THE DISTINCTION BETWEEN "KIND OF" APPROPRIATE AND CUSTOM-MADE ATTIRE

THE DISTINCTION BETWEEN "KIND OF" APPROPRIATE AND CUSTOM-MADE ATTIRE

Why is it important to have clothes that are tailored and customized to fit you? If you're not familiar with the concept of clothing as a fashionable item, rather than just something you wear outside to avoid frightening small children, it may be confusing. Can't you simply go to the mall, find a suit that appears to be decent, try it on, and be finished with it?

Grey Linen Two Piece Suit

Yes, it is possible to wear clothing on your body, including those that are mentioned above. However, everyone's body shape is different. Some individuals have broad shoulders and narrow hips, while others may desire a narrow appearance but have a protruding stomach. There are also those with long torsos and short legs, or vice versa, and this can significantly affect how the same clothing item appears on each individual. Therefore, it is not suitable for everyone to wear the same type of clothing. However, if you consistently wear pants with a 36" waist size and 32" inseam, you are essentially settling for one standard size without considering other factors such as jacket size, which is often overlooked.

The ready-to-wear suits, or prêt-à-porter if you want to sound sophisticated, are created to fit a hypothetical man. This man represents the average data for men in your area, and his specifications are used to make a size chart. The objective is to ensure that as many men as possible can fit into these suits in order to maximize sales.

Indeed, there is some variation in the waist and leg length when it comes to sizing, but it is not sufficient. If you are aiming to appear your very best, general measurements are inadequate. We require meticulous attention to details.

Keep in mind that being able to put on a piece of clothing doesn't necessarily mean it fits properly. Usually, if the fit is poor, the comfort will be poor as well, and this can greatly impact how comfortable you feel while wearing your suit.

WHY FIT MATTERS

Why is using the phrase "kind of" not satisfactory? When it comes to fashion specifics like wanting a navy, notch lapel, two-buttoned, bootleg pants, and a double vent on a three-piece single-breasted suit, it's easy to get engrossed in the details.

No matter what kind of impression you want your suit to give, it is important that it looks good in all aspects of your daily life. We don't just stand still like mannequins while wearing suits; we engage in various activities, such as work, play, sitting, and standing. Perhaps you lead an active lifestyle and are constantly on the go. Maybe you tend to fidget by tapping your legs or adjusting your sleeves frequently.

It is important for a suit to fit properly during various movements. Our muscles expand and become tighter when they are strained. The sleeves and pant legs shift as we stretch or flex. Even sitting can alter the alignment of the jacket's shoulders on our own shoulders. Although it is acceptable to make minor adjustments to the jacket or pants, if you find yourself constantly needing to do so every time you move, it becomes an unnecessary annoyance in your daily life.

If you've ever seen a story set in the mafia era, you're probably familiar with the joke about the muscular "goons" who are so big they burst out of their suits. We've also witnessed Hulk tearing his way out of Bruce Banner's suits in movies. It's entertaining to witness in the cinema, but it's not so enjoyable when you feel the same way while going about your everyday life.

The concept is to design clothing that allows for freedom of movement without adding unnecessary bulk to your figure - that's why getting the right fit is crucial.

Dark Blue Two Piece Stripe Double Breasted Men's Suit

How does an ill-fitting suit appear?

Therefore, if a good match is not solely based on the ability to physically wear a suit, what factors contribute to a suit being poorly fitted? We will examine these aspects in more detail later on, but for now, let's provide a brief overview of common fit problems.

