. Just some of the occasions that can require formal menswear include:
• Corporate events
The Right Size
While you might just choose a size that looks right with everyday clothing, formalwear is different because you tailor the pieces to fit your body. The way formal menswear fits will ultimately make or break your outfit. It is important to obtain your measurements before you make your final purchase in case you need to go up or down a size. Keep in mind that it is always easier to make bigger clothes fitted than to try and fix pieces that are too small for your body type.
The Color Game
As a rule of thumb, your jacket and pants should be in a neutral color. Navy and black are great basics to have that you can wear over and over again, as well as at any time of the year. Brown and gray suits are also good basics to have if you are tired of wearing black. Once you have your basics in place, you can play with other colors by the way of ties and dress shirts. Don’t be afraid to add color to your outfit, as it will make it stand out—just be sure not to go bolder than you are comfortable with.
Where to Shop
There is great news for men who hate going to the mall—there are a multitude of online formal menswear stores. Some examples include:
• Nordstrom online
• Sanders Menswear
• MACS Formal Wear
• Black Tie Tuxedos
However, if you are shopping for menswear for the first time and don’t know your measurements, it may pay to go in person to make sure your pieces are tailored just right. Men’s Wearhouse and Jos.A.Bank are among the two leading stores to find clothing for just about all formal occasions.