09 February 2011

Year of the Double-Breasted Suit

I like my suits the same way I like my women: smart, attractive, and double-breasted. Why should you be surprised? Crazy people may claim 2011 is the year of the rabbit. Others might say it is the year of the diamond dogs. Well, I say 2011 is the year of the double-breasted suit. Can you feel it? I certainly do, as I recently took delivery of a Paul Stuart navy double-breasted (DB) suit picked up in the sales. To me the DB suit most closely resembles a true suit of armour, presenting a bold, united military front and a wraparound completeness absent in the SB suit. Of course a man must have the right physique to pull it off. Sometimes recommended for hollow-chested pipsqueaks, the DB looks best, I think, on a tall chap with strong chest and a confident, forthright manner. The DB suit's peak lapels lend height and make the wearer look like an avenging archangel come to take names and kick arse in reverse alphabetical order, like Mosley cracking commie skulls in the streets of London. There is widespread reluctance to take on the DB suit, and I confess I do not know why. Perhaps namby-pamby trads shun it because it projects masculine boldness, a role that makes them feel uncomfortable when all they want to do is hide out in the study and fondle their grosgrain. Or perhaps it is too formal at a time when so many chaps work out of the home in stained bathrobe and rotting slipper. Whatever the reason, I have increasingly noticed, there is certainly no lack of DB suits out there. Two chaps in my office are known to wear them on occasion. Several actors in the film Fantastic Mr. Fox sported a DB suit, as did Royal Tenenbaum. Both Paul Stuart and Brooks Brothers have included them in recent seasons. Ovadia & Sons offer two models for the S/S 2011 season and a beautiful DB chalk stripe number for the coming autumn. If you have not already done so, consider making 2011 the year you acquire a DB suit, a much neglected though essential component of a man's sartorial collection.

12 comments:

Reginald Jeeves said...

Nowadays, it's difficult enough getting one's gentleman to wear a navy DB blazer, rather than an SB one; convincing him to wear a DB suit requires superhuman persuasive powers which very few of us have.

lifelibertyelegance.com said...

DB suits look great, the trouble is that when one is wearing the coat, it is imperative to keep the front closed; this can be less than convenient at times... particularly when the weather is warm or whatnot.

Personally, I just haven't been used to having them, hence I haven't bought any yet... but at some point I may invest in one or more. :)

Tabitha said...

That first sentence will become a classic AC quote.

Stockton Andrews II said...

The DB Suit: A gentleman's Kevlar for those times when you just can't avoid moving amongst the fuzzy wuzzies and the hottentots.

I V Style said...

Fan of Mosley, are we, old boy?

I V Style said...

Thought not.

A.E.F. said...

Admiral, Fantastic Mr Fox is a modern style icon. So glad to see you reference him. A DB double vent is perfect for hiding a bushy tail, or lack thereof.

Patrick said...

I've picked up a few. The problem is finding DBs that don't have an extra inch of shoulder.

Every time I trot one out I get compliments.

I'm medium-sized at 5'9" and 170. After trial and error I think the four-button variety works best for me (4 x 1).

It's imperative to keep the jacket buttoned. A loose DB jacket is a really foul sight.

ADG said...

My first bespoken "go" was a DB.

Des Esseintes said...

Patrick is right. DB appears painfully difficult to get right in RTW, almost always dreadfully boxy and without an shape. About half of my suits are DB but only maybe two among them are RTW.

The occasional DB odd coat, other than blazers, can look good, too, but only in the softer Italian shape.

dE

Tabitha said...

It never fails to amaze me that you can write well and do sums, if you ever get published you'll never get stiffed on your advance. P

the fly in the web said...

Double breasted always looks like a pea jacket to me...
Good on overcoats though.