Pretty much every man owns a suit. Probably two… or three… or perhaps even more. And that’s because, regardless of who you are, or what you do, a good suit really is a vital wardrobe staple.
And until the 1970s, suits were ‘it’; they were the everyday on-trend go-to outfit for men across nearly every industry. But the truth is that men’s fashion has come a long way over the past 50 years, and today there are so many more exciting, fresh, and contemporary choices that traditional suits are starting to feel a little dated. They’re starting to seem a little boring, a little tired, a little dull, and a little outdated.
But that doesn’t have to be the case. Suits are still stylish. They’re still the ultimate in menswear. And with a few simple (and low cost!) tricks, you can easily turn any old and boring suit into something fresh.
Here are 7 inspirational ideas to get you started:
The Perfect Fragrance
The smallest detail of all is one that you can’t even see with the naked eye: fragrance. If you think that perfume is just for women, think again. In fact, finding the right scent can be one of the best ways to transform a dull everyday suit into an outfit that breathes life, energy, power, and all-round style. There are many different colognes and aftershaves out there, but what’s best? Only you can decide what scent suits your fashion sense, style, and personality, but many fragrances designed for men are often made from spicy smells, with hints of pepper, cardamom, and ginger for a masculine, almost sultry appeal.
A Colourful Pocket Square
The humble pocket square may have hit its peak in the 1920s, but its reign isn’t over just yet. And it’s actually an accessory that’s set to make new waves in the modern 21st century fashion world. Many designers are already breathing new life into this vintage style, with French-based Pochette Square being one of the latest brands to combine retro concepts with contemporary patterns. By choosing the right pocket square – one that’s bright, bold, characterful, and lively – you can instantly transform even the most tired of suits into something new and exciting, with a pop of colour that really attracts attention.
Your trousers, jacket, and shirt may be boring… but who says your shoes have to be? Switching things up and pairing a bold, stylish, or even unusual pair of shoes with your suit can up your everyday look and give your overall ensemble a little extra oomph. There are some fantastic options out there that you may not have even dreamt about trying out. For example, did you know that a pair of runners, some hiking boots, and even Texas-style cowboy boots are some of the best men’s boots for pairing with a suit? They may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but non-traditional combinations can look amazing when done right.
You can liven up any boring suit in just seconds by selecting socks that are a complete contrast from the standard blacks, blues, and browns you typically wear. And the best thing is that you can give your suit a different personality – a different edge – each and every day by choosing different sock styles. Plain socks in bright and vibrant colours are the obvious option, but don’t overlook cool patterns and imagery, too. With the right length trousers, you can easily hide crazy socks from your employer or clients, keeping them hidden away until you really want to show off your stuff and give your look a super rapid refresh.
An Eye-Catching Tie
Colourful ties as a suit-boosting accessory? You’ve already heard that one time and time again, right? Of course, you have. But ties don’t have to just be vibrant in order for them to be eye catching. An unusual texture achieves the same effect, and it’s something a bit different to the norm. If you were a fan of Roch Barbot in Todd Snyder Suiting’s FW19 campaign, then you’re probably already familiar with the knit tie; an unusual twist on the standard accessory. Knit ties add substance and tactility to a dull and boring suit, and can be just what you need if your personal style preferences don’t really allow for anything too bold.
A Simple Tie Bar
A tie bar is functional, sure. It helps keep your tie flush to your shirt, preventing it from flapping around, especially in windy weather. But what many men don’t realise is that a good tie bar can be more than just practical; it can actually help to lift a boring suit and breathe a fresh lease of life into any day to day business look. Even the most simple of tie bars can have a significant effect, adding a shimmery contrasting shine against any colour tie, and really working to draw the eye. It’s great for keeping the attention on the more interesting parts of your suit, and masking the dullness of the rest of it.
A Stylish Leather Bag
Believe it or not, it may not be your suit that’s the cause of the problem. In fact, the reason for you feeling that your look is dull and tired could be due to the overall aesthetic. So, when it comes to trying to lift a boring suit, don’t just focus on the suit alone… consider how other aspects of your ensemble could play a role in the end result. Take bags, for example. The classic accessory for any suit is a traditional briefcase, but that’s not the only option. Today, there are some fantastic leather bags for men – both shoulder bags and crossbody alternatives – that can help to add a touch of 21st century style to your suit.
Stylish Suits Never Go Out of Fashion
The suit… it may seem old and outdated on the surface, but it has all the core elements that make up a great outfit. By keeping these traditional elements, and embellishing them with modern twists and contemporary designs, it’s easy to create an outfit that’s chic yet still manages to stand the test of time.
Meheret Hailemelekot is a Marketing Assistant at Myer and has worked with such iconic Australians brands as Jetstar, Snooze, and UniSuper.