  • The shoulders pose the biggest challenge when it comes to adjusting a suit, making it very difficult to fix a poor fit in this area. Men with broad shoulders are familiar with the uncomfortable sensation of wearing a suit that feels too tight and ready to burst at any moment. On the other hand, those with saggy and empty shoulders end up looking awkward and losing their impactful appearance.
  • Buttons: If you're unable to fasten your button without it appearing overly high on your chest or as if it might burst, there is an issue. Unusual wrinkles on the jacket when it is buttoned are another indication that something is amiss. Additionally, if you are required to unfasten the coat in order to bend comfortably, that is also a problem with the fit.
  • Men with a wider chest can relate to the sensation of the Hulk, just before his suit bursts open. This can cause problems such as a noticeable gap between the jacket and shirt, as well as excess skin or fat protruding from unwanted areas.
  • Coat: It seems impossible to remove the jacket, right? Do you now understand that there are numerous little details involved in fitting a suit correctly? That is exactly why we are here today! The length of the jacket is also important. If it is too long, you will appear childlike. If it is too short, you will either look like you are bursting out of it or ready to start your career as a rapper. It's a matter of finding the right balance.
  • Reverse: The presence of fabric rolls or unusual creases on the back of the jacket serve as a clear indication that there are problems with the suit. Instead of focusing on advancing in your career, you will find yourself constantly adjusting and fixing this jacket, consuming a significant portion of your time.
  • Are the sleeves too lengthy or too brief? Whichever way you choose, it'll make you appear foolish.
  • Have you ever heard the phrase "hot under the collar"? Well, that should not be the case for you! Your collar should be well-fitted and stylish, not like you are wearing an oversized suit that belongs to your grandfather.
  • Are the pants you're wearing loose and droopy at the back? Do you have the feeling that they might rip? It's not a flattering appearance, regardless of the situation.
  • Pockets: Having pockets that hang loosely is not fashionable. Simply put, if you have pockets that resemble bunny ears attached to your hips, it's time to take a seat, measure yourself, and find better-fitting ones.
  • The fit of pants is something that many people struggle with. It is important to note that there should not be a gap between the pants and shoes, and there should also not be excessive fabric pooling around the ankles.

By observing, you will notice that although some of these specifics may be minor, they greatly affect your appearance and level of comfort. You may have never thought about adjusting your collar, but just imagine the discomfort of a tight collar that makes you feel as if you are being choked. Conversely, having an excessive amount of fabric remaining will result in itchiness and discomfort.

You can say goodbye to ill-fitting suits because the Oliver Wicks team is here to help. We will guide you on how to properly measure for a suit, ensuring that you never have to worry about fit issues again.

More on how a suit should fit

HOW TO MEASURE FOR A SUIT LIKE A PRO

Before we start, let's gather the things you will require:

  • When using a service like Oliver Wicks to have your suit made, it is important to know their preferred unit of measurement, which is centimeters. This ensures that there are no misunderstandings or mistakes during the process. It is recommended to use a good quality tailor's tape measure, which can be purchased inexpensively. It is not recommended to use a measuring tape from your toolbox, as it should be made of soft fabric rather than a complex DIY version. It is also essential to use a tape measure that you trust to be accurate, as some cheaper Chinese imports may have significant inaccuracies. To ensure accuracy, compare the tape measure against a reliable ruler before taking measurements.
  • A companion: Having someone to assist with measuring the awkward parts will make this task much simpler. Although it is possible to do it on your own, straining and contorting may increase the chance of making a mistake and will not provide an accurate result. For instance, twisting to measure one shoulder could cause the muscles to tighten, making them appear larger when measured. Persuade a friend or partner to lend a hand.
  • Ensure that you are ready to dedicate some time to yourself. If you're tired and just want to sleep, it's best to postpone it for another day. It's also important to choose a day when you feel relatively normal. If you indulged in three pizzas and a lot of beer while watching your favorite team yesterday, your measurements will be affected. Similarly, don't only do it on the day you feel the slimmest. Select an average day. It is recommended to measure yourself later in the day, so you can comfortably wear your suit all day. Throughout the day, we eat, drink, and experience fluctuations in temperature... you will get a more realistic understanding of your comfortable size if you measure in the afternoon.
  • Having a notebook is essential because even if you have someone to help you, it's difficult to remember everything accurately. Whether you choose to write it down or use an app, make sure to note the exact location where you were measuring.
  • If you own a well-fitted shirt, it will be helpful in visualizing some of the measurements mentioned. However, if you don't have a shirt that you love the fit of, there's no need to worry. We recommend grabbing a dress shirt from your wardrobe to use as a visual reference for seam locations, without actually putting it on.
  • If you have a preferred pair of shoes, retrieve them. Instead of wearing trainers, opt for leather dress shoes or loafers. The height and structure of trainers can disrupt an important measurement.
  • Your most optimal trousers: Kindly wear pants, or your pal might flee! Opt for the trousers that fit you perfectly to obtain accurate measurements. If they still don't feel comfortable, remember the areas that are unsatisfactory.

Onward to the fitting we go!

