At one point we’ve all owned a hand knitted Christmas jumper embroidered with Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, complete with a red nose that actually lights up. This is fun and festive, but it’s not not going to fly at your work Christmas party or when you’re meeting your partner’s parents for the fist time at the extended family Christmas. Our guide to dressing for the festive season allows you to look jolly yet polished.
Pocket squares operate on a sliding scale of festivity- from ‘all-out lights and bells festive’ to a subtle hint of Christmas. Keep things polished and refined by adding a red or green pocket square to your suit or blazer, ensuring it is patterned with a paisley print rather than a snowman.
A great way to add festivity to your look for formal business events and dinners, look for a red and white patterns for a more traditional touch, keeping it simple with a white border against a plain red background. A fine red and green check pattern is also Christmas-sy without being over the top.
A photo posted by Men Suit Style (@mensuitstyle) on Nov 13, 2015 at 3:48pm PST
The fall-back present from every secret Santa, quirky Christmas neck-ties are only ok if you happen to be a child entertainer or are in attendance at a Christmas fancy dress. Avoid ties patterned with snowflakes, baubles and mistletoe as there are other, more polished ways to embrace the silly season.
A plain red skinny tie looks fresh and preppy when paired with a blue suit, making it a great summer option that hints at festivity. For something a little more classic, a deep emerald green tie with an 8cm blade and white min-geo print will allude to a classic White Christmas and create the optical illusion of ‘snowflakes.’
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If you find yourself working in an ultra-professional environment or at a black tie event humming “Jingle Bells,” patterned socks may be your answer to finding the perfect festive touch. Sock are easy to hide under suit trousers and pants, yet should be patterned with more refined Christmas motifs such as snowflakes, a Fairisle print or an abstracted red or green design. Socks that say “Ho ho ho” or involve images of Santa surfboarding in his underwear should be avoided. Keep it simple and charming and remember less is more.
Subtle red & green
A photo posted by Men Suit Style (@mensuitstyle) on Aug 26, 2015 at 9:53pm PDT
For most of us who love Christmas, we would find nothing unusual about getting around in fairy lights and a Santa hat. However if this is non-approved work attire, look at adding subtle hints of red and green to show your festive cheer.
A finely striped red and white shirts speaks to the candy canes we all love, yet looks dapper when paired with a navy suit and polished chestnut brogues.
In contrast, a gingham patterned shirt in a mint tone is fresh and summery, reminiscent of an Australian Christmas. Pair this with beige chinos and brogues for a fresh, smart-casual look.
As we’ve noted with pocket squares and ties, accessories are a great way to fly the Christmas colours. You can also look for cufflinks with a red or green enamel inlay to add that extra touch of cheer.
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