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hargist
05-27-2009, 02:38 PM
I'm getting married in October and I'm wondering if anyone has some good suggestions for a reputable national chain for tuxedo rentals.

My preference is to buy one, but since I have four groomsmen, it's more practical to rent as I don't expect everyone to buy. Plus, I want everyone to match.

Myself and most of the groomsmen are coming from Los Angeles, but my Best Man is coming from Connecticut. The wedding is in Chicago, so it makes sense to have a national chain handle it so everyone can get fitted in their respective cities and pick up the tuxedos in Chicago.

An establishment that carries classic styles is preferable, of course.

Any suggestions?

Geesie
05-27-2009, 02:42 PM
Buy, and as long as you have the same lapel and number of buttons as the ones the groomsmen rent, nobody will notice.

Mid-fogey
05-27-2009, 03:20 PM
Buy, and as long as you have the same lapel and number of buttons as the ones the groomsmen rent, nobody will notice.

...I bought one 20 yrs ago and have worn it at least a few dozen times. I've made my money back many times over. It feels a little classy to have you own.

John in Covina
05-27-2009, 03:32 PM
I am not sure if the Mens Warehouse rents tuxes.

But I recall that a guy left his suit home accidentally when traveling for business and he called the closest MW who called the local one he bought from to get the measurements over the phone so he could get fitted quickly at the MW he was visiting.


So it sounds posible to get measured before hand and send it to the Chicago shop to have stuff ready for pick up, if done right.

David V
05-27-2009, 03:59 PM
Unlike the Bridesmaids, your grooms men need not match. Actually. nothing says "rental" more than all the men in the same thing.

You could layout the basics for them: Peak or shawl, 1 button SB or DB, White shirt black bow tie and waist covering and let them choose what looks best on them.

Just don't let anyone put those mini corsages on them. A single small flower with no added leaves or sprigs of what-not.

Chasseur
05-27-2009, 04:09 PM
Another vote for buying. In particular, if you seem to end up being invited to weddings or other functions every year or so. Besides you really have to watch the rental stuff these days, wow lots of it is bad...

Geesie
05-27-2009, 04:19 PM
...I bought one 20 yrs ago and have worn it at least a few dozen times. I've made my money back many times over. It feels a little classy to have you own.

I bought one for high school prom, wore it to my wedding, and still pull it out now and then, though I have to more jackets now.

dhermann1
05-27-2009, 05:14 PM
Check Ebay. They often have used rental tuxes at a good price. Keep in mind however that if you wear a tux with a notch lapel (as opposed to shawl or peak) and have even one Lounger present, said Lounger will be rolling his eyes at you in dismay. Notch collar = declasse. And all wool is MUCH nicer and more comfortable than poly or wool poly blend. I agree about not matching. Each man should pick a tux he feels he looks best in. Looking good with is not the same thing as being identical to.
In your profession you'll have plenty of opportunities to wear a tux in the future.

hargist
05-27-2009, 08:50 PM
Thanks for the comments everyone.

Actually, you've clarified something for me. The answer was in my closet all along. I have a tux that I bought a couple years ago that is exactly the kind of tux I would otherwise rent (single-breasted, peaked lapels, single button, double-besomed pocket). And it's already tailored!

I was thinking about renting because I was caught up in having everyone match, but after thinking about your comments, I like the idea of everyone not perfectly matching.

As an aside, is anyone aware of my tux designer? The label says Linea Domizia. I Googled it and the only thing I came up with is that it is an Italian designer and I found one jacket on eBay that retails for $1,100 (so says the post). I bought it second hand at a store where I've had good luck in the past. I don't know much about designers. I buy my suits based on style and fit and I've been lucky enough in the past to have inadvertently bought suits by Lanvin and Valentino, and realized it only after the purchase. I'm wondering if I was similarly lucky when I bought my tux.

dhermann1
05-27-2009, 09:10 PM
Geez, dude, you scared us there. Don't know about the label, but I'll bet Marc Chevalier will know.

chanteuseCarey
05-27-2009, 10:14 PM
Another idea- My hubby bought his wool tux for our wedding. He also bought a tailcoat separately. He wore white tie and tails for the wedding, and all the groomsmen rented wearing single button tux with a vest that matched the bridesmaids and the flower girl.

Good for you that you already have a tux, its a really good investment (and it sounds like you got a very good one). My husband wore his tux six times in the first six months he had it. Once you own one you'll find more places to wear one.

We were originally going to wait until our son was 16yo to buy him a tux, but with them available for good prices on evilBay and his being in an xmas production and going to many dance and concert events- he now has a wool single button, a tailcoat and I just snagged him a cream dinner jacket. He got his tux at age 12-1/2yo! He already outgrew the first tux pants I bought him in early Dec.08, so we just bought him a new pair from Selix. Next is to purchase a black peaked DB tux jacket, and a burgundy tie and cummerbund set.

Bugsy
05-27-2009, 10:14 PM
It has always puzzled me why brides can spend thousands of dollars on dresses they will never wear again while the groom usually rents a suit that could be come in very handy. I'm glad you found your tuxedo. There's nothing like wearing one's own clothing. AND Congratulations to you all.

hargist
05-27-2009, 10:18 PM
I know what you mean about the bride and bridesmaids spending tons of dough on their dresses. It puzzles me too why it's so expensive.

Luckily, my fiancee is a designer and is not only designing and making her wedding dress, but the bridesmaids dresses too. That's saving everyone a lot of cash.

hargist
05-27-2009, 10:20 PM
Another idea- My hubby bought his wool tux for our wedding. He also bought a tailcoat separately. He wore white tie and tails for the wedding, and all the groomsmen rented wearing single button tux with a vest that matched the bridesmaids and the flower girl.

