The Rights and Wrongs of Wearing a Suit Without a Tie

There may be some hard and fast rules about certain areas of men’s fashion, but opinion is definitely split on whether it’s acceptable to wear a suit without a tie. It would be easy to dismiss the question with an elegant shrug and say, why not, it’s a matter of personal choice, but if you’ve invested in bespoke men’s tailoring, you may feel you need some guidance!

Actually, suits being worn without ties are fairly commonplace, including on such BBC flagship programmes as Newsnight, where presenter Evan Davis never seems to wears one. Interestingly, the main evening news presenters do still wear ties. Greek cabinet ministers, including the prime minister Alexis Tsipras, have had a high media profile recently, and almost to a man they opt for the suit worn without a tie. By contrast, their male European counterparts in Brussels always seem to wear ties.

So, is not wearing a tie even when wearing a bespoke office suit simply a matter of wanting to create a more relaxed look? If that’s an option and isn’t against any club or office dress code, and you feel confident enough to carry it off, then by all means do so, but always make sure you wear a good quality shirt, preferably one with a stiffer collar that will stay in place. Adding a pocket square is another nice touch, and wearing a gleaming pair of brogues will send the right kind of message that you’re taking this relaxed look seriously - but still mean business!

It goes without saying that, tie or no tie, a suit should always be well fitting. Other than that, the only golden rule that must be observed at all times is that, if in any doubt, always wear a tie. In the unlikely event that you do feel hopelessly overdressed, you can always remove your tie later. Finally, wearing a jacket or blazer with an open collar is much less of a dilemma and is always acceptable!