THE SHOULDERS

We will perform the shoulder measurement in two stages. As previously stated, adjusting or repairing men's suit jackets in this area is quite intricate. Therefore, it is crucial to ensure the accuracy of these measurements. Do not forget the age-old advice to measure twice!

 

TWO SHOULDERS

To begin, we will measure the width across both shoulders. This entails measuring from one point to another across the shoulder area. If you have a well-fitting shirt, please put it on. Ensure that you pop the collar so that it does not obstruct the measurement. We are seeking the distance from the seams of the shoulder and arm to align on one side, pass over the back underneath your collar, and reach the other side. This measurement showcases the entirety of your shoulder width.

If you are uncertain about the size of your shirts, you can measure while not wearing anything on your upper body. Envision yourself as if you were holding an Olympic barbell on your shoulders. That is the line you should follow across your back. Make sure you stand properly, but in a relaxed manner, without slouching your shoulders or feeling any tension. Picture the specified arm seam and measure from that spot on your shoulder, going over your back, until you reach the equivalent spot on the opposite side.

Video demonstration on how to accurately measure for two shoulders.

ONE SHOULDER

Once more, if you own a properly fitting shirt, wear it. Lift up the collar. Notice the small seam that starts from the shoulder point, goes straight over the top of the shoulder, and ends at the collar? That is the measurement we need. Even if you don't have a shirt that fits perfectly, examine this seam on a man's shirt (or refer to our informative video) to accurately determine where to measure.

A video demonstration is available to show how to accurately measure for a one shoulder garment.

SLEEVE LENGTH

Let's proceed to the sleeve of the jacket. Keep your hands relaxed at the sides. Now shake them to release any tension caused by overthinking. Allow your arms to hang naturally. This measurement starts from the point where the shoulder meets the arm on a well-fitted shirt and goes down to your wrist.

If your shirt fits well, it's simple. The second point should end exactly where your cuff ends. If you don't have a proper shirt, measure slightly below the wrist joint because a cuff does not stop exactly at the wrist line.

A video demonstration is available to show how to accurately measure for sleeve length.

BICEPS

We have achieved a crucial measurement that plays a vital role in the overall comfort of your suit. This particular aspect is often neglected in ready-made suits, particularly if you frequent the gym. There is nothing more bothersome than experiencing constant tightness around the biceps while going about your daily routine.

In our suit measuring guide, we are taking a different approach this time. Raise your arm to a 90-degree angle and keep your fist relaxed to allow for correct bicep flexion. Flex your muscle firmly while making sure the measurement is comfortably snug, leaving room for one finger's width under the tape as a precaution.

A video demonstration on how to accurately measure for biceps.

WRIST MEASUREMENT

Next, you need to determine the size of your wrist at its fullest point. For the majority of individuals, this is where the wrist and hand come together. However, if you have a noticeable protrusion on your wrist bone or have previously fractured it on one side, you should consider that when measuring. Here's the twist - ask a friend to insert a finger under the measuring tape and record that measurement. This extra room is important as we are tailoring a suit, not a skin-tight garment, and you will often come across this allowance.

 

An instructional video showing how to gauge the size of one's wrist.

FITTING THE NECK SIZE OF A SUIT

Where do you prefer the position of a shirt collar when it is fastened? Ideally, it should be located on or slightly below your Adam's apple. This is the next measurement to take. Once more, ask your friend to insert a finger between you and the tape to ensure a comfortably loose measurement.

To obtain accurate measurements, it is important to exhibit appropriate behavior. Avoid any fidgeting, looking in different directions, or attempting to oversee the process. Instead, maintain a neutral stance with shoulders positioned back and relaxed, distribute your weight equally on both feet, and gaze directly ahead. If you need to observe something, utilize a mirror placed at eye level.

Everything is going well up until now! We now have a clear understanding of how the sleeves and the upper part of the jacket should be fitted. Now, let's move on to the chest area.

A video demonstration is available on how to measure for the collar.

MEASURING YOUR CHEST SIZE

It is important to take accurate measurements of your chest, so be sure to check and verify. Adopt the correct posture as described earlier, ensuring that your shoulders are even and your weight is evenly distributed on your feet. Avoid sticking your chest out, but also avoid holding your breath.

