The Elegant Man's Etiquette

The Elegant Man's Etiquette

The Elegant Man's Etiquette

By Nicola Santini - bon ton and etiquette expert, author of NON LO FACCIO PIU’

In a man's wardrobe we can accept exceptions on many things, according to the context and to the modern informality. But the Winter sales are going to finish soon, and with this list I'm going to make no concessions or discounts at all. Here all the bans and the NOs!

I've always been a fan of the theory for which the modern etiquette is composed by a rational common good sense, and of the theory that the context prevails on rules, or maybe on NOs. And that's ok, if you reason in terms of exceptions. But the first thing to know when you want a discount is to know what the full price is, to give the right value to what we are doing and to what we are giving up on.

After so many e-mails, received inexplicably in the same period, where I was asked to take a position on the NOs about the man's wardrobe, I prepared a list which should hung on his closet door. Be sure that the next post will concern her NOs.

  1. No to short socks, they're suitable only for sport.
  2. No to sleeveless shirts. I can't stand them outside the beach. They're ok in the gym, to show off, in the disco should be banned, under the shirt only if not visible, otherwise they should be forbidden!
  3. No to skinny jeans. Even if you are Beckham.
  4. No to waistcoats matched to jacket and tie. Allowed only if it is the uniform of a reception.
  5. No to man purse. One of the most practical and at the same time most horrible things. It apes the women's bag indeed. According to traditional experts, it's not considered elegant, since it is not conceived originally for men. I think it is hideous. Maybe I will change my mind.
  6. No to the unbottoned shirt beyond the second button. Even if you have Hugh Jackman's chest, the shirt must remain bottoned. Even on 15th August, unless you are on the beach.
  7. No to ties and bow ties with the knot already prepared. Learn!
  8. No to suspenders in view. And NO to suspenders if you already have the belt.
  9. No to jewels besides the weddin ring, a family ring, a watch or cufflinks (but not always): No to chains, studs, earrings and so on, if you want to be elegant.
  10. No to the pocket square matched to the tie.

I realize that the list could be three-time longer, but I trust on you!

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