A suit is a worthy style investment. Pick wisely and it can last you for years. When a suit fits, it’s smart, flattering and will instantly make you look put together meaning it’s well worth taking the time to get it right. From what’s what in the world of lapels, to the suit jargon you need to know, to help you find your perfect fit here’s the anatomy of a suit…
KNOWING YOUR LAPELS
A peak lapel collar points upwards towards the shoulders and is found on more formal double-breasted suits, tuxedos and smart coats. It’s good for a slim build as it accentuates the shoulders.
A notch lapel is shaped like a sideways ‘v’ where the collar meets the lapel, with a visible gap in the fabric. The ideal style for everyday, as it streamlines the chest.
A shawl lapel is made from a singular piece of fabric with no break, often in contrasting fabrics to the body of the jacket such as satin or velvet. Avoid if you’re on the larger side and go for a notch lapel instead.
HOW YOUR SUIT SHOULD FIT…
This term refers to the single most common problem when buying a suit are trousers that are too long. The rule is that they should break (crease) once above the front of the shoe. Any more and they’re too long.
One of the first things that you should look for when trying a suit jacket is whether its collar aligns with your shirt collar. If there’s a gap – put it back.
Around the waist
A jacket that’s too large in the waist will lack shape, making the wearer look bigger than they really are. However, wearing a jacket that’s too tight and pulls around the waist can draw attention to your stomach area.
Across the shoulders
If the jacket is too large the shoulders will sag, while a jacket that’s too small will cause the top of sleeves to wrinkle and pucker.
Always leave the lowest button of your jacket undone. Fashioned by the generously-waisted King Edward VII (who simply couldn’t do his bottom button up) has now become a suit style rule.
Sleeves should allow for half an inch of shirt cuff to be visible. If you can see the seam of the shirt sleeve it’s too short in the arm.
Now you’ve got the knowledge, check out our suit selection to find your perfect fit.