Once again, measure using the finger trick without having them tightly pull the tape against you - keep it friendly and comfortable, resembling how you would like the actual suit to fit. The recommended starting point for measurement is below the armpits and across the nipple area for most males.

A video demonstration on how to properly measure the chest area.

MIDSECTION 

We still have not reached the stomach! So, staying in the same neutral, straight, and relaxed position as before, move your fingers just below your ribcage. This spot is not your actual waist or stomach, but rather it is located right at the bottom of your ribs. Keep some space for one finger and ensure it fits comfortably without causing any discomfort. Don't forget to continue breathing in a natural manner!

 

Video demonstration on how to measure the waist area.

WAIST MEASUREMENT FOR THE SUIT JACKET

We understand that waist size is a delicate topic. However, there is no need to feel embarrassed. Whether you have a little extra bulge or wish to gain some weight, we don't judge you for not having a perfect physique. Our goal is to assist you in looking fashionable and elegant just as you are, but we do require an accurate measurement to achieve that.

The majority of people have their widest point around the belly button. It is possible that you have a slightly different shape, so make sure to accommodate for that. Adjust the fit to be comfortably snug, but not overly tight, leaving enough room for one finger's width.

We are nearly finished! We understand that there is a lot to consider, but by identifying the important aspects that suit you best, you can have a customized Oliver Wicks outfit that fits perfectly. Say goodbye to uncomfortable collars, awkwardly wrinkled backs, and sleeves that are too short and uncomfortable on your arms. Trust us, it is definitely worth it!

Referring to your back, let's include a few measurements for the length of your jacket. As we have already measured your stomach, you can reward yourself with a drink before we complete the process.

Video demonstration on measuring the waist

JACKET LENGTH

If you're wearing a shirt that fits well, raise the collar once more. We will begin at the seam of the collar, but not at the back as you might think! The measuring tape should run down the front of your body. Your starting point is where the collar seam and the shorter shoulder seam in the "one-shoulder" section intersect – it's similar to one side of suspenders, if that helps you visualize it! Make sure to watch the video for additional guidance.

Ensure that you are in the same powerful position we have been utilizing. Let me summarize: keep your shoulders relaxed and your stance evenly distributed, stand upright, and look straight ahead at a point within your line of sight. Your arms should naturally hang down, so give them another shake to confirm. This is another significant factor, so make sure not to mess it up!

Gently press the tape against your body. Stop measuring at the height of your thumb knuckle, but be cautious not to let the tape go over to your hand, as this would make the measurement longer than it should be. The tape should go from the seam point to the middle of your thigh, following a straight path down your body, resembling oddly long braces.

Please measure this point to determine if you prefer a fashionable jacket length. However, please inform the tailor if that is your preference when you submit your measurements.

 

Video demonstration on how to measure jacket length

BACK LENGTH

Now that we have determined the correct length of the jacket, let's focus on fitting the back. This measurement is not as important as the overall length measurement. It is particularly useful when ordering a vest, as it indicates body length, but we still recommend taking this measurement when measuring for a suit. It allows the Oliver Wicks team to have a better understanding of your body shape and serves as a way to verify the accuracy of the other length measurement.

In this instance, our measurement will start from the seam of the collar and go down the middle of your back, ending at the level of your belt or waistband while wearing pants. Generally, this corresponds to the waistline for most men, but individual body types may vary.

Now, we have completed all the required measurements for a excellent jacket or blazer. Next, let's include the suit trousers in the ensemble.

Burgundy Paisley Contrasting Lapel Blazer & Waistcoat

A video demonstration showcasing how to measure the length of a jacket's back.

Black Collared Jacket

MEASURING YOUR WAIST FOR SUIT TROUSERS

Although we did capture body measurements for the suit jacket, the measurements for the pants may appear slightly altered. It is important to return to a relaxed and balanced posture. Avoid contracting your abdominal muscles! Stand in a natural position, neither tensed nor expanded, and measure the spot where the pants will rest on your body. Keep it comfortably snug, allowing room for only one finger.

A video demonstration on how to take measurements for pants' waist size

GETTING THE HIP FIT CORRECT

Next, we proceed to the hips. This measurement can evoke amusement or slight discomfort, but there is no need to feel shy! This measurement is crucial for tailors like Oliver Wicks, who create customized suits, as it helps them properly shape the pants' seat and fly. Therefore, it is important to ensure accuracy. Be mindful not to artificially tighten your buttocks during this measurement – return to your normal power stance.

