Yes, Valentine’s Day is mostly terrible. And no, expressions of love shouldn’t be mandated to certain dates. But that doesn’t mean that it isn’t good to have an excuse for dressing up nice, and accompanying someone special somewhere fancy.
Even if they’re the kind who claims not to be bothered about what you’re wearing, when you hit date night suited up, it is noticed. Especially if it’s not the suit that you wear every day to work.
For festivities, you need tailoring that’s just as fun (although never with a capital ‘F’ – that heart print suit is the sartorial equivalent of a cold shower). By adopting a subtle pattern, a bolder hue or a cut that’s not so ordinary, you separate office time from quality time. Which is more romantic than any bunch of roses. Although it never hurts to accessorise.
Key lesson: outshining your other half is not the aim. Berluti’s navy tailoring stands out subtly and its slubby fabric steers casual, to ensure they’re still the one that gets the waiter’s second glance.
But you win too; the super-soft cashmere-silk blend means they won’t be able to keep their hands off you.
Berluti Brera Suit, available at Mr Porter, priced £3,100.
Blue Is The Colour
Navy is what you wear to work. For Valentine’s, you need to brighten up. Tailoring a few shades more vivid stands out, rather than fading away. Especially when it’s in fabric with a subtle sheen that catches the light on the dance floor.
Bright Blue Slim Suit, available at River Island, priced £150.
If the only tailoring you ever wear is your birthday suit, turning up in a three-piece is overkill. Corduroy in a loose cut is more relaxed, so your date won’t be worrying that the evening’s going to end up in a Vegas wedding chapel.
Curtis Kulig Navy Co-ord Suit, available at Topman, priced £200.
Expect The Unexpected
Your Valentine’s may tend more towards impromptu road trips than dinner and movie, but that doesn’t mean you can’t suit up.
Paul Smith’s travel-ready suit is crafted from a special fabric that looks just as fresh after an all-nighter as it does off the hangar. So you could always drive straight into that chapel, should the evening go well.
A Suit To Travel In Navy Wool Soho Suit, available at Paul Smith, priced £730.
There are guys who turn up with a fistful of roses. And there are guys who turn up dressed like a fistful of roses. Etro’s typically bold florals make a statement, sure, but at least they won’t have wilted by the next morning.
Jacquard Jacket, available at Etro, priced £835.
If you can’t offer a royal wedding, at least inject your outfit with some regal flair. Reiss’ Prince of Wales check elevates workaday grey, with the subtle pattern doing just enough to distinguish between the nine-to-five and five-to-whenever.
Reiss Prince Of Wales Check Suit, available at ASOS, priced £355.
Red is the colour of love, but turn up in crimson tailoring and expect your date to turn on heel the minute you’re spotted propping up the bar.
A scarlet lining, however, offers a mood-setting flash without overdoing the Rod Stewart thing.
Gucci Monaco Suit, available at Matches Fashion, priced £1,508.