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Your getup introduces your personality and style, so here are some ways to accessorise and spice up your outfit

In the famous story of Sheikh Saadi and His Dress, where Sheikh Saadi was served better food because of his attire, there are two lessons; and one is often overlooked. 

The first is obvious: in an ideal world, one should not judge others solely by their appearance. But the other lesson is that in the practical world, you are often judged by your appearance. 

Your getup introduces your personality and style. That’s why you need accessories to spice up your outfit. Cufflinks, ties, suspenders, belts and pocket squares are some examples. Here is how to use them wisely. 

Cufflinks: A touch of elegance

Modern cufflinks come in a variety of styles, materials, and designs. From classic monograms to quirky and contemporary shapes, cufflinks allow men to express their individuality. For formal occasions, consider classic sterling silver or gold cufflinks. Whereas, more casual events may call for playful designs or customised options.

Whether you opt for the traditional bullet back closure or the convenient and user-friendly whale tail closure, cufflinks add a touch of refinement to any dress shirt.

Tousef Islam is a suave young journalist who understands the art of accessorising. Tousef believes that the key to mastering accessories boils down to two fundamental principles: feasibility and materials.

“As much as accessories are meant to enhance your style, they should seamlessly integrate with your overall look,” Tousef advises. “Feasibility is crucial – consider your position, physique, day’s schedule, and even the weather when incorporating accessories into your outfit.”

He stresses the importance of selecting materials thoughtfully. “Valuable metals and ornamental gems or designs are favoured by those with means,” he says. “However, it’s crucial to stay practical. Otherwise, it may seem ostentatious rather than stylish.”

Ties: The art of neckwear

If you’re asking someone for money, wear a tie. Oscar Wilde once said, “A well-tied tie is the first serious step in life.” The necktie has long been a symbol of professionalism and style, evolving from its military roots into a fashion staple. Ties offer endless possibilities in patterns, fabrics, and widths, allowing for both stylish and creative outfit combinations.

The width of your tie should complement your suit’s lapel, with slimmer ties pairing well with slim lapels and wider ties with broader lapels.

Imran Hossain, a corporate employee, advises that a silk tie in a solid colour or subtle pattern exudes a classic and timeless look. However, for those seeking to make a statement, experimenting with textures, colours, and patterns can elevate a simple suit. Mastering various tie knots, such as the Windsor or Four-in-Hand, adds sophistication to your ensemble.

Regarding fabric, options include silk, wool, cotton, and polyester. “Silk is luxurious but high-maintenance, while wool offers a stylish contrast, particularly when paired with a silk pocket square. Polyester, though lightweight, may give off a cheaper vibe,” Imran explained.

When it comes to colour and pattern, solid-coloured ties like navy and burgundy are versatile options. Striped ties convey professionalism, with thinner stripes exuding a more refined look. Polka dots offer a classic choice, while paisley ties add a touch of history and sophistication.

Suspenders: A return to classic cool

Suspenders, once deemed old-fashioned, have made a stylish comeback, offering both practicality and a dapper aesthetic.

The key to wearing suspenders well is understanding the occasion and coordinating them with the rest of your outfit.  

Avishek Dash, a banker, shared his experience of wearing suspenders for a decade or more. “Pairing leather suspenders with a casual ensemble or opting for silk ones with a formal suit can instantly elevate your overall look.”

Remember, the proper fit is crucial when wearing suspenders. “They should be adjusted to comfortably hold up your trousers without causing them to sag or pull uncomfortably,” cautioned Avishek. 

The thickness of the suspenders is also important. Dr Mizanur Rahman, former chairman of the Human Rights Commission, is known for his distinctive use of suspenders. “There are thin suspenders and thick ones as well. Always choose the thickness of your suspenders, keeping the outfit in mind,” he mentions.

Clip-on suspenders are the go-to if you want easy versatility. Just attach them to any pair of pants. They’re the laid-back choice— perfect for city shorts, funky jeans, or any fashion-forward outfit. 

For a slightly more formal vibe, go for button-on suspenders. These require pants with hidden buttons on the inside of the waistband. If your trousers lack them, add your own or let your tailor do it. 

Y-back or X-back? Y-back is the modern choice. Unless you’ve got unusual pants-keeping-up issues or super sloping shoulders, Y-back is the way to go.

Belt: Blending in balance

The wrong belt draws unwanted attention to your belly and can make you feel uncomfortable and self-conscious. You need to know about the types of belts out there and which one you should buy. 

The rule of thumbs for belts is to match the belt colour to your shoes for a cohesive look. Black belts pair well with black shoes, while brown belts complement brown or other earth-toned shoes.

There are mainly two types of belts: Dress belt and casual belt. Choose a belt that matches the formality of your outfit.

Typically made from leather, dress belts are sleek and formal, suitable for wearing with dress pants or suits. More relaxed in style, casual belts may feature different materials like canvas or suede, often worn with jeans or chinos.

Canvas belts are lightweight and perfect for summer or outdoor activities, commonly adorned with vibrant patterns or designs, adding a playful touch to any ensemble.

The buckle in the belt catches the eyes. The prong buckle is the most common type–this one basically goes with any outfit but is more suitable for a formal one. Then there is the box frame buckle, which is a rectangular frame with a prong, offering a sleek and modern look. Make sure you don’t mess up. 

Pocket square: A touch of colour

A mere six to twelve inches of fabric, folded and tucked into a jacket’s breast pocket, possesses the remarkable ability to elevate an outfit from ordinary to extraordinary.

Its origins are debated, with some tracing it back to ancient Egypt, where noblemen used scented cloths to ward off odours, while others attribute it to mediaeval European knights who adorned their breastplates with handkerchiefs as symbols of luck and chivalry. Regardless of its history, the pocket square as we know it emerged during the 1920s, becoming a symbol of refinement and class for dapper gentlemen.

Today, pocket squares come in a variety of fabrics and patterns, from classic white linen to vibrant silk, catering to every occasion and personal style. Whether attending a black-tie event or strolling through the city streets, there’s a pocket square to suit every taste.

Different folding techniques, such as the presidential fold or the puff fold, offer endless opportunities for creative presentation. Pairing the pocket square with the rest of the outfit involves selecting complementary fabrics and designs, ensuring a harmonious look.

In terms of etiquette, proper placement of the pocket square is key—ensuring it peeks out slightly from the jacket’s breast pocket for visibility. Coordination with other elements of the outfit, such as ties, shirts, or socks, helps achieve a harmonious overall look. When done right, the pocket square adds a touch of sophistication and flair to any outfit.


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