Is There Ever a Right Time for Suspenders?
Suspenders, or braces, are commonly seen at costume parties, on television, and in your great-great-grandfather’s day. They’re hardly mainstream, but they can also be a glamorous and fun accessory to incorporate into your wardrobe.
In bygone days, suspenders were a must for any gentleman. However, they wore them hidden under their clothes, not as a fashion statement. For reasons of convention, be wary of wearing suspenders in the most formal of situations. However, they are appropriate for moderately formal and smart casual settings, and can be incorporated into your daily wardrobe if you fancy yourself as a snazzy dresser.
It’s impossible to wear suspenders without pants as they need to clip or button to the top of your trousers. But you wouldn’t wear braces with just any old pair of pants. Suspenders are quite a formal piece, so are best worn with suit pants. They look divine with formal pants, a shirt and a tie without a suit jacket. Depending on your personal style and for a more playful look, you may want to substitute the tie for a bowtie.
In keeping with the prohibition era aesthetic that suspenders fit into so well, they look great when paired with grey suit pants. A cap or fedora can also be donned to finish the look.
Suspenders can be found in all manner of crazy patterns. Wearing fluoro, rainbow or studded braces is best left to those going for a punk look. For a classic style, choose block colors or vertically striped braces.
A functional accessory, braces are made to hold up your pants. So it is not necessary to wear a belt in addition to your suspenders. Not because it doesn’t look good- wearing suspenders and a belt simultaneously is not particularly unfortunate looking. Rather, if you wear both at the same time, people who notice your outfit will question why you are wearing both. If you want to avoid being asked why you are wearing both a belt and braces by everyone you meet, ditch the belt. Besides, you don’t need to wear both. Suspenders will do a better job of holding up your pants than a belt does.
One inch to one-and-a-half inches thick is the ideal width. Two inches is the maximum width your suspenders should be.
Thinner suspenders, one inch or less, are great for looking stylish and should be worn with light and form-fitting clothing. Meanwhile, thick suspenders can make you look dorky. Keep them in mind for dress-up parties, but not for your day-to-day wardrobe.
Keep your suspenders proportionate to your size. If you’re of a bigger build, then you can get away with wearing thick suspenders. Also consider the weight of your pants. Wearing suspenders will put this load onto your shoulders. If you are wearing heavy pants, thicker straps are better as the weight will be distributed across a larger area.
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About Natasha Abrahams Natasha Abrahams is a writer and journalism student from Melbourne, Australia. When she is not busy with being a principal writer on Weekendnotes or skipping lectures, she can be found emptying her wallet at the nearest shopping centre. You can read more from Natasha at: http://mensstyleandfashion.com/