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How do you like your suits to fit

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by johnnynorman3, Apr 19, 2004.

  1. johnnynorman3

    johnnynorman3 Distinguished Member

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    (1) How closely does your actual chest measurement correspond to your suit size (and I'm asking for YOU in particular)? For example, if your chest measurement is 40 will YOU opt for a size 40 suit (as a general matter)? (2) Comment on these two fits and tell me which one you prefer/think is more elegant. Fit #1 Fit #2 A note on the links, I included these pics because they were easy to find. Ignore the fact that the suits jacket cut compliments the pants cut in each. What I want comments on is how the first link is a looser cut in the torso, and the second link is a more pinched cut, so much so that you can see some pulling of the fabric in the torso area (another stupid rule, I think, the one that says that the jacket shouldn't wrinkle AT ALL when buttoned -- that was the first rule my first tailor told me).
     


  2. VMan

    VMan Distinguished Member

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    I like #2 a lot better. I own a couple of suits and sport coats, and my tailor always cuts them to look like #1. I just prefer a slimmer, athletic-cut suit.
     


  3. matadorpoeta

    matadorpoeta Distinguished Member

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    1) i have a 40" chest. rtw i choose a slim fitting size 40. if i had to buy a hickey freeman or some other such suit, i'd wear a 38.

    2) suit #2 looks more elegant to me.
     


  4. johnnynorman3

    johnnynorman3 Distinguished Member

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    Matadorpoeta, that's interesting re: your suit size. Actually --to put it better -- reassuring. I just recently started being able to afford Hickeys on discount (around $400 or so for a HF Collection -- I refuse to spend more than $500 on a suit, what with all the outlets, etc.). I thought that I was shrinking when I put on a 38R Hickey and it fit like a 39ish (I normally wear a 39R).

    I agree that suit #2 is better. I recently returned a very nice suit that I got a VERY good deal on because it fit like #1. I'm lucky they let me return it, because it was past the return policy date. Over the past month or so, I've just come to really dislike the #1 fit. Additionally, I've sort of come to hate three buttons -- they seem to look good on some people, but they just don't look that graceful to me.

    Another thing I like about #2 is that it fits snug around the hips. I've begun to notice that the most unflattering thing in a suit is to have the hips too big on the jacket.

    Can a tailor take in the hips on a jacket as well as the waist?
     


  5. The Dandy

    The Dandy Active Member

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    While I can't say that I think either suit fits properly, I distinctly prefer the cut of suit #1. In my opinion, a man's suit should drape over his frame, rather than cling to it. This is not to say that a man's clothing should be baggy and ill-fitting, however, it should not tug on certain areas of a man's features and call attention to them. A man's bearing, rather than his physiognamy, should be apparent when he wears a properly cut suit.
     


  6. johnnynorman3

    johnnynorman3 Distinguished Member

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    Now, I think it is a matter of personal taste, Dandy. So, I wouldn't be so brash as to call you wrong. But I personally disagree that clothes shouldn't call attention to a man's physicality. This is especially true for leaner men, of which I am one. I have a decent build -- more of swimmer's body -- and even still I look a bit silly with cloth draped over me such that I have no figure. It makes me look scrawny, young, and messy, not to mention shorter.
     


  7. water

    water Senior Member

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    Johnny, I agree with early popular opinion here and choose Suit #2.

    I also completely agree with your comment that a suit should call attention to its wearer's physicality. I am in good shape and want to make sure my suit emphasizes it. In my opinion, clothes that drape make me look like I am a child wearing my father's suit.
     


  8. Renault78law

    Renault78law Distinguished Member

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    i think #2 is much better, and far from clingy. but i'll have to qualify my answer...#2 is much better with regard to the models in those pictures, based on their age and figure. a closely fitted suit would not look as proper on an older gentleman, similarly, many don't have the figure to show off a closer fitting suit.

    with regard to the original post, i have a 40 inch chest, but generally buy RTW suits sized at 42. i concede it's not the best idea, but my shoulder's are too broad/large to accomodate a 40. in such cases, a good tailor is indispensible.
     


