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Party season: the most wonderful time of the year. ‘Til you kill your liver, gain two stone and feel like maybe it’d just be easier to end it all… But while we’re not best placed to advise on your drinking habits, we can offer tips as to what to put on.
And this year, there’s ample opportunity to switch things up, sartorially at least (you’ll still have to contend with those forced exchanges with colleagues at the office party, though). Instead of the standard tuxedo, the likes of Saint Laurent have long pioneered a bolder take: the party jacket. Be it velvet, bejewelled, jacquard or textured, there’s an air of 1920s opulence to partywear this season.
But be warned: a statement jacket isn’t always an easy wear. There a
re some rules you need to get across before you get gussied up. “Party season jackets work best with peak lapels, as it draws attention to the shoulders,” says Mr Porter’s style director, Olie Arnold. “The V-shape is usually a sign of a quality, well-fitted suit, so stick to that silhouette.”
Also, if you’re peacocking in colour, then you’ll need a more muted approach elsewhere. “Stick to the script with a black bow tie in a similar silk to the lapels,” says Arnold. “And your pocket square and shirt should be white, with a fly front or with holes for shirt studs.”
Wearable, but no wallflower, SuitSupply’s burnt orange jacket offers a sophisticated alternative to tacky tangerine. Less Carmen Miranda, more red carpet Cumberbatch.
Available at SuitSupply, priced £259.
Blue velvet is big this season, but a tough wear if the shade’s too bright. Which is why Jaeger’s riff on the trend strikes a perfect chord – statement with the jacquard, but palatable on the colour front.
Available at Jaeger, priced £350.
If you thought white tuxedos belonged on Broadway, think again. House of Fraser’s crisp offering can dress up even the most low-key of black trousers and roll necks.
Available at House of Fraser, priced £99.
Only Bond villains wear velvet on the reg. If you’re more Joe Bloggs than Jaws, it doesn’t make sense to splash out on a piece you’ll wear a couple of times a year at the most, so plump for something like ASOS’ modestly priced option. (Every little helps for that mountain lair fund.)
Available at ASOS, priced £70.
Nautical clobber isn’t all YMCA and Vengaboys. Steer the captain vibe onto the right course with Dolce & Gabbana’s tasteful embroidered double-breasted blazer.
Available at Matches Fashion, priced £1,550.
Black tie is one of the stricter dress codes. And while you shouldn’t toy with silhouette, you can experiment with fabric, as Christian Pellizzari so masterfully illustrates with this bold (but not blinding) jacquard dinner jacket.
Available at Farfetch, priced £579.97.
Despite the jewel tone influx, colour wheel-shy guys needn’t feel alienated. Here, Moss Bros provides an alternative to the rainbow shades that still pops. Nobody puts monochrome in the corner.
Available at Moss Bros, priced £129.
As the creator of the original ‘Le Smoking’ jacket, Saint Laurent sometimes has to go the extra mile to make its eveningwear offering seem fresh. Which in this case means more sequins than a gay pride float in Vegas. Perfect for magpie tastes (and oil magnate salaries).
Available at Mr Porter, priced £2,135.