Summer 2018 1

Summer 2018: All Styles for a casual day out to town – Part 1 It’s that time of year again, where the warm summer sun shines down on this green earth throughout the day. If there’s a time to leave the house, it’s now. Yet this climate means you’ll need to adapt your dre read more


The origins of style a history of the gentlemans true friend the waistcoat

The origins of style – a history of the gentlemans true friend – the waistcoat

Nothing better than wearing a waistcoat to work, or the networking events and dinners you’re invited to. Isn’t that right? We couldn’t agree more.
Other people may ask themselves “Who still wears waistcoats? Are they still in style? I thought this was a thing from the past!”
Although you perhaps don’t see them every day, they are still very much in style today. But where do they come from? Who came up with this idea of crafting a “vest” for Gents? What is its purpose? Let’s go through it one by one here, so you have an educated knowledge about this fashionitem, when you are planning to upgrade your wardrobe the next time.
Unlike most garments or fashion accessories that are out there to choose between, the origins of the Western waistcoat can actually be dated quite precisely to one man – and that is the English King Charles II. In October 1666 this royal gentleman decreed the waistcoat to be part of an Englishman’s correct dress and a style tradition was born.

The idea for the waistcoat had not been a new one up until that point, as it was based very closely on designs seen previously in Persia and in India, but it was the first time it was decreed to be the chosen dresscode to go by.
The waistcoat’s arrival in England, however, immediately made history, as the occasion was marked by an entry in the most famous historical diary of all time, that of Samuel Pepys: “The King hath yesterday declared his resolution of setting a fashion for clothes which he will never alter. It will be a vest, I know not well how.” Note the original term “vest” (still favoured in America). Over time it became known as a waistcoat for the simple reason that it reached the waist and no further (unlike the formal dress coats worn on top of them, which would reach down to the knee). Interestingly, it was thought for some time that the name waistcoat was derived from the fact that garment was originally made from excess material that would otherwise have gone to ‘waste’. This, however, was nonsense.

Originally, during the 17th and 18th centuries, the fashion in waistcoat was for highly ornate items in bright colours, but this gradually gave way to a much more informal and even puritanical style in the late 1700s and into the 19th century. Partly this was due to the international influence of the distinctly anti-aristocratic French Revolution in 1789.

From the 19th Century till date

From 1810 an onwards waistcoats became shorter still and became a much tighter fit, eventually almost doubling as an undergarment or a foundation garment, increasingly being used cosmetically, to streamline the fuller figure. When the corset became popular in the 1820s, waistcoats served to emphasise the fashion for the pinched waist and they often featured whalebone stiffeners of their own, as well as laces at the back and reinforced buttons at the front.
After 1850, this style changed somewhat and towards the end of the century, with the arrival of portly Edward VII, the waistcoat began to expand a little to suit the shape of its owner.

In the 20th century, the prevalence of the waistcoat and its significance as a status symbol began to wane. It became a much more functional item to round off a formal three-piece suit, its use as a place to store a snazzy pocket watch also falling by the wayside as the wristwatch came into its own.

Today, aside from persisting in more formal outfits, waistcoats have also taken on a life of their own in certain youth subcultures, being worn by indie kids or in steampunk circles, sometimes just with T-shirts or in the antithesis of their formal roots, sometimes even on their own.


Fashion tips for men: Dressing according to your body shape

All of us gents have an independent body shape, which can be a blessing, a challenge or a burden. It can make off-the-rack shopping to a horrendous experience, a walk in the park or, we repeat – a challenge.
You’ve probably heard the terms hourglass figure, pear and apple shapes before, when talking about body shapes. While this is not a topic that is high on our gents priority list, when talking to the chaps at the local bar, this however can serve as an indicator for what type of shopping you should be doing, when the time comes for shopping clothes.

The struggle about fit

Men’s body shape is important when deciding what to buy and wear. Not all clothes work for everyone. As a tailor-shop, we know as well as anyone the importance of a well-fitting, flattering garment. This article will therefore take a look at how gents can dress to suit according to their shape, whether it’s for everyday use, fashion tips or if you’re planning to get a wedding outfit, where you of course want to look and feel great. Let’s get into the different body shapes and how you can use it to your advantage.