Good for you that you already have a tux, its a really good investment (and it sounds like you got a very good one), my hubby wore his tux six times in less than six months. Once you own one you'll find more places to wear one.

We were originally going to wait until our son was 16yo to buy him a tux, but with them available for good prices on evilBay and his being in an xmas production and going to many dance and concert events- he now has a wool single button, a tailcoat and I just snagged him a cream dinner jacket. He got his tux at age 12-1/2yo! He already outgrew the first tux pants I bought him in early Dec.08, so we just bought him a new pair from Selix. Next is to purchase a black peaked DB tux jacket, and a burgundy tie and cummerbund set.


Wow, I was lucky to get a new pair of Toughskins from my mom when I was a kid! She would just iron on a patch when they got a hole in them.

Spatterdash
05-27-2009, 11:14 PM
Yes, Mens Wearhouse has an excellent selection of classic evening and formalwear for rent, but get in and sized early. They order from outside of the store.
I got a classic white and tails rig from them a few years back.

I recall reading the elements of a classic tuxedo once- Hand-tied black bowtie, arrow collared shirt (not wing collared) with either a plain front or vertical pleats, black or silver studs and cufflinks, a hand-tied black cumberbund with the pleats up or black low-cut vest (vest was prefered to modern clip-on cumberbunds) plain front slacks with satin piping down the outer seam, a single breasted black coat, peaked or shawl collar with one button and european venting (on the sides), or no vents at all, a white handerchief in the breast pocket, opera pumps or leather slippers, preferably highly shined leather, not patent leather, or velvet. Spats were allowed only if oxford black shoes were worn and the spats were likewise black. Oxfords and spats were considered inferior to pumps and slippers and generally not recommended. A silver watchchain was allowed on the vest.

The other thing that struck me was that the article said Midnight blue was a truer black than dye black, at least to the eye, and should be sought after.

The other thing I found interesting was folding and tying a cumberbund yourself, with the fringed tails hanging out on the side. I liked the idea, though I'm a vest man.

anon`
05-28-2009, 06:45 AM
Vented jacket? Gross!

Otherwise, pretty spot-on. There's nothing wrong with proper patent leather, though: it's just as correct as calfskin, velvet or even (God forbid!) suede. And I do certainly prefer pleats for a black-tie ensemble, but that's honestly a personal preference, IMNSHO.

Midnight blue is not blacker than black, however. What it is, is richer than black under many (most?) artificial lights. This doesn't seem to be a universal truth, and though I've never tested this, I suspect that it might be a knock on certain fluorescent bulbs, whose phosphor coating can filter out odd bits of the visible spectrum and make colours appear something other than true. Regardless, under certain (artificial) lighting conditions, black can often take on a sort of sickly grey-green hue. Sometimes not, however. If one does elect to wear a tuxedo of midnight blue, one is well advised to make sure the lapels are still faced in black.

And grosgrain-faced lapels == wonderful, if you can find such a jacket =)

Orsini
05-29-2009, 04:13 AM
There is nothing wrong with purchasing your own evening semi-formal/black tie rig for your wedding. It is the big day and your bride-to-be, as the others have noted, is going to spend a lot for an outfit that will be worn once and handed down to your daughter. No reason why your outfit cannot be handed down to your son.

On the other hand, if you insist on having a logical justification, if there is any chance you will need a back-tie rig four times a year or more, then purchasing becomes a rational proposition. The cost of renting the ill-fitting monstrosity available from most shops adds up quickly.

Now that that is settled, I do not recommend the miserable notch lapel, the various rationalizations not withstanding. Is is the least elegant of the three alternatives and there is no good reason for getting one.

Manton's article about wedding attire is very good, although some of the fine illustrations seem to have gone away, (http://www.askandyaboutclothes.com/Tutorials/AntongiavanniWEDDINGATTIRE.htm) and this website is a very good reference (http://www.blacktieguide.com/).

Go with something classic (no senior prom hallucinations), and make sure the self-tied bow tie is black, and that the cummerbund is not -- matching them is an excellent way to look like (senior) staff. Single button, ventless much preferred -- no center vent, and turndown collar (thank you, DOW) is fine. Patent opera pumps are the best, but if those bows give you the creeps, patent plaintoe oxfords (Copley-type) are OK (sniff!). Just make sure, no captoe!

Midnight blue, one of many innovations in gentlemen's wardrobe for which we have the DOW to thank, is the color for evening clothes (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Midnight_blueclothes), as genuine black tends to take on a nasty green cast under artificial light.

And here is the killer -- I do not recommend that you match or coordinate any color element in your outfit to that of the bride or maids. To do so is considered to be the act of a.....well, let's just say: don't do it!

John in Covina
05-29-2009, 08:13 AM
Using a purchased tux 3 to 4 times will pay for the tux over renting and they really don't need to be all with in a year's time. A tux depending on style can often be used for a a special evening out with your new bride or for better parties at Christmas and New Years. Also if you host a party sometimes it is a good choice, it helps your to be the Master of Ceremonies.

Spatterdash
05-29-2009, 09:13 AM
You know, now that you guys mention it, I haven't seen many vented jackets in classic formalwear, despite what I read.

BTW, let me point out that it was a magazine from the eighties, might have been GQ. Most of what it said seems consistant with current opinion, but it looks like it dropped the ball on a few issues - or more likely, my memory of the article is incorrect.

The reason I mentioned it was the midnight blue cloth choice, the self-tied cumberbund and the insistance on turndown shirt collars with self-tied bowties. These options can be hard to locate when going rental. Some are just not available.

