Importance of dress.

The penalty of solecisms of costume.

Tailors not always to be relied on.

It is absolutely true, though in a very limited sense, that the tailor makes the man. If a man does not dress well in society he cannot be a success. If he commits flagrant errors in costume he will not be invited out very much, of that he may be certain. If he goes to a garden party in a frock-coat and straw hat, he is condemned more universally than if he had committed some crime. The evidence of the latter would not be upon him for all men to read, as the evidence of his ignorance in social forms is, in his mistaken notions of dress. Things are more involved than ever in the sartorial line, since so many new sports and pastimes have sprung up for men. A man cannot consult his tailor upon every trifling detail, even if his tailor were always a perfectly reliable authority, which is not always the case, for there are tailors and tailors. A young man’s finances do not always allow him to go to one of the best, and the second and third-rate artists in cloth are apt to purvey second and third-rate fashions to their customers.

“Certain fixed rules.”

A brief summary of the forms of dress appropriate to various occasions may be of some use to the inexperienced. It is obvious that to enter into detail would be out of place in a matter where change is the order of the day. But there are certain fixed rules that are, in a sense, permanent, and with these I may succinctly deal.

For morning wear.

Light trousers.

Black coats.

For morning wear the morning-coat or jacket or the tweed suit is correct. After lunch, when in town, the well-dressed man may continue to wear his morning-coat or the regulation frock-coat, with trousers of some neat, striped grey mixture. The tailor’s name for the material of these is “mixed cheviots.” It is not considered good form to wear very light trousers except on special occasions, such as weddings, garden parties, or afternoon assemblies of a festive kind. Even then it is better to err on the quiet side than to be overloud. The days of broadcloth have long gone by, and coats are now made of vicuna cloth or black twilled worsteds, with a dull finish and of an elastic quality. Waist-coats may be single or double-breasted. There is no restriction as to the colour of the tie.

The Park suit.

The Park suit may consist of a grey or light-brown frock-coat, with waist-coat and trousers to match, and this is the usual dress for Ascot, the smartest of all the races. At Sandown the low hat and tweed suit, or long racing coat, are worn, except on such days as the Princess of Wales is present, when the Prince sets the example of wearing a black coat and silk hat, and all other men are expected to follow his example.

For a summer morning in the Park.

Brown boots.

For a morning walk in the Park in summer the straw hat, or low hat and tweed suit, are as correct as the black coat and silk hat. But it must be remembered that a straw hat or low hat cannot be worn with a black coat of any kind. The “pot” hat and brown boots are permissible with an overcoat, under which there may be a tweed suit, but brown boots may not otherwise accompany a black coat, though they are admissible with the Ascot suit.

  By PanEris using Melati.

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