The King & Allen guide to… Prince Of Wales Suits

There is a nothing more quintessentially British than Prince of Wales suits. To wear it is to wear an icon of British heritage – a timeless style that will be enjoyed and treasured for a lifetime.

Not only is it steeped in British history, but it occupies a very practical place in a gentleman’s wardrobe since it looks as magnificent in the office as it does at an event. Moreover, they have an air of great prestige, in part because of the history and in part because of its rarity. It’s very hard to find off the peg and almost impossible to have any choice of pattern if you do.

At King & Allen, we stock over 50 different styles and patterns. We have seen a huge surge in popularity recently for, not just the classic grey checks, but also for other colours (such as blue and brown). This is a suit style that goes beyond the plain solid colours but is not as business-focused as a pinstripe.

Bespoke Prince of Wales Check Suits

How to Style it

We usually recommend that it be worn as a single-breasted, 2 button jacket, or double-breasted, 2 show 4 (as favoured by Prince Charles). These are both classic English cuts and will, therefore, compliment the style of cloth. The jackets should be double-vented at the rear, and could potentially sport a right-hand ticket pocket as a nod to days of yore when the pocket was used during the daily commute. The trousers should have buckled or buttoned side adjusters, which, again, is the more classic Savile Row style. They could even sport a turn-up, but only if you’ve got the height.

Accessorising Your Suit

We would recommend a plain shirt with a patterned cloth, ideally in white or a hue that compliments any colour running through the check. A brown brogue is an ideal shoe to accompany most men’s Prince of Wales check suit styles. Finally, a plain silk pocket square is the ideal finishing touch – truly regal!

Prince of Wales Check Suit

The History of the Prince of Wales Suit

The check is a variant of the Glen Urquhart check, having originated in the valley of Glenurquhart in Inverness-shire, Scotland. The checked wool was first used in the 19th century by the New Zealand-born countess of Seafield to outfit her gamekeepers. The fabric first gained its moniker due to its popularity with Edward VII in the late 19th century.

The style was made famous, however, by his son Edward VIII (of Mrs Simpson fame) when he was Prince of Wales – simply because he had such an extensive and infamous wardrobe.

Since then, the check has continued to maintain its regal status and is still extremely popular with Prince Charles.

Bespoke Prince of Wales Check Suit