The waistcoat returns

Fuelled by movie and music stars, waistcoats have made a huge comeback.We take a look at three different ways to wear designer waistcoats.

Bibek Bhattacharya | Print Edition: August 24, 2008

Traditionally, a part of the classic threepiece suit, the stylish waistcoat’s history goes back a long time—to 1666 and to the restoration of the British monarchy. King Charles II had waistcoats made for him as a part of the new regal wardrobe. Nobody knows who the tailor was, but it became a rage in aristocratic circles.

No cultural phenomenon did as much for the waistcoat as Saturday Night Fever, which turned it into a disco uniform. Of late, with the design focus shifting towards a fitted, slim look, the waistcoat is back yet again. Here are some Indian designers giving us their own unique version of this 400-yearold garment.

Rohit Gandhi and Rahul Khanna
Rohit Gandhi and Rahul Khanna have been reinventing the urban male’s look for sometime now. And their modern touch is evident in this black waistcoat. The fitted style goes perfectly with the shirt and the skinny jeans help narrow the silhouette.

He’s wearing:
White shirt from Cue-H20: Rs 3,550
Black waistcoat from Cue-H20: Rs 7,500
Skinny jeans from Cue-H20: Rs 3,550
Black shoes from Lacoste: Rs 8,500

Shantanu & Nikhil Mehra
Shantanu & Nikhil Mehra

Here’s a prime example of a touch of decadent class to an attire that’s primarily regal in its style. Thus, brothers Shantanu and Nikhil Mehra’s red jacquard weave waistcoat (it’s a weaving technique that allows you to get patterns on cloth) complements Ravi Bajaj’s black Jodhpuri suit beautifully, and gives it just the right rakish touch.

He’s wearing:
Black velvet Jodhpuri suit by Ravi Bajaj: Rs 26,000
White shirt by Ravi Bajaj: Rs 3,900
Red jacquered waistcoat by Shantanu and Nikhil: Rs 9,500

Ravi Bajaj
Ravi Bajaj
When it comes to a complete sartorial look, few do formal wear as well as Ravi Bajaj. This white waistcoat has a touch of class with the distinct buttons and the front pockets. Best paired with a suit, you can wear it with a suit of a different colour, too, as long as you look suave. With a waistcoat like this, you won’t need a tie. You can also wear it without a jacket. It looks cool when paired with jeans, as well.

He’s wearing:
Pinstriped suit by Ravi Bajaj: Rs 14,500
Grey shirt by Ravi Bajaj: Rs 4,950
White waistcoat by Ravi Bajaj: Rs 4,950
Black shoes from Lacoste: Rs 8,500

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