The inverted Triangle

If you’re one of those gents with broad shoulders and narrow hips, then we cheer you – you’re a guy with an inverted triangle body shape! This body shape is quite easy to dress, but to balance the shoulders out, you may wish to use detailing to your advantage. Same goes for wide legged trousers, to even out your heavier top half of your body. Opt for fitted or tapered shirts, so they don’t hang off you like boxy tents. Never opt for padded shoulders. Double-breasted suit jackets should be avoided too.

The rectangle

If you’re one of the gents with a rectangle body shape where your chest, hips, and shoulders are of a similar width, then suits with padded shoulders will work well for you. Paired with lighter suit colors, it will also give the impression of broad shoulders. Wearing slim trousers will further work to make you look less rectangular. Layering will add bulk to your shoulders and give your torso a more defined shape.

The triangle

Are you equipped with wider hips and narrow shoulders? You may not have been aware all this time but – you’re a triangle. You’re bulkier around your stomach and slimmer at your chest and shoulders. In order to dress for this body shape, you’ll want to use many of the same tricks we covered under the rectangle section, to make your shoulders appear bulkier than they actually are.
Clothes must be well fitted, but not too tight. Ill-fitting clothes on a triangle body shape will only emphasise the bulk around your stomach – not something you’ll want.

The Oval body shape

If you’ve one of those gents with a larger stomach and your body appears round, you’re an oval. No issues. With this body shape, to dress as an oval, you want to direct the attention of the eyes to your shoulders and chest instead – away from your stomach. Wear V-necks and vertical stripes to slim down your torso, and choose low-rise trousers that sit around your hips rather than your waist. Don’t bulk up your frame with too many layers, or wear exuberant patterned shirts – a mistake way too many gents do, when they try to cover up their wealth around the gut.

The trapezoid shape

The trapezoid body shape sounds like something taken out of the circus or mathclass, but is actually extremely similar to the inverted triangle, with a moderate width waist rather than a narrow waist. This body shape is the easiest of all to dress for, and provided your clothes fit you well, you can get away with wearing pretty much whatever you want – so feel free to experiment with your favourite colours and patterns.

At Exclusive Tailors we craft your suits from the the ground up, which takes your body shape, design preferences and personal style into account. Which these options and educated choices, you’ll be sure that your bespoke suit accommodates you perfectly according to your personal style, wearability and taste.

Book an appointment with us today to get started. Find more information on how to get in touch with us here!


Five outdated formal wear fashion trends for gents

Five outdated formal wear fashion trends for gents

Before we move onto other articles about suiting, shirting, style inspiration and fashion trends, let’s go back in history a bit, shall we? Why is this important you ask? Easy.
To know the present and future of style, one first of all needs to be informed about the style of the past (and what is not considered stylish anymore).
Fashion hasn’t just been around since yesterday, and time has changed. So has style. What was once in, has since been out – and in some cases it even made it back in style. Style and Fashion are rollercoasters that are not always easy to understand.
Are there any styles that are definitely out of fashion for good? You bet, or at least we hope so. This 5 formal wear fashions for men have once been smart and trendy – but are definitely a thing of the past.

Top hats

“Not the top hats! No! Those are in style!”, you may think, but no, not really. It could be that you’ll see a guy trying to give it a go, like a groom or best man, donning a hat at a wedding, but we think it is fair to say that top hats have vanished, for good. It’ll not become a new standard in a formal outfit again. They were once worn by all classes throughout the Victorian era, but have since come to be associated with wealth, the upper classes and magicians. The contemporary cousins of top hats – bowler hats – have faced a similarly swift decline.

Spats

Spats? Oh no! Not the spats! The what? Spats were originally designed to be buttoned up around the ankles and worn over the shoes, in order to protect them from rain and mud. They quickly became far more than a practical garment, however, evolving into a stylish accessory that was associated with the fashion of the late Victorian era. Spats also became associated with wealth. Today, you’ll only find spats at military parades with marching bands, so only gents with a present or past in that field are really aware of what Spats are. To most others, it was wasn’t even known till now, that there was even a thing called Spats.

