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What is a dinner jacket?
Non-black or non-midnight blue jacket, it can be off-white or burgundy or have different patterns. Of course, other colors such as blue, bottle green, or purple work as well. Basically, the sky is the limit.
What isn’t a dinner jacket?
1. Smoking Jacket
2. Mess Jacket
Dinner jacket options:
1. Off-white dinner jacket
2. Velvet dinner jacket
3. Brocade dinner jacket
4. Tartan dinner jacket
5. Boldly patterned dinner jacket
6. Vintage dinner jacket
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Hi. I am wearing a velvet dinner jacket to a formal cruise night, and want to be correct with the trousers.
I have bought a pair of black formal trousers with a satin strip, but I'm unsure of them as there, not the same color shade of black. Is this acceptable?
Or should I go for a contarsting colour maybe grey?
Kind regards James
As always a very excellent review. I beg to differ only slightly regarding the dinner jacket or tuxedo with peaked lapel. I have a fine Italian Pal Zileri peak-lapelled double brested black tux which was surely not cheap and I think its fine albeit a bit more formal than the single breasted shawl style. I do agree the latter is smoother and more chique and often my first choice, depending on the occasion. I have also worn my Favourbrook black & gold velvet smoking jacket though at less formal dinners and at Christmas with my family though sometimes also at my London Club on occasion, when a little more eccentricity is allowed.
If you’re going with a tartan dinner jacket, I would avoid black watch unless you served in that regiment because veterans can get a little touchy about it. There are literally thousands of tartans to choose from, so I would look into that to see what you actually like the most. Of course, you can wear whatever you want and the black watch thing applies mostly to kilts.
Mess jackets are military dress wear (usually in the UK and Canada) the colours denote rank and regiment and are still seen today, so no they're not just a silly circus outfit, and are most definitely acceptable in Black tie.
And i thought " a suit is a suit" .. i NEVER EVER COULD HAVE IMAGINED SOO MUCH VARIATION ..
HOW CAN SOMEONE DISTINGUISH SO MUCH ? .. you need to have a greater eye for that ..
And years of experience and knowledge..
DAMN i feel like a complete ignorant ..
Great topic! I do not yet own a tuxedo, but I am thinking about buying one. Do you think it makes the most sense to start with a black tuxedo, and then later add a dinner jacket in a color that works well with black (not dark blue)?
DeJuan McGuire yes, absolutely! Build up a classic ensemble, then add and build as time goes on. It's perfectly acceptable to wear a classic Black Tie ensemble at a loose black tie event, but not so acceptable to wear an alternative dinner jacket to a more strick black tie event.
I personally find an ivory coloured dinner jacket with peaked lapels more appealing than one with a shawl-collar. The formality of the peaked lapels helps to balance out the "less formal" nature of the ivory dinner jacket.
Really informative and helpful video! I especially loved the burgundy velvet jacket you wore; it is very elegant. Would you say velvet should be reserved for dinner and smoking jackets, or do you think it can be used for sport coats and more casual garments?
I disagree on the peaked lapel off white dinner jacket. The very picture that you displayed of Sean Connery as James Bond had an off white dinner jacket that had peaked lapels. I agree to stay away from notched collars but a peaked lapel jacket certainly does not indicate it is a "cheaper" variant and in my opinion is perfectly acceptable.
My thoughts exactly. Mess jackets are worn at military ceremonys and events I'm surprised he didn't knows this as he seems to be quite educated. I'm a cadet so I'm pretty I know this before anyone questions my opinion haha
I had a very nice white dinner jacket and lent it to my friend for his wedding who ended up spilling a whole glass of red wine on it. Oh well... All gone. I bought a replacement, haven't had a chance to wear it yet though.
I wanted to ask a question but it is not really related to this tuxedo topic.
So basically in my school we have uniform. We have to wear a navy blazer and black trousers. So my question is - can I wear dark brown shoes with this combination , or only black shoes are appropriate?
Gentleman's Gazette so its incorrect to wear flaps or flaps means no no.
and i think you said a correct dinner suit has to be same fabric or same color lapels? or is it ok to have a white and black lapel .. what color goes best with a black dinner jacket?
Cummerbunds are essential! Well, maybe not cummerbunds, but definitely a waist covering that is low enough to expose a good bit of the shirt. Unless you're wearing a double breasted jacket, a waist covering is definitely essential.
