SERIES 4 – wiTtY wARdrObes; TOPIC 2- Clothing Capsule: Business Travellers (Men)

The one thing that most of us don’t enjoy about travelling is deciding which clothes to carry and which outfits to put together. Each person has a different reason or purpose of travelling. Some travel for fun, some for business, some are digital nomads, some for competitions of various sorts. Capsule wardrobes are a smart and effective way to dress classy and elegant without wasting much time deciding your outfit. 

Let us begin with Business Travellers. In their world, the laptop and official files take up most of their suitcase space and then come the pile of “wearing for sure” and “maybe going to wear” clothes. The only decision they should make this work trip is for clients and bosses, not for choosing from multiple attires. This blog guides you through a capsule wardrobe for men.

Here is a list of must-have apparel for this capsule wardrobe for men business travellers. These, in turn, will help create quite a good number of ensembles for your work trip. 

  1. Upper-wear:  
  • Shirts: The most common and essential formal clothing item is a shirt. Most men get that professional look going as soon as they put on a shirt. It is a versatile article that can be paired up with literally anything, so basically, what I’m saying is, don’t forget to carry a shirt! The broader shirt categories are – oxford button-down shirt, button-up shirt, and formal dress shirt in styles of plain, small checks, and thin stripes. The primary colour palette for shirts is – white, grey, light blue, and black for plain; black & white, black & grey, blue & white, black & beige, preferably for small checks and thin stripes. 
  • T-shirts: You will need comfortable casual t-shirts for going around the hotel, as nightwear, or even for a morning workout if you overate the night before;). Along with this, you will need a few dressy t-shirts as well. You can wear them under your blazer for an official meeting or explore the city matching it with a pair of jeans, either on a friendly outing or an evening dinner with colleagues. You can carry a polo neck shirt, a collared t-shirt, a suitable henley t-shirt, a crew neck t-shirt, and a decent v-neck. Any colour works for this apparel, make sure it isn’t very flashy and doesn’t have a lot of prints. 

2. Lower-wear:

  • Slim Chinos: Go to work looking dapper without losing your comfort by putting on a pair of chinos. These fall into the category of formal as well as business casual. The best colours to carry are lighter shades like grey and beige.
  • Pleated Pants: If you aren’t too lazy to iron each pleat, go ahead and dress-to-impress your boss with formal pleated pants. The most classy and smart colours are dark grey or charcoal, black, and cream(like khaki). A meeting with a vital client-check, off-site evenings with colleagues-check again.
  • Dress pants: That one girl who won’t look at you, that one colleague who always puts you down. Show yourself off while carrying a professional look with dress pants. The darker the colour, the better-navy blue, black, steel grey, to name a few. Nothing can go wrong with these pants, and there are a plethora of options that you can match them with. One pair is a must-have in your suitcase.
  • Flat front pants: These are a mixture of dress pants design and pleated pants style, just without the pleats and more form-fitting. This lower-wear acts as a representation of confidence and assertion. The colours to carry are black, khaki, and almost any shades of grey.
  • Jeans: A pair of dark-washed jeans or any presentable pair of jeans is a must. Just for relaxing in the hotel lounge, touring around on your day off, or for a gathering with your colleagues, you need a pair packed in your suitcase. The colour entirely depends on your style or choice; make sure that it matches most of your upper-wear.

3. Accessories:

  • Blazer: Add class to your outfit with a smart blazer and get that handsome formal look going. Stick to shades of blue, black, and grey, but again not to forget, they should match most of your pants. The most appropriate work blazers that never go out of trend are single and double-breasted blazers. Do carry a notch-lapel blazer in shades of beige, or grey as they are comfortable and provide an extremely sophisticated look. Now for more important meetings or client dinners, you can also take along a shawl lapel blazer, which highlights best in black. All of these types can either be in plain or have a mild checks pattern to catch the eye.
  • Tie: In my opinion, the final image, the vibe of the whole ensemble, comes with the correct tie. Along with keeping in mind the most dashing tie, do remember that you shouldn’t carry a lot, make sure they suit almost every apparel you pack. However, a bow-tie is optional, and your ties shouldn’t be very bright or have multiple patterns. 
  • Footwear: The most stylish and smartest, giving you the best of both worlds(comfort and style) are oxford shoes or dress shoes. Impressive in colours of dark polished brown and black. Then comes loafers for any and every occasion, they fall in the category of business, casual, and business casual. My preference is the darkest shade of brown. Derbys are comfortable, smart to wear throughout the day, and for evening outings. Again darker colours suit better. Then there are brogues which are more on the casual side and look best in tan and brown. Lastly, black plain toe shoes are perfect for defining your feet. Try to carry a maximum of two pairs, depending on the number of days from either of these categories. Other than that, feel free to bring athletic shoes for working out and flip flops for lounging, if you have space.
  • Belts: Even if any apparel from your lower-wear isn’t loose, pack at least one belt. Without a belt somehow, the formal ensemble looks a bit shabby. These can be of any colour, just not very bright or with a shiny buckle as they shouldn’t the centre of attention of your outfit. Plain, medium-sized belts look slick and smart. 
  • Socks: Socks are essential to keep your feet relaxed all day, so carry proper length socks of various colours according to the rest of your suitcase’s clothing.
  • Bags: Apart from your main suitcase, you need some bags or carry-ons to keep your handy valuables, required files, your electronics, and of course, chargers. Have a backpack for essential items that you can have with you on the flight, and you may or may not use it for your official electronics as well. You can also take along an elegant briefcase or a laptop bag for documents, laptops, iPads, or tablets for carrying it with you at work if you don’t want to keep it all in your backpack. Personally, a classy briefcase completes the entire besuited vibe and gives off confidence and professionalism. Moreover, it’s up to you to carry a duffel bag for the gym incase its a long trip.  
  • Other accessories: Don’t forget a dashing watch, it’s essential for your work trip. Depending on the weather, you can pack a pair or two of sunglasses for summer, a smart muffler/ shawl for winter. If there is a particular party after the official work, you can also bring along a waistcoat.
  • Suits: In my opinion, full suits should not be a part of this travel wardrobe as the purpose of creating more outfits with fewer clothes will be defied. However, if need be, a set or two can be packed.

Here are a few outfits that I find perfect for your business travel capsule wardrobe! Do have a look!

Black dress pants, dark blue and white striped shirt, black plain toe shoes, watch, white tie, black belt with silver buckle
Blue oxford button down shirt, grey flat front pants, grey blazer, dark grey dress shoes, dark blue and black belt, blue and grey tie, watch, black laptop bag
White button up shirt, checks greyish black and white single breasted blazer, beige pleated pant, bluish grey derby shoes, rustic brown briefcase, watch
Maroon polo neck t-shirt, black jeans, sunglasses, black loafers

Stay home, stay safe((:

~Vee

6 thoughts on “SERIES 4 – wiTtY wARdrObes; TOPIC 2- Clothing Capsule: Business Travellers (Men)

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