October 7, 2010

Men’s Formal Wear and the Full Visual Effect

Hugh Jackman with Tieless Tuxedo

Hugh Jackman in Tuxedo

Hugh Jackman at the world premiere of X-Men in April 2009 provided a vivid example of how the tieless formal look can payoff if you do everything just right and you can also manage to look impeccably perfect.

At the X-Men premiere, Jackman is pictured wearing a black tuxedo, white shirt and a big white smile. Where’s the black tie? Obviously, it’s not there. The collar on his white shirt is open, signaling that Jackman’s idea of a formal premiere is less formal than others.

But what makes this work as a fashion statement is Jackman’s unshaven look. That’s the topper. That deep, black growth, which is not really a beard yet and should have been shaved if dressing in full formal wear, telegraphs to all that Jackman is not interested in going with the total look a buttoned shirt and bow tie would give him.

This is a good example of a guy setting limits for exactly how formal he’s going to look by making strong choices. (Of course, good actors are known for making very clear, strong choices when they play a role.)

Consider what you’re wearing to a formal occasion and remember that you are creating a total picture. It’s not only what formal wear accessories you decide to include, but it’s also how you decide to wear your hair, whether or not you shave and how you display the clothing on your body. You’re creating a strong visual image and by ensuring it’s consistent, you’ll be able to create a unified look.

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