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Take the tuxedo test

Take the tuxedo test

Los Angeles Times
Modified: December 14, 2012 at 3:56 pm •  Published: December 14, 2012


Many have worn it, few really know it. How much do you think you know about the venerable tuxedo? Wear your smarts on your sleeve like a 14-karat cuff link by taking our quiz.


According to legend (as well as the “Fairchild Dictionary of Fashion”), the tuxedo derives its name from which of the following?

a) The last name of the original designer

b) The Latin words for “formal breastplate”

c) The town in New York where it was first worn

d) An anagram of “Ox Duet,” the Broadway play in which it made its debut.


Who was U.S. president the year the tuxedo made its debut at the Tuxedo Club’s autumn ball?

a) Martin Van Buren

b) Grover Cleveland

c) William Howard Taft

d) Abraham Lincoln


The man widely credited with introducing the tuxedo to the world, Griswold P. Lorillard, came from a well-to-do family that made its fortune in what commodity?

a) Tobacco

b) Furs

c) Lumber

d) Coal


What simple — but sensational — modification did Lorillard and friends make to the prevailing formalwear style at the time to create the tuxedo?

a) Put a satin side stripe down the outside of the trouser leg

b) Add contrasting fabric lapels to the jacket

c) Had the tails cut off a tailcoat

d) All of the above


What is the traditional reason often given in explaining why a pleated cummerbund should be worn with the creases in the pleats facing upward?

a) It makes the jacket lay flat while standing.

b) It makes it easier for the wearer to sit at a dinner table.

c) If caught in the rain, it helps channel the water to each side instead of down the middle of the crotch.

d) Historically, men would tuck theater tickets into the open pleats.


Which of the below accurately describes Sean Connery’s first tuxedo-clad on-screen appearance as James Bond?

a) In “Dr. No,” wearing a shawl collar tuxedo while playing chemin de fer

b) In “From Russia with Love,” stepping out of the surf with a notch lapel tuxedo under a SCUBA suit

c) In “Goldfinger,” wearing a double-breasted, gold-trimmed tuxedo while golfing with Auric Goldfinger

d) In “Thunderball,” skiing down the Alps in a tuxedo ski suit


Before opting for a Tom Ford tuxedo in “Quantum of Solace,” James Bond spent five films wearing which Italian label?

a) Giorgio Armani

b) Prada

c) Ermenegildo Zegna

d) Brioni


Which famed fashion designer created a tuxedo suit for women in 1966 that was dubbed “le smoking”?

a) Coco Chanel

b) Yves Saint Laurent

c) Christian Dior

d) Hubert de Givenchy


What does the slang term “Canadian tuxedo” refer to?

a) A tuxedo without contrasting fabric lapels

b) A hockey jersey worn over a traditional tuxedo

c) An outfit consisting of denim pants worn with a denim jacket

d) An orange prison jumpsuit


What distinguishing feature gives the shoe known as a “tuxedo pump” its name?

a) The patent leather material on both vamp and sole

b) A two-tone black-and-white construction

c) Grosgrain bow ribbon detail on the vamp

d) Satin side stripes between the sole and vamp


1. c) The tux is named after Tuxedo Park, N.Y., a town about 40 miles north of New York City. (The Latin words for “formal breastplate” are “formalis loricam.”)

2. b) The tuxedo can be traced back to 1886 — during the first of Cleveland’s two non-consecutive terms as U.S. president.

3. a) The Lorillard Tobacco Co., founded in 1760, is the third largest U.S. manufacturer of cigarettes, with brands that include Newport, Old Gold and True.

4. c) There are differing opinions as to whether the idea first started with Lorillard or his father — or even someone else altogether — although Lorillard was the first to wear a tux. But it was the trimming of the tails that made the silhouette stand out.

5. d) so the pleats can hold tickets. (Although some cite the upward pleats as a way of catching crumbs at the dinner table, no tux-wearing man would show enough lack of breeding to need such a thing.)

6. a) Bond has been sporting his signature tuxedo since the very first film in 1962.

7. d) Brioni had the distinction of providing the tuxedos — as well as other garments — starting with Pierce Brosnan in “GoldenEye” and ending with Daniel Craig in “Casino Royale.”

8. b) It was Algerian born Saint Laurent whose “le smoking” caught fire with women the world over.

9. c) (And “Tennessee Tuxedo” is a cartoon character voiced by Don Adams.)

10. c) It’s the broad, flat grosgrain bow that characterizes the tuxedo pump.


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