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Mark your polo


I cannot imagine a man not having at least half a dozen polo T-shirts in his wardrobe (I actually know someone who owns three dozens of them). And yet, we always wonder — can a polo be worn with a suit? Let’s find out by going back a few years to the time it was first created.

This iconic garment was first worn by French tennis legend Rene Lacoste in 1926 at the U.S open. The distinctive features of the polo are — a collar, placket below the collar, up to four buttons, optional pocket on the chest and short cuffed sleeves to hug the arm. Most polos are made from knit fabric and help keep the garment airy, especially when worn as sportswear.

Here are five ways to wear your polo:

The sporty look: khaki shorts + white polo shirt + brown belt + casual watch + no-show socks + boat shoes

Ideal for a beach party, this combination will make you look dapper while still keeping it fun.

If you want to make a few heads turn with this look, add a straw hat or cotton hat. The thumb rule for wearing shorts is to keep an eye on the fit and fabric.

Wear them slightly above your knee and loose enough but not baggy.

Summer casuals: polo shirt + chinos + brown belt + casual watch + no-show socks + loafers

Some may call you plain, but this is your ideal outfit for an informal dinner or casual date night. You’re sending the message that you care for neatness by sporting this look. Jazz up the look with coloured or patterned socks and a funky watch.

Casual suit: polo + light grey suit + brown belt + brown casual watch + no-show socks + loafers

If you have to wear business casuals or have a casual suit environment at work, this is your go-to uniform that is both classic and timeless. To add a bit of a contemporary element, wear a watch with a metal band in a solid or two-tone hue. However, style adjustments always take the backseat when it comes to work dress rules. You’d rather play by the rules of your company. This outfit works great for a boys’ weekend out, making you look effortlessly stylish.

The layered look: white polo + dark denim + light jacket + brown watch + casual watch + loafers and no-show socks

When the weather is good, add a light jacket to your dark denim (I always prefer a no-wash), and you’re all set for a night out. Sometimes, a jacket is not always necessary, but when the weather permits and the occasion demands, you could well do with one.

The cardigan should always be in the opposite tone of the polo (think light shirt-dark jacket) to create a balanced look.

Rugged look: white polo shirt + dark denim + brown corduroy coat + brown casual watch + ankle boots

When you want to add a masculine touch to your look, boots are your best bet. You can match any classic colour sports jacket — blue, brown or grey — with a solid polo. For a more formal look, wear darker pants. Lighter pants are best worn in the daytime. Polo T-shirts are probably a universal piece to any wardrobe and can be worn in multiple ways. Choose a style and fabric that you’re comfortable with and style it up.

(The author is an image consultant and you can write to her at

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Printable version | Dec 12, 2019 4:09:20 PM |

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