A recent article in the New York Times talked about the shifting role of the business suit for successful millennials. It centered on exhibit A for the demographic to make its case. Using Mr. Zuckerberg as the Poster Child, they explained that the only time a successful millennial should be caught naked without the perfunctory hoodie is when they are trying to avoid jail or testifying before Congress — in a, well, a suit.

Does this mean you will look like a felon if you keep wearing a business suit and shoes with laces at work? The article weighs the sartorial moves of the world’s richest millennial:

” For someone who has made a professional and personal signature out of the plain gray tee and jeans — who has posted pictures of the row of gray T-shirts and hoodies hanging in his closet on his Facebook page; whose success has made those gray tees and hoodies into shorthand for a new generation of disrupters, as aspirational an outfit as a Savile Row suit once was — it was as much a visual statement of renunciation and respect as any verbal apology.

Mark Zuckerberg, the C.E.O. of Facebook, testifies inside the Hart Hearing Room in Washington. The only time he'll wear a suit.
Mark Zuckerberg, the C.E.O. of Facebook, testifies inside the Hart Hearing Room in Washington.CreditTom Brenner/The New York Times

Still, it is such a rarity that former President Barack Obama made a joke out of it in a 2011 Facebook Town Hall, referring to an earlier meeting and calling himself “the guy who got Mark to wear a jacket and tie.”

That makes sense. Mr. Zuckerberg understands the role of image in communication. Facebook is, after all, a platform built largely on pictures. As Peter Thiel, the venture capitalist and Silicon Valley billionaire wrote in his 2014 book, “Zero to One”: “It’s a cliché that tech workers don’t care about what they wear.” He went on: “Everybody from slackers to yuppies carefully ‘curates’ their outward appearance.”

Mr. Zuckerberg in his omnipresent gray T-shirt in 2015. Millenials' suits are out.

What Would Your Shoes Say?

Well, if they could talk, they’d probably tell you that a smart dresser can easily thread a pair of Allen Edmonds with purple laces and match them to their favorite jeans. (Allen Edmonds is a brand we love.) A slightly worn pair of wingtips or brogues with patina WILL embellish the look WITHOUT having to shill for a Cucinelli t-shirt (Mr. Z’s go-to brand) at $299.00 a mallieta della moglie. (That’s “wife-beater” in Italian.)

We’re not saying you should wear this outfit to your law office just yet. But at least your shoes say a lot more than a boring suit when you bring them to shooli.

Mr. Zuckerberg in his omnipresent gray T-shirt in 2015.CreditLluis Gene/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

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