Gentleman Style: Complete Men’s Style Guide

You don’t get a second chance to make the first impression, we all know this old saying, but many of us take it for granted.

The first impression makes all the difference not just in business, but also when you want to establish a love relationship, friendship or when you are trying to impress a potential employer.

People’s first impression about you will most likely be the judging factor of how they treat you. As a gentleman, your appearance set the stage for the connection you need with your potential significant other or a business partner, so it essential to take your look very seriously.

Below is our gentleman style guide. A complete men’s style guide for men who want nothing but to be modern dandy gentlemen.

Always Wear the Right Suit

A suit is a suit, as long as it fits you, right? Wrong. Men brands offer different interpretation when it comes to a wardrobe staple, so you are probably going to find a standard suit spun off in thousands of different ways.

Some are shorter, others look athletic, others are slim and shorter, slim and long, other are more tapered.

So, if you thought a suit is just a suit, then you may need to reconsider your opinion. To have a gentleman look, you need to dress appropriately.

Even a good looking and fitting business suit can be out of place if you wear it in some event. If you have a firm grasp of fashion, you need to know when and how to wear a particular suit.

Experts agree that there are three styles of men suit;

  • English style.
  • The continental style/Italian style.
  • American sack suit style.

The English style is typified by a soft un-padded shoulder, and hourglass body with single or double m breasted and two or three buttons.

The Italian, on the other hand, is epitomized by squared and high shoulders and short close single-breasted body and with two buttons.

The American style sack is a natural shoulder suit with the roomier body and two or three buttons.

Double Breasted or Single Breasted?

Each of these suits people differently, so before you head on shopping, you need to know what look good on your body type and what doesn’t. The choice between a double-breasted suit is a matter of personal taste.

I personally prefer the single-breasted option and so does many American men, probably because this is what is often available.

This is quite unfortunate because the double-breasted option has many advantages for certain men.

 For instance, they give tall men a fuller appearance to the figure, and for larger men, they draw attention to the mid-section.

Two or Three Buttons Jacket?

The three-button suits give the illusion of height, so if you are short, this could be your best bet.

The two-button gives a more formal appearance, and it is important to remember this when you are wearing this suit, it makes you feel in style.

Notched or Peak Lapels?

A timeless lapel is one with moderate width that matches with your proportion and not the width of the fashion.

This is why you should choose a bespoke suit rather than an off-shelf. Having a suit lapel that is proportional to the wearer makes the jacket look fitting, it will not be too big, and it won’t be too small even when it fits you well in other areas.

The Trouser

The trouser should not be the focal point of your attire; their primary job is to draw an eye upward to the jacket and down to the shoes.

So, the trouser is probably the first thing a person will see, so the trousers’ fit and design are critical. Don’t get a pair of pants that is too tight in the crotch or one that is too loose at the backside causing a draft.

 If you are a thin guy, then choose a flat front, and if you are a bit large choose a pleat option. Although cuffs on trousers are back in style, pants without a break are so much better, in any case, the key is to have enough varieties to play off.

Never cheap out on your suits, whether you choose a bespoke or off the shelf. If you find two for $400, it means that the manufacturer had to cut corners.

Choose a blue suit, because these are popular at the moment, but you can’t go wrong with grey, or traditional charcoal hues.

The chunkier herringbone pattern, as well as plaids, are also in style. The herringbone pattern is classic, but you may consider staying conservative if you intend to have a timeless piece for your closet.

Get Quality and Matching shoes

Fortunately, or rather, unfortunately, men footwear trends don’t change radically. A trendy shoe may get a little pointier, but its shape may remain the same or change subtly.

However, just because shoes don’t trend radically doesn’t mean they should let you down. So what type of shoe must you have on your closet if you don’t want to go out of style?

  • The Black Oxford and Capotes

These are an all-rounder, they seem never to go out of style. The Oxford, in particular, gets through just about any family crisis and every life event life throw at you.

As long as you take care of these, you won’t go out of style with your bespoke suit. Always look out for a fine stitch on the shoe edge and ensure that the shoe sole is stitched to the upper part.

You may come across some models that are only glued, which significantly reduces the lifespan of the shoe.

  • Wingtips

The good thing about wingtips is that they can be worn with almost any official suit and still look stylish, except for the black suit.

The wing-tips have v-shaped decoration, and they are less formal than the Oxford, so there are many ways you can complement with upper wear.

  • Loafers, Drivers and Boat Shoes

I am a fan of loafers, and I believe that every gentleman should have one to alternate casual wears. You need to give your official shoe a little rest after a week of wear and tear.

 Loafer has established themselves as an excellent alternative to laced boots. Use them to class up your business casual look, but always try the Oxford for business attire.

  • Sneakers

Sneakers are go-to footwear for those who are style conscious. You can wear them with your lounge suits or perhaps throw them on your favorite blue jeans, but make sure they look stylish.

