The XX Factor

A Case For The White Summer Suit

A staple of legendary men like Tom Wolfe and Colonel Sanders, our female counterpart breaks down how you make the look your own this summer.

Consider me the solitary female specimen that would rather see Matthew McConaughey in his clothes than out of them—the guy’s got style, and when he recently turned up to the Veuve Clicquot Polo Classic in a crisp white suit, it had me reconsidering the conventional wisdom that Colonel Sanders and Tom Wolfe are the only guys who can pull off the look.

Though WSJ’s Steve Garbarino (and our own Tyler Thoreson) prescribe something closer to cream to ring in warm weather, I think now is high time to carpe diem on the classically pure version while the daylight hours extend blissfully beyond cocktail hour. But before you go all late-90s -three-button-NBA-style number, consider a few mandatory rules for pulling off the white suit in style:

1.     Find an impeccable fit: By now you’ve put as much research into finding a brilliant tailor as a primary care physician, right? Put him to work to ensure your white suit has a slim cut and a perfect break. There’s no room for error when it comes to white.

2.     Get some sun on your face: A pasty complexion and fair fabrics don’t mix—not to mention that a white suit says “man of leisure” while a pale face says “cubicle jockey.” Spend some time on the beach before you attempt this look.

3.     Dress it down: The quickest route to looking like a clown in a white suit? Overdoing it. Undercut the potential starchiness of the look with a chambray shirt or lived-in T, suede bucks (sockless, but of course), and a canvas belt.

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