The Cut

I love suits.  Though I’ve often struggled with word.  ‘Suit’ derives from the Latin sequor, which means ‘to follow’, because the cloths of trousers, jacket and waistcoat ‘follow’ from the same cloth.  But there’s a second, more obvious relation to ‘follow’.  In that, for most working men - especially in professional services - everyone wears a suit.  This is often perceived as following the crowd.  Blending in.  Disappearing.  Just “men in suits”.

Image from Aquascutum - featuring the Ford Notch lapel suit

Image from Aquascutum - featuring the Ford Notch lapel suit

Well that’s just wrong.  Suits are about personality and style.  The texture, the cut, the colour are just the most obvious elements.  But the pockets, lining, and buttons all add uniqueness.  

And that uniqueness, whether you like it or not, says something about you.  Aquascutum suits’ classic fits gives an air of dependable Britishness.  One can’t help notice how Paul Smith’s unlined summer suits exude airy lightness of character - in a good way.  Look at the next chap you see with a suit.  What does it tell you about him?  Crumpled?  Shiny?  Colourful?  

There’s a well known concept in behavioural economics known as the ‘halo effect’; that we think that because people are good at one thing then they’ll be good at a whole host of others.  We do that because our brains are lazy, and quickly associate one thing with another.  So a colourful suit is likely to set expectations of a colourful personality.  And most likely the reverse too.  

So next time you put on your suit, think about what it says about you.

Thomas ClipperComment