How to Rock Christmas Menswear

It’s the festive season, which means many, many parties. The question, what do us guys wear? Well, as an early Christmas gift, Impact Style has you covered.

First, a few ground rules:

a) Always get an idea of the theme. 

There is absolutely no point in wearing your smartest suit to a festive fancy dress party. Or vice versa. Ask your friends how they’ll interpret the theme if you aren’t sure.

 b) Always keep your shoes neat.

Seriously, there is no outfit that will look good with unkempt shoes. They are the first thing anybody notices.

 c) Be festive! Maybe add some red to your pallet, or some velvet, wool, or tartan, but only as much as is required.

So you’ve polished the shoes, gauged the theme. What now?

1) The house gathering / non-theme social.

The lights will be on, you will be around the same people for most of the evening. You need the perfect outfit. Do not be too bold, but be sure to catch people’s eyes.

A way of standing out is to be discrete with splashes of colour. Think a monochrome outfit: we’ll suggest a slim fit trouser or chino and a thin, plain V-neck jumper (navy is always a safe option but use the colours you know suit you). Pair this with a statement shirt and match your sock colour to the main colour in the shirt. If your shirt doesn’t have a pattern, your socks can. But stick to polka dots or stripes, and the colour or undertones of your shirt. Never wear Christmas socks.

For a smart-causal party, you can get away with most footwear. In the winter boots are always a good idea, they’ll keep you warm and they add a few inches to your height (this applies to formal wear too). However, a minimalist trainer can be equally stylish, and comfier. Experiment with it. It is usually fine to wear black shoes with any colour outfit, even navy.

Or find a really nice Christmas jumper. Some are notably badly made; some are a work of art. Perhaps investing in one solid jumper could sort you out for life!

2) The formal.

Everyone’s nightmare, how to stand out in a suit, in a room full of suits? Fear not:

Step one – Make sure your suit actually fits you. The most expensive suit that is an inch too big or small will look cheap. So concentrate on this. It’s worth buying a cheaper suit and using the additional money to have it tailored (if you don’t already own one). If you do, make sure it fits properly.

Step two – Avoid a white shirt. Everyone will wear a white shirt. If you want to go relatively safe, use a light blue shirt (or baby pink, but as it’s Christmas time bare in mind you can’t wear red with pink). If you want to be a bit more bold, find something striped or polka dot.

Step three – The tie is essential. If you have a plain shirt maybe opt for a knitted tie. Tweet, tartan, plain – they’re wintery and less people will own one. If you have a pattered shirt make sure your tie is the same colour as your suit.

Step four – Match your shoes and socks. Additionally for a formal you’ll want the socks to be plain and to match your shoes (ideally your shoes will match the suit) but if they don’t, wear black shoes and black socks, with a black belt – this even looks fine with a navy suit.

Step five (optional) – Don’t forget about the accessories. If you have a patterned shirt, consider matching the pocket square to the suit. Or if the square is on the blazer, match it with the shirt. This is an additional chance to squeeze some festivity into the outfit.

Also don’t rule out bracelets, necklaces etc. Christmas is full of glitter and cheer. Lads can sparkle too.

 3) The fancy dress party.

No Santa hats. Either go for a full Santa outfit or find something else. Other than that, go all out. The more you commit to a fancy dress – the better you’ll be seen.

The safe option is to sport a Christmas jumper, perhaps pair it with a plain white shirt, slim-fit bottoms and suede shoes. Stick on some glitter, rosy cheeks, or reindeer antlers if you want to make some additional effort.

Any questions? Send us a message, and enjoy the festive season in style!

Rhys Thomas

Image Credit: Kevin Dooley via Flickr – License.

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