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Tailoring question

Stu

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In A. Harris' post on measuring for Ebay, he says that the chest measurement is unalterable. I was looking at a suit on Ebay, listed at 42R, that had as its chest measurement 47.6 inches. That seems a lot, according to Andrew's post. MI measured several of my suits and they normally run about 45 inches in the chest.

My question: Can't you take an inch or so out of the chest from the seam that runs down the back? I really want/need this suit, but am really stuck on this thing about all that room in the chest. The reast of the measurements are fine. Would that much room in the chest be a big problem that couldn't be altered?
 

davei

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IMHO the truly critical fit is in the shoulders. One manufacturer's 42R may be another's 40R, etc. and given a certain cut, two 42Rs from different manufacturers can look totally different.

That being said, it's possible but not adviseable. You do NOT want to alter the back seam of the jacket, any tailor worth their salt will work with the side seams. This opens up a whole slew of other problems since by altering the side seams, the armhole is altered, and if you have to adjust a lot of material in the side seam, the whole sleeve needs to be removed and re-sewn later. In any case, the sleeve will need to be eased into a smaller armhole, if the alteration is not too large this can be done, if not then the lower seam on the sleeve needs to be tapered in to fit the new armhole.

IMHO the set of a sleeve is the hallmark of a great suit, too much alteration can ruin it. Another problem: take too much material in on the sides and there can be puckering around the waistline, this too will need to be altered with some steaming/stretching.

That's my take on it, if it's worth the time/risk/expense, that's up to you.
 

Stu

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Thanks Davei: I'll probably pass on the suit, even though it's something I really need. I just don't want to blow $500 for something that I'm not 100% sure about. One of the drawbacks of Ebay, I guess.
 

A Harris

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The chest is not necessarily unalterable - it's just that this alteration is trickier than the others and you may have trouble finding a tailor that can do it for you.
 

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