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Another first suit thread.


Well-Known Member
Apr 12, 2006
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Well, like a few other people I'm also a college student looking for his first suit. However, I'm a pretty small guy and it's hard for me to find a perfect suit. Right now my spending limit is about $400. I'm 5'4", 115 lbs. and would wear a size 36 in H&M's slim suit jacket. Colorwise, Charcoal and Navy would seem most apropriate according to what I've seen and read. And considering I'm rather short I'm thinking pinstriping and a two or even one button suit would make me look taller. Like many other people I made the mistake of just buying a random suit jacket/blazer from express in a size 38. At first I felt more confident but I slowly realized it fit me very poorly.

I've been shopping around for a suit to use for a wedding and whatever else I would need it for such as job interviews and whatnot. I live in the Bay Area so I have a pretty large selection of stores to choose from. I checked H&M since I knew they would fit me, however size 36 jackets are only paired with size 32 pants and are not allowed to be swapped (though I didn't see any size 30 pants anyways). So now I'm looking to Banana Republic which have both size 36 jackets and 29 & 30 pants when ordered online. I was just wondering if that would be a good choice and whatever else people can suggest. SF also has a large Nordstrom and a new Bloomingdales. I think I'm gonna try to avoid Macy's though. Anyways, long story short... help. Thank you all in advance.


Stylish Dinosaur
Dubiously Honored
Apr 21, 2005
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For a first suit, I'd stick to a solid. With a solid, you can wear the suit several days in a row, if you have to, and no one will be the wiser. Pinstripes are more memorable, and seem out of place at events such as weddings and funerals.

BR's suits are not great quality. But I understand your sizing dilemma, and BR has a navy solid right now that at least looks decent. But before paying retail at BR, I'd suggest poking around on STP (a longshot, with your size) and visiting any discounter, such as Filene's Basement, that you might have nearby.

There's also eBay, if you know your measurements very well.


Well-Known Member
Apr 12, 2006
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Thank you for the advice. I wouldn't mind a solid navy suit. I don't think the memorable thing will be much of a factor since I won't need to wear it several days in a row however, if it's out of place at weddings and funerals then that's definitely a factor. I really should visit some discounted places though (I've heard some people also suggest Nordstrom Rack), I'm just not entirely sure what to look for.


Stylish Dinosaur
Oct 13, 2006
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Go for a midnight blue /nearly black for its versatility ...
You will look as sharp in the office or dining outside without a tie.....
You can wear white,pink,lavender or any blue based office shirts.....
The world will be your oyster ...You can even wear it outside with a strong deep blue shirt for a CSI Miami look!!!!!...
If you are quite small ,avoid double-breasted suits please....
Shop around ,look for quality and classic elegance especially on a budget...


Distinguished Member
Mar 15, 2006
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Although there are ways to make them work, pocket flaps and cuffs probably are the two biggest no-nos for you. (No cuffs then virtually rules out pleats.) Yes, also avoid the double-breasted look, though that's more due to your age and lack of a proper basic suit than your build. Size unfortunately means that, on most details, it's more an issue of taking what you can get.


Stylish Dinosaur
Spamminator Moderator
Mar 13, 2006
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zara has apparently revamped their suit lines: sastretria inglesia, metropolitano and charme bourgeois. i think something there might work for you.


Senior Member
Mar 11, 2006
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I have a similar problem with being short. Suits & sport coats are the bane of my existence. Are you a 36R or 36S? I would hazard to guess you're a 36S. If that is the case, BR will definitely not work for you as their suits only run to a 36R. Your best bet is to hit the department stores (Macy's, Nordstroms, Saks, Bloomie's, etc.), Zara, or Brooks Brother. Ultimately you will either have to find a store that caters to shorter men, go MTM, or bespoke. Let me know if you find a good resource. Good luck!

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