3 Essential Pieces for This Holiday Party Season

Source: iStock

Source: iStock

Gentlemen, it’s time to step your game and show the world your sartorial prowess: It’s party season, meaning you need to look your best at all the parties you’re set to attend up until you pop champagne on New Years. Here is your Cheat Sheet guide to looking good for any and all festivities that require a little something extra. Here are the top three pieces to tackle this season and survive all of the over-indulgence in style.

1. The velvet jacket

velvet jacket

Source: John Lewis

There is something so Keith Richards-esque about this one. The velvet jacket, seen in recent seasons by Dolce & Gabbana, Haider Ackermann, the always sophisticated and handsome Tom Ford, and also on the red carpet by the likes of Ryan Gosling and Bradley Cooper, is hailed as this season’s answer to texture, says D’Marge. The plushy blazer is the perfect statement-making alternative to a dinner jacket, and with a sharply tailored fit, it’s surprisingly versatile.

FashionBeans suggests that the perfect fit for the jacket is slim, rather than boxy, and should fit similarly to your suit jacket: the sleeves not too long or short, the jacket nipped at the waist, and it should not be too broad or restrictively narrow in the shoulders or upper back. Wear it as a straight swap for tuxedo or suit jacket.

If you’re more a showman, and if the event the event is less formal, try a velvet blazer in lighter colors like rose, mint, or yellow or opt for a trendy jacquard brocade in black, allowing the beautiful pattern and plush fabric to make you a stand out at the party. If you’re going to a formal event or you’re one that prefers a muted look, a plain velvet jacket in jewel tones like rich blue, forest green, emerald, black, navy, or burgundy with the absence of pattern allows you to play with patterns elsewhere, such as adding a polka dot pocket square, striped, or printed dress shirt or a printed pair of pants (more on that in a moment) to your ensemble. If the event is casual or there is no strict dress code, then simply pull it over a roll neck with a pair of black denim. Finish off your look with leather loafers or contrast pop-colored brogues. Try Reiss Velvet Magnum Velvet Blazer, in Grey by John Lewis.

2. Patterned pants


Source: Nordstrom

Look like the most stylish man in the room with a pair of pattern pants, from subtle houndstooth or checkered to paisley options. You can easily swap these styles for your normal neutrals to liven up your festive season styles. As always, if you’re wearing a standout piece then the rest of your look should be low-key. For example, pair your pattern pants of choice with a crisp white dress shirt and smart black or brown shoes, says FashionBeans. Opt for trousers with a slim fit, but make sure they’re not overly skinny, that way you can wear them casually with a black or white T-shirt and a pair of nice tassel loafers. Try J.B. Britches Flat Front Check Wool Trousers from Nordstrom.

3. The tuxedo

young man in tuxedo, suit, stylish

Source: iStock

The obvious choice, especially if you’re attending a black tie event, is to opt for a tux. As a general rule, if an invitation says “black tie optional,” it’s actually a polite way to say that it’s not really an option. It’s always better to overdress than underdress. Famous suit company Jos. A Bank says that when it comes to the classic tuxedo, you have a wide range of options with the two main pieces. You can never go wrong with a classic notch lapel, single-breasted jacket. Your other lapel options include a shawl, peak, or Nehru, which you have to be careful with choosing as it strictly depends upon the type of event you’re attending. When it comes to the pants, you want to make sure that there’s a silk stripe down the outside of each leg, making sure they’re tailored to fit your height perfectly. When it comes to color, your go-to options are midnight blue or black because they’re acceptable in all party situations.

The next piece to add to the equation is your dress shirt. It’s important to select a shirt this is a little subdued. There are two different types of tuxedo shirts that are differentiated by collar: traditional point collars and wing collars. The wing collar reveals the band of the bow tie around you neck, while the other does not. That said, either is an acceptable style to wear with a classic tuxedo. You can also choose to wear a shirt with a plain or pleated front. Just make sure that whichever style you choose that both need to be finished with French cuffs with cuff links.

Lastly, Jos. A. Bank suggests that the best type of tie to wear is the classic bow tie that you can tie yourself. Finish off the tuxedo with a pair of patent leather shoes that you can also wear with some of your other choice holiday party outfits. Try the Black Tuxedo from Express.

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