My social feeds have been filled with plenty of “Best Dressed” lists from Sunday’s Screen Actors Guild (SAG) Awards. Most of the lists included a lot of tuxedos, which I have no problem with. But one suit stood out for me: Dev Patel’s navy Brunello Cucinelli suit. That might not be the exact suit, but it looks pretty close, and should give you an idea of the price range. With his suit Mr. Patel gave a lesson in formal dress without wearing a tuxedo. The added bonus is that this look works both inside and outside the black tie arena. Like I mentioned, this is a pretty expensive suit, and that’s usually the trouble with celebrity profiles: most of the clothes are out of reach for everyday guys. On top of that, I think knowing how and why outfit choices were made can help us recreate it on our own. Today I want to run through this look and put my own (more affordable) spin on it.
Photo via CNN
The first, and probably most important thing, to realize is that this suit is not any shade of blue, it’s navy. This allows it to slide right in with the navy tuxedos, and it is close enough to black to not be an eyesore. Additionally, the waistcoat adds an extra level of formality. The crisp, white shirt and navy tie keep the entire ensemble simple and classy. For me the most interesting choice is the shoes. Black is a more formal color that most Americans don’t typically pair with blue. However, many Brits do (Mr. Patel was born in London). In fact “never wear brown in town” still holds true today in The Square Mile. Furthermore, the choice of a derby over an oxford speaks to the outfit’s balance. A derby is a less formal shoe than an oxford, but in a more formal color. It may not look like it on the surface, but this is a very well-planned outfit. It’s designed to walk the line perfectly between black tie and suit-and-tie.