Gents, finding the perfect suit can be quite the task. Whether you’re searching for a timeless two-piece, tailored separates or going all out with a waistcoat, jacket and trousers, we’re taking the stress out of suit shopping with our handy guide.
A timeless suit is an investment; a style building block that will ensure you look and feel the business when you need it most. The right style will fit like a glove and offer years of wear, so before taking the plunge, we suggest you do a little research to ensure you find the perfect suit for you…
Heading to a wedding or simply looking to update your work wardrobe? Ask yourself why you’re in need of a new suit and where you’ll be wearing it…
If your office has a more conservative dress code, stick to classic cuts and try to avoid trend-led tailoring. A simple two-piece suit in a dark colourway is not only practical, but endlessly versatile and can be styled with different shirts and accessories to create a variety of looks.
Tip: try charcoal, black or rich navy as your foundation colour.
This isn’t the time for a flamboyant hue or a novelty tie. You want to be taken seriously and make the right impression, and a sharp suit is a step in the right direction. A black fitted suit teamed with a crisp white shirt always works, simply add a splash of colour with a tie in rich merlot or heritage green – understated, but effective.
If you’ve received an all-important invitation you’ll want to dress to impress, and your chosen style of suiting will depend on the season. Attending a summer wedding or a formal garden party? Opt for lightweight fabrics in stone grey, powder blue and lighter, more delicate hues. Tip: If the invite states black tie then a dinner suit or timeless tux is a must.
A suit should create a sleek, streamlined silhouette that fits perfectly in all the right places. The following tips will help you find the perfect fit whatever your body shape...
Suit shoulders should hug your own and appear neat – look out for excess material or fabric that looks strained. If the seam feels tight and uncomfortable, opt for a larger size or a different fit.
Tip: Lean against a wall wearing your jacket – if the suit shoulder hits the wall before your arm, the suit jacket is too big.
Your suit jacket should button easily without forcing you to breathe in, while a slouchy, gaping look is a big no-no. Once it’s buttoned, place your fist between you and the jacket – any wider than your fist and you’ll need a smaller size.
Hang your arms straight and cup the jacket hem in your hands. If you can’t reach, it’s too long. If it’s shorter, then it’s really a matter of personal taste - many modern suit jackets only sit an inch or two below the cuff.
Sleeve lengths are easily altered, so if the rest of the jacket fits to a tee but the sleeves are too long, there’s no need to fret. Simply ask your tailor to alter the sleeves so an inch of your shirt sleeve is showing.
The rise of the suit trousers (i.e. where they sit on your waist) should suit your taste and style. Remember, the cut of a trouser leg should flatter without appearing too tight or too loose. If you find the trouser waist or length has a couple of extra inches, a tailor can easily amend this.
The number of buttons on your suit jacket will have an affect on the fit and the cut. Make sure you know the ins and outs of each style...
Three Button Suit - This suit is extremely on-trend and particularly flattering on men of a medium or tall build
Tip: Never fasten the last button. Instead, button up the top two – or just the middle button.
Two Button Suit – Great on all body shapes, especially men with shorter torsos. This design is widely available and a real style classic.
One Button Suit – Ideal for more contemporary dressers, this option is suited to slighter frames.
Tip: The button should always be fastened when you’re standing, but the reverse when you’re seated.
Double Breasted – This more traditional style remains popular with men of all ages, and has the advantage of suiting all body shapes.
Most suits feature a vent at the rear of the jacket. A centre vent is extremely common, however a double vent is usually favoured by European designers.
There are two main types of lapel - the notch lapel is found on most business suits, and the peak lapel is more contemporary and adds edge to classic tailoring.
Your choice in fabric will depend on the time of year. Try to avoid thick fabrics in the sweltering heat and stick to breezy cotton or linen pieces for all-day comfort. Wool suits can be worn all year round depending on the fabric’s density. The finest wool is worsted wool, with a high thread count or ‘super’ as it’s known in tailoring. The finest ‘super’ has a 450 thread count, but is extremely delicate. Opt for a number in the low hundreds if you want to invest in a style that will last.
Tip: If you’re going to be travelling a fair distance, a linen suit isn’t for you. This lightweight fabric creases easily and will appear messy after your journey.
A good suit jacket will feature a fully-lined interior, and this is an easy way to add a flash of colour or reveal a little of your personality. Look out for statement stripes, vibrant hues and on-trend patterns.
Tip: Your chosen lining should complement the majority of your shirts. A pattern or bright colour works best with clean white.
Don’t dry clean your suit too often – the fabric will only wear out
Do wear a belt that matches the colour of your shoes
Don't wear brown shoes with black suits
Don’t fasten the bottom button of your jacket
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