Orsini, the cumberbund is not black? I have never heard such a thing. I was always under the impression that formalwear arose as a way of making all the men both elegant and (most importantly) uniform, so that the ladies could take the spotlight visually. Therefore, black and white was the only choice for a gentleman.
What colors should the cumberbund be?
More importantly, has anyone ever learned to fold and tie on a real cumberbund?

anon`
05-29-2009, 09:30 AM
The reason I mentioned it was the midnight blue cloth choice, the self-tied cumberbund and the insistance on turndown shirt collars with self-tied bowties. These options can be hard to locate when going rental. Some are just not available.

Orsini, the cumberbund is not black? I have never heard such a thing. I was always under the impression that formalwear arose as a way of making all the men both elegant and (most importantly) uniform, so that the ladies could take the spotlight visually. Therefore, black and white was the only choice for a gentleman.
What colors should the cumberbund be?
More importantly, has anyone ever learned to fold and tie on a real cumberbund?
There's nothing wrong with a good, stiff wing collar! In fact, the boiled-front, to-attach tunic and collar of "classic" evening wear (white tie, by modern standards) was the original shirt compliment of a black tie ensemble. But those are difficult to find (at least in the US--there appears to be a small but relatively thriving niche for them in the UK) and those modern, self-wing-collar abominations just horrid. A turndown is a very nice alternative, however--my sole formal shirt, to date, is such a model.

As for cummerbund colours, it was generally considered acceptable--particularly so in warm weather where one might wear a white jacket, and I believe this was more common in the post-War period--to wear a cummerbund of a very deep, rich colour (burgundy, plum, bottle green). What is never acceptable is to alter the colour of the bow tie. That is black, and really shouldn't match the waistcoat or cummerbund; otherwise it screams rental, which defeats the whole purpose.
If you do opt for a non-black cummerbund, do please wear a white pocket square. Tuxedos really cannot handle more than one item that isn't black or white.

And for the record, I've never seen a cummerbund that was not pre-folded. I'd began to question their very existence!

Orsini
05-29-2009, 09:35 AM
...Orsini, the cumberbund is not black? I have never heard such a thing...Both Flusser and http://www.blacktieguide.com/ recommend they not match and I agree. I believe it makes you look like the maître d'. I like burgundy (an excellent color), but Vatican red and bottle green are good as well.

Spatterdash
05-29-2009, 09:38 AM
Couple of points...

I didn't say anything was wrong with wing collars, the article I was thinking of did. I agree that the wing collars in the rental market these days are... well, eeesh, ya know?

Also, I have an off the wall example, but I just recalled where I have seen a self-made cumberbund with fringed tails - "Addams Family Values". Gomez wore one while dancing in the bistro with Morticia.
I'm glad I stick with vests/waistcoats.
My compliments to Orsini. www.blacktieguide.com is a fantastic resource and should be required reading for every gentleman - brides, too, since they make a lot of these decisions for their grooms.

Orsini
05-29-2009, 07:59 PM
Couple of points...

I didn't say anything was wrong with wing collars, the article I was thinking of did. I agree that the wing collars in the rental market these days are... well, eeesh, ya know? Wing collar is still OK for evening semi-formal/black tie but it is just too fiddly for me. Unfortunately, it has picked up some baggage from the abuses of the rental shops.


Also, I have an off the wall example, but I just recalled where I have seen a self-made cumberbund with fringed tails - "Addams Family Values". Gomez wore one while dancing in the bistro with Morticia.
I'm glad I stick with vests/waistcoats.That might be good for Halloween.

My compliments to Orsini. Thank you kindly.

www.blacktieguide.com is a fantastic resource and should be required reading for every gentleman - brides, too, since they make a lot of these decisions for their grooms. This is really an excellent source. The gentleman who writes it is, I believe, an amateur who has really done his homework!

MisterCairo
05-29-2009, 09:21 PM
One rents a car if need be.

One does NOT rent clothing or shoes.

Even to bowl.....

John in Covina
05-30-2009, 08:21 AM
One does NOT rent clothing or shoes. Even to bowl.....
************
I read that good bowling shoes are also good for learning to swing dance in!

Erik
05-30-2009, 01:41 PM
Another recommendation to purchase your own. And it isn't necessarily an expensive venture - Tuxedos can often be had for surprisingly reasonable amounts if you put the time in to find them on the clearance racks.

MisterCairo
05-30-2009, 02:14 PM
I bought a relatively inexpensive tux several years ago while in law school (there was a ball each year). I saved rental fees three times, more than paying for the tux, shirt, tie and tabs, just in law school. A few uses since then, and I really can't complain.

It wasn't vintage, but getting a style that isn't too "in" or "now" will ensure a classic look for years to come.

I'm told one should also ensure "expandability" to extend the life of the suit, as waistlines have a habit of creeping!

Orsini
05-30-2009, 06:22 PM
I bought a relatively inexpensive tux several years ago while in law school (there was a ball each year). I saved rental fees three times, more than paying for the tux, shirt, tie and tabs, just in law school. A few uses since then, and I really can't complain.

It wasn't vintage, but getting a style that isn't too "in" or "now" will ensure a classic look for years to come.

I'm told one should also ensure "expandability" to extend the life of the suit, as waistlines have a habit of creeping!Just a few trips to the rental shop avoided, and you break even. And once you have your own black tie rig, you are sure to find excuses to wear it.

Here's a trick: you and your date get all gussied up in evening semi-formal/black tie and go to a nice restaurant. They will think you are either going to or coming from some posh event and are probably someone important. You will probably get a better table, better service, and be fussed over to no end. All because you dressed more nicely...

de Stokesay
06-08-2009, 09:07 PM
Here's a trick: you and your date get all gussied up in evening semi-formal/black tie and go to a nice restaurant. They will think you are either going to or coming from some posh event and are probably someone important. You will probably get a better table, better service, and be fussed over to no end. All because you dressed more nicely...

