The term "business casual" can be interpreted in various ways. The definition can change depending on several factors. For example geography, climate, culture, and of course the nature of occasion affect the interpretation. However, the business casual dress code is first of all always a step down from smart casual and definitely not as formal as boardroom attire. It's neat and professional but still informal.
To continue from the autumnal business outfits post I decided to come up with a post featuring some other attires from the past weeks. These are all a bit more casual than the ones in the previous post and therefore named as autumnal business casual outfits.
Sometimes you can manage business casual by wearing jeans and and button-up shirt. Or a suit without a tie. As mentioned this depends on the usual dress code on your office. For me business casual means that I go a small step down from my outfits that I use for formal business meetings. So my business casual outfits are still maybe a little bit more dressed-up attires than what it means for many others. For me the casualness comes here mostly through the fabric, texture and pattern choices.
Gray herringbone suit with the Symposium pocket square
The first attire features one of my oldest suits, a gray herringbone suit by Uniqlo. This is one of the suits that shows that the most important thing in terms of a suit is the fit. After that comes the construction, fabric and details. This is the only suit in my rotation that is made by fused construction. But it cost 150 euros. And I dare to say that you would not guess the price on the first look. But naturally if you want to find a suit on that price you are forced to do some sacrifices.
Herringbone pattern is one of my personal favorites. It is subtle yet a bit more vivid than plain wool. For this outfit I combined the suit with a white button-down shirt and a navy blue wool tie. And then I picked up the DLA Symposium pocket square. The colors of the pocket square repeats the blue of the tie and burgundy brings in a little splash of seasonal color.
The reason why I consider this outfit to fit in the category of business casual is the textures you can see. The fabric of the suit is quite heavy wool cloth. And the visible herringbone pattern as well as the 3-roll-2 buttoning makes it even more casual. The tie is also made of wool and if you take a closer look, you can notice that the wool used for it is also quite heavyweight. And to keep the attire in balance, I chose to wear button-down shirt.
The gray flannel suit
This post features two iconic pieces of men's clothing. The first one is the gray flannel suit. This suit is in fact my first mtm-suit I have ever commissioned. It is made of mid-gray super 120s flannel by Vitale Barberis Canonic and single breasted with two buttons.
The gray flannel suit is also kind of a chameleon. You can easily dress it up or down. This outfit you see here is kind of business casual but you could also wear it for more formal occasions as well.
The mid-gray is a great shade for a versatile business suit. First of all this kind of gray is easy to pair with different shades of blue and brown. But it is also easy to mix and match with accent colors such as the orange here. The mid-gray suit is also a good choice for both casual and more formal occasions.
This gray flannel suit is also one of my suits that I wear the most as separates. The trousers I can easily combine with multiple different sport coats and blazers. And the jacket is also suitable to wear even with denim and chunky knitwear. But still I like the most when I wear it as a full suit.
Navy blue flannel blazer with floral tie
Then there is the navy blue blazer. A garment that is an essential for every guy. A garment you can use for almost any occasion. A garment you can dress up or down. And a garment that is also the perfect choice for business casual or smart casual outfits.
The navy blazer is equally at home when dressed up with a grenadine tie and flannel trousers or dressed down with button-down shirt and denim. It is a piece that helps you to navigate between formal and casual occasions. You can basically wear it not only at the office but also from wedding parties to dinner dates.
Considering the fact that I wore mid-gray flannel trousers with this outfit it is actually more smart than business casual. And this attire I could easily wear for more formal business meetings as well. But I still wanted to have it in this post as by changing the white shirt for a merino wool roll neck sweater for example, this would a perfect business casual attire.
Navy blue jersey blazer with white trousers
The last one of the outfits is also build around navy blue blazer. But definitely another kind than the one above.
When you wear an outfit like this, pay attention to the construction, details and materials of the jacket. In general a blue blazer and light colored trousers are a simple combination. But for example a very boxy and heavily structured navy flannel blazer with medal buttons would definitely make this outfit too formal. Instead an unstructured jersey sport coat with patch pockets is a casual and relaxed choice.
I think everyone has kind of favorite combinations. Or combinations you tend to wear with certain garments. For me one of those is to wear a denim shirt and brown tie with this blazer. I like how the textures and colors go together. The soft cotton of the DLA denim shirt is a perfect match for the jersey fabric of the jacket. And the dark brown color of the tie balances the ensemble.
For this attire I chose to wear off-white corduroy trousers. It actually seems that corduroy is again gaining popularity among menswear enthusiastics. I believe that at the upcoming Pitti Uomo in January we will see a lot of suits, jackets and trousers made of this material. And in fact corduroy is a good choice in case you are looking for something that's in between formal and casual.
Finally, corduroy is not an easy material to pull off. But still it is in my opinion quite versatile. You can combine the corduroy trousers with knitwear and with not only wool but also for example cotton sport coats. They are also easy to dress up or down depending what kind of a look you are after. And as you can see, they work well with the navy blazer.