How To Wear A Vest With A Dress Shirt

Pulling off a great vest is a sure way to get some compliments on your style. But how exactly do you “pull off” a vest? Here are a few tips on how to wear a vest with a dress shirt in style!

What You Need to Know

Let’s start with something you may not have considered: when you wear a vest, it can dominate your outfit. That’s not a bad thing, but it’s something you need to keep in mind. If you’re wearing just a vest over a dress shirt, for example, then your vest becomes the most striking part of your outfit.

On a practical level, that means the style of vest you choose will dictate what else you’re wearing with the outfit. If the vest is more formal and ideal for, say, a wedding party, then you’re going to want to wear a formal pair of trousers to go with it, like Berle Super 100’s Garbadine Trousers.

You’ll also need to think about how the colors of the rest of your outfit interact with your vest. The shirt you wear with the vest will be one of the most important elements to choose here. A crisp white shirt underneath the vest helps keep the attention on the vest, giving you a clean look that doesn’t clash. A bolder color can work great too, as long as it pairs well with the color of the vest.

How Should A Vest Fit?

Another element that plays into how the vest looks is how it fits. A vest that’s too large or too small can make the entire outfit look silly. On the other hand, a well-fitting vest can save an otherwise bland outfit. Here’s how to tell whether your vest fits right:

  • Shoulders. The shoulders of your vest should lay flat on the top. If there’s excess wrinkling on the shoulders, the vest is too big for your body.
  • How tight? You should be able to button up your vest without the buttons pulling the fabric in streaks—that’s a sign that your vest is too tight. You can tell if the vest is too loose by inserting your hand down the vest when it’s buttoned up—if your hand moves easily through, it’s too big.
  • Length. The bottom hem of the vest should rest comfortably at the top of your pants. Most vests aren’t “flat” on the bottom—they feature sharp angles that will overlap the top of your pants to different degrees. But if you find any part of the vest goes more than a few inches below your pant waist, it may be too long.

More Tips for Wearing a Vest

Once you’ve coordinated your outfit and double-checked the vest’s fit, it’s time to think about how the vest looks once you’re wearing it.

Consider unbuttoning the bottom button of the vest. Keeping the entire vest cinched is generally a no-no, as it will look too constraining, especially if you’re wearing the vest as an outer piece.

You’ll also want to think about how you dress the shirt underneath your vest. For formal occasions, buttoning it up to the second-highest button will work. For a more casual look, you might consider unbuttoning another button or two to open the chest without looking disheveled.

Find a Great Pair of Matching Trousers

Of course, it helps to have the right clothes to go with your vest, as well. Berle offers a wide range of Tailored Pants and Casual Pants options that can pair perfectly well with a vest for formal or casual occasions. Shop today!

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