Ruffs

Now, what are ruffs? Whilst it is very difficult to find a lace collar on men’s clothes today, chances are that centuries ago you couldn’t get away from finding lace in collars. Lace collars and cuffs were no longer enough – to be part of the sartorial and social elite from the mid 16th to mid 17th centuries. You needed to wear a ruff. These ruffles of fabric – worn around the neck – were favoured by men, women and children during the late Tudor and early Stuart periods. At their most extreme, ruffs were over a foot wide and had to be supported by a wire frame. Sure, they’d keep your neck warm, but we’re nevertheless glad that ruffs have been consigned to the history books.
Does this style need to come back, ever? We hope not.

Frock coats

Before you think: “Oh, but there are still frock coats. Those are still being used”, let’s stop you right there. The frock coat has undergone quite some surgery since their invention and are today commonly known as morning coats. Frock coats were a mainstay of men’s fashion from the 18th century through the beginning of the 20th century. They were seen as a basic part in military uniforms and were official court dress until the mid ‘30s. Frock coats were eventually usurped by morning coats – suits that had previously been seen as too informal to wear for formal occasions. George V signalled the end of the era of frock coats in 1926, when he wore a morning coat to the opening of a flower show. Goodbye frock coat. Thanks George V!

Wigs

Last, but not least, let’s tell you about wigs. Wigs are definitely out of fashion. Periwigs were the ridiculous looking, funny-looking creations that was worn by the elite in society in the 16th and 17th centuries. Famously worn by Charles II, Samuel Pepys and pretty much every other upper class gent during this time period, these wigs were initially used for a practical purpose – to tackle head lice. Sounds charming, doesn’t it?
Wigs could be more easily deloused that natural hair, so other than being a fashion trend, it also had practical reasons. The aristocracy adopted this craze eagerly, wearing wigs to cover bald patches.

Do you think that any of the above trends makes it back into Fashion?

We sure hope not, as we can’t see any of these above trends to add to the look of the modern, style-concerning gentleman.

To read other articles in our series, please visit our blog section. If you are looking for a bespoke suit that is definitely in trend, then contact us here to get in touch, so we can arrange an appointment.


When Can You Wear a Tailored Jacket with a T-shirt

When Can You Wear a Tailored Jacket with a T-shirt?

Alright, here is one for the smart casual readers among you. A question we’ve received frequently is as to when, how or if you should wear a tailored jacket with a T-shirt. The short answer to that is, well, it depends.

There are just a few factors that you should consider before donning that tailored jacket of yours over your T-shirt. Let’s go through them, and a few more style tips here.

The factors

1. What type of suit jacket are we talking about?

2. What type of T-Shirt are we talking about?

3. Where are you planning on wearing this?

 

The suit jacket type

First ask yourself, does it fit you? If no, then read no further. An ill fitting jacket can’t be worn with anything. Period.
The next thing you should ask yourself is whether the style is classic or not. Not classic as something made in the 1950’s or 1960’s, but rather timeless in its design. Think more of two or three button, single breasted, notched or peak lapels, pockets, etc. If it’s something taken from your best disco nights, when Saturday Night Fever was still a thing, then again, skip the idea.

Never wear any clothing that doesn’t fit you well. Not too large and never too tight.

A well fitting suit jacket should sit comfortably on your shoulders, allowing the wearer to move his arms back and forth easily. Nothing on your jacket should appear loose or baggy.

 

The type of T-Shirt

Now, let’s look at the T-Shirt. If you’re holding your favourite Star Wars- or funny T-Shirt in hand, put that right down again. Put it down. Seriously. What are you thinking?
The T-Shirt of your choice should rather be an unicoloured piece without emblems, stickers, buttons or….funny quotes and sayings. Leave that for the night out, or even better – leave it in your wardrobe for, well, later.

If you’re wearing a light coloured blazer or suit jacket, try to opt for a color that matches or adds contrast to the look. Depending on the weather you can make a qualified choice in terms of fabric. Is it cold? Opt for wool. Is it warm? Then Linen is a good option for you (same applies to suit jackets). Now, you’ll probably find a lot of mixes in fabrics, but try a few on to see how they feel.

One thing that you should always remember is that no matter how you dress it up – T-shirts will always remain informal. A good thing for some events, a no-go for other events (who said black-tie event?)

When to wear this look

Well, as we just wrote, the T-shirt and blazer look doesn’t go well everywhere. You can’t wear it to formal events, weddings, board meetings or networking events, but you can wear it at the office (on casual Fridays, or depending on the dresscode at your company), you can wear it after work, to still remain a stylish look – but you can also wear it for a night out, making your look playful, but still dapper.

