Suspenders are long strips of fabric worn over your shoulders with the purpose of holding up your trousers. While they were originally worn for practical purposes, today they are worn as a trending fashion product. Suspenders are not only for bankers – they are the most fashionable addition to any outfit. They are highly versatile and go with pretty much any type of outfit. Here's all you need to know to get the suspenders right.
There isn't much variety when it comes to types of suspenders. There are two main variations: the ‘X’ and ‘Y’ shapes. The letters refer to the shape the straps make on the back side of your outfit. We recommend the ‘Y’ shape, as it has a more stylish appearance. However, if you are wearing suspenders for functional or work reasons then the ‘X’ shape will provide a bit of extra support.
Suspenders come with two primary attachment systems – the clip-on and button attachments. The latter are for experienced users and require buttons to be sewn into the pants. It's a commitment to purchase pants that are specially designed with buttons but they do make a difference. If you're going to incorporate suspenders into your daily life then we recommend investing into having buttons sewn in. That extra step will show off
your stylish perception and fashion sense. However, the classic clip-on suspenders have a more casual appearance and are easy to use.
Strap width may vary from narrow (less than 1" or 25 mm) to wide (over 2" or 62mm). We recommend a narrow width for their sleek and trendy appearance. When opting for a professional look, solid colour classic suspenders are the best pick. They can pull off both, formal and business professional outfits. When wearing suspenders casually, go for a simple pattern.
If you want to rock suspenders with a suit, stick to button attachments. Suspenders also look great with both, your standard tie as well as the quirkier bow tie. For a vintage look, pair your bow tie and suspenders together.
Colours, patterns and fabrics
Suspenders don't need to match your shirt, suit or tie. Darker colours and solid colours are more formal than lighter colours and patterns. A safe bet is to go with solid colour suspenders that are darker than your shirt. In fact, a pair of solid navy suspenders is an extremely versatile choice for almost any wardrobe.
One of the truly cool things about suspenders is how easy it is to customise the fit to your particular proportions. If the suspenders are leather, the front strap can be loosened or tightened just like a belt: via a buckle and holes. All other suspenders have a metal clip on the front straps that you simply slide up and down until you hit the exact right length for your frame.
Suspenders and belts
The cardinal rule of savvy suspender-wearing goes like this: regardless of the type of suspender, don't wear a belt at the same time, as they serve the same purpose. Suspenders on a plain waistband (no belt loops) is preferred.
Suspenders are best on pants that have a little room in the waist. If your pants are perfectly fitted to your waist or tight – you don’t need suspenders.
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