  9. Brian SD

    Brian SD Moderator

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    I disagree with Dandy, in that I feel that a slim cut on a slender body is very flattering and attractive, although I do understand that it may look a bit too "sporty" for an older gentleman. I seem to be out of the loop for suit sizing. I wear a 36R with a 34" chest and a significantly smaller waist, and it is often a bit too baggy for my tastes, but is the smallest size available commonly. I have a vintage 36R velvet coat that seems to fit me perfectly, but few designers make a well-fitting coat for me presently. On the topic of the well-fitting vintage coat, perhaps someone can inform me as to why this occurs? Has the size standard increased to keep up with the increasing obesity in modern society? If I wasn't in the office, I would measure it myself to see, but alas... [​IMG]
     


  10. friendlyone

    friendlyone Well-Known Member

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    Let me chime in to support number 2. But I don't see why one has to choose between a baggy suit and one that pulls when buttoned at the waist. Surely, a properly fitting suit can be slim, with a pinched waist, without showing lines when buttoned. Presumably, this is what your tailor was trying to say.
     


  11. agent.5

    agent.5 Well-Known Member

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    Can someone give me a bit more "color" as to what are your guys talking here? I have a 42" chest and I will try to find a jacket or blazer with 44" chest. As we are all aware a 42R can have a chest size anywhere from 42" to 46". So when you guys are talking about a slim 38R, for example, are you guys talking about a +0" cut or are you talking about something else, say for me a +2"?
     


  12. johnnynorman3

    johnnynorman3 Distinguished Member

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    Glad to see you trying to turn the conversation to more specifics. The inches measurement confuses me as well.

    But, here's my experience. (1) I own one suit that I would categorize as "slim fit" -- a trunk show MTM Oxxford Cummings model that I got off EBay that was obviously cut to NOT be an Oxxford. I have, roughly, a 38" chest. The jacket has about a 38.5 or 39" (tough to tell exactly) chest measurement. The armholes are cut high, which makes the suit fit closer to the body, but I feel like the jacket fits to a tee -- though, again, the cut is not classic "business" (though the suit is so nice that I would feel comfortable wearing it to the office). (2) Most of my suits have 41" chests, and they seem to fit me fine, though I wouldn't mind it if they were 40". These sizes are both 38s and 39s. Because they are two buttons, the difference between the 40" and 41" is probably negligible -- for a two button, it seems to me that the waist measurement (and to a lessere extent the hip measurement) will be the true arbiter of how closely the suit will hug the body. (3) I have one suit that is a 40R and that measures about 42" in the chest. Again, it is a 2 button. It is a little looser than what I would prefer, but I think that if I nip it in 1" or 2" in the waist, that will do the trick -- the shoulders are very natural and not wide and it is unvented, so again, I don't think that the chest measurement is not determative as to fit.

    I think that the +0 is a super slim fit. +2 is a young, modern business fit. +4 is a classic "gentleman's" fit. I think that the #2 link is probably a +2 fit, while the #1 link is at least a +3.

    Does this sound right, guys?
     


  13. johnnynorman3

    johnnynorman3 Distinguished Member

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    I just caught some kind of flaw in my argument in my previous post. It may be that the chest measurements in both pic #1 and pic #2 are equivalent -- that is, both are +4 or +3 or +2 of whatever -- and that it is the WAIST measurement that differs. I'd be interested to see how the Corneliani in pic #1 fits if just the waist were nipped in.
     


  14. agent.5

    agent.5 Well-Known Member

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    I think the waist also depends on the body. I try to have a +2" on the widest possible waist measurement (as my waist tends to fluctuate between 33" to 35"), even though I wear size 32 Guess jeans. For me it will be 44" chest/37" waist for a 7" drop.

    Brioni and Kiton do not make jacket with 7" drop, so I stay with Georgio Armani Black Label.
     


  15. Brian SD

    Brian SD Moderator

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    I think in that waist has a bit more bearing than chest measurement in this case, as you can see where the lines originate from in that picture.

    I would consider +2 to be just about right unless your figure is the result of a sedentary lifestyle, in which case I would think +4 would suit your body-type better. I am a fan of tight-fitting clothing; however, wearing a +0 coat gives off the image that I have outgrown my clothing but am still wearing it. In the case of a slender gentleman, a more tapered / slim waist with slight pulling upon arm movement would be flattering, while the opposite applies to a less fit man.

    In either case, I believe when standing with your hands at your sides, there should be no wrinkles.
     


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