It's hard to deny the changing face of the City since the crash – not just in attitudes – but in the people, the aesthetic, the atmosphere.
The sense of purpose that the Square Mile once had has metamorphosed to accommodate the new kids on the block.
London’s tech boom has risen from the ashes of the financial crisis.
Twenty years ago, the 50,000 square foot trading floor of the London International Financial Futures and Options Exchange was jammed with derivatives traders.
Today, it is home to Deliveroo.
With the old school retrenched to Canary Wharf, and the rest working in fintech, the City’s sartorial fashion is starting to reflect the new age.
The neologism of “no brown in town” is dying, although not extinct.
To declare an interest, we are tailors – so we sort of know what we’re talking about – and the evolution in style we’ve witnessed is pronounced.
Dwindling are the days of the anonymous uniformed City boy; braces and blue suit, black shoes, maybe a floral tie on a Friday if he’s feeling a tad rebellious.
It was reported just last year that brown shoes and loud ties “hinder investment banking hopefuls” from working class backgrounds, although the anachronism is waning, thankfully. Naturally, we still witnesses fresh-faced graduates who look like they’re in school uniform, sticking to the unwritten laws of the City.
A classic is a classic, after all.
And while not every workplace is JP Morgan, which has acquiesced to millennials and made suits optional, some still enforce strict dress codes: Dark and conservative, navy or grey suit, white or blue shirt.
Even in that environment, there are little tweaks one can make – bold lining or a coloured undercollar can add a touch of character.
Elsewhere, the new, more fashion-conscious inhabitants of the Instagram age add just a splash of colour to the Square Mile.
The tech scene is certainly more nonconformist – and while the spread of off-the-peg Topman suits is certainly not to our taste – the techies appreciate a well-tailored suit as much as their new neighbours.
For them, the suit is not a gentleman’s armour, but a reflection of his style and character. We’ve witnessed a growing interest of texture in the City, influenced by the creatives on the Silicon Roundabout. The cuts are slimmer than before, and experimenting with higher waisted trousers, for example, shows a more discerning style. Separates are also in – contrasting jackets and trousers allow the tech guys to level up their sartorial style.
The modern professional’s wardrobe is interchangeable between client-facing and relaxed after-work drinks. Between flying to Berlin and New York, or grabbing a coffee in Shoreditch.
As the worlds of tech and banking collide in the latter-day City, striking a balance is cardinal for a man who cares about his style. When that wardrobe is created with a conversation and an understanding, the fit is always perfect.