Style Guide

How to guide How to guide

How to guide

What to wear & when What to wear & when

What to wear & when

  • Wondering what to wear and when?
    Check out our guide to make sure you are always dressed to impress
  • Black Tie
  • White Tie
  • Wedding
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Black Tie Style

Black tie is a dress code for formal evening events, and is worn to many types of social functions. Like with any dress code there are many rules on how to get it right. Follow this short guide and you won't be able to put a foot wrong! Remember everything mentioned can be found here at Dobell - just click on the links!

When it comes to the history of the tuxedo it can be accurately dated back to the summer of 1886. However, there is much debate about its exact origin. Legend has it that Pierre Lorillard IV an American tobacco magnate with enormous wealth, designed the tuxedo and his son Griswold Lorillard first wore it to the annual Autumn Ball of the Tuxedo Park Club- a village just outside of New York and renowned for its upper crust society members.

While parts of this story are without a doubt true, the first phase of the tuxedo actually began earlier that summer when James Brown Potter a wealthy New York coffee broker was invited to visit the Prince of Wales (later King Edward VII) in Sandringham when they met on vacation in England at a court ball in London. Once at Sandringham Potter realised he had not a clue on what to wear to the formal dinners. After summoning up the courage to ask the Prince for guidance on the matter, he was sent immediately to the Prince’s own tailor in London’s Saville row, Henry Poole and Co. Here he was fitted for a short black jacket- minus the usual tails and reminiscent of a British riding coat, a style that the prince had taken to wearing of late.

When Griswold paraded this new jacket at the Autumn Ball it caused an enormous amount of excitement. The story spread throughout the land like and at once the dawn of a new staple formal wear garment was with us.

A tuxedo can transform any man, giving him instant self confidence. Follow this short guide and you can’t go wrong:

The word Tuxedo refers to the suit or jacket known to the British as a dinner jacket or DJ and to the French, Germans and Italians as the smoking jacket. Tuxedos are traditionally worn at events such as weddings, formal dinner parties, when going to the opera or ballet or any other event for that matter that states the dress code is ‘Black Tie’ on the invitation.

These days you get a variety of colorful tuxedos; however we would generally advise to stick to classic black to avoid looking out of place! Cream however, can also look sophisticated, but must be worn only in the summer or warm climates. A good tux is a real investment and can last for decades so be careful to choose a style that lasts. To be safe, stick to these three styles:

Peak lapel

Shawl lapel

Notch lapel

Only single breasted are actually thought of as classic tuxedos.

View our range of tuxedos here...

Trousers
Trousers are simple they should not have turn-ups or belt loops. Traditionally a braid detail or strip of material that matches the lapels lapel facing runs down each outer seam. They can either be a pleated front style or a more modern flat front. View our range of tuxedo trousers here...

Tuxedo Shirts
Tuxedo shirts of either black or white look great with a smart tuxedo and pleated or ribbed panels can add a little distinction. You can wear either a wing or a laydown collar. To get it really right you should always wear a shirt with a double cuff and accessorized with cufflinks. View our range of tuxedo shirts here...

Accessories
Whether you choose to wear a necktie, a bow tie or a cummerbund, be creative to get an exclusive look. The sky’s the limit when it comes to colors and patterns! View our range of accessories here...

Tuxedo Shoes
Lastly pay attention to your shoes. Every detail counts to really show off your tuxedo to its full potential. Laced tuxedo shoes or patent leather slip-on shoes are a must. The shinier the better! View our range of tuxedo shoes here...