All Jazzed Up: What To Wear To A Party Now

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All Jazzed Up: What To Wear To A Party Now

Words by Mr Ashley Ogawa Clarke

23 November 2022

Being well-dressed for a party is a fine balance of cultural nuance and confidence. The venue and the crowd will generally dictate the level of formality you need to adhere to with your outfit. The tough bit is pulling it off with some measure of panache. And while the past two years have not given us much opportunity to hone our skills for party dressing, the menswear runways have remained a bountiful source of sartorial inspiration. From bolder-than-brass trousers to leather suits and coats fluffier than a Pomeranian with a blow-dry, the best menswear this season is tailor-made for putting on the Ritz. Want to be the best-dressed man at that event you’ve just RSVP’d to? Here’s how…

01.

Big, bodacious trousers

From L to R: Umit Benan B+ FW22, photograph courtesy of Umit Benan. Dries Van Noten FW22, photograph courtesy of Dries Van Noten. Gucci FW22, photograph by IMAXTREE.COM

Men’s trouser silhouettes have continued to expand and billow in recent years, and there’s no sign that the trend will slow down just yet. Plus, while it may be natural to focus on what’s going on above the waist when it comes to your outfit, the impact of a big statement-making pair of trousers can’t be denied. Look to Umit Benan B+, Gucci and Dries Van Noten for the most show-stopping and expensive-feeling examples, which show that big, bright tailored trousers immediately lend a look more gravitas.

Dries Van Noten’s AW22 collection was inspired by the excitement of a raucous house party, in something of a rebellion against the enforcement of social distancing during the pandemic, while also reflecting how much braver men can be when it comes to peacocking with their clothing. “We don’t know if it is before or after the party,” the designer told Vogue at the time. “But there’s a lot going on in that house.”

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02.

More leather

From L to R: Fendi FW22, Mr Filippo Fior/IMAXTREE.COM. CELINE HOMME FW22, photograph courtesy of CELINE HOMME. Hermès FW22. Photograph by Daniele Oberrauch/IMAXTREE.COM

There’s been enough leather in menswear recently to make a Berghain bouncer blush. For AW22, Versace showed biker jackets with party-ready printed shirts and pinstripe trousers, while CELINE HOMME and Hermès showcased full leather suits that felt edgy, sexy and yet somehow still tasteful.

While we’d forgive you for not wanting to spend a night in a leather sweatbox, at least consider adding a pair of leather trousers or a leather blazer – one of the biggest trends of the moment – to your party repertoire. Both will bring an element of edginess to any outfit, plus the way the light reflects off the fabric at nighttime will add depth and texture to your look.

Be wary of going too tight, however – nobody wants to be peeling themselves out of hot, close-fitting leathers at the end of the night. Or perhaps they do. No judgement here.

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03.

Flamingo tailoring

From L to R: AMI Paris FW22, photograph by Mr Daniele Oberrauch/IMAXTREE.COM. TOM FORD FW22., photograph courtesy of TOM FORD. Dolce & Gabbana FW22, photograph by Ms Monica Feudi, courtesy of Dolce & Gabbana

The new Roaring Twenties are here, and they’re pinker than a radioactive radish. You might blame Mr Harry Styles’ transformation into a next-gen Sir Elton John, but the bright pink suit is one of the standout trends this winter. They were especially bright at Dolce & Gabbana and AMI PARIS, where both had black details on the lapels, whereas TOM FORD turned things up a notch with vivid pink and amethyst-coloured suits in sumptuous velvet.

A suit this bright will look confident and daring, which is never a bad thing for a party. But if you’re bold enough, the trick is to keep it grounded by wearing it with a relaxed shirt or a turtleneck, as well as with a pair of smart, simple shoes.

If a hot pink suit fills you with horror, slightly more muted shades such as lilac and mauve are equally up-to-date options – TOM FORD also makes an excellent suit in either blush or lavender that will turn heads without blinding the viewer.

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04.

Teddy bear coats

From L to R: Off-White FW22, photograph by IMAXTREE.COM. Casablanca FW22, photograph courtesy of Casablanca. LOEWE FW22, photograph by Mr Daniele Oberrauch/IMAXTREE.COM

Famously worn by both P Diddy and Del Boy, the giant furry coat is a menswear staple that signals a kind of cool-yet-cuddly gravitas. Incidentally, a fluffy coat is also great for events, immediately making an outfit more impactful. This season, they come in myriad iterations – some in untamable shearling, as at LOEWE; some fluffy enough to make the Cookie Monster turn to stress eating (see Casablanca or Off-White). It’s just the thing to wear if you want to enter a party looking the business, even if that business is selling used cars.

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05.

An unexpected tie

From L to R: KENZO FW22, photograph by IMAXTREE.COM. Rhude FW22, photograph courtesy of Rhude. Reese Cooper® FW22, photograph courtesy of Reese Cooper®

To look at the photo of the suited yet tieless world leaders gathered at the G7 summit this summer, you might have thought that nobody had a need for neckties anymore. But the death of the tie has been greatly exaggerated.

Thanks to the contrarian nature of fashion designers (tell them anything is defunct and they’ll resurrect it faster than a necromancer on Adderall), the tie is everywhere for winter 2022. And not just on office-appropriate clothing, either. In some places it was expected, such as at trad tailoring stalwart Dunhill, but it also appeared at more streetwear-minded brands such as Rhude and KENZO.

Perhaps most notable, though, was at Reese Cooper®, where an oversized hoodie was styled over a white shirt and black tie. It was a perfect example of the formality spectrum finally coming full circle with formal menswear on one side and casual streetwear on the other, and showed that ties really can look good with anything. Keep that in mind next time you worry you’ll be underdressed for an event.

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