 If you choose a white sneaker, keep everything else simple. Try teaming them with straight-fit black trousers and a simple white t-shirt for an everyday ensemble.

You can elevate your appearance by tucking the teen into the waistband, and the trouser finishes just above the ankle. Basically, what this does is show off your box-fresh kick creating a modern, streamlined silhouette.

If the white sneakers are not your style, try the slip-on; these give you a gentleman style that creates great first impression.

Take a classic pair and team them with rough and ready work pant or jeans in a lighter due. Throw them a plain T-shirt or a chore jacket.

You want to be a real gentlemen remember, so try to be simple but stylish. If comfort is a priority, then invest in a stylish pair of athletic shoes.

  • Chukka Style Boots

Although sneakers-with-suits is a popular trend right now, it is quite easy to get away with Chukka boots.

 Even some hiking boots can work, as long as you have a sports coat and some dark indigo jeans.

 With Chukka boot style, you shouldn’t wear anything that is too Utilitarian especially if you are wearing a three-piece and a bow-tie.

Match the Right Trouser with the Right Jacket

Several pairs of trouser jeans is a good investment, and a gentlemen wardrobe should have several jackets.

When it comes to matching jacket and trouser, the key is paying attention to the fit and the texture.

When you are pairing a coat with the trousers, or a corduroy trouser with a sports coat, then the top feel and the button one should complement one another, they do not necessarily need to match or feud one another, but they should complement one another.

If you are choosing pants to go with a blazer, you need to consider the occasion.

You are better off selecting a blazer design that suits multiple occasions, this way; it can be easy to find a go-to jacket for a semi-formal, smart casual or formal event. Color is critical for a stylish and straightforward combination.

 you may consider rocking a black blazer with grey pants. This could be an excellent combination for a formal occasion, but to complete the outfit in a more sophisticated manner, you may consider sticking to a monochromatic color palette.

For a casual look, why not consider, throwing on a grey Chinos over a wool trouser or a suit pant? You will look mature and stylish at the same time.

Don’t Overlook the Shirt and Tie Combination

It is important to focus on the suit, and for most men, this is not a problem. However, what you choose to wear it with is what gives that’s the real stylish conundrum you have been looking for, and this often boils down to the combination of shirt and tie and in most cases just the tie.

The first thing you need to watch is the shirt collar. You may not have realized it, but the tie and the form of the color frame your face.

 It’s probably the small bit of your attire that someone will notice when you are having a direct conversation.

Typically, there are four collar choices:

  • Cutaway
  • Point collar
  • Button down
  • Spread collar

The cutaway is the most elegant, but it definitely requires wearing a tie. This style has the largest amount of space between collar points, so you will need to dress well to abhor this vacuum.

Then point collar is often put in a military dress, so it can pretty much without a tie assuming you aren’t wearing a lounge suit.

On the other hand, the button-down is more casual than the collar point style; it’s a more relaxed style and does not need a tie. The spread collar is more like a cutaway, but it’s less ambitious.

Generally, the collar needs to fit your face, so narrow collar will work best for slimmer or more angular fact and for more rounder features, you need a wider collar cutaway.

 The button down is good for casual and chunky ties, or when wearing under a V-neck sweater or maybe a tweed jacket.

Also, please don’t get too cheap when it comes to ties. Quality neckwear is quite cooler since the lining is designed to breathe.

Accessorize but Never Bling

Remember you want to have a real gentlemen style, so you need to combine stylish suits, shirts, jacket or your classic shoes with good accessories, but do not bling.

Accessories are a bit personal; they are unlike other men stuff, so you need to wear them if you are comfortable with it.

However, in context or wearing them like a real gentleman, wear them sparingly. Keeping jewellery modest especially in a professional environment is your safest bet if you do not want to come out unprofessional.

Learn to balance everything, so if you are a guy who wears small watches, then don’t wear the bulky bracelet on your other wrist; otherwise, you will look lopsided and uneven, and of course, this means diverting attention to your look as a whole.

Final Thoughts

Too many men did not have an influential male figure they could look up to when it comes to style, and it’s not surprising to find men out there trying to be much like women when it comes to fashion.

 Nothing is wrong about that, but irrespective of what kind of man you are, good, bad, indifferent, you can start to upgrade your wardrobe and turn it into a real gentleman wardrobe.

Get the right suit to wear and know when to wear it. Get the right shoe, find a good jacket for your trouser and more importantly know how and when to accessorize.

 Remember, as a gentleman, there is a time your dress code matter, and there is a time your etiquette does, so make sure you observe both.

About the author

Lamin
Lamin

Fashion allows me to push the limitation of creativity and express myself without saying a word. Semi-Formal Men is my not so formal fashion blog. I’m a very easy person to talk to, so please feel free to contact me anytime. :)

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