The Tuxedo Series Part V: Finishing Touches
Henry A. Davidsen master tailors and image consultants merge fabrics, buttons and zippers together to create clothing that is custom-made to fit the wearer’s lifestyle, profession, body type and silhouette. While the tailors create the major pieces, the finishing touches are largely up to the man who wears them.
In this series, we’ve covered the history of the tuxedo as well as the major differences in types of jackets. This time, we’re taking a look at the particular accessories that may be incorporated into the outfit.
- Studs – Most quality tuxedo shirts forgo buttons and instead leave three to five holes for placing studs. These studs function in much the same way as cufflinks, fastening together to hold two pieces in place. Studs are commonly found in black, though variants such as white and mother of pearl exist.
- Cufflinks – As with French cuffs, tuxedo shirts require cufflinks to keep the sleeves in place. In formal dress, it is encouraged that men wear conservative cufflinks, typically in gold, silver and/or black. However, some men opt for more opulent options, incorporating diamonds or other jewels.
- Boutonniere – A completely optional show of confidence, a boutonniere is a flower worn in the left lapel hole. Carnations (unless you’re in France), roses, lilacs, gardenias and statice are all fantastic options for bringing color and confidence to your tuxedo; they’re also a fantastic conversation starter.
- Watches – In the rules of formal dress, it is considered somewhat rude to wear a wristwatch, as it indicates that a man has somewhere to go other than where he is. The pocket watch is considered more acceptable in formal dress and evokes a particularly classic appearance.
- Ties – A black bowtie, unless attending a white tie event, is a tuxedo standard. To purists, a long tie is considered to ruin the appeal of the tuxedo, but this doesn’t stop many stars and athletes from donning one. The length and width of the tie are generally up to the wearer. However, extremes on either side are often considered pretentious. It should be noted that formal wear experts could spot a pre-tied tie from across a room, as a self-tied one is often slightly askew.
As one of the few bespoke tailors creating wedding tuxedos from Princeton, NJ to Delaware, we know a few things about how to help men look their best in formal wear. To learn more about our process, give us a call or stop by our store.