Australian male formal wear has developed its own unique style over recent decades. With a rising population and a strong culture, Australia has made its own impact on the global fashion stage.
Melbourne has its hipsters with their twirly moustaches and tight denim shorts. Brisbane has Akubras and jeans, with a penchant for light shirts and pants (if you’ve ever survived through a Brisbane summer, you’ll understand). Sydney has a bit of everything from all over the globe.
While a fairly laidback bunch, Aussies do have their formal moments. For many Australian males, their first experience of pulling on a suit is for their Year 10 Formal. It can be a messy experience. “Will my tie match her dress? Are these shoes too flashy? Should I wear white sunnies or black sunnies?” Of course, sunglasses are a ubiquitous accessory at just about any Australian high school formal.
After the Year 10 Formal, the young Australian male is cast adrift. He now has a suit, but he’ll never be quite sure whether an event calls for it. Races? Check. Wedding? Who knows these days. Funeral? Nope, it’s a pink suit, that won’t be at all appropriate.
While we’re on the topic of outrageously coloured suits, don’t. Just don’t.
Every Australian bloke tends to develop his own awkward fashion sense over time. When it comes to formal wear, it’s usually the same deal. A fairly plain back or grey suit (sometimes with pin stripes), a tie and some cuff links. Or no cuff links, depending on how much you splashed out on the shirt.
Nowadays, it seems like every trendy young thing has a blue suit, a pair of brown shoes, a brown belt, and a shirt that’s too small with a tablecloth pattern on it. If you happen to get down to the track during the Spring Carnival, you’ll see these clones everywhere.
The fact of the matter is, dressing a little differently on formal occasions can really make a man stand out. However, if he dresses differently in the exact same way as every other guy who’s dressing differently, then a plain black suit would have been a far better choice. Or a dark charcoal suit, for the particularly tasteful.
At the end of the day, you just do you. Your shirt’s secondary colour doesn’t need to match your shoelaces or the thread that holds your buttons onto your jacket. If you’ve got a nice, clean suit (suits from Lowes do not count), and you iron your shirt and polish your shoes – you’re set!