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HomeFormalwear AccessoriesEverything You Need to Know About a Tuxedo Cummerbund

Everything You Need to Know About a Tuxedo Cummerbund

When it comes to formalwear, there is much to consider when dressing for a special occasion. Whether a modern or classic fit would best compliment your body, the color of the suit or tuxedo that makes sense given the event or season, as well as the type of material to keep you comfortable given the time of year. Figuring out which tuxedo is right for you is only part of the process. Your work is only done once you’ve also selected the right tuxedo accessories to complete your look. While you may have considered which bow tie or long tie to wear, one accessory you might not have considered is the cummerbund. A cummerbund is one of the more often overlooked tuxedo accessories, however has the ability to take any ordinary tuxedo to the next level of class and style. Below learn everything you need to know about a tuxedo cummerbund and how to wear one with your tuxedo at the next special event in your life.

What is a Cummerbund?

You’ve likely seen a cummerbund worn in movies or on television shows where a black tie event is taking place. But what exactly is it, and what purpose does it serve? Traditionally black in color, a tuxedo cummerbund is a pleated waist sash that is worn with single-breasted tuxedo jackets. While most tuxedo cummerbunds are black in color, other colors can also be worn including gold, burgundy, bottle green, as well as white. The widest part of the tuxedo cummerbund is the front, where it can more effectively conserve warmth. Traditional tuxedo cummerbunds are made of quality silk material, while less expensive options will be made from synthetic materials like polyester.

So what exactly is the purpose of one of the most misunderstood tuxedo accessories? The primary purpose of the tuxedo cummerbund is the preserve the immaculate presentation expected when wearing formal attire. Serving as a waist covering, a tuxedo cummerbund prevents your shirt from showing below the buttoning point of your jacket, maintaining a much neater appearance. It is believed that by ensuring your shirt only shows at the chest in a powerful V-shape, a stronger and more masculine look is achieved. A tuxedo cummerbund avoids any distracting white from popping out below.

History of the Cummerbund

It is first important to note the proper spelling of the tuxedo cummerbund, as a very common mistake is often made. The proper spelling for this tuxedo accessory is “cummerbund,” as opposed to “cumberbund” as it is often misspelled. The origins of the tuxedo cummerbund can be traced back to 1850s India, during the time when British Military officers were stationed in the country. During this time, British officers were required to wear full formal attire, including vests, despite the incredibly hot temperatures in the sub-tropical climate of India. To find a cooler solution to the formal attire required, they took inspiration from the colorful sashes Indian men wore around their waists called “kamarbands.” The British adopted the fashion, making them black and adding them to the list of tuxedo accessories for dinner wear attire. The tuxedo cummerbund made its way to England and became a staple of Victorian fashion.

Occasions to Wear A Tuxedo Cummerbund

A cummerbund is one of the most formal tuxedo accessories, so it is not the right choice for every occasion. You will likely only wear a tuxedo cummerbund to black tie events where formal dress is expected or required. The most common examples of black tie events include very formal weddings, prestigious balls or galas, milestone birthday parties, or award ceremonies.

How to Wear a Cummerbund

While one of the simple tuxedo accessories, there is a right and wrong way to wear a tuxedo cummerbund. The most important thing to remember when wearing a tuxedo cummerbund is that it should be worn with the plates facing upward. This is a common mistake, but one that is easily avoidable. Plus, having the pleats facing upward is beneficial as the pleats are great for catching crumbs and holding tickets. Also important to remember when wearing a cummerbund is that it should be worn at the natural waist. With your trouser pants worn at navel level, the upper half of the cummerbund should cover your shirt, while the lower half covers the top of your trousers. When worn too low or too high, the cummerbund will not flatter your figure and instead create a messy and disheveled look.

Finally, a tuxedo cummerbund should only be worn with a bow tie. Frankly, wearing a tuxedo cummerbund with a long tie would look awkward. Instead, pair it with a bow tie of the same fabric.

Do You Wear a Belt with a Cummerbund?

Because you want your tuxedo cummerbund to fit snugly against your body to create a sleek and slim look, you should never wear a belt with a cummerbund. Doing so would only result in an unsightly bulge that is unflattering for formal events.

Cummerbunds from Savvi Formalwear

The benefits to tuxedo cummerbunds are plentiful, from keeping you cool, to catching crumbs, to offering a slimming silhouette. Savvi Formalwear offers an incredible selection of tuxedo cummerbunds for men to pair with tuxedos of all styles and colors. Our selection of tuxedo cummerbunds is available in a variety of colors to fit the color palette you need. To make coordinating your tuxedo accessories simple, we offer matching tuxedo cummerbunds and bow ties or long ties for rent at affordable prices you’ll appreciate. Simply browse our selection of tuxedo cummerbunds online then pick up at a store near you.