Common mistakes men make when wearing a suit


Avoid these mistakes when you are wearing a suit

Timeless and versatile. The suit is one of the sole evergreens of menswear. It is the foundation of all gentlemen’s wardrobes. It can drastically change any man’s appearance. But just as grand the right suit can make you look – the sad fact is – that just as awkward the wrong suit can make you look. The truth is that a single mistake will totally ruin your overall look.

A good percentage of us men can’t seem to get it quite right. If you are one of them, you are not alone. You might be making a few mistakes and not even realize it. There is no lack of style tips, on the internet, in fashion magazines, and unfortunately very often from less sophisticated and refined friends and colleagues or older relatives. The latter well-meaning of course, but that’s not what you need.

One very common misconception is that it is about the money you pay for the suit. But nothing could be more wrong. It’s the way you wear it that matters most.

So, before you start digging in to all the latest innovations and options in tailoring – why not check out these advice – and start getting compliments on your suit and looks.

Check out Sir Vincent’s buttoning guide*.


Don’t allow your trousers to be too long.

Nothing will ruin your look more – there’s just no recovery from this one. Don’t let your trousers puddle over your laces. Your trousers (whatever the style) should only touch the tops of your shoes, and there should be no bunching of fabric. Pants with no break (horizontal crease in the fabric) mean they’re so short they fall right above the shoe and flash some sock. Nah please… Aim for a medium break — not too rumpled or baggy, but not too short around the ankles. There is a fine line between too long and too short and a little to no break is perfect.


The mankle

I’ve touched on this before but I think it’s time to give it some context. Mankles – the cut where you show off your ankles with trousers cut or rolled up just above the ankle. If you really fancy this look, make sure you go all the way, i.e. no socks and boat shoes. OK, monkstraps will do too.


Get the right length on you jacket sleeves.

Jacket sleeves are just as important as the trousers. Too long sleeves look clowny and sloppy whereas too short sleeves make you look like a dork or as if you just escaped from some institution. Your shirt sleeve should present itself with 1-1,5 cm at the end of your jacket. It is most common that the jacket is way too roomy, even outside North America. Either way – too long or too short – you need to sort this out.

And while you are at it – make sure your jacket is cut right around the upper arm and your torso.


Don’t choose a jacket that is too long.

Let the jacket end where your fingertips end. It’s not complicated at all.


Never wear a backpack with a suit.

It doesn’t matter if you are the account IT architect and unbearable for the global company you work for – a backpack worn with a suit will make you look like a school boy. Apart from ruining your look it will crease your suit. There is no escape in it. There is no running away from it. Get a sling bag or a leather attaché case.


Clean and shine your shoes.

The old saying that the first thing people look at on a man is his shoes is very true. Your shoe situation can tell everything about you, absolutely everything, like if you are working in an office or if you are 23 and really handsome or if you are a little bold and tired or if you are practical and comfortable, a rebel or conservative. But the most important thing of all – and this is an absolute rule – do not wear dirty shoes. Just don’t. A dapper man keeps his shoes clean and free from scratches. Visit the cobbler once in a while. No matter if you are wearing loafers, a smart oxford shoe or something else. Clean and polished. And keep at least two pairs of shoes in the same colour so you can let one pair rest for a day from sweat and stretching and use shoe trees when storing them. Trainers? By Jah, no.

Check out Sir Vincent’s colour guide for shoes*.



Unless you are the class clown or a hipster, match your sock colour to your trousers, not your shoes. For example, if you are wearing a navy suit with black shoes, go for navy socks. A light suit requires darker socks, but not as dark as the shoes. However mismatching socks can always be worn deliberately, but as always, to break the rule, you need to master it first. But never expose your hairy skin while crossing the legs.

Hungry for more style tips? Check this out*.

About the author

Derreck - the distinguished rootsman

Consultant Style Advisor ~ manners and respect ~

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