This also works with a regular suit. When dressed casually, one often gets ignored by salespersons, waiters, &c., but if dressed in a well-cut and well-fitting suit, he will command instant respect and will receive much better service. I see this every day.

One primary thing to consider, about the original question or wedding-wear, is that it is imperative to take the dinner jacket (if that is what you are wearing to your wedding) to a proper tailor, not just an alterationist who can only shorten cuffs. Be prepared to spend some money (perhaps as much as $100) to get your new, or old, dinner suit fitted properly. Even if you own it, nothing screams rental as much as a suit that doesn't fit properly. This is because rental agencies prefer the loose fit as they can stuff a wider variety of people into the same suit without costly alterations. The result often looks like 50 lbs. of poo in a 70 lb. bag. Really, the cost of getting your suit fitted properly will make a whole world of difference, and since you are going to wear it again anyway, becomes cheaper with each additional wearing.

Finally, give your groomsmen the option of buying or renting, as they prefer, because not everyone is in the same financial position and they are doing this for you. There is no point in imposing on them too much, but since it is your (and you bride's day), you definately have the right to dictate the type of dinner jacket that they will wear.

de Stokesay

hargist
06-09-2009, 02:35 PM
Yeah, that's what I'm doing. I decided to stick with the tux that I already have. I bought it a couple years ago and it's already altered to fit me. Plus, it has all the features I like, which is why I bought it in the first place.

I'm going to tell my groomsmen to get their tuxes wherever they want, but I'm going to lay down some rules so nobody clashes too much.

Ultimately, I like the idea of wearing my own clothes rather than some rental.

Midnight Blue
06-15-2009, 08:02 AM
This is really an excellent source. The gentleman who writes it is, I believe, an amateur who has really done his homework!

Correct on both counts! I'm glad you like the site.

Doh!
06-15-2009, 11:51 PM
I'm going to tell my groomsmen to get their tuxes wherever they want, but I'm going to lay down some rules so nobody clashes too much.



This won't clash with much... right? Or would tails and spats show up the groom too much?

http://i14.photobucket.com/albums/a301/bonzohart/Guild%20Halloween%202008/Halloween2008017.jpg

Edward
06-16-2009, 07:00 AM
I'm another vote for going for the 'non-matching' look for the men. I suppose to most folks it doesn't look 'costumey' especially, as for the average person nowadays all formal clothes seem costume. :( for me, tough, the ideal would be to have the appearance of all wearing something plucked from each person's own wardrobe to fit in with the dress code of the occasion. S'how I'd do it if ever I married, anyhow.


Using a purchased tux 3 to 4 times will pay for the tux over renting and they really don't need to be all with in a year's time. A tux depending on style can often be used for a a special evening out with your new bride or for better parties at Christmas and New Years. Also if you host a party sometimes it is a good choice, it helps your to be the Master of Ceremonies.

Absolutely.... A few years ago, I bought a dj, trosuers and shirt for twice the cost of the going rental rate. Wore it four times.... a saving of 100% of the cost of renting. The dj and trousers I wore during my university days had a similar number of outings before I outgrew them - and those cost me a grand total of GBP3 in a charity shop. Presently I most often wear an early 40s db dj and trousers, grosgrain lapels, very nice cut, purchased on ebay and tailored in to my waist for less than the price of one hiring of some nasty contemporary confection. And I absolutely agree with all who say that once you own black tie, you find occasions to wear it.... heck, I've found exactly the same thing with white tie.

The black tie ensemble you have in your wardrobe sounds excellet.

Question: I hear of so many weddings in the US where the men go black tie... is it the norm to have evening weddings over there? I don't recall a black tie wedding I've everf heard of in the UK, but that is, I believe, to do with some technical law about weddings having to be during daylight hours or some such...

Lensmaster
06-16-2009, 09:25 AM
Question: I hear of so many weddings in the US where the men go black tie... is it the norm to have evening weddings over there? I don't recall a black tie wedding I've everf heard of in the UK, but that is, I believe, to do with some technical law about weddings having to be during daylight hours or some such...


Just because men here wear a tux at their wedding doesn't mean the event is being held in the evening...sadly.

hargist
06-17-2009, 12:46 PM
Just because men here wear a tux at their wedding doesn't mean the event is being held in the evening...sadly.

My wedding is right on the edge of evening, at 5:00pm, so I opted for black tie.

hargist
06-17-2009, 12:51 PM
This won't clash with much... right? Or would tails and spats show up the groom too much?

http://i14.photobucket.com/albums/a301/bonzohart/Guild%20Halloween%202008/Halloween2008017.jpg

Looks good to me, except for one thing. Your lapels aren't peaked. They're notched.

Just looking out for you, Doh. You wouldn't want anyone laughing at you.

hargist
06-23-2009, 09:42 PM
I have one other question, gents. What are your opinions regarding waistcoats? I kind of like them over cummerbunds, but how necessary are they really? I think I'm definitely going with a white waistcoat with my black tux, but I was wondering what your views might be.

chanteuseCarey
06-23-2009, 10:09 PM
My husband bought a single button tuxedo before our wedding, but also found a good price on a tailcoat only.

If you are wearing a white waistcoat, you are going with tails then?? For our quasi-Victorian style wedding, my husband wore white tie and tails (the vest fabric matched my dress, but no hat) and the groomsmen wore regular single button tuxedos and their vests matched the gals' dresses. With him in tails it made him stand out just a little bit from the other guys.

chanteuseCarey
06-23-2009, 10:12 PM
We just learned this this year in gearing up for white tie art deco events- with a waistcoat/vest you would wear white suspenders underneath it, not a cummberbund. A cummerbund is the alternate instead of a waistcoat/vest I believe.



