Four major details

Discussion in 'Suits' started by Matt Deckard, Jul 9, 2005.

  1. Matt Deckard

    Matt Deckard Man of Action

    Four major details that modern tailors do not incorporate into their suit designs.

    1. It is all about the armholes. The higher the armhole is to your armpit, the more maneuverable you will be in the suit. Vintage suits had high cut armholes and felt like a shirt when worn. Very comfy. Modern tailors go more for the drape than fit from my experiences, and make the armholes big enough for 5 arms.

    2. Extra beltloop right next to the fly. This belt loop which may look out of place to the modern observer is very useful in keeping the buckle of the belt in place right above the fly. Todays trousers do not have this loop and the buckle tends to hover above and below the waist.

    3. Diagonal stitched pleats. Vintage trouser pleats had stitching that went from the waistband to about a half inch downward into the pleat. This allowed the pleat to hold its shape part way down which helps keep the crease. Modern pleats are simply sewn into the waistband and given no such special stitch a care or thought.

    4. Long zipper flys. High waisted pants need long fly openings, most modern makers make the opening on their low waisted pants the same length as the opening on their high waisted pants. Very inconvenient.
     
  2. STHill

    STHill One of the Regulars

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    Excellent information, Matt. Four very simple touches that make a world of difference.
     
  3. Matt Deckard

    Matt Deckard Man of Action

    Just a bit of a diatribe... Saw the new GQ article about how to buy a suit and thought I'd say this

    In the article they are focussing on what is now rather than what is timeless. I just don't like the guise of saying it's timeless. I'm sure someone out there right now is trying to grip his fingers under the edge of his jacket thinking the suit is the wrong length for him even if it looks perfectly well proportioned.

    They don't seem to go as in depth, or have the balance sense that you read in old issues of Esquire from the 30's. I'm also not a fan of the super thin and tall models being used as reference for all body types. They may talk about other body types once in a while, though the young American male looking for a suit isn't always going to be built like an olympic swimmer.

    I learned alot as I lost 70 pounds, and one of those things is that different cuts look better on different weights. The other thing is that Large modern armholes are all up and down the size scale when it comes to off the rack. Many Custom shops don't take an armhole measurement any longer... they go with a ratio. A ratio that is calculated too big.
     
  4. Tomasso

    Tomasso Incurably Addicted

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    GQ

    The fact that this item made it to print illustrates that GQ is not a reliable source of information concerning menswear.
     
  5. Matt Deckard

    Matt Deckard Man of Action

    Perhaps not relaible for style and fit, though they are the place to go if you are wanting to find the Puma pullover that works best with the Air Jordan's.

    They have guys that work there and wear suits (I hope).
     
  6. Clara Rose

    Clara Rose New in Town

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    What would you consider a good source for suit-purchasing advice? I have a few friends that are about to head out into the business world, and although I can advise them on what looks good, I am not as aware of how to judge suit construction and tailoring.
    Alternatively, if anyone knows of a good place to buy quality suits in the Chicago area (or Detroit or St. Louis-- anywhere in that swath of the Midwest) I would love to pass that information on. Thank you.
     
  7. Matt Deckard

    Matt Deckard Man of Action

    It would be Hellauseful if there were good tailors around who just knew how to construct a suit.

    Chicago is the home of Oxxford suits, one of the premiere houses for tailoring in the US.

    Their garments are very expensive. The other end of the spectrum is the Banana Republic suit. Of the lowere end makers, they have a pretty stout construction and classic details.

    As for a guide to buying a suit that isn't misinforming. Well... I'l take a crack at that and see what I can have up in the next day or so. I'm not an expert, I know what i see and what i think looks nice. there are some details that your man should keep in mind when looking for a suit that looks good on his body.
     
  8. Matt, if I may, I'd like to add one more to that list:

    5. Droploops. While not related to fit, I believe them important for composition, framing, and aesthetics. The extra 1/4" or so of material above the belt precludes the belt from becoming the line of demarcation between trousers and shirt.

    Regards,

    Senator Jack
     
  9. Clara Rose

    Clara Rose New in Town

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    Those Oxxford suits are gorgeous!! I think they may be a bit pricy for these guys though...
    They're all finishing law school and about to head of to major firms, so while they will have a decent budget, I think they'll already be in sticker shock over the cost of good clothes in general. Unfortunately, they still feel fashionable dressing consists of old jeans, college fraternity t-shirts and a baseball cap. One of my friends and I have promised to take them shopping in Chicago and help them pick out some basics so they have a functional work and casual wardrobe. Any suggestions are always helpful.
     
  10. Funny ... when my dad attended law school (1963-'66), all the students had to wear jackets and ties, or preferably suits, to their classes. And this was at Columbia University in N.Y., one of that era's most liberal schools!

    .
     
  11. Tony in Tarzana

    Tony in Tarzana My Mail is Forwarded Here

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    And another armhole gripe. The armholes on my black suit (I wore it on the Gamble House tour) are big enough to drive a Packard through, and yet the sleeves are tight around my arms! OK, I'm big, but I'm no bodybuilder! What gives?
     
  12. Clara Rose

    Clara Rose New in Town

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  13. Feraud

    Feraud Bartender

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    Matt, Can you expand on this comment a bit? Is this to mean gripping the under edge of the jacket is wrong because the length should be more, less, or either depending on the suit and person?

    Thanks.
     
  14. Matt Deckard

    Matt Deckard Man of Action

    It is all a matter of balance. Your arms may reach past or they may not. That doesn't matter. What matters is that the overall look is balanced. There is no steadfast rule that will make you look right. We are all shaped differently. A good tailor will make the jacket length proportional to you regardless of how far down your arms extend in comparison to the jacket.

    Make sense?
     
  15. Feraud

    Feraud Bartender

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    Perfect sense. Thank you!
     
  16. Tomasso

    Tomasso Incurably Addicted

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    Covering Your Butt.............

    ......should be the #1 priority in choosing jacket length.

    There's also an often used method to determine proper length but it's not always applicable as physiques vary from person to person. It is to measure from the floor up to the collar seam and divide in half, that point being the jacket length.
     
  17. Being that torsos come in all sorts of lengths, proportionate and disproportionate to overall height, I'm not much for a mathematical angle. I think the only way for any man to buy the correct length jacket is to try on a lot of them, and then when he's done trying them on, try on twice as many more. I understand not everyone has an eye for composition, but I do believe it is something one can learn.

    My perfect length is 30.5" measured from collar hem but I can go 1" either way. More than that is too short or too long, and I suspect most men will have the same problem. I know some collar backs are going to be wide and some narrow, but I've found this the best place to measure from, as the hem of the collar is where it actually rides at back of neck.

    All men should know their range, (should know all their measurements, in fact) especially if the wallet opens all too easily for a great looking suit. (and that goes double for an sight-unseen online purchase) I've brought home too many 29" suits only to have to sell them 6 months later.

    Matt, is there a link for this GQ finger-measuring link? I'd like to read this nonsense.

    Regards,


    Senator Jack
     
  18. Matt Deckard

    Matt Deckard Man of Action

  19. Right away I see that the jacket for dude #4 is too short. But then, they're saying that's the style. Funny how they say the ventless jacket is 1986, yet they're promoting a short-jacketed look that's going to say 2006 in 2008. Do these clods re-read their own copy?
     
  20. Tomasso

    Tomasso Incurably Addicted

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    A good tailor can determine proper length in 30 seconds.



    Are you speaking of the top of the collar or the collar seam? Tailors use the seam because the measurement will not change no matter how high the collar is cut.
     

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