Last, but not least – always wear this combination with confidence!

Quick tips to get you started

  • A jacket with a lot of structure or sharp angles is often better matched with similarly formal shirts and accessories
  • It doesn’t need to be trim
  • Make it fit. It doesn’t make much sense to wear a comfortable T-shirt with a suit jacket or blazer that you can barely button
  • Pick a decent T-Shirt. Choose a Linen blend shirt, a henley shirt or perhaps a striped one with just a hint of details, if plain coloured is too boring for you
  • Do never opt for a V-neck T-Shirt
  • Consider casual footwear to round up the look
  • Lastly, if the T-shirt reaches the hem of your jacket, you may want to tuck it in

Tailored suits for women – 8 fashion tips for wearing the suit casually

Tailored suits for women – 8 fashion tips for wearing the suit casually

We’re covering Men’s Fashion most of the time when it comes to suits. It’s a habit. We admit it. Tailored suits are as versatile as it gets. However, also Ladies are ever increasingly wearing suits, so gents, bear with us – this is for the Ladies. Men have the option to pair tailored blazers with V-necks, polo-Shirts, T-shirts, dress shirts and transform themselves from formal to casual, casual to formal in no time. For Ladies that’s no difference. Actually, the Ladies are probably left with quite a lot more choices to pair the suits with casual wear. Here are 8 style tips for our female readers; suggestions about how to mix and match your formal suit with casual garments.

Fashion tip 1: Mix masculine with feminine

Spice up your suits with a traditional masculine shape with more feminine elements to the outfit. Add a long necklace for example, perhaps experiment with ruffles on your blouse, maybe some floral patterns on accessories.

Fashion tip 2: Make a fashion statement

Suits are a fashion statement of their own. You don’t need to accessorise it, as chances are, that it would be drowned out by darker colored suits. For lighter colored suits, you will risk to look like the accessories drown you. Opt for a single jewellery instead, maybe just a handbag.

Fashion tip 3: And out comes the skinny jeans

Skinny jeans are a good fit with your skinny jeans, if the shape of your blazer allows it. Maybe add a V-neck cotton top for a more effortless casual look. This look works very well if you opt for a lighter colored suit, or at least not black, or darker colored suits.

Fashion tip 4: Color it upExclusive Tailor Week 31 Tailored Suit For Women 8 Style Suggestions Picture 2

If you wish to pair the neutral colored suit in a more relaxed setting, pair it with a brightly colored blouse and match it with accessories, as an easy way to add a bit of energy to the outfit.

Fashion tip 5: Wear it with shorts

Wear a suit and waistcoat with matching shorts for an instant stylish casual outfit. It sounds wild, and it is. Pair it with boots to get a bit more of a grunge look.

Fashion tip 6: The classic look

No matter the suit, it’s certain that it will look stunning with a plain white blouse. If you want to add some twist to this classic look, add eye-catching buttons, or perhaps a scarf that adds a bit of contrast.

Fashion tip 7: Time for the pencil dress

Tailored suit jackets look really great over flattering pencil dresses. Transform a day dress into an outfit for work simply by adding your tailored jacket over the top of it. Voila, a versatile look is born.

Fashion tip 8: No need for the blouse

Many female trendsetters have mixed the tailored suit with plunging necklines, without leaving a sign of any layers underneath. A brave look, probably for the more busted Ladies, but if you pull off the look, it’s really unbeatable. Women have more ways to mix the tailored suits with casual clothing compared to Men, as they can add much of their existing clothing to especially the blazer. They can go from casual to formal in even less time than Men can and vice versa. None of these outfits will have the wow factor if your suit doesn’t fit you correctly. A bespoke suit from Exclusive Tailor leaves you with a lot of options such as, choice of fabrics, accessories and even the cut of the suit. Wearing skirt or trousers? Center vent, no vent, or perhaps a cheeky side vent? The trousers, half lined or fully-lined? When ordering from Exclusive Tailor, our tailors will walk you through each of these options. Once your suit has been crafted, you can now think about how you want to mix and match it with your casual clothing. Book an appointment with one of our expert tailors today to start creating your very own bespoke suit.

Have a look to some trend fashion suit by Exclusive Tailor