Style Profile

Style Profile: Mike Tullie

Talking with Mike Tuille of DownCity Design Studio


A black suit is so simple and classic, but offers so many possibilities. What can you tell me about this one?
This is our basic twill suit in black. This is one of our most popular suits because it can be dressed up or easily made more casual with a pair of jeans or a less dressy shirt. The client gets to choose the fit, the style of lapel and pockets, and the overall length and cut. We can jazz it up with a fancy lining or some upgraded buttons. And, it’s made to measure.

This is a very classic way to wear the suit. How could you add a bold accent or unorthodox touch without disrupting the overall look?
If you’re wearing a tie, you can style it up with something bold and colorful in either a bowtie or a classic style. And if you are going with no tie, we can do a crisp white shirt with a contrasting fabric on the inside of the collar, placket and cuff, and also add contracting stitching on the button holes and buttons. Pocket squares also give you an opportunity for some edge.

Who are some of your personal style icons?
I always liked a put-together look, even when I was a kid. I am always impressed with the way men looked when they went out of the house in the movies of the ‘40s and ‘50s, when people wore suits and ties with dress coats and hats. Just your average man-on-thestreet knew how to turn himself out. I am also a huge fan of Don Draper’s look from the first few seasons of Mad Men, when the show was set in the early ‘60s. I am often amazed at restaurants or public events today to see that men often look as though they don’t put much effort into it or just do not care.

What are the important things to think to achieve that put-together look?

Good coordination, with the right shoes – polished – and a little thought put into a shirt and tie is both functional and makes a statement that you gave it some thought, and that you care about how you approach your personal and business relationships.

What are the five essentials you feel absolutely belong in every man’s wardrobe?
A dark, well tailored suit; well polished shoes in both black and a shade of brown; a white shirt that fits perfectly, like the custom shirts we make; a versatile overcoat, which can be worn in many situations; and well cut jeans that can be worn with a blazer or suit jacket for a polished but more casual look.

Finally, is there ever a bad occasion to wear a suit?

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