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Formal Wear Primer

dnjan

One Too Many
Messages
1,685
Location
Seattle
1 I have a nice set of black braces, can or should I wear these with the DJ? I'll probably be wearing a waistcoat, so I imagine not. Honestly I'm not even sure why my pants have buttons for braces...

The braces would not be seen, so colour is not an issue.
 

Cobden

Practically Family
Messages
788
Location
Oxford, UK
There is a circumstance where a red cummerbund is almost mandatory (with usually a white DJ or shell jacket) - however, seeing as the this requirement is for members of the colonial service on their way to Sierra Leone on an Elder Dempster steamer, I think it's ignorable in the 21st Century!

You ought to show some cuff sleeves, otherwise they look long.

Oh, I agree. I just prefer a slither of cuff to several inches
 
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adouglasmhor

Familiar Face
Messages
77
Location
Glasgow, Scotland, United Kingdom
I think using a buttoniere to accent your dinner ensemble was and still is common.
I tend to see roses and carnations the most, and in England, the poppy is very popular. These go into the buttonhole of your left lapel (popular on the right for a very short stint, i think). You sometimes find a little loop sewn into the reverse side of the lapel to secure the stem to keep the flower standing up straight.
My 1920's dinner jacket, which is single breasted with peaked lapels, doesn't have a buttoniere hole. Instead, it has a slight break between the collar and lapel where you insert the flower. There is a thread between the collar and lapel and some elastic on the reverse side of the pale to hold the flower in place.


ray

the Poppy does not have the same role as a buttonierre even though worn the same way. Wearing it is an act of remebrance for servicemen who have fallen and paper or silk are both acceptable as long as they come from one of the ex service charities involved in the care of veterans.
 

Charlie Huang

Practically Family
Messages
612
Location
Birmingham, UK
the Poppy does not have the same role as a buttonierre even though worn the same way. Wearing it is an act of remebrance for servicemen who have fallen and paper or silk are both acceptable as long as they come from one of the ex service charities involved in the care of veterans.

Indeed. Actually, one should restrict poppy wearing to the few weeks around Rememberence Sunday rather than 365 days of the year. The whole point is that they are meant to make a fleeting but poinent appearence in the calendar.
 

dhermann1

I'll Lock Up
Messages
9,158
Location
Da Bronx, NY, USA
For those who don't know what the poppy represents, during World War I, poppies grew in profusion on what became the battlefields of the war. "In Flanders Fields", a poem commemorating the death of a British soldier, became the most well known poem of a war that produced much great poetry. The symbolism was that the red of the flowers represented the vast amounts of blood shed by the soldiers who fell on those battlefields.
After the war disabled veterans created paper poppies that were sold on Armistice Day, Nov. 11th., to benefit disabled veterans and their families. The tradition is still observed, but not as widely as it once was, especially in the United States.

In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie,
In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.
 

dnjan

One Too Many
Messages
1,685
Location
Seattle
Perhaps this belongs in the "I remember" thread, but I remember men selling the silk poppies along the street in town when I was a kid. Haven't seen that in many years.
 

Charlie Huang

Practically Family
Messages
612
Location
Birmingham, UK
Me in the breeches:

206496_10150151632172063_688147062_7215228_1130358_n.jpg
 

Charlie Huang

Practically Family
Messages
612
Location
Birmingham, UK
It is not court dress in this version. The buckles need to be black instead of gold, the bows removed from the garter strap and the waistcoat must SB with no lapels in black or white and I must have white gloves for it to be alternative court dress. As it is it is currently formal white tie as opposed to standard white tie with trousers.

The chapeau bras is vintage and use to belong to Geoffery Bird, son of Sir Alfred Bird, 1st Bt., founder of the Bird's Custard Factory, when he was High Sheriff of Warwickshire in 1931. For alternative court dress, it ought to be an opera hat (I think, from the most recent regulations). I just grabbed it as it was just lying on the table for the photograph.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Court_uniform_and_dress_in_the_United_Kingdom#Alternative_court_dress
 
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bumphrey hogart

One of the Regulars
Messages
159
Location
cornwall,England
Just to throw the cat amongst the pigeons,has anyone seen the latest black tie advice from Debrett's. Here we are debating how many shirt studs is correct and it appears the evening waistcoat and cummerbund will soon be as anachronistic as the boiled shirt.
Maybe we should all be investing in those horrible satin topped trousers after all!
 

Charlie Huang

Practically Family
Messages
612
Location
Birmingham, UK
Just to throw the cat amongst the pigeons,has anyone seen the latest black tie advice from Debrett's. Here we are debating how many shirt studs is correct and it appears the evening waistcoat and cummerbund will soon be as anachronistic as the boiled shirt.
Maybe we should all be investing in those horrible satin topped trousers after all!

TBH, Debrett's are sometimes their own worse enemy when it comes to style and preservation of style...
 

bumphrey hogart

One of the Regulars
Messages
159
Location
cornwall,England
TBH, Debrett's are sometimes their own worse enemy when it comes to style and preservation of style...

But so many people look to them for the current stance on what is or isn't correct. There must be thousands of people reading their advice on what to wear this season and if you're not careful you're going to be getting 'teenage' stockbrokers sniggering because you're wearing a waistcoat. Not that that would bother members here, if you've had the courage to wear fedoras, a bit of sniping from someone who doesn't know any better isn't going to bother you. What is worrying is those same 'teenage' stockbrokers are the next generation of evening wear buyers and wearers. Unfortunately it does seem the DJ is becoming just another suit, that's almost the same, but just a bit posher than the one you wear to work every day. and the advice in this primer, (as excellent and as interesting as it is for students of style), it appears it is already a little anachronistic. Most people just want to know what is correct, and it seems the waistcoat and cummerbund are no longer correct. This won't stop me wearing them,as I imagine it won't stop you, an evening suit just wouldn't seem finished, but I think this could be the death knell for them.
 

Charlie Huang

Practically Family
Messages
612
Location
Birmingham, UK
Rather get sniggered at by a teenage stockbroker than look like a prat/slob...

Seriously, Debrett's is hardly the first port of call when it comes to sartorial matters. Given the internet, the first port of call is that and I feel the black tie guide will be much more of use and be more read by the masses. Debrett's will become the exclusive domain of the rich teenage stockbrokers and we do not follow their example.

I don't think the Queen will approve of proscribing the waistcovering and to me, her approval is the final say in the matter. For example, she doesn't approve of clip-on bows.
 
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