It can be a bit challenging to envision the widest point of the hips on a male body, unlike on a female body where it is more noticeable. Nonetheless, it will be roughly located around the hip bones and directly at the highest point of the buttocks. Watching the video will greatly assist in measuring this area accurately.

Video demonstrative guide on how to accurately measure the width of your hips.

THE SIT OF THE CROTCH

We need to acknowledge that these measurements can be slightly uncomfortable, but it is necessary to endure them in order to have a great-fitting suit. The outcome will definitely be worth it. This important measurement starts from the top of the pants or belt at the front of the body, goes through the legs, and ends at the same point at the back. Essentially, it runs down the fly and up the middle seam. It should be comfortably tight, without feeling like a wedgie. Remember to not let your pants affect this measurement, and instead, aim for a natural snug sensation. Once again, use the one-finger allowance.

Video demonstration on how to accurately measure the crotch

THE WIDTH OF THE THIGH

Similar to the bicep, this measurement is significant as it considers a large muscle. Although you won't likely be doing squats while wearing your new suit, it's essential for the thigh area to fit comfortably as you go about your daily activities and sit at your desk. Measure around the widest part of your thigh, usually near the inseam. Ensure it is snug but still comfortable, leaving space for one finger.

A video demonstration on how to properly measure your thigh

MEASURING YOUR KNEE

This action is not difficult. Repeat the same steps as before, but now focus on measuring your knee. The main thing to be cautious of is keeping your knee straight and standing in a relaxed position, not stiff like when on parade. It's important to also ensure that you are not unintentionally putting more weight on the leg being measured, as this can falsely tighten the muscles in that area.

Video demonstration on how to accurately measure your knee.

THE OUTSEAM

We are currently assessing the total measurement of the trousers. Allow us to provide a brief explanation on the various lengths of pants.

Now I will explain what the "pant break" is. Even a small variation in the length of your pants can greatly impact your appearance, and it is astonishing how slight the difference in fit can be. The "pant break" refers to a discreet and slight folding at the front of the pants, while the back part hangs straight down towards your footwear.

In the past, pants that didn't touch the ground were considered too short. Nowadays, it is acceptable to have a slight break in the pants of a fitted office suit, where they touch the top of the shoe without revealing the socks. This style is referred to as having no break, as there is neither a crease nor visibility of the ankle and sock.

Avoid completely avoiding the act of crossing your legs, as it is not recommended. Doing so may result in a resemblance to the character Steve Urkel, which is not a desirable look for a sophisticated man. Take caution if you frequently cross your legs or have particularly long legs, as your pants may unintentionally rise too high when sitting, giving off an awkward appearance. However, it is acceptable to show a small portion of your socks when crossing your legs.

For someone who is unsure of which direction to take, opting for a half-break is likely the wisest choice. This style, which is more in line with modern fashion trends, complements slimline contemporary outfits and includes a subtle fold. With no visible sock and a slight gathering of fabric on the top of the foot, it offers a sleek appearance.

The most traditional appearance for pants is a complete break, which means there is a clear fold in the fabric and an accumulation of excess fabric on top of the shoes. Usually, the length of the pants should go halfway down the back of the dress shoe. This style works well with classic or casual pants and is suitable for more traditional men. However, it is important to execute it correctly, as an excessive amount of fabric can make a tall man appear shorter and make everyone else look childish.

Let us discuss counters. The counter refers to the elevation of the back of the shoe, commonly known as the back seam. It is advisable to use dress shoes for this measurement as their counter tends to be slightly higher. However, if necessary, you can also measure the counter of loafers, which typically sits a bit lower.

 

Before measuring, it is important to know the desired length of the pants. If you are unsure, you can take a photo of the measurement while wearing your dress shoes and include it when sending your measurements to the tailor. This will allow the tailor to see the exact placement of the measurement and discuss it with you.

If you own a pair of trousers that fit you perfectly, we recommend using them as a reference when measuring, along with your dress shoes. However, if your pants do not fit well, do not use their measurements.

Measuring is very easy. Just stand straight and balanced, as we have been doing. Start at the waist and go down the side seam of the pants, either real or imaginary, until you reach the bottom. That's it!

 

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