I have one other question, gents. What are your opinions regarding waistcoats? I kind of like them over cummerbunds, but how necessary are they really? I think I'm definitely going with a white waistcoat with my black tux, but I was wondering what your views might be.

anon`
06-23-2009, 10:13 PM
Waistcoat or cummerbund... one or the other (but never both at once!) is absolutely required with a single-breasted jacket. I myself cannot abide the cummerbund with a black jacket since landing a wonderful three-piece ensemble about a year ago, but to each their own. White waistcoats are, in a sense, more authentic than black, as early black tie lifted many of its details from white tie dress codes, waistcoat among them. I personally would love to get my mitts on a vintage white waistcoat, but that has not yet shown itself to be in the cards, as it were.

Both are superfluous with a double-breasted jacket: you cannot see either when then jacket is buttoned, and we all know what happens if you admit to wearing a double-breasted jacket unbuttoned around here ;)

Edward
06-24-2009, 07:36 AM
Just because men here wear a tux at their wedding doesn't mean the event is being held in the evening...sadly.

Ah.... I suppose that, again, is symptomatic of the decline of formalwear in society in general - most folks don't know how and when to wear it. I should think, though, in Mr Hargist's case, the "after six" rule is acceptably bent by slipping in just an hour earlier... ;)


I have one other question, gents. What are your opinions regarding waistcoats? I kind of like them over cummerbunds, but how necessary are they really? I think I'm definitely going with a white waistcoat with my black tux, but I was wondering what your views might be.

Forgive me if I'm wrong, but I think some of the responses up here have misunderstood the intent of this comment - by "over" you mean "in preference to", as opposed to physically worn over, yes? DB jackets, of course, should not have either underneath them, as the jacket will cover the waistband (the purpose of both cummerbund and waistcoat). With a black jacket, I very much prefer a waistcoat myself. Traditionally, I have veered towards black, though a white waistcoat also looks good, and would certainly have a more authentic 30s look to it. With a white/ivory jacket, worn during the Summer season or in the tropics, I would never wear a waistcoat, always a cummberbund. The very point of the white jacket (typically lighter in fabric) is as a concession to warmer conditions, so to wear a waistcoat with it somewhat defeats its purpose. A coloured cummerbund would be my preference here (generally a burgundy for me - have one in this colour in each of satin and velvet); I also tend to wear a burgundy silk pocket square with this ensemble. Bow tie should never be anything other than black - though with South Seas Dress, I believe scarlet is acceptable, no?

benstephens
06-24-2009, 11:10 AM
Just out of interest for my research into 1920s/30s menswear. When was a white waistcoat worn with black tie? all my 1920s and 1930s menswear catologues all show them with a black wasitcoat.

I would like to see some pictures please.

Kindest Regards

Ben

benstephens
06-24-2009, 11:25 AM
I have one

http://images.google.co.uk/imgres?imgurl=http://www.blacktieguide.com/History/1920s/sartor_dinnerjacket1925.jpg&imgrefurl=http://www.blacktieguide.com/History/04.htm&usg=__KvYHSqh5KBJ1U2bZ8IoP891-8Nc=&h=1100&w=427&sz=229&hl=en&start=37&um=1&tbnid=2ZAX8h54rf985M:&tbnh=150&tbnw=58&prev=/images%3Fq%3Dblack%2Btie%2Bwhite%2Bwaistcoat%26nds p%3D18%26hl%3Den%26safe%3Doff%26client%3Dfirefox-a%26rls%3Dorg.mozilla:en-GB:official%26sa%3DN%26start%3D36%26um%3D1

Chasseur
06-24-2009, 11:31 AM
Here is a photo from the excellent blacktie guide:

http://www.blacktieguide.com/History/1920s/1930_The_Furies_movie_Getty.JPG

benstephens
06-24-2009, 11:34 AM
Yes, I thought it was more of a 20s fashion than a 30s fashion, That was what was throwing me I was sure by the 1930s it was more usual to wear a blcak waistcoat.

Interestingly I remember seeing a very early jacket (Just post WW1) that came with a white jacket, a completely original set which was nice.

Kindest Regards

Ben

hargist
06-24-2009, 11:45 AM
Forgive me if I'm wrong, but I think some of the responses up here have misunderstood the intent of this comment - by "over" you mean "in preference to", as opposed to physically worn over, yes?

Yes, that is correct. I did mean "in preference to." I would never wear a cummerbund with a waistcoat any more than I would wear a belt with suspenders.

I think I'm going to go with the white waistcoat. It's a great classic look.

Now I just have to decide on whether to wear a wing collar or a turndown collar. I'm leaning towards a turndown collar because my ceremony technically starts in the afternoon with the reception going into the evening. I think a turndown collar is a good compromise.

Chasseur
06-24-2009, 11:45 AM
My knowledge is VERY limited, but my understanding is that in the US it remained something worn with black tie into the early 1930s, but by 1933 or 34 it was out of fashion. Or perhaps it went out of fashion about 1930 and then had a small resurgence in 1932-34. I can't remember.

avedwards
06-24-2009, 02:40 PM
Just a quick thing about cummerbund vs white waistcoat; for my prom next week I decided not to wear a white waistcoat, or any waistcoat for that matter, as my DJ has notched lapels (it's otherwise correct) and that would seem too informal for the formality of the white waistcoat. A black cummerbund instead I thought as my DJ is midnight blue and burgundy would be too much colour with the blue (as it won't be dark for a few hours and the blue will be visible). Does anyone agree with my reasoning for a change ;)?

