Photograph by Jennifer Livingston
You've probably seen a lot of numbers in your life getting smaller. Here's a reduction you might actually welcome: the return of the one-button suit. No longer confined to the black-tie circuit, the minimalist suit is a fresh alternative to the two- and three-buttons in your closet. Courtney Colavita
The Closure: You don't have the option to leave a one-button jacket unfastened, so it's imperative that you choose one that closes in the right spotapproximately one inch above your navel.
The Underpinnings: The deep V created by the one-button allows you to play up what's beneath it. A crisp white shirt and a striped tie give the suit a modernist bent, while a striped V-neck sweater and a solid-colored button-down accomplish layering without fuss.
The Proportions: Since the button is typically set lower than usual, the jacket should be nipped at the waist and fall below your hips. A cropped jacket will look off, because the space above the button will be disproportionate to that below it. Avoid overskinny collars and lapels, too.
In his spring collection, Z Zegna designer Alessandro Sartori introduced several one-button suits in paper-light cotton. The Italian designer focused on the style because he thinks it gives a guy a subtle power that other suits don't. "Two- and three-button suits look a bit austere," Sartori says. "A one-button is more open, modern, and has a pinch more masculinity."