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Stroller Dress Code

Morning/Day For Him

(UK and Commonwealth)
     

In General

Daytime Dress
The semi-formal dress for daytime events is known as the Stroller dress code (shown here).

It is basically the same as Black Tie which is normally reserved for evening events, but with a Lounge Suit jacket and a long tie, instead of a bow tie.

Headwear

Homburg Hat
While most modern people do not wear a hat with black tie, a black or midnight blue (to match jacket and coat) homburg hat was traditionally worn although this rule can be bent to allow a black or grey fedora to be worn.

Obviously it should be removed when indoors.
Bowler Hat
Black. An optional accessory, useful in winter.

Obviously it should be removed when indoors.

Neck

Tie
Traditionally grey.

Jacket

Lounge Suit Jacket
Grey or Black.

Other than the jacket, the 'Stroller' dress code is essentially the same as 'Morning Dress' which is the full formal daytime dress.

Waist Coat

Waist Coat
Grey or buff.

Double breasted.

Top

Formal Shirt
White.

Cotton, linen, or silk.

Shirts designed to be worn with a bow tie have a spread collar (which diverges more than a standard collar so that the bottom of the bow tie sits between the peaks of the collar). This is the more modern look favoured by Hollywood and James Bond.

Or alternatively a stiff winged collar adds formality.

Double cuffed with long collar if worn with a long tie.

Single cuffed and winged is the only option if worn with a cravat such as at weddings.

If not worn with studs the shirt often has a flap of material over the buttons.

Marcella, piqué or pleated front.

True traditionalists have detachable collar and cuffs.

Bottom

Formal Trousers
Black.

Striped.

One satin, silk or ribbon seam on the outside leg.

No turn ups/cuffs. No belt loops (normally worn with braces or incorporate side adjusters).

The same as formal morning dress.
Tailcoat
For a more formal look, a black tailcoat could be considered. This is still more informal than a full morning coat, the tails being split to as an innovation to accommodate horse riding.

Ankles

Socks
Black.

Knee length.

Silk (ribbed)

Footwear

Formal Shoes
Black.

Lace up.

No toe cap or decorative brogueing.

Patent leather in the evening, non-patent leather during the day.
Oxford Boots
Button Boots
Judhpur Boots
Chelsea Boots
Court Shoes / Opera Shoes / Formal Shoes
Patent leather.

Silk (ribbed) bow.

Coat

Chesterfield Coat
The ideal accompaniment to Semi-Formal wear.

Accessories

Cufflinks
Preferably pearl.
Studs
Preferably pearl.
Braces
To support the trousers.
Handkerchief
White silk or linen.

Coloured with a white Dinner Jacket.
Boutonniere
White.

A flower for your jacket button hole.

Traditional at weddings.

Alternatives

Military Mess Uniform
A military mess uniform is suitable for a semi-formal event.

You must be entitled to wear the uniform.

In the navy 'Mess Undress' is worn for semi-formal events.
Scottish Dress
Scottish dress is suitable for semi-formal events, and is common in Scotland. However, you should be sure to have a claim upon a tartan before wearing it.

Scottish dress consists of a black jacket (Prince Charlie, Montrose, Sheriffmuir, Argyll), black waistcoat, kilt or trews (a form of high top trouser without side seams, and cut on the cross-grain), winged dress shirt (see above), black bow tie, kilt hose, black Ghillie brogues, flashes and sporran.
Traditional Dress
Traditional dress is always appropriate for semi-formal events.

History

Formal and Semi-Formal
In high society, White Tie and Ball Gowns was the standard formal form of dress for social gatherings. It shows the wealth of the upper classes and their familiarity of etiquette, and is still expected at the very highest class of event.

However, such elaborate presentation is not very practical for frequent usage, and so the semi-formal dress code Black Tie, consisting of Dinner Jackets and Evening Dress or even the shorter Cocktail Dress was established, for dining in a sophisticated manner, without the impracticalities and lavishness of full formal dress. Overtime, this has become the more standard form of dress for most formal events.
Top Hat
The Top Hat was the standard hat to be worn with evening dress until the 1920s.

When the lounge suit became popular as everdayday wear in the 1910s, the formal homburg hat which was popular at the time was made 'old-fashioned' in the 1920s by more casual hats such as the fedora or trilby. As a result of this, the homburg replaced the top hat as the standard headwear to be worn with semi-formal dress.

Now of course, like all hats with formalwear, it is optional. A winter choice. Wearing any other hat with semi-formal dress is a fashion faux pas (with the exception of the bowler hat for semi-formal morning wear).