Dan D
06-25-2009, 06:09 AM
Dear Hargist,
As I understand it, a wing collar is technically only appropriate for white tie and tails: when wearing a dinner jacket, one is supposed to wear a turned-down collar with a black bow tie. Wing collars only with white bow-tie and formal tailcoat.

But then tradition is always there to be played with...:)

Dan D
06-25-2009, 06:12 AM
Dear Avedwards,
A cummerbund produces a nice lengthening effect of the dark colour of the trousers, and makes one appear taller and slimmer, I think: a classic look, and always flattering! As long as there's not too much of a clash between the midnight blue, which always looks more black under electric lighting than anything actually black, and the black of your proposed cummerbund during the prom, it should be a great ensemble.

anon`
06-25-2009, 06:39 AM
Dear Hargist,
As I understand it, a wing collar is technically only appropriate for white tie and tails: when wearing a dinner jacket, one is supposed to wear a turned-down collar with a black bow tie. Wing collars only with white bow-tie and formal tailcoat.

But then tradition is always there to be played with...:)
The soft-front shirt with attached turndown collar didn't start appearing with black tie until the '30s, if memory serves. Prior to that, the same stiff-front tunic with to-attach wing collar that one wore with white tie was pressed into service with black tie.

In the context of black tie, neither is necessarily more correct than the other, though the wing collar is rather more formal and I don't think they look "right" with a double-breasted tuxedo jacket, or anything in a tropical colour.

Between the two, I personally think that the soft-fronted turndown is the more versatile option in this day and age (being well-suited to any black tie combination), and also think now that the modern wing collar is never an acceptable option! But I would dearly love to add a stiff-front tunic to my closet with a collection of nice, high collars. These seem to help one get away with wearing a topper with a tuxedo nicely ;)

Feraud
06-25-2009, 07:39 AM
Don't forget..
http://207.218.231.242/~thefedor/showthread.php?t=7058

Edward
06-25-2009, 08:15 AM
Yes, I thought it was more of a 20s fashion than a 30s fashion, That was what was throwing me I was sure by the 1930s it was more usual to wear a blcak waistcoat.

Interestingly I remember seeing a very early jacket (Just post WW1) that came with a white jacket, a completely original set which was nice.

Kindest Regards

Ben

Ben, you may well be very correct - my knowledge is sadly lacking on the finer details here. I had it in my head that black tie started to appear on the party circuit on a regular basis from about 1930, but I could ell be very wrong. when did it first appear as semi-formal wear?



The soft-front shirt with attached turndown collar didn't start appearing with black tie until the '30s, if memory serves. Prior to that, the same stiff-front tunic with to-attach wing collar that one wore with white tie was pressed into service with black tie.

In the context of black tie, neither is necessarily more correct than the other, though the wing collar is rather more formal and I don't think they look "right" with a double-breasted tuxedo jacket, or anything in a tropical colour.

I know what you mean. I have often worn the same attached-wing collar shirt as I wear with white tie (I know, not a separate collar, shame on me lol ) with my early 40s db dj. This 'works' well enough to my eye, but by preference a turndown collar would be what I would reach for every time with black tie. The relative informality of a white jacket requires a turndown collar, ideally, in my eyes..... that said, there is something darkly appealing in throwing caution to the wind there.... maybe it's the potential it has in my mind to imply that, rather than wearing the 'wrong' shirt, one simply has many black-tie evenings, that the 'more correct' shirts are in one's laundry basket, not having had the time to be laundered and pressed before the next event. [huh]


Yes, that is correct. I did mean "in preference to." I would never wear a cummerbund with a waistcoat any more than I would wear a belt with suspenders.

lol

David V
06-25-2009, 08:16 AM
Dear Hargist,
As I understand it, a wing collar is technically only appropriate for white tie and tails: when wearing a dinner jacket, one is supposed to wear a turned-down collar with a black bow tie. Wing collars only with white bow-tie and formal tailcoat.

But then tradition is always there to be played with...:)

Regional differences.
This comes up often on the men's clothing fora. Frowned upon by those in the know in the UK. Smiled upon by those in the know in the US.

You put vinegar on your chips and I put ketchup on my fries.

Dan D
06-25-2009, 08:30 AM
Absolutely, and thank goodness for them: wouldn't life be terribly dull if we all thought and wore the same things ?! Wardrobes and conversation would be uniform (no pun intended) and depressing. Huzzah for variation in all things in life! :)

Dan D
06-25-2009, 08:35 AM
...except, of course, I should have added, for differences in my pay-cheque each month, which mean More Deductions At Source, which is never good...

avedwards
06-25-2009, 09:50 AM
Dear Avedwards,
A cummerbund produces a nice lengthening effect of the dark colour of the trousers, and makes one appear taller and slimmer, I think: a classic look, and always flattering! As long as there's not too much of a clash between the midnight blue, which always looks more black under electric lighting than anything actually black, and the black of your proposed cummerbund during the prom, it should be a great ensemble.
I don't think I need to be any taller or slimmer as I already am 6'1" and especially slim these days (bad health). My decision to wear a cummerbund was entirely a matter of the correct lack of formality to match my more informal DJ. Unfortunately my prom will start before it is dark (though after 6:00pm) so the blue will show for a while as it is visible under natural light. Either way, the black cummerbund seems perfect and I've been lucky enough to find a NOS '50s one. I will post a picture of the ensemble within the next few days so people can tell me if I look suave or just stupid. ;)

dhermann1
06-25-2009, 09:59 AM
Speaking of those high collars, I have occasionally had a hankering to replicate what I call the Neville Chamberlain look, that is, the standard suit "in the City" worn by businessmen in the 20's. The sack coat, with the striped trousers, waistcoat, spats, and high collar. Not quite as formal as all those foreign ministers at Versailles, but like what a Member of Parliament might have worn around 1932.
BTW, a good source for a high collar shirt, suitable for white tie and tails is T M Lewin, in the UK. I got one for about $60 US.

