Jacket for men necessary in Paris

Aug 16th, 2007, 01:58 PM
  #41  
 
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I can't even respond to most of this. However, in Paris last winter we did have reservations for a very special meal at a Michelin starred restaurant. DH, who is a casual guy, wore a very nice cashmere and camel hair blend, dark navy, single breasted contemporary cut sports jacket. He looked good.

My brother is a very hip dresser and wore a very modern suit. He looked good.

Otherwise, they both wore their normal clothing every place we went. They both looked good.

This was the first time my husband EVER took a jacket on vacation, and it was because of the Michelin starred reservations. He wore it on the plane as we pack very light.

I think this is all so silly. I know some European men that are good dressers and some that are horrible dressers. I know more American men that are bad dressers, but then, I know more American men.

If your clothes are clean, modest and acceptable, you ought to be welcome wherever you go. My two cents.
tuscanlifeedit is offline  
Aug 16th, 2007, 01:59 PM
  #42  
 
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I have been to Paris eight times. I have never worn a sport coat or blazer, nor have I ever brought one.
Wait, I did bring a blue blazer when I was a kid and went with my folks in the 60s, and I did get a great burger at Wimpys. Coincidence, I think not!

I have never been relegated to restaurant Siberia by not having the aforementioned attire. In the winter, my sweater and overcoat have always seemed to be fine, and we had some nice tables.

In the summer, a decent button down shirt or, dare I say, short-sleeved golf-type shirt have been fine at the many bistros and brassieres we have frequented. I have never been taunted (at least to my face) by one of our servers.

I don't go to Michelin-rated restaurants, as I would like to have some money left in my retirement fund and spending $500 for dinner is not my type of enjoyment.

That said, I think it is wonderful that many of you put on a sport coat or even a tie to go out to dinner. I'll even compliment you on your wardrobe should we have tables next to each other.

I guess being a Southern California native has hindered my sartorial selection and taste, but I am comfortable with it. My wife, who has extremely good taste (except maybe for her choice of husbands) is my compass, and if she thinks I look fine, that's all I need to know.

Anyway. Do you need to pack a blazer for Paris? No.


maitaitom is offline  
Aug 16th, 2007, 02:14 PM
  #43  
ira
 
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Hi M,

>I don't go to Michelin-rated restaurants, ... spending $500 for dinner is not my type of enjoyment.<

If you choose carefully, you could get away for less than 1/2 that.

And your wife might even say that you look good in your sports jacket.


ira is offline  
Aug 16th, 2007, 02:20 PM
  #44  
 
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Author: robjame
Date: 08/16/2007, 04:58 pm
Neo - It happens all the time, everywhere in the world. Somebody has to get that table by the window or get bumped to First Class.
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Robjame, I don't think you're reading my post right.
I TOTALLY agree that a well dressed man (or couple) are likely to get better service than a not so well dressed couple.

What I DON'T agree with is that a man will get better service simply because he's wearing a sport coat. A sport coat wearing man is NOT necessarily a better dressed man than one without one.

I repeat my examples above. Will from Will and Grace enters a restaurant in his usual designer casual attire -- long sleeve designer shirt, nice slacks, great shoes. Next to him is the character from King of Queens played by Jerry Stiller wearing a sportcoat. If the restaurant seats Jerry Stiller in the better seat and gives him better service just because this horrible dresser happens to be wearing a sport coat, then that is NOT a restaurant I'd want to patronize.

Is that clearer?
NeoPatrick is offline  
Aug 16th, 2007, 02:21 PM
  #45  
 
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"And your wife might even say that you look good in your sports jacket."

I look even better in a tux. That doesn't mean I like to wear one. Some business and social events call for sport coat and tie or even tux. Paris, for me, does not require my wearing a sport coat.

Maybe when I'm 60.

maitaitom is offline  
Aug 16th, 2007, 02:29 PM
  #46  
 
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NO
dgassa is offline  
Aug 16th, 2007, 02:30 PM
  #47  
 
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<<Maybe when I'm 60.>>
ira - I guess that puts us in our place!!

I think it depends what you are comfortable in.
What does your wife wear maitai?
Is it necessary - probably not.
robjame is offline  
Aug 16th, 2007, 02:32 PM
  #48  
 
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robjame, was my last post clearer?

Uh-oh, now I'm really worried. As I said this summer was the first time I've worn a sport coat every night in Paris. It was also my first time in Paris being over 60. Is there a significant connection there?
NeoPatrick is offline  
Aug 16th, 2007, 02:33 PM
  #49  
 
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<<If your clothes are clean, modest and acceptable, you ought to be welcome wherever you go. >>

Well, yes and no. A "destination" restaurant with formal service deserves consideration about dress - If you've saved up for a special night out, gotten dressed up and settled in at an elegant restaurant, do you expect other guests to be dressed in bermuda shorts and tank tops? Or even in polo shirts they'd also wear for a golf game? Restaurants spend a lot of time and attention on creating atmosphere - and a standard level of dress is part of that. You can call it snobbery, but it's calculated to serve the customers.

Dress for the vacation you want to have. If that doesn't include occasionally wearing a jacket, cool. As for me, I don't get to go to fine restaurants that often (or to the opera, for that matter, another place I'd wear a jacket), so when I do go, I like to dress it up a little. For my sake, no one else's, to make it more an event. I rather feel that way about Paris, too. I take a jacket - I even take TIES!! Alors!!

