Make Sure the Suit Fits Properly


You’ve picked the right quality and cloth for your suit, but what difference does it make if it doesn’t fit? Proper fit is essential to your enjoyment of your new suit—and how you look in it. First and foremost, the shoul­ders of the coat must fit your shoulders. This allows for the most freedom of movement and the most flattering lines. Next comes proper fit in the waist and seat, critical for both comfort and proper appearance of pleats, waistbands, and other pant features. As you would expect, custom suits have a clear advantage over off-the-rack suits: a properly measured custom suit will always provide superior fit and comfort.

Next, choosing a collar is more than just a matter of style. As the closest part of cloth­ing to your face, your collar has a surpris­ingly strong influence on your overall ap­pearance. You should always select a collar style that counter-balances your most prom­inent features.

Weight is another factor that we can all run into, and hiding it is accomplished when we incorporate stripes into our patterns whether it is in Shirting or Suiting. The key to stripes is using cloth that has dark ground as its background color, such as a blue base with ½ inch wide stripes in shirts is one of the most flattering color/pattern combinations a person can wear. Styling in shirts is another aspect; specifically a slightly higher color in the back with a medium spread, no pocket on the shirt front panel will give the appearance of longer thinner silhouette.

In Suiting, stripes versus windowpanes or plaids come into play again…softer/thinner width stripes spaced about ½ inch apart in single colors versus multi-stripes are one of the more slimming combinations. Style also plays a ma­jor part in the weight illusion game. Three-but­ton coat styles are the most flattering for most body types as they give off a vertical appear­ance. For more portly body types, a two-button coat with a higher button stance and no vent in the back of the coat are more complimentary.

Top Three Elements for Instant, Visual Weight Loss:

  1. Anything tight makes you look heavier than you are. Most quality garments have seam al­lowances, so take advantage of that and see your local tailor. Gentlemen with a healthy waistline may want to consider wearing their pants a little loose and wearing braces to hold them up. This will provide comfort and allow the pleats to lie nice and straight.
  2. Subtle patterns fused with narrow stripes provide a more slimming affect than plaids and bold stripes. You can always look like you lost weight by wearing the properly fitting shirt.
  3. Make sure the yoke of your shirt ends right at the tips of your shoulders. If all of your shirts’ yokes fall off your shoulders, custom-made shirts are the answer. The shoulder is the most masculine part of the male body; there­fore, you always want to draw attention to them and draw the eye up. When the shirt yoke falls off the shoulder, the eye is drawn to the stomach, which is not always a man’s best feature. If your shirt “finds the shoul­der,” you will always look thinner.

About Author

Amy Day

Amy Day is the Associate Publisher and a contributing writer for Strategy Magazine. She has an MBA in Marketing Communications and Strategic Leadership from Southern Methodist University and has been on staff with Strategy for nearly a decade. She is an award-winning business executive with customer service credentials from the Disney Institute. In addition to editorial oversight, her regular beat includes business, customer service, publishing, and family/child wellness.

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