Shirt tailoring and sizing question

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by cpadude, Apr 13, 2007.

  1. cpadude

    cpadude Active Member

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    I have what probably seems like a basic question about getting shirts altered. I have about 7 Brooks Brothers Slim Fit shirts which I thought were slim enough with the right sleeve length.

    Now on further reflection (and with a more refined eye thanks to styleforum), I realize that the shirt sleeves are too long and that the back of the shirt is too blousy. Is it possible for a tailor to take the shirt in and shorten the sleeves?

    This seems like an easy process, so what is a decent price in a major city (Chicago to be specific if you have recommendations)?

    As a rule of thumb, how big are the waists and chests of your shirts relative to your actual chest and waist size, respectively.

    Thanks Much.
     
  2. Alexander Kabbaz

    Alexander Kabbaz Senior member

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    If you are an average size between 15 and 17 neck, then:

    Chest 6"-7" additional fabric
    Waist 5"-6"
    Hips 6"-7"
     
  3. Augusto86

    Augusto86 Sean Penn's Mexican love child

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    Seems as good a place as any - what exactly do the two numbers that most dress shirts are given MEAN? Like 15.5/35, or whatever. I always buy shirts in S/M/L or have them made - so I don't know what the numbers mean, and that sort of shirt is usually wrapped or online, so I can't try it on!

    Help me, O master of shirts...
     
  4. mack11211

    mack11211 Senior member

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    The two numbers refer to neck size and sleeve length as measures from the top of the center back behind the neck.

    Generally an S has a neck of 15, a M, 16; a L, 17. Sleeve length might be 33 for S, 34 for M, 35 for L. Chest of an American-cut M shirt will be about 50 inches. These sizes are approximate, esp in chest and sleeve, and vary by maker of course.
     
  5. DocHolliday

    DocHolliday Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    15.5 = neck measurement
    35 = sleeve length, as measured from the center of the collar to the end of the sleeve

    Italian shirts usually list the neck size and the chest size.
     
  6. matadorpoeta

    matadorpoeta Senior member

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    Italian shirts usually list the neck size and the chest size.

    i've never seen a dress shirt that listed the chest size. my guess is that you are mistaking the neck size in centimeters (42, 43, etc...) for a chest size.
     
  7. matadorpoeta

    matadorpoeta Senior member

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    Now on further reflection (and with a more refined eye thanks to styleforum), I realize that the shirt sleeves are too long and that the back of the shirt is too blousy. Is it possible for a tailor to take the shirt in and shorten the sleeves?

    i would bet that, rather than shortening the sleeves, you likely need to have the cuffs made tighter.
     
  8. DocHolliday

    DocHolliday Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    i've never seen a dress shirt that listed the chest size. my guess is that you are mistaking the neck size in centimeters (42, 43, etc...) for a chest size.
    Good lord, you're absolutely right. I'd never thought about it before, but this is the only thing that remotely makes sense. Funny the things one assumes. And I can't tell you how long I've labored under this impression! A good laugh at myself today!
     

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