By the way, restaurants certainly will notice how customers are dressed (in particular the customers they don't know) when accomodating them. Along with manners (general decorum included), intelligence, beauty ... these are things that are attractive to other customers, believe it or not. (even in the most casual places, who hasn't said to himself, "This place draws a nice-looking crowd ..." If you haven't, think about it next time.) So given the choice, a host will put "attractive" customers (that whole mix of qualities) where others will see them, and will want to put the loud, the tired-looking, extremely under- or over-dressed, etc where they don't send out an undesired message. This is purely business. It may only happen in 5% or fewer of all restaurants, or maybe more ... but it's hardly rare or strange.

Who doesn't appreciate someone going to a little effort?
tomassocroccante is offline  
Aug 16th, 2007, 02:36 PM
  #50  
 
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"ira - I guess that puts us in our place!!"

robjame - As a card carrying member of AARP, I'm not too far from 60. I told Tracy if I ever wear shorts with wing tips and black shorts it's time to put the gun to my head.

"What does your wife wear maitai?
Is it necessary - probably not."

She doesn't wear a sport coat either.

maitaitom is offline  
Aug 16th, 2007, 02:39 PM
  #51  
 
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Neo - yes LOL - see your "classical references" were lost on me. I totally misread what you were saying. Sorry.
As long as we don't uses fellow Floridians as examples of how to dress.

I think we "older folks" still enjoy getting dressed up a little for dinner (a three hour event for us). I have no quarrel with those who don't agree.
robjame is offline  
Aug 16th, 2007, 02:40 PM
  #52  
 
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"wing tips and black shorts "

black SOCKS. See robjame, I'm already losing it. A sport coat can't be far behind. Look at poor Neo, he has already started the over-60 trend.

maitaitom is offline  
Aug 16th, 2007, 02:43 PM
  #53  
 
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And while I want to defend my wearing the sport coat this summer by saying "because it was cold", I have a horrible fear that I only thought it was cold due to my advancing years. Oh dear.
NeoPatrick is offline  
Aug 16th, 2007, 02:57 PM
  #54  
 
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I guess formal is what you are used to.

We're from so. calif. and we were going to a very formal fancy restaurant in Philly.
I called to find out what the "dress code" was and they said nice and informal.
My husband put on a suit and tie (he said that is what they meant by informal.)

My daughters and I wore t-shirts and blue jeans because that is informal in the beach community we live in.

Boy were we out of place with the suits/and "formal" wear worn by men and women!!!!! At least I didn't wear my flipflops.
nanabee is offline  
Aug 16th, 2007, 03:08 PM
  #55  
 
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I find it amusing how many people seem to think that if you don't "dress up" it means you are wearing shorts and flipflops. I guess people with absolutely no sense of measure have to dress as well as possible because they just can't gauge what is appropriate.

I still get upgraded to 1st class quite often without wearing a jacket and tie anymore. Of course I have also been airline staff long enough to know what charms the check-in staff and the station manager.
kerouac is online now  
Aug 16th, 2007, 03:12 PM
  #56  
 
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Well, NP, all our years are advancing at the same pace, 365 days each, one day at a time!

On that note: a well-fitted jacket serves another purpose beyond "formalizing" = it makes those of us with less-than-perfect proportions look instantly in better shape! This could be the reason the tailored suit has survived so long ... it can give a man a youthful waistline and straight shoulders. No surgery or exercise required.

Here's a memory that just came back:

One hot summer night about 15 years ago I was at an off Broadway theater. In walked Douglas Fairbanks Jr. He'd have been about 75 then. Beautiful light gray suit, white shirt and dark necktie. The rest of us, save for maybe his friends, were summer-in-the-city ultra casual. At intermission I couldn't help but be fascinated at the utter "comfort" he displayed. He didn't look hot, for one thing, and clearly didn't think twice about how he was dressed - he had done that long before, found his standard and was sticking to it.

In a world where "being comfortable" seems to equate with seeing what you can get away with, I like to remember photos of my grandfathers, in their suits and straw hats, looking like gentlemen - not movie stars, but with their own dignity.
tomassocroccante is offline  
Aug 16th, 2007, 03:12 PM
  #57  
 
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kerouac-
you have insight into what gets one into first class!!

you MUST share with us.

we will tell no-one else promise.
you secret is safe with us.
nanabee is offline  
Aug 16th, 2007, 03:14 PM
  #58  
 
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Hi Kerouac, I do love these discussions. Now that I am retired and no longer officed in Paris, and more importantly, missing my expense account, my search for great Parisian dining centers more on Bib Gourmand type restaurants. And I confess that perhaps I lived too many years in Boston and NYC. Nevertheless, I believe that proper attire and a bit of "attitude" works well in Paris. Not in other parts of France, where politeness and a kind word is all one needs.
oakglen is offline  
Aug 16th, 2007, 03:21 PM
  #59  
 
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kerouac??
we're waiting!
nanabee is offline  
Aug 16th, 2007, 03:41 PM
  #60  
 
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nicely put tomassocroccante
Your last paragraph is right on
robjame is offline  

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