As the cliche says, rules were meant to be broken — and this is where you can push the envelope.
Wear a tie in the office
Google ‘the tie is dead’ and you’ll find newspapers from London to New York reporting how office workers are abandoning this relic of a bygone era, and business heavyweights like JP Morgan, Goldman Sachs, and Barclays have officially relaxed their dress codes. So let your necks breathe, fellas — undo that top button and adopt a more contemporary look in the office.
Button your suit the right way
It’s controversial to suggest that there’s any wiggle room with the time-honoured ‘sometimes-always-never’ law of buttoning your suit jacket, but watch an episode of Man Men and you’ll notice that menswear demigod Don Draper wasn’t scared to do up his bottom button. The rule is even more optional with double-breasted seats, where you see all sorts of combinations of fastened buttons — buttoning them all gives off a statesmanlike, military vibe. In this era of more casual formalwear, there’s nothing wrong with an open, flowing, unbuttoned suit jacket, either.
Wear black to a wedding
There’s no need to be boring at a wedding anymore — and at the very least, that starts with ditching deathly black in favour of shades of blue or grey, or even venturing into patterned suit fabric territory. A wedding is a relaxed environment to push the boundaries a little bit, play with colour, and splash a bit of personality with a patterned shirt, loud tie, or unusual accessory to let your hair down.
Trainers are too casual
You’ll need to apply a bit of common sense — don’t rock up to the office in your Stan Smiths or attend a formal wedding in bulky purple Jordans, but a pair of white minimalist sneakers with a lighter-coloured, summery, unstructured-cut suit? Go for it. Make sure you keep your trainers bright sparkling white and they’ll work seamlessly with almost any outfit.
Match your socks with your pants
Another stuffy rule of business wear that can be discarded now that office dress codes have become more relaxed and contemporary. Sure, matching your suit colour with dark navy or black socks is a failsafe choice, but it’s forfeiting an opportunity to inject some more personality into your workwear, especially if your socks complement some other aspect of your outfit — echoing the colour of your pocket square or tie, for example.