I can only speak for where I live and work: the Kobe-Osaka metro area.Interesting. Would you say the general population (not the subcultures and fashionista elements) represent a more European or an Americanized dress style. And among subcultures, are they different by lifestyle mostly, or is it an brand-identity culture.
Just a few questions. Feel free to PM if you want. I'm just curious, because what I've read presents both views.
1. Black, navy, and shades of gray, solid and striped suits. Black rules and is considered the interview suit. Unfortunately, even for men here with high-contrast complexions, black looks terrible. The company that makes the MTM that I graduated to and will graduate from has Italian, American, and British styles to choose from. In the summer, 'to combat global warming,' suits are optional for some companies. Older men tend to wear odd jackets to the office. Blazers are usually navy, but black is not uncommon. Many MTM offer the highest quality fabrics. Three-piece suits and odd jackets and trousers are popular during the winter. Sweater vests and turtlenecks are common in the winter. In the summer polyester blends are popular, presumably to offset the wrinkling of lighter weight. Most men I know own 4 OTR when they wear suits in the cooler and colder months, never brush, and always dry clean.
2. Many wear striped shirts with spread collars, cutaway, point, and button down collars. Many wear a black suit with an unbuttoned white shirt, a weird combo of formality and informality. I've recently seen collars that have metal buttons under the collars to snap. Unfortunately, during the summer, many wear short sleeves with a tie, either with or without jacket. Polyester blends in the summer are popular. Showing cuff is not rare, but not the norm, either. Cufflinks are uncommon and very rarely double-sided.
3. For many companies, ties are optional during the summer if you wear a jacket. Those who do wear ties tend to wear garish prints. Many wear their ties too long, sometimes covering the crotches. Nice striped ties are common, while plain ties are uncommon, save for black neckties for funerals and white neckties either for weddings or for guys who think a white necktie and a white shirt with a black suit is sexy. Again, many wear ties with short sleeves in the summer, with or without jacket.
4. Outside of going to a wedding pocket squares are rare. If you want an unfolded linen pocket square, Paul Stuart or a haberdasher may have one-the major department stores do not. Most match their squares and ties.
5. Suspenders are uncommon.
6. Socks are rarely OTC and those that are black, navy, and charcoal gray. My shoes are a size 8.5 US, which is 26.5 Japan. That means I should wear a 28 sock over here. So far, for OTC the best I could find is 27-28 for OTC socks. Many wear ankle socks and make no attempt to coordinate them with their pants or anything above the trouser.
7. Many wear nice shoes and many keep them polished.
8. 'Japanese men do not wear raincoats' I have been repeatedly told. Never given a reason. But, should it be slightly chilly in the autumn and out come the overcoats and scarves.
Most men that I know do not like suits, wear them only if they have to, and welcome American business casual. Many younger men are metrosexual 'ladyboys' who are slaves of fashion.