Usually your advice is perfect, but I've got to disagree with you on this one when you say a dinner jacket is a "non-black" jacket. No, a traditional dinner jacket is black (or midnight blue). Certainly other alternatives have come and gone over the last century (particularly the tropical "white" dinner jacket), but the classic dinner jacket is black. For this purist, anything but black for evening dress is tacky. A velvet "dinner jacket", of whatever color, gives me horrid flashbacks to the 1970s.
This video confused me for a while, I didn't realise for a while you were distinguishing a difference between a dinner jacket and "tuxedo". We don't really use the word tuxedo here in Britain and instead we would call a typical black "tuxedo" a dinner suit or, sometimes, a dinner jacket. I'd never considered the option of wearing evening wear that wasn't (what I would call) a dinner suit before. Also, with respect to the mess jacket, I see them worn rather often as one of my friends is a military officer and a mess jacket of some description is part of almost every regiment's regalia.
Good video, but I disagree on one point.
3:00 : you say that off-white dinner jackets with a pique lapel look cheap. I think that while the classic might have the shawl collar, a well made peak lapel ivory dinner jacket looks really good too. (I own a custom one myself). I really dont understand your advise on staying away from peak lapel off-white jackets because they supposedly look cheap and are not to be worn.
Great work other than that, keep it up!
Greetings from Switzerland
It's interesting: You are repeating everything I have said, but repeating with correcting manner, like I have said something opposite.
Read it again: I didn't say ivory dinner jacket is perfection, I have said a shawl lapel is the best choice for ivory dinner jackets, so it would be perfect in it's nature. I have also stated that ivory dinner jackets are reserved for tropical climates and wearing them other than that is a huge faux pas, so why you remind that again like I have said something else?
"Jowly chin" means fat chicks, hence a rounded face. "Broader in the gut" means big belly, hence a thicker person. Again, the same things that I have said.
The necessity of shawl lapel on the ivory dinner jacket is the "loungeness" nature of the shawl lapel. The peak lapel as more standard, and slightly more formal than the shawl. The shawl lapel can be cool, but it's inherently a little lounge-ier. That's why smoking jackets always have shawl lapel.
The etiquette of ivory dinner jacket dictates a tropical climate: The ivory dinner jacket's origin on cruises and at tropical resorts speaks to its specific role as a less formal alternative to traditional black tie. It is only appropriate at formal occasions in the tropics year round and in America during the summer season, typically at open-air social gatherings such as country club dances and yacht club parties.
Therefore, since it's a lounge-ier garment by etiquette, having the lounge-ier shawl collar will make it complete in nature. Having a peak lapel on an ivory dinner jacket (I believe) should not be defined with "cheapness", but can be considered as "stepping away from perfection".
Another advantage of shawl lapel is, it is also usually a little different from the majority of those in the room, at most occasions, and (to my eye) projects a feeling of suave comfort while still retaining formality. But careful: It's also not the most flattering to a man who is getting a little broader in the gut or jowly at the chin.
Heartrender1st suspenders for sure, as Fabian says tuxedo trousers shouldn't have belt loops. Yes you should still wear a cummerbund with suspenders. The point of the cummerbund is to cover the waistline and the 'workings' of the pants. If your jacket is single breasted you need a cummerbund or a waistcoat.
But if you have side tabs on the pants and it fits well so it won't fall down you don't necessarily need suspenders, but I personally still think go for suspenders, button on ones not clip ones, the clip ones will ruin your pants in the long run.
Heartrender1st You should never even have beltloops on your dinner suit trousers! I don't know for sure about suspenders with cumberband, but I would think so. Otherwise, maybe sideadjusters are the way to go.
Something often overlooked about boutonnières is that precut buttonholes are generally smaller than you need them to be, and can *not* altered once they've been sewn. You're better off buying a jacket without a buttonhole, and asking a tailor to cut and sew a boutonnière for you. (30-38mm for the traditional carnation.)
The link is in the video or you can just click here:
My personal variation of black ties is a vintage langrock midnight blue dinner jacket with a slight herringbone weave and grosgrain lapels. I wear it with plaid trousers and and opera slippers and it never fails to draw compliments. Thanks for the awesome guide!
I have been waiting for that for ages! And I love the double breasted white dinner jacket! I have one that I inherited from my grandfather, it's from the 60s, and i think i will tailor it to fit me as soon as I'm completely grown!
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