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OFFICE WEAR

ARE YOU TYING THE PERFECT KNOT?  


How many mornings have you wasted wrestling the silk demon that refuses to settle down? Tie times can be quite trying especially when one is pressed for time and does not have expertise on how to handle the garment. Here are tips on selecting the right tie and tying it right:

1. Select a good quality tie
If you are going in for a silken tie, remember that you are paying for the material. Thus, double check its quality. Pinch the tie gently to check the thickness of the material, remember it is the silk and not the lining that must be thick. The silk must have weight and be smooth, anything else is a compromise.

Hand sewn ties are much better than their machine-made cousins.

Ensure that tie won't twist around to display its label. Allow the garment to dangle mid air by holding it by its narrow end and raising it high. If it flips back, replace it, this is poor quality workmanship. The garment must stay stiff.

2. Choose the right colours
The colours of your tie should blend well with your skin tone and eye color as well as the suit jacket you are planning to team it with. So carry your suit jacket along with you while shopping for a new tie. Find a pattern that is interesting and tasteful and livens up your ensemble. Check if the tie looks good on you, if you must. Now-a-days most stores allow customers to try on ties.

3. Learn to tie it right
Just having a great tie won’t give you the desired effect if you haven’t tied it gracefully and correctly. Hence, to tie it right, follow these ground rules:

To get that perfect plum tie knot: insert a finger at the base of the knot and slowly pull the tie to the collar's edge. Lightly clipping the sides of the knot will give the tie a swell, plum look.

The tie, as a rule should be long enough to touch the belt. Make sure that belt buckles are covered with the end of the tie.

Always loop your tie through the narrow strip stitched on the underside of the tie. Flapping loose ends look shabby and unkempt.

Do not wrench the tie from the shirt at the end of the day. Unknot it gently and drape it on the tie-rack. Folding or stuffing the garment will ruin it.

It is better to dry clean the tie instead of washing it. Do not try to blot off stains with a detergent or stain remover, this damages the fabric.

 

FIVE TIPS TO CHOOSE THE RIGHT SOCKS  


Socks are that discreet, hidden part of the official dress and shouldn’t really matter, right? But then you don’t want to get caught with your pants up and a mismatched pair of socks. Here are 5 simple socks selection tips.
 
1) Colour:
Always select a sock colour that matches your pants. White socks are fine for gym and playing outdoors, but for formal clothing, the socks’ colour should not stand out and create a stark contrast. You will be drawing attention to yourself that you don’t want.
2) Fit:
Select a pair of socks that stay up. Socks bunching around your ankles don’t really say ‘class’ or ‘elegance’. They need not be too tight but need to be tight enough to stay up.
3) Texture:
Texture? You might think. But did you know that the thickness of your socks should actually vary with the occasion? The more formal the occasion, the thinner your socks should be. Thicker socks are best left for more informal occasions.
4) Patterns:
Don’t ever go for a meeting with complex patterns on your socks! It doesn’t exactly impress the bosses. For a formal occasion, wear plain socks. Small, discrete patterns are still usable, but bigger patterns are definitely not recommended.
5) Change:
Finally, the most critical detail. Change your socks everyday! This cannot be emphasised enough. Have a sufficient stock of socks, depending on the number of formal occasions you go to. Falling short of socks to wear could be a serious problem, and wearing smelly socks from last week could leave a bad smell with your hosts after you leave.

So, go ahead, pay some attention to the pairs of socks you own and make sure you are prepared to be well dressed when the occasion arises.
 

DRESSING IN BUSINESS CASUALS  


Business Casuals is a term not many of us are comfortable with, because we are not sure what it means. These 5 tips will help solve this problem to an extent.
 
1) Ask for official guidelines: Ask the human resources department for official guidelines. Business casual means different things at different companies. At a large corporation, it may mean a sport coat with a tie; at a smaller company, it may mean khakis and a polo shirt.
If your company has no written policy, observe what others wear as business casuals to get an idea.
2) Check for meetings: Before you dress casual, check to make sure you don't have any meetings that require formal business attire.
3) Dress Professionally: Select clean, pressed and wrinkle-free clothes. Your outfit should communicate professionalism.
4) Wear a belt: Be sure to wear a belt, and have it match the color of your shoes.
5) Choose proper footwear: Choose your socks properly. Avoid white socks and tube socks. Rubber soled leather shoes or boots are suitable for casual day. Worn-out shoes, sandals or sports shoes are not acceptable.

If you are still not sure what is acceptable, it is best to wear a formal shirt and pant without a tie.
 

BUYING AND WEARING SHIRTS THE RIGHT WAY  


A man probably looks his best in formal attire, but any mistake in formal dressing stands out pretty prominently. Wearing the right shirt in the right way goes a long way in achieving the right formal look.

Follow these 5 tips for wearing formal shirts to get that right formal look.

1) Translucent Shirts: A strict no-no. Never wear a translucent shirt for job interviews or any black tie event. White shirts are the best bet for most occasions. Soft, muted colors, and mild patterns like stripes are also acceptable.

2) Right Size: Getting the right size shirt to wear is very important. A tight shirt will leave your wrists exposed and choke your neck. A loose shirt will bunch up around your wrists and neck and look bad. Get a shirt of the right size to feel comfortable and look sleek.

3) Buttons: Make sure you fasten all buttons on the shirt including the small ones on the side of the sleeve at the cuff. These make sure that your arm doesn’t get exposed at that point. Button down collars also need to be buttoned or else they stick out awkwardly.
Button all your buttons even if they seem like they serve no function.

4) Match that tie: Choose your tie carefully to compliment the shirt you wear. A wrong tie can take all the charm away from wearing a good shirt. Keep in mind that, when choosing a shirt and tie with checks, the shirt should have smaller checks.

5) Tuck it in well: Last but not the least, tuck in your shirt properly. It shouldn’t look too school boyish, so don’t tuck it in all the way. The shirt should cover at least half the belt.
 

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