Another laurel from Indian cultural trove, the word “cummerbund” traces its roots back to the Persian phrase “kamar-bandi” . It is a combination of the words “kamar” (waist) and bandi”(band).  The English military officers during their term in colonial India opted for the cummerbund as an alternative to the waistcoat. As the Victorian era began, the civilians found their fancy in cummerbund too and by 1920 it was an appreciated formal accessory.

However, the cummerbunds do hold a more clinical origin. The cummerbund was used as an accessory to give warmth and protection to the local folks in India and Persia from the sudden drop of tropical temperature. Whereas the British officers were inclined on seeking for a cooler dining uniform due to the heat in the Indian subcontinent.

The foundation of “black-tie” lies with the commanding principles it holds. One such direction in formal elocution suggests for the functioning elements of one’s ensemble must be covered. Whence it is essential for either a waistband or a waistcoat to dress over the occurrence of awkward shirt bunching.

While Black Tie standards demand the cummerbund to be black, trends have found acceptance for colours into the formal outfits as well. Deep tones of burgundy, plum, bottle green and blue are considered appropriate hues for cummerbunds. Nevertheless, the bow tie is to follow the traditional code of black if one opts for a colourful cummerbund. Throwing multiple colours in a tuxedo takes a compromising toll on its integrity.

Most if not all cummerbunds have pleats. These pleats once had functional values, serving the purpose of pockets to withhold ticket stubs and other night-at-the-opera sorts of things. The correct way of wearing a cummerbund with pleats is to wear the pleats facing upwards. In drawing the discussion to close, cummerbunds tend to make men appear taller with a narrow waist.

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