Sunday, May 6

how to dress

To be too much in the fashion is as vulgar as to be too far behind it. No really well-bred man follows every new cut that he sees in his tailor's fashion-book. Only very young men and those not of the most aristocratic circles, are guilty of this folly.

In the morning wear frock-coats, double-breasted waistcoats, and trousers of light or dark colours, according to the season.

In the evening, though only in the bosom of your own family, wear only black, and be as scrupulous to put on a dress-coat as if you expected visitors. If you have sons, bring them up to do the same.

For evening At Homes, dinner-parties, and balls, wear a black dress-coat, black trousers, black or white waistcoat, white cravat, white kid gloves, and thin patent-leather boots. A black cravat may be worn in full dress, but it is not so correct as a white one.

A tail-coat should be worn on all but informal occasions. A dinner-jacket may be worn for home or informal dinners, or when going to the theatre with men only . . .

For daytime, in the park lounge suits, with bowlers, straw or Homburg hats, are worn in the morning, but after lunch a frock-coat or morning coat and silk hat must take their place. With a black frock-coat dark trousers should be worn. Brown boots must, of course, never be worn with a frock-coat . . .

In town, gloves should be worn out of doors. A stick may be carried, but not when going to church.

-- Etiquette for Gentlemen: Rules for Perfect Conduct (1890)