Come on, boys: Wear a suit! While some trends in menswear have carried over from 2009, 2010 does open the doors for several new or reintroduced styles. I think you’ll be surprised by the versatility of a well-tailored, fitted suit.
In 2010, the ideal men’s suit places modernity with the higher-ups, closely followed by classic suiting details and a masculine shape. Look for a slim-cut, European suit, but not anything overly skinny or tapered. Today’s suit is made to highlight the shape of the male body, no cigarette legs or typical American box-cuts. Look for a suit design that includes broad shoulders, a slim-cut waist and a slim leg.
Keep in mind a few more pointers for a modern-classic suit:
• Look for a suit jacket that accentuates the natural, V-like shape of the torso.
• There should be two side vents on your suit jacket for a streamlined silhouette.
• For a more European look, look for peaked lapels (vs. classic American notched lapels). This is visually striking. It broadens the chest and lengthens the torso (creating a distinct, upside-down triangle effect). If you don’t know what I’m talking about, look up “lapel” on Wikipedia. They have good illustrations that clearly demonstrate the differences between lapel styles.
• Trousers should hit at the ankle. The cut is slim and neat, trousers with a narrow waist and fitted legs.
The three-piece suit was a trend on the rise in 2009, still gaining speed in 2010. If you are thinking about a three-piece suit, keep in mind…
This year in fashion, designers seek to create clothing with real wearability and longevity. This means classic: classic colors, conservative styles, reasonable patterns.
No more mismatching color, crazy fabric combinations or borderline absurd accessories. Purchase a three-piece suit in a uniform color, fabric and pattern. If you do want one piece of a different hue, pick the least risky — perhaps the waistcoat. Still maintain the same fabric but experiment with the color; if you choose a color in the same family — say, a charcoal-grey jacket and trousers and a grey, pinstriped vest — it will look more cohesive.
Buttons and breaks:
Look for a suit that breaks near the bottom of the rib cage. Also, remember that the higher up your waistcoat buttons, the more boxy the effect. For a modern take, the waistcoat, too, should be v-shaped (thus its buttons should also begin lower, not near the collar). In terms of jacket buttons, two buttons is my favorite. Jackets with more buttons will lengthen your torso; jackets with one button will not. If there are too many buttons, it tends to look uncomfortable.
Check out collections for Spring 2010 for more ideas:
• Armani for urban comfort: classic patterned suits (checks, stripes); shirts with oversized patterns
• Dolce & Gabbana for dressy casual: denim with ties, boots, and jackets.
• Bottega Veneta for the confident: purple, orange, striped and tie-dye pieces
• Tom Ford: He is one of the No. 1 names in modern, fashion-forward menswear, particularly known for his ankle-length trousers and his slightly over-the-top (fabulous) suits.