Blackl3232
06-25-2009, 10:44 AM
Now I just have to decide on whether to wear a wing collar or a turndown collar. I'm leaning towards a turndown collar because my ceremony technically starts in the afternoon with the reception going into the evening. I think a turndown collar is a good compromise.

I would definitely recommend a wing collar if you're wearing a white waistcoat. I don't like the look of a wing collar with either a black waistcoat or a cummerbund, but it's the only one that looks right with a white waistcoat to me.

Chasseur
06-25-2009, 11:32 AM
I've always thought a white waistcoat with black tie looked best with a wing collar, and a black waistcoat (or cumberbund) with a turndown collar. Just me.

donCarlos
06-25-2009, 12:22 PM
This may be a bit offtopic, but I thought about this a lot.

There are almost no occasions to wear a diner jacket here. Iīve never seen anyone wearing diner jacket to any social occasion, not even when it would be proper, like proms. So I thought... "What would happen if I intentionally forget the "itīs equally bad to overdress as it is to underdress" rule, get a black tie attire and wear it to ANY suitable evening occasion?" And by suitable, I donīt mean to a pub, or a bar, but if somebody celebrates their birthday, or when I attend some prom, go to some fancy restaurant etc.

Ordinary suit, usually with very bad fit is the most formal wear most people have around here. I know a lot of people who donīt even own a suit. That is so wrong and impossible! Of course I will stick out even more, but I got used to it. People need to know...

There seems to be a trend, mainly among us, the younger loungers "you like it, you wear it"... Why not? What do you think?

dhermann1
06-25-2009, 01:17 PM
Yes yes yes yes yes yes yes yes. Positively, absolutely.
You'll freak out lots of people, but the women will swoon.

chanteuseCarey
06-25-2009, 02:10 PM
DO IT DonC!! Are there concerts, plays, or other theater performances to wear it to? Once you have the outfit you'll certainly find places to wear it. You may want to consider morning dress (like they wear at ascot!) too besides a tuxedo. You'll look smashing! Someone always needs to start the trend for dressing better, looks like its you where you are!

Like I've said about our family getting into vintage, (and that includes formalwear too -hey, even our 13 yo son has white tie and tails, a single tuxedo, and an ivory dinner jacket), "If we have the clothes, we'll find the places to wear them."

And YES, us women swoon over elegant gents in tuxedos!



This may be a bit offtopic, but I thought about this a lot.

There are almost no occasions to wear a diner jacket here. Iīve never seen anyone wearing diner jacket to any social occasion, not even when it would be proper, like proms. So I thought... "What would happen if I intentionally forget the "itīs equally bad to overdress as it is to underdress" rule, get a black tie attire and wear it to ANY suitable evening occasion?" And by suitable, I donīt mean to a pub, or a bar, but if somebody celebrates their birthday, or when I attend some prom, go to some fancy restaurant etc.

Ordinary suit, usually with very bad fit is the most formal wear most people have around here. I know a lot of people who donīt even own a suit. That is so wrong and impossible! Of course I will stick out even more, but I got used to it. People need to know...

There seems to be a trend, mainly among us, the younger loungers "you like it, you wear it"... Why not? What do you think?

SamReu
06-25-2009, 02:16 PM
I hardly need to weigh in on this, but I advise you to read the excellent advice offered here, ie, buy a good black-tie ensemble, preferably with a shawl collar. If you go with something basic, it won't matter a whole heck of a lot if the groomsmen aren't clad in something precisely like yours.

And, as a Lounger noted, it feels kind of classy to have a tuxedo in the closet, ready for anything.

hargist
06-25-2009, 04:48 PM
I hardly need to weigh in on this, but I advise you to read the excellent advice offered here, ie, buy a good black-tie ensemble, preferably with a shawl collar. If you go with something basic, it won't matter a whole heck of a lot if the groomsmen aren't clad in something precisely like yours.

And, as a Lounger noted, it feels kind of classy to have a tuxedo in the closet, ready for anything.

I mentioned this previously in the thread, but I already have a nice Italian designer tux in my closet. I was stuck on having my groomsmen match, so was thinking about renting. After hearing all the advice, I decided to wear my own tux and have my groomsmen get their own, with some road rules.

hargist
06-25-2009, 04:58 PM
DonCarlos,

I can tell you without a doubt that you may get some strange looks here and there, but the reaction will be overwhelmingly positive. And yes, women do like a nicely dressed man. Fact is, dressing nicely is not something that most men do these days, so sticking out from the crowd in a positive way like that is nothing but good.

Case in point: I stopped into a Brooks Brothers yesterday near my work. I often take a break from the office and walk around the outdoor mall across the street. I asked if they had any waistcoats. The woman who was helping me said they didn’t, but went on to say, “Of course you’re looking for a waistcoat. You’re the best dressed man in Century City (that’s the name of the section of Los Angeles where I work). Why wouldn’t you have a waistcoat? In fact, I’m surprised that you don’t have three!”

She went on to say that she notices me walk by the shop all the time. I was a little embarrassed, but it also felt good.

So people do notice, and it usually isn’t bad attention. It’s almost always good. The only snide remarks I get from time to time is about my hat, but that’s rare. Those comments are almost always overwhelmingly positive too.

chanteuseCarey
06-25-2009, 06:14 PM
Independent of having a tux for a wedding- a tux, vintage or even new (if its a classic style) is always a good style investment.

