How to wear a three piece suit

When you need a little extra sartorial swagger, nothing beats the refinement of a three piece suit. It’s the perfect way to make an immaculately dressed statement for those gilt-edged occasions such as weddings or a day at the races, as well as being an ultra-stylish option for the office. And what’s more, getting the look right is much easier than you’d think if you follow a few simple rules.

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Let’s start with the basics; what constitutes a three piece suit? Just as it sounds, a three piece suit is a matching tailored jacket, waistcoat and trousers, with the emphasis on the matching. A suit with a fancy contrast waistcoat is just that, and best approached with caution.

Keep it simple and stick to a suit in a classic dark cloth; grey or navy work well and are less formal than black. Importantly, your waistcoat should be fitted but not too tight and be long enough to cover your trouser waistband (ideally worn without a belt) with the top button sitting on the chest line.

Pair with a plain crisp shirt (white is a failsafe option) and add some personality with the flourish of a natty silk tie and a coordinating – but never matching – silk pocket square and a pair of subtly stylish cufflinks. Open collars can work for more casual summer events, but it is best to stay clear of collarless shirts which can tip the look in to fancy dress territory.

Keep footwear classic; a brogue boot or sturdy soled Derby lace-up shoe will ground your look for everyday and something more elegant with a leather sole will give a refined edge for special occasions. Never be tempted to try trainers. Ever. And the finishing touch? Simply add confidence and a smile to ensure being perfectly dressed, whatever the occasion.