An un-patterned black bespoke suit is the most formal piece of business wear available to a man. Anything more formal moves into the realm of the black tie dress code, with a tuxedo replacing the suit. Patterning will reduce the formality of the suit somewhat, though it’s rare to see black wool with anything beyond a very modest striping. A patterned black suit will usually still serve as formal business dress, appropriate for anything but somber occasions such as funerals.
Construction of the Black Suit
Plain black suits are almost always made from wool. The visual weight of unbroken black is too overpowering to pair with a light, billowing fabric or a high-sheen textile. Even wool suits may seem too slickly smooth if the wool is very fine, giving the wearer a slightly artificial appearance. Small amounts of synthetic fibers can add strength and durability to a wool suit, but more than a minor addition to the blend will give black a faintly reflective quality that looks garish in most lighting. Black suits are often made from the undyed wool of black sheep. Woven thickly, it gives a very clean drape that helps with the imposing effect of the dominant color.
If you only wear suits as a business matter and prefer a more casual standard for your personal life, you may not need a light brown suit in your closet. It could serve as an occasional outfit for work-related parties, particularly in the summer, but the odds are that you’d be able to find something else to work just as well.
The tan suit is ideal for the man looking to expand his dress wardrobe without adding yet another piece of business-formal wear that looks overdressed in casual company.
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