Trench Coats have a military background. They developed from several other coats, such as the serge greatcoats, before being used in the First World War. The name and general style of the coat during this period carried over into civilian use. They are a very useful addition to a suit during some types of extreme weather.



One advantage of the large trench coat is that it can be worn over other clothing without any issues. This is undoubtedly part of the military appeal; a uniform could be kept neat and dry under a trench coat. This also works well for business suits. A trench coat keeps out the weather elements, leaving a suit well protected underneath.



Cotton Fabric

Though often cut in the same way as modern coats the early military coats were often made from cotton. This was inexpensive, durable and treated to be made water resistant. These coats were almost always military khaki in colour.


Wool Gabardine

This was a high end version of the coat. It is waterproof and has a warm silk lining, which is sometime removable. Initially only military officers could wear this, but modern trench coats are only a slight redesign of this classic garment.


Leather Coats

This is a modern variation, and probably the hardest wearing type. It is heavier, warmer and more durable than almost any other natural material. It also reasonably easy to maintain, not requiring dry cleaning. Unfortunately these are expensive, and can be associated with the uniform of gangsters and foreign spies. Otherwise, these may catch on as a classic modern alternative.


Modern trench coats are not a loose as old military ones. Their extra warmth means they don’t require additional layers underneath. As such, a trench coat is a useful item for suit owners when they require protection from any wet or cold weather. An umbrella and a good trench coat are all a suit owner need to have on hand. They offer protection and still manage to look quite stylish.

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A good suit requires an appropriate pair of shoes, lest the whole look be ruined. There are a few factors to consider here.


Black shoes with a black suit is probably the most common combination, but it can be a little conservative. There are other possible combinations, and we need not limit ourselves. Nonetheless every man should own at least one pair of formal black shoes. These will match almost every clothing option.


Navy Blue Suit

Try Black, Brown or Red/Burgundy Shoes. As long as the shoes aren’t brighter than the suit the various combinations should work well. Shoes can contrast, but not dominate.


Lighter Gray suit

A gray suit is a little less formal, but appropriate for some business offices. Again, Black, Brown or Red/Burgundy Shoes work well, provided the gray isn’t too dark.


Charcoal and Dark Gray suits

Black shoes match darker gray, and some Burgundy shoes, but never brown. The charcoal suit is a more serious and professional business look; light options don’t work.


Cream or White Suit

This will take anything except black. As long as the shoes aren’t too vivid almost any light colour show might work with cream or white suits


Wearing boots with a suit would have seemed like a disastrous idea a generation ago, but modern lace up boots can look quite slick. Anything boot protrudes outside the pants legs won’t work, but when the top of the boot is hidden inside the bottom of the pants cuff the result looks like a regular shoe. If the boot has a pointed front or looks stylish you will find the result is quite swarve. Boots are a good option in colder weather.


Virtually the only other accessories that go with the suit are the belt and tie (and perhaps a matching handkerchief). We recommend matching the belt with the shoes. The tie combination can be tricky, but most combinations work well, as long as no one factor is too salient.

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