F inally, the gentleman is reclaiming the suspenders from the nerds, the punk rockers and grandpa! It takes a little work to bring your suspenders from IQ to GQ, but trust me, it can be done. And when it’s done right, oh how sweet it is!
To start with, find yourself a nice pair of quality suspenders, or braces if you’re from across the pond. If you’re not sure where to start, talk with your regular suit guy. If you don’t have a regular suit guy, get one. You’re a gentleman after all!
Many quality suspenders are made to be able to button to the inside or dress slacks, and most slacks come with buttons on the inside for suspender wearing. If your slacks don’t have suspender buttons, you can easily sew them in, or have your tailor do it for you. Clip-on suspenders are considered to be more on the casual side, but they are making a comeback. Be warned that clip-on suspenders sometimes slip, and can cause damage to your slacks, particularly if they are wool.
To bring the whole look together, the suspenders need to make a subtle statement. Suspenders speak for themselves without you having to dress them up too much, so avoid brightly colored suspenders and instead stick to something a little more subdued. Also, pick suspenders that are narrower, rather than thicker.
What you are shooting for here is a classic look – keep this in mind when picking out the rest of the outfit. If you try pairing suspenders with jeans and a t-shirt you’ll wind up looking more like a hipster than a gentleman. Go with dress pants and a collared shirt, which you will of course tuck in. If you want to make the look more casual, you can unbutton the first couple buttons on the shirt and tone the look down. Dress pants should be cut narrow as well; this will help streamline the look and offset the feeling that you’re wearing grandpa’s suspenders.
It might take a bit of getting used to, but we’re pretty sure you’ll like the feel of suspenders in the end, along with the extra personality it gives to your distinguished, classic look.