28 June 2011

Dinner Clothes

A.N. Wilson: Young Fogey

You might be interested to know I recently acquired a new Brooks Brothers dinner suit with shawl lapels. Social occasions where such clothing can be worn have started appearing on my calendar with more frequency. Why not oblige and have a bit of fun? Below is an excerpt from one of Alan Flusser's books in which he discusses lapels on dinner jackets. Notch lapels, he says, are verboten, a directive ignored by our friend A.N. Wilson (at left) who appears to be wearing what I would guess is rented kit from Moss Bros. As a tall, robust-chested chap with a muscular physique, it would seem I have made the correct choice, at least according to Mr. Flusser. Now I can sleep at night, in pace, dreaming everlasting fogey dreams.

Only shawl or peaked lapels are used for dinner clothes. Peaked derives its heritage from the tailcoat, shawl from the smoking jacket. The shawl lapel produces a softer, old-world image and tends to be used on alternative dinner jackets such as the white summer dinner jacket, velvet smoking coat, or more idiosyncratic ones in wool tartan or cotton madras. Men with round faces or less muscular physiques generally look smarter in the uplifting, sharper-angled, pointed-end peaked lapel. Both lapels possess the sweep and self-importance that helps differentiate the black-tie coat from the less formal suit jacket.

Style and the Man, Alan Flusser (1996)

7 comments:

Osbert II said...

Peak lapels are too After Six.

AN Wilson is a shit. Well, that's what Bevis Hillier said.

Anonymous said...

Bevis Hillier is a fat grammar school shit, well according to AN Wilson.

A.E.F. said...

Admiral, Your shawl collared dinner suit sounds very fine. I always think a shawl collar requires a larger, floppier bow-tie a la W.B. Yeats or a c.19th French Artist.
What do you think?

White Horse said...

Shawl style cardigans and sweaters seemed all the rage last winter....I'm much more fond of the style on dinner suits. Good purchase.

Styles Bitchley said...

Couldn't have made a better choice; this is exactly the same tux I've been wearing since 1986. I like the fact that Brooks allows you to buy separate jackets -- I own two shawl collars in different sizes as my weight fluctuates.

Anonymous said...

really?

Anonymous said...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mhk5Rjz7xk0