10 Frequently Overlooked Rules of Wearing a Suit


Every man needs to own a suit. It’s the go-to choice of outfit for formal and semi-formal events. Furthermore, some dress codes specifically require men to wear a suit. But regardless of your reason or reasons for wearing one, you should follow some basic rules.

Unfortunately, many men overlook the following rules when wearing a suit. While some of these rules are minor and affect only the suit’s aesthetics, others are more important and affect the quality, comfort or other key elements of the suit. So, familiarize yourself with the following overlooked rules of wearing a suit.

#1) Match Socks with Trousers

The golden rule of choosing dress socks to wear with a suit is to match them with the color of your trousers. The general idea in doing so is to make your socks and trousers blend together. If you wear black trousers, for instance, wearing a pair of black socks will create a cleaner and more uniform appearance. On the other hand, wearing black trousers with a pair of white socks will create an unusual and awkward appearance that makes you stand out. To prevent this from happening, always wear socks in the same color as your trousers.

#2) Choose Thin Lapels for a Modern Look

Unless you’re going for an classic, old school look, it’s best to avoid wearing a suit jacket with wide lapels. As you may already know, lapels are the folded sections of fabric on suit jackets and coats. They are created by folding the front edges over; thus, creating an double-layered area of fabric on the front of the jacket. Different suit jackets, however, have different sized lapels. Generally speaking, wide lapels offer an old school look, whereas thin lapels offer a newer and more modern appearance, the latter of which is preferred by most fashion-forward men.

#3) Your Socks Should Cover Your Legs

Don’t make the mistake of wearing “ankle-length” socks with a suit. While this may seem harmless enough, it’s a serious fashion faux-pas that will hurt your overall appearance. So, what’s wrong with wearing ankle socks with a suit? The problem is that your legs will likely be exposed when sitting. When you sit down, the bottom of your trousers will rise just enough to reveal your legs — and that’s exactly what you should try to avoid. Instead, choose socks that rise at least halfway up your calf, concealing your legs when sitting and standing.

#4) Your Necktie Shouldn’t Go Past Your Belt

If there’s one accessory you don’t want to forget when wearing a suit, it’s the necktie. A proper necktie will complete your suit by defining your neck and adding new color. With that said, however, you should position your necktie so it stops right before or at your belt. If your necktie goes past your belt, it’s too long and should be replaced or adjusted accordingly.

#5) Wear a Black Suit for Strict Formal Attire

If you’ve done any shopping for a new suit, you’re probably well aware of just how many colors in which they come. From black and charcoal to navy and yellow, there are suits in nearly every color you can think of. When dressing for a formal event, however, it’s best to stick with an all-black suit. Black suits offer the highest level of formality, making them ideal for such occasions. Of course, you can wear black suits to other events as well. In terms of formality, however, black suits excel in creating a clean, concise appearance that’s guaranteed to make you look and feel like a million bucks.


#6) Match Your Belt with Your Shoes

In addition to matching your socks with your trousers, you should also match your belt with your shoes. These are two essential elements of a suit that must flow cohesively with one another. If your shoes and belt don’t match, it will look distracting and unkempt. Thankfully, this is an easy problem to avoid, as most belts and shows are either brown or black. So, make sure your shoes are the same color as your belt when wearing a suit.

#7) Choose a Fitted Suit Jacket

Perhaps the biggest mistake men make when wearing a suit is choosing a jacket that’s either too small or too big. If your suit jacket is too big, it will look baggy with excess fabric. If it’s too small, it will look (and feel) constricting. While you can always take your jacket to a professional tailor, a better option is to order your suit here at StudioSuits. We offer custom sizing on all suits at no additional charge. You provide us with your measurements, and we’ll use those measurements to create the perfect custom-fitted suit.

#8) Your Necktie Should be Darker than Your Dress Shirt

Another important rule of suit etiquette is to choose a necktie that’s darker than your dress shirt. Even if your necktie is the same color, it should be a slightly darker — not lighter — tone than your shirt. Following this rule is essential for creating a clean and formal appearance.

#9) Don’t Wear Suspenders and a Belt

There’s nothing wrong with wearing suspenders with a suit, but you shouldn’t wear them with a belt. If you’re going to wear suspenders, leave the belt off. And if you wear a belt, leave the suspenders off. There’s no reason why you should wear suspenders and a belt in the same outfit, as they both serve the same basic function.

#10) Choose the Right Fabric

Make sure you choose a suit fabric that’s appropriate for the climate in which it will be worn. Different suits are made of different fabrics. Cotton and linen, for instance, is an excellent choice of fabric for the spring and summer months, while wool and corduroy are better fabrics for the fall and winter months.