That's in part why we didn't wait until our almost 13yo son was 16 to get him his. He's already worn formal wear to seven events from early Dec 08 to late May 09. But then again our son may be an unusual kid to use as an typical example...


I hardly need to weigh in on this, but I advise you to read the excellent advice offered here, ie, buy a good black-tie ensemble, preferably with a shawl collar.

And, as a Lounger noted, it feels kind of classy to have a tuxedo in the closet, ready for anything.

donCarlos
06-25-2009, 11:11 PM
Thanks for positive reactions for my crazy idea! Now you really got me thinking... God, this place really sucks my wallet empty!

Dresscode would be easy for me then - where normal people wear a suit, I wear my new tux. (I still donīt know where to get it)
Itīs a shame that I canīt get my tux before going to Karlsbad to the international movie festival. Maybe a rental? lol

Edward
06-26-2009, 04:51 AM
I refer the gentleman, Mr Don Carlos, to the quotation underneath this very post. ;)

As to source: eBay, eBay, eBay. Seriously, if you can't at least find a decent early 40s db dj and trousers on there, you're doing something very wrong.

hargist
07-06-2009, 10:16 AM
One last question about tuxes and how they are worn in modern times.

I bought my waistcoat from Brooks Brothers over the weekend. The clerk asked me what kind of tux I have, and I told him it is single button, single-breasted. He said that waistcoats are normally worn with tails, but that's not my understanding.

Just want to clear this up. My understanding is that one has a choice, either a cummerbund or a waistcoat. I prefer waistcoats.

I'm not wrong to wear it with a single-breasted jacket (non-tails), am I?

Bird's One View
07-06-2009, 10:41 AM
A waistcoat must be worn with a dress tail coat, but may be worn with a dinner jacket as well.

chanteuseCarey
07-06-2009, 10:47 AM
OMGoodness, I LOVE this avatar!!!:eusa_clap :eusa_clap :eusa_clap


A waistcoat must be worn with a dress tail coat, but may be worn with a dinner jacket as well.

dhermann1
07-06-2009, 11:30 AM
There are many posts on this question on the formal wear threads. The gist is this: With a standard tux, that is peak lapel or shawl, single breasted, a cummerbund is OK, but a waistcoat preferable. Then there is the question, black or white? Both are acceptable, but make sure it has just 3 buttons. If you look at 30's films, the men all wear black 3 button waistcoats with the dinner jackets, and I'd guess the majority of Loungers would lean in that direction, as well.
You see at a lot of weddings these days the men will have black waistcoats with 4 or 5 buttons, and no lapels. I personally don't think this looks as classy as the old fashoined 3 button with lapels.
With a tailcoat, you'd wear a white waistcoat only. With a white dinner jacket (or off white, i.e. summer style, again, single breasted) you'd wear only a cummerbund.

hargist
07-06-2009, 12:26 PM
Really, it's no wonder there is so much confusion about this. I knew that a white waistcoat is perfectly acceptable with a single breasted jacket, but when the clerk at Brooks Brothers said that they are normally worn only with tails, I started to second guess my own knowledge. I mean, if the "experts" (the clerks who actually sell tuxedos) can't give straight information, what hope does the average person have?

Orgetorix
07-06-2009, 02:25 PM
Really, it's no wonder there is so much confusion about this. I knew that a white waistcoat is perfectly acceptable with a single breasted jacket, but when the clerk at Brooks Brothers said that they are normally worn only with tails, I started to second guess my own knowledge. I mean, if the "experts" (the clerks who actually sell tuxedos) can't give straight information, what hope does the average person have?

Well, I wouldn't discount the BB clerk's advice too quickly. The standard accessory with a single-breasted tuxedo is either a black waistcoat or a black cummerbund. A white waistcoat is acceptable for wear with a tuxedo, and indeed it's quite a nice look when paired with a tuxedo and accessories of a sufficiently formal nature. But the white waistcoat is still essentially a loaner from the white-tie outfit and is most at home with a tailcoat.

Keep in mind the historical context: The dinner jacket was a more modern innovation upon the tailcoat, and when men started to adopt them (for less-formal events) they simply swapped out the coat and kept the rest of their white-tie accessories, including white tie and white waistcoat. As the dinner jacket or tuxedo developed into a mode of dress in its own right, it came to have its own set of acceptable accessories--black ties, black waistcoats, and cummerbunds (and, later, soft-fronted shirts with turndown collars). So, by 1935, say, someone wearing a white waistcoat with a dinner jacket would be wearing a style that was a bit out of fashion and a bit more formal than the current trends.

So I still would say that it's true the white waistcoat is normally part of the white-tie ensemble. It's acceptable with black tie--you won't be committing a faux pas--but it's not one of the most commonly chosen accessories.

One other note: If you're going to wear the white waistcoat with a tuxedo, the rest of your outfit should be as formal as possible, so that it almost looks like a white-tie ensemble. The jacket should have peaked lapels, not notched or shawl. The shirt should be stiff-bosomed, not pleated, and it should take a stiff, detachable wing collar.

Dan D
07-07-2009, 01:57 AM
Dear All,
There's a really useful article about wedding attire (itself linked to others) that some might find useful here (http://www.mensflair.com/style-advice/contradiction-of-wedding-attire.php).

Caveat: one can get lost in reading on this site for eons.

Midnight Blue
07-12-2009, 07:41 AM
As always, Orgetorix is right on the mark. To see the migration of the white waistcoat from full dress to semi-formal dress, see the History section of www.blacktieguide.com.

http://www.blacktieguide.com/Classic_Components/Alternatives/IMG_3324_D.JPG