As the art of dressing makes a comeback in menswear, the tuxedo is back in the limelight. So for this holiday season — as well as for any special formal occasion — consider wearing the tuxedo as not so much a begrudging sartorial obligation, but rather, a rare opportunity to shine as the distinctive, dashing, debonair man that you are.
Today's tux is modern, minimal, molds perfectly to your body, with meticulous attention to detail that provides lots of options to leave your personal mark — qualities that you can never dream to have in an abominable rental. So invest in your own tux and never be mistaken for a groomsman again. A man of genuine style owns himself — and his tux.
A classic tuxedo jacket has a single button, but the 2-button is a popular option. The peak lapel or shawl collar is the standard, but the notch collar has come to be commonly accepted. Although black is the most widely worn color, midnight blue is also a classic tux color that offers a dose of sophistication yet "something different." Remember: no more than 2 buttons, ever, and most importantly, make sure you're wearing a jacket, not a box.
Although the stand-up wing collar (below left) is the traditional tuxedo shirt style, the most current collar style is the turndown collar, which is basically the collar style you see on your normal dress shirt (below, right). Please: no vest, no cummerbund, and no clip-on bow ties, although if you prefer a cummerbund, keep it sleek and subtle. Don't get too fussy with the shape of the pocket square either, i.e., no origami.
Daniel Craig gets my vote for the best dressed tux man in the world. I just about die every time I see him in a tux (or suit ... or anything ... or almost nothing). Here, he sports a midnight blue classic shawl collar with silk cuffs by Tom Ford. Two words: Freakin' Sublime.
Classic Done Right: Single button peak lapel. Polished. Natty. Gracious. Charming. Turner Classic Movies ... but 2010.
Bringing Sexy Back: Midnight blue over black says "evening." Modern, masculine, dark and sensual. Shows that black-and-blue can be a really good thing.
So Luxe: The velvet jacket is opulent and sumptuous. Plush, ritzy, and swanky, it's perfect for the festive, glitzy holiday season. Don't worry, you won't come across as self-indulgent if you pair it with more basic, modest underpinnings throughout.
The Skinny: Not for the Average Joe, but works splendidly for the man who knows he's the hippest man in town.
Winter White: The white dinner jacket will get you noticed in a sea of black. Traditionally worn only in the domain of balmy, summery evenings, this is a sharp option when you're inviting in the new year in style from somewhere warm, preferably south of the equator.
[Above 5 Photos by Paola Kudacki for GQ.]