If there is one piece of couture that shows that you’ve come of age as a sophisticated gent about town, it has to be the three piece suit. Positively oozing charisma, it’s stylish, it’s versatile, and it will rise to any occasion. But there’s more to the three-piece suit than matching any old waistcoat to any old jacket and trousers. If you’re going to wear a three-piece suit like a boss, you need to do it right.
How to Wear a Three-Piece Suit
The traditional three-piece suit is made up of single-breasted jacket, waistcoat and trousers. All should be all made from the same material. And all should have the same lining. While selecting a contrasting waistcoat can work, it compromises the sleekness and formality of the look and needs to be carefully controlled to avoid looking clownish. So, for the most formal occasions, if you’re going to boss it, you need a suit like the Ellroy. In classic black, the single-breasted jacket, double-breasted waistcoat combo in contemporary skinny fit holds gravitas and style.
If you want to lift it further to wedding day chic, consider the Fleet floral. It delivers all of the above, with a sumptuous floral flocking for a final finishing touch.
Wearing a three-piece suit to work can feel a bit pretentious. But it’s all about finding the right suit. And in spring and early summer particularly, a three-piece makes a great option, delivering easy layers that allow you to maintain that smart aesthetic even when things start to heat up and the jacket has to come off.
A suit like the Salut in blue check is formal without being overly so. The skinny fit cut and white piping give it a contemporary edge which ensures that while it’s fully fit for work, it’s also suited for drinks afterwards.
Not feeling the check? The Uptown suit, with its understated charcoal wool blend, carries a more pared-back aesthetic without losing any of the smarts.
Day at the races? We've got you covered! For that and relaxed affairs with a smarter dress code, a three-piece suit like the Ginger in burgundy checks all the boxes. It’s bold without being brash, and buttoned up with a plain shirt, it’s also oh-so-stylish.
Dreaming more about cutting a dash at those not-so-distant summer do's? There’s no rule that says that three-piece suits can’t be colourful. And the Isaak definitely bedazzles. The glorious pastel floral pattern brings pizazz to any occasion, and yet the overall style is sleek, sophisticated, and poised. Perfect for spring and summer weddings.
Three-piece suit essentials to remember
- Keep your shirt plain. Wear a tie. And if you want to accessorise, go for a simple pocket square, plain cufflinks and plain tie bar or waistcoat chain.
- Don’t fasten the bottom button of your waistcoat.
- Belts are an optional extra, but only essential if you need it to keep your trousers up – and here, braces are better. The whole point of the three-piece suit is to present a clear visual sweep of fabric from top to toe.
- Make sure that your waistcoat overs the beltline by an inch or two to avoid any scruffy shirt bulges. You’re not at high school now.
- Select a waistcoat that will stand up on its own without a jacket – but fitted well enough to avoid unsightly shaping when worn beneath your jacket.
The three-piece suit is one of our all-time favourite sartorial choices. It’s versatile, charismatic and unspeakably stylish. If you want to be ready for any occasion, a three-piece suit is a wardrobe essential.