Suit you, Sir?

Darragh Everard

Are we witnessing the death of the suit, will it be business (attire) as usual when people return to offices, or will it reinvent itself to its glorious occasional significance?
The pre-pandemic worker; under-nourished, underslept, untrusted, underappreciated but overdressed.

We know that the first 4 are changing but what about our attire?


At Eirkoo, we surveyed almost 500 white-collar workers to ascertain whether they wanted to return to wearing a suit or formal workwear for women. 69% of them said that they had no intention of doing so.


There are several elements of the pre-pandemic workplace that people will not want to see returning: the unnecessary commute, the annoying co-worker approaching them at their desk, the benign elevator chatter, etc. Often referred to as the navy suit brigade, many office workers are now looking to ditch the formal clothes for good. This has been a trend for some time now. When company announcements are printed in the media, if the subjects are under 40, they are more likely to be dressed in casual clothes than Saville Row's best. Accountancy firmsLawyers, and Bankers tend to be the last bastions of tradition in this sense, but we have even seen Goldman Sachs relax their dress code in the last year.



The suit, once synonymous with creativity, flair, a percipient urban worker has been diluted into the tieless, white-shirted, navy-suited commuter on the train who has fallen back asleep having only gotten out of bed 45 minutes ago. Throw in a coffee cup the size of the buckets they use to soak Super Bowl-winning coaches with and a ‘cereal’ bar which has more sugar than a can of Coke and you’ve got the recipe for said worker to have a horrible start to their day.


Now that people have been wearing casual clothes for over a year, will put on a suit remind them of those times? Will a suit return to becoming mandatory attire, much like in funeral parlours and courthouses?

Or is there a chance where a suit can return to being for an occasion, an important meeting, a pitch, maybe a colleague's anniversary, retirement, etc.?

As many of our roles have been redefined, there is a chance to redefine that of the suit in the workplace. I look forward to seeing its evolution.


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