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I am sorry but the Englishman, as far as I know, regards the SB 3 button as the most sober and formal suit of all. The DB is racier. I think this notion is an American one and nothing wrong with that- in America.
 

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Have you youngsters never been out in the weather?

In the old days people didn't ride in heated or air-conditioned autos they rode on wagons, horse back, or walked. On warm days SB is nice. On cold day, and especially if it is windy and cold, DB will keep you way warmer and keep the cold wind out. When I was a boy some of the autos didn't have heaters in them yet and when it is snowing hot rocks or bricks only last a while to keep one warm. The generation before used real horse power for farming and some travel. When you use real clothing to protect you from the elements, because you need to, you learn to dress according to need. Lots of outdoor coats have a zipper and a flap over the zipper that makes a difference in warmth. In the old days you didn't have zippers so a wide overlap with buttons made the difference. Therefore, neither SB or DB is more correct, or any other way you want to think about it , than the other. They are equal.
 

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The db is probably considered more formal because ....

it must be worn buttoned at all time, siting or standing. The excess jaket material must be contained with a proper buttoned stance. If you can't wear your db buttoned while sitting, the fit is not correct. I don't think warmth has anything to do with it. Even before the auto, I can't imagine a sartorially splendid gentleman riding in an open wagon. Also, the db should never be worn without a tie. While any suit worn without a tie borders on inappropriate attire, the db worn sans tie is a sartorial breech not easily forgiven.
 

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it must be worn buttoned at all time, siting or standing. The excess jaket material must be contained with a proper buttoned stance. If you can't wear your db buttoned while sitting, the fit is not correct. I don't think warmth has anything to do with it. Even before the auto, I can't imagine a sartorially splendid gentleman riding in an open wagon. Also, the db should never be worn without a tie. While any suit worn without a tie borders on inappropriate attire, the db worn sans tie is a sartorial breech not easily forgiven.
Is this also true for DB blue blazers and white linen suits, which I see frequently worn with an open collar?
 

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And I would add, a DB should not be worn with a button-down shirt. Plain collar shirt (and tie, of course) only. Perhaps it's a personal quirk but the DB is more formal looking and the button-down just doesn't seem to work. The one exception to this rule I can recall is Cary Grant in a scene from "The Bachelor and the Bobby Soxer," where he wears what must have been a navy blue DB (movie is black and white) with a crisp button-down shirt and tie. He looked great, as usual, and I forgave him.
 

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I love to wear the double-breasted jacket with a BD collar. A good butcher stripe on the shirt and slim cut to the jacket turn this uncertain combination into a confident and relaxed look.
 

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I could count on one hand the DB suits I've seen in real life, so I ask those more knowledgeable.

I have never seen a DB suit in anything other than a somber solid or stripe. This would IMO suggest a more formal garment. Has anyone ever seen one in a pattern or bold color?
 

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The DB suit is the descendant of the frock coat, the business and formal wear of the 19th century and as considered more formal than the lounge suit, the forerunner of the SB suit. The DB is more formal than the SB, not less.
 

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When I was a boy some of the autos didn't have heaters in them yet and when it is snowing hot rocks or bricks only last a while to keep one warm. The generation before used real horse power for farming and some travel.
My grandparents' 1934 Hudson Terraplane had a heater. How old are you?

The same argument could be made for people who live in big cities - the buildings radiate heat, but there's a lot more walking outside when it's more convenient than getting in a car to go somewhere.
 

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My grandparents' 1934 Hudson Terraplane had a heater. How old are you?

The same argument could be made for people who live in big cities - the buildings radiate heat, but there's a lot more walking outside when it's more convenient than getting in a car to go somewhere.
Car heaters were not a standard fitment in some models of Fords (UK) in the early 1960s. I recall that my Mother's car at that time was not blessed with one although she soon got rid of it and was bought one that had.
 

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I could count on one hand the DB suits I've seen in real life, so I ask those more knowledgeable.

I have never seen a DB suit in anything other than a somber solid or stripe. This would IMO suggest a more formal garment. Has anyone ever seen one in a pattern or bold color?
Most of my DBs are sombre stripes, but I have a couple with very bold stripes, and I've had a couple in fairly unrestrained Prince of Wales checks.

They're definitely more formal, though.
 

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Fred Astaire and Cary Grant wore bd shirts with db jackets....

but they were cuatom made and not the styles you see in bd's today. Grant's bd's were actually spread collars with French cuffs where the button was at the tip of the spread. He wore these in 'Notorious'. Fred's bd were of the roll variety and were worn with slim ties, 2-1/2 to 3". He wore them with a 4 x 1 button stance db. The bd shirts of today look silly with a db jacket. Especially with the 6 x 2 button stance now popular. To emulate Fred and Cary, you would have to replicate the types of bd shirts they wore, which probably means custom made.

To answer the poster about buttoning linen or blazer db's: It is quite common to see a db sport coat worn without tie. I often do it myself, but I never wear a dress shirt sans tie. I wear a sport shirt which is cut to wear with a jacket or a turtleneck. But no matter what you wear with a db sport jacket, a db looks foolish with the jacket unbuttoned.
 

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I could count on one hand the DB suits I've seen in real life, so I ask those more knowledgeable.

I have never seen a DB suit in anything other than a somber solid or stripe. This would IMO suggest a more formal garment. Has anyone ever seen one in a pattern or bold color?
I have two. The first is a light/medium weight worsted by PRL that is a fairly bold POW plaid. I just picked this up in the after-Christmas sales at an outlet for 150.00 ;)

Also have a heavier, flannel by Corneliani (but I guess they both are to be accurate!), also in a fairy bold POW plaid. My tailor saw this one and wanted to know where he could get one !

they are great suits for going out to dinner, unique and very distinguished, but probably not for someone who wants to be ignored while out.
 
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