30 November 2016

By Paul Bako

The Christmas season is here and that means a variety of parties to attend. The modern man certainly cannot call on every function for which his presence has been requested but for the few he can and definitely will he has to be the ultimate clotheshorse making sure that his outfits suit the occasion and complement his already dashing comportment and debonair demeanour. There are three broad categories of events the modern man should expect to be invited to this festive season. Each requires a different approach to fashion, from the accessories to the fragrance.

The Formal Conclave

This is a black tie affair. It could a company networking event, a dinner invitation or any other formal event in which the modern man is expected to dress with elegance and present himself at his very best. A tuxedo or dinner jacket (as it is known in Britain) is perfect for such events because it is respected in fashion as pristine evening wear for men especially since it comes in black or a dark shade of blue. The bowtie is a necessity as tuxedoes are generally defined by the presence of a bowtie. A suit is also appropriate and if it can be a three piece then all the better. Gentlemen attending black tie events must don black apparel or colours of very dark shades. The shoes must always be black and fashion etiquette denotes that the colour of the belt must match the shoes. A watch is the only accessory one needs for such an event. As for fragrance, a scent with either leather or wood at its base gives the right impression and brings out the masculinity the tux or suit already portray. Dolce & Gabbana Velvet Desert Oud and Tom Ford Tuscan Leather are very good choices.

The Social Soirée

A semi-formal get together of associates, acquaintances and co-workers. Office Christmas parties and cocktail events fall under this category. Because it is not exactly formal a gentleman has more room to express himself through fashion at such a function however, the idea is to retain the air of elegance by dressing in a stylish and distinguished manner. Mixing and matching will be convenient. The blazers and jackets should come out of the closet and black pants are the key to maintaining a subtle air of grace. Wool ties and pocket squares will spice up the look as they are trending right now. A beige jacket and slim fitting shirt coupled with a black and white wool tie and a black square will contrast black pants for example. Oxford shoes help tone down the formality. Bracelets can be worn as long as they match the outfit and a lapel pin can flatter the jacket worn. Soiree attire needs a great smelling accompaniment. Going for a clean yet memorable scent will add depth to your quasi-formal looks. Bleu of Chanel and Acqua Di Parma will have heads turning.

The Friendly get-together

A comfortable setting because the gentleman is more than acquainted with everyone present. The gentleman is free to put on a pair of jeans or corduroy pants. Deep colours are more preferable for bottoms and they leave room for the top to make the contrasting difference. A semi-bright turtle neck or a jersey top can contrast amazingly with dark jeans or pants. Button down and granddad collar shirts have also become quite attractive. If a shirt is to be worn then tucking it in is the gentleman’s way as it exudes a buoyant sophistication at such gatherings. Rings and bracelets can prop up the look but in essence the man is aiming for a smart casual appeal. A charismatic and soft cologne should be worn to the friendly get-together but it is not a must.

Fashion up and Merry Christmas.




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