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Here I am, finally answering the question, “How many suits should I own?”
The answer to the question of how many suits should a man own varies entirely on who is asking the question.
We all have various occupations, lifestyles, and budgets, and the number of suits you require is determined by all of these factors, as well as your own preferences and how much you enjoy wearing a suit.
So, I’ve divided this article into four sections, each of which corresponds to one of four main types of people:
- the man who never wears a suit
- the occasional suit wearer
- the man who has to wear a suit to work
- the man who enjoys wearing suits and dressing in a classical way
I’ll recommend how many suits each type of person should own, as well as which suits they should wear.
The Man Who Never Wears a Suit
So, the guy who seldom wears a suit, doesn’t have to wear one to work, loves more casual suit, and dislikes getting dressed up to go out.
Even if there appears to be no probable reason to wear a suit, the man who never wears a suit should nevertheless own one.
There are some occasions, however infrequent, when it is preferable to wear a suit, even if it is not required.
I’m specifically thinking of weddings and funerals. I’d say it’s not about you if you say, “I don’t need to wear a suit to that.” It’s all about respecting the folks for and with whom you’re attending those occasions.
I would recommend a dark navy blue or charcoal gray wool suit for this suit because it will be worn to a more formal function.
Plain bottom trousers with two buttons, single-breasted, notch lapel, flap pockets, and double vent.
The darker color is ideal for any type of event’s formality, and the design is conservative enough that even a man who never wears a suit would feel at ease wearing it.
The Occasional Suit Wearer
This man does not have to wear a suit to work, but he prefers to look well and will dress up for special occasions such as weddings, date nights at a fancy restaurant, corporate holiday parties on New Year’s Eve, and other such events.
Although he isn’t particularly fond of wearing a suit, he does so when it is necessary and suitable.
Let’s just say this is the type of individual that doesn’t want to go overboard with a large suit collection or invest a lot of thinking, time, effort, or money into it.
I’d recommend keeping three suits for the occasional suit wearer:
- A hopsack suit in navy blue
- A wool suit in a mid-grey color
- A cotton suit in khaki
On these suits, I style them in the same conservative type. Again, two-button, single-breasted, notch lapel, flap pockets, double vent, plain bottom trousers.
However, I might add a cuff to the trouser on the hopsack suit, and patch pockets instead of flap pockets on the khaki cotton suit.
I’d go with a hopsack suit because the jacket can easily be worn separately if you’re not going to wear the suit all the time.
The same goes for a khaki cotton suit. You not only have the jacket as a separate item, but you also have a beautiful pair of pants.
This three-piece suit set will cover you for any event and season.
The Man Who Has to Wear a Suit to Work
It makes no difference whether this person enjoys wearing a suit or not because it is part of the workplace uniform.
I would recommend five suits for this guy.
Three of them will be made out of a four-season wool, while the other two will be made out of a summer fabric and a fall/winter fabric, respectively.
We’ll have our navy blue suit, a mid-grey suit, and then I’ll add in some pattern and recommend a subtle windowpane for the first three.
It’s completely up to you here in terms of color, although I’d recommend a navy or gray.
I have a gray windowpane suit that I wear all the time and adore, and a windowpane like this is a terrific way to add some variety and range to your suit collection, especially if you’re not into big designs or making a bold statement.
When it comes to fashion, I’d go with a more conservative look, such as two-button, single-breasted, notch lapel, flap pockets, double vent, and simple bottom trousers, as I’ve mentioned before.
When we’re thinking about expanding our collection and adding some variety, I think it’s also crucial to think about a couple of seasonal suits.
For the summer, I propose a khaki cotton suit with patch pockets on the jacket, and for the fall and winter, you must have a flannel in your rotation.
One of the most conventional possibilities is a mid-grey flannel suit. I’d go with a conservative look. I would, however, add a two-inch cuff to the pants.
Heavier materials, such as flannel, benefit from a cuff because it adds a little extra weight to the fabric, which improves the drape.
The flannel suit is the one that I would do something different with if you want a suit that isn’t so conservatively fashioned.
Instead of a single-breasted suit, opt for a double-breasted suit with six buttons and a peak lapel. It would be slightly different from the other four in your lineup, but still very traditional.
The Suit Addict
This is the last guy, the men’s style aficionado, who doesn’t require my assistance.
There’s already so much passion, information, and opinion there that choose which suits to have becomes a very subjective matter.
It becomes more about curating what you like and what you’re interested in wearing yourself, rather than a need-based procedure.
The suit enthusiast, I believe, will have the essentials: navy wool, mid-grey wool, or charcoal gray. For the summer, a windowpane wool suit and a mid-grey flannel suit, and for the fall and winter, a mid-grey flannel suit.
At that point, I believe it boils down to a love of fabric, color, and having options that are more seasonal.
So, for spring/summer, there’s linen, fresco, and Solaro, and for fall/winter, there’s a bunch of flannels and tweed in various weights. One of my favorite flannel patterns is chalk-stripe.
The sky is the limit here for the men’s style addict and suit lover, and there is no limit to the number of suits that this individual may own.
I hope this information was useful. This is a question I hear a lot, so I’m delighted to be able to finally put a bow on it.
Of course, these are only ideas. Because there are no clear and fast laws in this situation, everything is open to interpretation.