Are you rummaging through your wardrobe, hoping to find THE outfit for your next event? If you’re considering putting on a classic suit, we have something to help you suit up in style. Look no further than the timeless statement piece of men’s fashion: a waistcoat!
That’s right! A waistcoat, also known as a vest, is a classic fashion staple for every gentleman. It adds much-needed charm and sophistication to your usual suit, boosting your overall look and, automatically, your confidence.
So if you plan to make a lasting impression and showcase your impeccable sense of style at the next event, then don’t think twice before purchasing an elegant and well-tailored waistcoat to match your suit.
But which one to buy? Where is the right place to wear it? And finally, how do you style it? This blog will answer all those questions!
The Role Of Waistcoats In Fashion
Waistcoats have a long and illustrious history in the world of fashion, transcending time and trends. These versatile garments have persisted for ages, gracing both formal occasions and everyday wear with their distinctive blend of elegance and practicality.
Waistcoats, which first appeared in the 17th century as part of men's three-piece suits, quickly evolved into a mark of refined taste and social status. They evolved in terms of design, material, and purpose over time. Waistcoats are no longer limited to menswear; they have also found a place in women's fashion, surpassing gender barriers and embracing inclusivity.
Beyond their visual charm, waistcoats also come with practical benefits. They also give you a flattering silhouette by accentuating the waist, regardless of your body shape.
As fashion evolves, waistcoats remain a timeless classic, full of charisma and class.
Types of Waistcoats
When it comes to choosing a waistcoat for your next big event, it’s important to understand the many types of waistcoats that are available today. This way, you can select the one that suits you and the occasion the best!
Here Are Some Common Types Of Waistcoats
1. Single-Breasted Waistcoat
This style of waistcoat, which has one row of buttons along the front, is the most common. It is a versatile piece that goes well with both professional and casual attire.
2. Double-Breasted Waistcoat
Contrary to the single-breasted waistcoat, this style has two rows of overlapping buttons that fasten on the front. Double-breasted waistcoats frequently offer a more formal and refined look that is appropriate for upscale events.
3. Shawl Collar Waistcoat
The shawl collar waistcoat features a rounded, continuous collar that extends from one front side to the other. This style offers a classic and sophisticated look.
4. Notch Collar Waistcoat
The notch collar waistcoat is inspired by suit jackets and has a triangle cutout at the neckline, similar to a blazer's lapel. It has both a formal and informal appeal, making it appropriate for many occasions.
5. Horseshoe/U-Cut Waistcoat
This waistcoat features a deeper U-shaped neckline that exposes more of the shirt worn underneath. It gives a sense of elegance and works for both formal and semi-formal occasions.
6. Nehru Jacket/ Bandi Jacket/Sherwani Waistcoat
This waistcoat style is from India and has a Mandarin collar and a button-up front. The Nehru jacket is a popular choice in Indian and South Asian fashion, and can be worn with traditional outfits for weddings, ceremonies, and other special occasions.
Choose the one that suits your personal style and the ambience of the event for the perfect look!
When And Where Should You Wear A Waistcoat?
You can wear a waistcoat based on the occasion, the dress code, and your personal style. Here are some suggestions on when and where to wear a waistcoat:
- Formal gatherings: Waistcoats are a traditional part of formal clothing. They are frequently worn as part of a three-piece suit, which also includes a dress shirt and a suit jacket.
Weddings, black-tie galas, corporate formal events, and significant ceremonies are all examples of formal occasions where you can wear a waistcoat.
- Business settings: A business suit can be worn with a waistcoat in specific professional settings. This gives your attire that extra dash of sophistication and professionalism.
- Semi-formal events: For occasions that lie somewhere between formal and casual, a waistcoat can be a terrific option. Consider cocktail parties, garden parties, and nighttime festivities where you want to seem put together but not overdressed.
- Vintage or themed parties: Waistcoats can be a crucial element of a variety of themed parties or events, such as 1920s Gatsby or Peaky Blinders-themed parties and Victorian-inspired gatherings.
These occasions allow you to express your particular style while still having fun with historical fashion pieces.
