2019 CHARITY CHRISTMAS JUMPER

What to wear this party season

With the 'Party Season' nearly upon us, we thought that we would give you a little insight into the range of clothing that you may be required to wear, the alternatives & a little history of each style

THE DINNER JACKET

Strangely, the arrival of the 'dinner suit' in 1885 was actually designed to be a style for loosening ones tie. Edward V11 swapped his tailcoat for a silk smoking jacket with matching trousers, providing a more comfortable alternative to tails.

What to wear: The silk lapel makes the dinner jacket. There are three types of lapel, the notch, the peak and the shawl. The most popular at the moment seems to be the peak with its upwards facing point, but the shawl, where there is no point at all and the lapel curves round the chest, is arguably the most classic.


Now the colour! Black I hear you cry?! well actually, midnight blue actually appears darker in artificial light and with Daniel Craig's navy dinner jacket in James Bond has made the navy and blue a very popular choice now days.

Fabric wise, you should really go with a classic barathea, A closely woven with a slight diagonal weave appearance and broken rib effect. It has a granular or pebbled surface but it feels smooth to the touch. Weight wise, the most popular at the moment is a 12-14oz. In the old days, you would always go heavy, but with most venues now being heated, the need for the real battle proof fabrics is less important.

In regard to trousers, go fitted, classic and with a silk or grosgrain side seam. Steer away from turn ups and ideally keep clear of pleats. You want a sharp tapered leg.

The Velvet Jacket

Velvet refers to the structure of the fabric, not the fibre. It's the pile that gives the velvet its characteristics. The pile is short & dense, giving a soft shine that catches the light & gives it its unique look.


The velvet / smoking jacket, as we know it, came about when The Crimean War popularised Turkish tobacco with the British. After dinner, gentlemen may put on a smoking jacket and retire to a smoking room. The jacket was designed to absorb smoke and protect other clothing from falling ash.

Now a days, people are substituting the classic black dinner jacket for a velvet jacket. Velvet is available in a huge number of colours but I always suggest sticking to a classic navy, or maybe a deep burgundy or green if you fancy. Again, having a silk lapel is a real personal choice and by not having a silk lapel it does open up the opportunity to wear the jacket with jeans or more casual trousers.

Frogging

The Frog fastener is ornamental braiding that some people choose to have on their velvet jacket. Consisting of a button and loop, it is an ornamental fastener. The purpose of the frogging is to provide a bit of decoration to ones jacket.

Frogging came from military uniforms, particularly evident in the more prestigious Regiments.

The fashion for adding frogging to your jacket is just a way of showing a bit more flamboyance in your jacket.
There has definitely been a trend away from frogging recently, I believe more down to the fact that people are wearing velvet jackets to drinks parties and casually as well as a dinner jacket so the frogging would be too formal for these other occasions.


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