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Rules For Dress Belts

We believe that many of the old "rules" about professional dress are no longer operable, but that does not mean that all of them are wrong. Here are a few general principles to think about when shopping for a dress belt:

  1. Generally speaking, you should be buying a dress belt that is one size larger than your waist. A 36" waist usually demands a 38" belt. A belt fits best when fastened in the middle hole, giving the gentleman 2" in either direction. 
  2. There is really no excuse for a belt not to match the shoes.
  3. If you absolutely, positively can't match the belt, it should be darker than the shoes.
  4. The darker the belt, the more formal the look; the lighter the belt, the more casual the look.
  5. A dress belt is made of a smooth calfskin leather, lizard, alligator or crocodile; any other material means it probably shouldn't be worn as a dress belt.
  6. A standard dress belt usually measures 1 1/4" to 1 1/2" wide. Anything wider than that may have issues fitting through normal belt loops.
  7. Double-buckle belts are an excellent value for the gentleman that cares - rightly so - about matching the metals of his belt buckle to any jewelry he wears (watch, ring, bracelet, etc.).
  8. Some belts can be cut to size for a perfect fit, especially for those that have a 33", 35", or 37" waist. All of Michael Toschi's belts are cut to size. While we are happy to cut the belt to the nearest inch, any leather repair or shoe repair shop can cut it even shorter to get an exact fit. [Make note that a custom cut belt cannot be returned.]