No matter the cost of your garments, the fit is everything. The biggest problem with off-the-rack suits is that 99% do not fit. This is because most men are not the “standard” stock size. You might have one arm slightly longer than the other or have very slanted or squared shoulders that cause the jacket to not fit accurately in places.
At Jaxson Maximus, your fit is our specialty. With a team of some of the best custom clothiers in the industry, we create a superbly fitted garment made exclusively for you. While our specialty is custom clothing, if you choose an off-the-rack option, we have put together this helpful guide showing you how a suit jacket should properly fit.
HOW A SUIT JACKET SHOULD PROPERLY FIT YOU: ENHANCING YOUR NATURAL STANCE
When trying on a suit, you want to try it on and look how it hangs on you in your natural stance, don’t man up, huff your chest out, or suck in your gut. If you tend to slant forward with your natural posture, you do not want to stand up straight in an unnatural way when trying on.
We recommend walking around in the suit to see how it feels with your natural movements. If the suit does not feel good in your natural stance, it is unsuitable.
A properly fitted suit should have shoulders that lay flat, minimizing any wrinkles or pulling on the shoulders. The jacket shoulders should end at your shoulder’s end. The padding should be minimal if you have regular to square shoulders. If you have slanted shoulders, then jackets that have more considerable padding are favorable.
Your jacket collar should rest against the back of your shirt collar without any gaps separating them. If there is a gap, it means that your natural stance is too forward for that particular jacket and should be taken to the tailor to have them shorten your collar, or in some cases, you may have to realize that the jacket is not a good fit for you. You want the collar always to hug the back of your neck.
If you have a big horizontal roll in the back under your collar, the jacket’s shoulders were not made to fit your shoulder type. Tailors can take about 1-1/4″ out of the roll if it’s more than that. To solve the issue, you should consider not purchasing that jacket.
The second button on a 2-button suit jacket should lie no more than one inch above your belly button, never below. If so, your jacket is too big on you, throwing off your body’s proportions.
The sleeves on your suit jacket should always hang nicely, minimizing wrinkles or creases if you see wrinkles on your sleeves, which indicates that your jacket sleeve does not align with your arm’s natural position and may need to be re-positioned by a tailor.
Your sleeves should end right at the break of your wrist, just below your wrist bone. We recommend wearing a dress shirt to show ¼” of the cuff. If it’s longer or shorter than the break of the wrist, adjustments will be needed at your tailor.
One of the worst mistakes that you can make when selecting an off-the-rack suit is picking one where the jacket’s length is off the mark. Choosing the wrong length on a jacket can make you look shorter or dated.
Jacket length does have some personal preference, but a good rule to follow when trying on a new jacket is to check that the length falls no more than 2″ past where your buttocks meet the top of your thigh. Most modern jackets are made to be at that point where your buttocks meet the top of your thigh or about 1″ below.
CIRCUMFERENCE OF JACKET AROUND YOUR TORSO
When trying on a new jacket, if the jacket’s sides feel roomy, that means that the jacket is too big on you. As a general guide, the front panels should kiss each other when the jacket is unbuttoned. If the jacket’s front panels overlap, then the jacket is too large. It the jacket’s front panels have a space between them, preventing them from kissing; it is too tight.
The armhole of your jacket should be cut high enough that it does not bind your movement or cut into your armpit. The secret to the armhole is that it has enough room to move freely and comfortably but is not so big that you have a few extra inches of excess room. This excess room under the armpit will cause wrinkles and extra cloth that needs to be removed by your tailor.