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What are the differences between a dress suit and an ordinary suit?  We explain them to you!

You have probably often ask yourself what to wear on which occasion. If you have been invited to dinner in an elegant restaurant or have a business meeting, the decision will be relatively easy – both occasions call for a smart, but not a dress suit. However, what about your son’s prom or the ball at the end of your daughter’s dance classes, or a wedding – maybe even your own? 

Of course, in that case, you would not wish to look underdressed and maybe, the question of what to wear will make you break out into a sweat more than the ballroom dancing that is de rigeur on such occasions. Can you relate to this? Then we have reassuring news for you: it’s actually not that complicated! The dress code is often specified on the invitation. Let us have a look at how to correctly interpret the dress code for an event and what makes a dinner suit so special compared to other, ordinary suits.

[Translate to English:] blaue Business Weste von bugatti

Everything starts with the respective dress code.

If you are expected to wear an ordinary black suit , it will probably say “smart dress” on the invitation. 

If the host specifies “evening wear” or “black tie” on the invitation, this is a clear sign that you should opt for a dress suit.

By the way: things can get even more formal! If the invitation specifies something like “full evening dress” or “white tie”, you are probably expected to wear a morning suit or tailcoat. 

If all else fails, a dress suit may be acceptable for such events. However, you should not even think about wearing an ordinary suit.

The suit – a perfect all-rounder

Every suit – a dinner suit or a morning suit is no exception – consists of a jacket and a matching pair of trousers. Three-piece suits also include a waistcoat.

In contrast to a dinner suit, which is formal evening wear for gentlemen, an ordinary suit is an all-rounder that is suitable for many occasions and can be worn at all times of the day – although these may, of course, also include evening events.

Suit jackets are either single- or double-breasted. A single-breasted suit jacket has a single button front; a double-breasted suit jacket has two that overlap.

What’s the perfect fit for a suit?

Below, you will find a brief checklist that will help you to determine whether a suit really fits you well.

  • The sleeves of the jacket must not be too long. The cuffs of your shirt should still be visible. 
  • The collar must not stick out from your neck.
  • The suit jacket should cover the openings of the trouser pockets as well as your posterior.
  • The trousers must be neither too short nor too long. If the trouser legs break slightly on top of your shoes, you have chosen the right length.
  • Do not buy a suit that is too tight. The jacket should not be wide open at the lapels when buttoned up, and the lining of the trouser pockets must not be visible.
When do I fasten which button?

Single-breasted suit jackets have one, two or three buttons. Pay attention to the following rules:

Suit and sports jacket etiquette #1

If your suit or sports jacket has only one button, this button must be fastened when standing up. When you sit down, you unfasten the button. 

Suit and sports jacket etiquette #2

On the two-button version, only the top button is fastened. Again, the button is unfastened when sitting down.

Suit and sports jacket etiquette #3

If your suit or sports jacket has three buttons, you have to fasten the middle button. You can also fasten the top button, if you like, but please: never fasten the bottom button. When you sit down, you unfasten all of the buttons.

Suit and sports jacket etiquette #4

With a dark suit from bugatti , you are always well and elegantly dressed. Black, anthracite or navy blue are particularly popular suit colours.

What to wear with a suit?

A white shirt and a tie or bow tie in a muted colour is always the right choice. If the occasion is quite informal, you can also wear a colourful shirt with a tie or bow tie in a matching colour with your suit. A matching handkerchief worn as a pocket square adds that certain something to your outfit.

To complete the picture to perfection, you should wear leather shoes and long socks – preferably knee-length. A glimpse of “naked” male leg is an absolute no-no!

The dinner jacket – elegant for formal occasions

A dinner suit is a particularly elegant evening suitToday’s dinner jacket evolved from the “smoking jacket” once worn by British gentlemen. 

Originally, this was a velvet smoking jacket which gentlemen slipped into after the official part of the evening was over, taking off their formal frock coats when they retreated to a separate room to smoke or play cards after dinner.

A classic dinner jacket is black – or dark navy or maybe anthracite, at the most – and is worn to evening events that start after 18:00. The so-called dress jacket, on the other hand, is white or light beige and is worn as an outdoor version of the dinner jacket to outdoor functions.

These days, only a few minor details differentiate a dress suit from an ordinary suit, which it is in any case. The basic concept is essentially the same; a dress suit also consists of a suit jacket, a pair of trousers and a waistcoat. However, there are some easily spotted differences.

Of course, you can purchase a wide choice of accessories for your suit outfit from bugatti online .



The dinner jacket – distinctive details

How can you tell that a suit jacket is a dinner jacket? The most distinctive feature is certainly the lapels, which are usually made of contrasting shiny silk or satin, rather than the same material as the jacket. A dinner jacket also never has notch lapels; it has either peak or shawl lapels. 

Unlike an ordinary suit jacket, a dinner suit jacket has no seam between the collar and the lapels. The collar runs into the lapel and then all the way down to the top button. You won’t spot any angled pockets or patch pockets at the waist, either.

The dinner suit trousers – a formal version of classic suit trousers

The most distinctive detail on a pair of dinner suit trousers are the galloon stripes down either side. This is a silk or satin stripe made from the same contrasting fabric as the jacket’s lapels. The galloon stripes also conceal the side pockets. You won’t find any back pockets. 

Even if you have the smartest belt ever hanging in your wardrobe – leave it there, a belt is never worn with dinner suit trousers. They sit best if they are held up by braces made of either black or white silk or barathea. Side adjusters at the waistband ensure a perfect fit.

Cummerbund or waistcoat – a matter of personal taste

If you don’t want to wear a waistcoat with your dinner suit, a so-called cummerbund is a must. Apparently, British soldiers brought the fashion for sashes from India to Europe in colonial times. The Persian word “kamarband” (=waistband) became the Anglicised  “cummerbund”.

A cummerbund is therefore nothing but a sash that can be adjusted at the back and is worn around the waist instead of a waistcoat. The colour of the cummerbund should match the colour of the bow tie. 

If you opt for a waistcoat, you should preferably choose a model without lapels that flatters your shape. The front panels of a dinner suit waistcoat can be made of black silk or the same fabric as the suit. You should refrain from choosing bright colours. They are a most unsuitable choice.

A two-piece dress suit, by the way, includes neither a cummerbund nor a waistcoat as a double-breasted dress jacket is worn only completely buttoned up.

What else do you need for a perfect dinner suit outfit?

A classic shirt is white, with turned over cuffs and a wing or stand-up collar to ensure that the bow tie sits perfectly. Ideally, the button front should be covered. A black bow tie is traditionally worn with a dinner suit. A handkerchief used as a pocket square completes the picture of the perfect gentleman. You should refrain from wearing jewellery, not even a watch. The focus should be wholly on your outfit. However, the cufflinks may be shiny!

Black patent leather shoes are stylish and the perfect match for a dinner suit. Whichever shoes you choose to wear with your dinner suit, they should always be polished to a shine. Your socks should also be black and knee-length, if possible.

 

What should I definitely have in my wardrobe?

If you are frequently invited to evening events, you should own a dinner suit and the matching accessories which, by the way, you can also buy from bugatti.

In any case, an ordinary dark suit is a must-have for any gentleman. Upgrade your suit for formal occasions with a white shirt, a silk tie and a high-quality handkerchief for a well-dressed and elegant look that is suitable for almost all occasions.

A morning suit, on the other hand, is worn on relatively few occasions, so you don’t really need to own one. Should you need a morning suit, you can always hire it.

If you own an attractive everyday suit and a festive dress suit, you will be well-equipped for any occasion and will always make a good impression!

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