To remember: While waistcoats can be a fashionable accent to your look, they aren't necessarily required in informal or relaxed settings.
Styling A Waistcoat: Dos And Don’ts
When it comes to wearing a waistcoat, getting the right look can make all the difference. Follow these DOs and DON'Ts to master the art of styling your waistcoat:
- Always wear a waistcoat that fits you the best. Premium tailoring is a very important factor to consider when purchasing a waistcoat. Even if a stitch or button is not perfect, it will show. The fitter and more snug your waistcoat, the better the look.
- Most times, a double-breasted waistcoat is often preferred over the single-breasted one. A double-breasted waistcoat can add interest to the space between a shirt and a single-breasted jacket, looking even better on formal occasions.
- Always match your waistcoat with the colour of your trousers/pants. If you’re wearing beige trousers, your waistcoat should be beige too.
However, if you’re matching your trousers with your blazer, make sure your waistcoat complements the blazer and is in the same colour as your tie (if you choose to wear one).
- If you have seen the deleted scenes of the popular show Peaky Blinders, Tommy Shelby (played by Cillian Murphy) is seen yelling at his family members to always leave the bottom button of the waistcoat undone. For years now, that’s been the golden rule.
- Never wear your waistcoat with a short-sleeved shirt. Always go for a shirt with long sleeves for a more polished look.
- Bulk layering is always a no-no. Avoid wearing a waistcoat over chunky or oversized garments, as it can ruin the whole purpose of the waistcoat, a sleek silhouette. Make sure your dress shirt is crisp, snug, and fits you perfectly.
- Finally, never ever wear your waistcoat with your jeans. While waistcoats can be styled for casual events too, jeans are definitely not an option. Gauge the formality of the occasion before choosing one.
Keep these points in mind the next time you decide to wear a waistcoat!
Perfectly Fitted Waistcoats From Kachins Couture
For over four decades, Kachins has remained at the forefront of crafting bespoke suits, shirts, blazers, waistcoats, trousers and more with a touch of class and grace.
In the era of growing fashion trends every day, we aim to seamlessly blend modern trends with timeless artistry, ensuring an unmatched sartorial experience.
Presenting to you, a carefully curated selection of premium global fabric brands, tailored to meet the refined tastes of the contemporary gentleman.
Explore the art of personalised fashion with #CustomByKachins.
Schedule an appointment today, or simply visit our website to check out more!
So, should you wear a waistcoat to your next event? The answer is a resounding yes! Be it a wedding, a gala, a dinner party, a work meeting, or a black-tie event, make sure you stand out from the crowd and make a statement with a perfectly-tailored waistcoat!
And as discussed above, a well-structured waistcoat not only symbolises class, it also has the power to enhance your physique and create a flattering shape. All you have to do is to pick the right waistcoat that complements your suit, ensures it suits you well and style it in the best way possible!
So, the next time you consider your outfit for a special event, go for a waistcoat; they might just be the missing piece that completes your stunning look!
When should you wear a waistcoat?
Most times, a waistcoat is thought to be a statement piece that boosts your regular suit. It is often worn for formal occasions like important business meetings, parties, formal dinners, black tie events, and more.
What is the etiquette for wearing a waistcoat?
The cardinal rule to wear a waistcoat is to always leave your bottom button undone. This rule has been followed since the invention of waistcoats to provide maximum comfort when sitting down or moving. It also enhances the overall look of your outfit.
Can I wear a waistcoat to a party?
Yes, of course. You can wear a waistcoat to a party and other big events like formal dinners, work meetings, weddings, and other such events. Even if you wish to wear a waistcoat to a casual party, make sure you style it wisely.
Do waistcoats make you look slimmer?
Yes, waistcoats have been known to make you look slimmer, as wearing them gives you the illusion of having a smaller waist. It hugs your torso perfectly, making you look fit and slim.
Can you wear a vest casually?
Yes, you can wear a vest for your casual outfits too. While they are usually recommended for formal events, you can also wear them to your two-piece suit to add a bit of formality to your casual outfit.