Menís Suit 101 Ė The Parts

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Published: 16th November 2010
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Though many may disagree, men's suit is one of the most important parts of a guy's wardrobe. Every man should own at least one suit for special occasions, be it a wedding, job interview or just a formal dinner. And being able to find that perfect suit is very important because wearing a suit is something every man should be able to pull off. But in buying that perfect suit, one should know its different parts to be able to choose properly. A good understanding of the suit's different parts will actually make or break the whole thing. All men should understand that the basics of the suit and its parts so that they can pick one that can accentuate their body type and other positive traits.

1. Single-breasted or Double Breasted. This is the first thing people see about a men's suit. The main difference about single and double-breasted suit is that a single-breasted suit has a single row of buttons down the front with the jacket flaps overlapping only to permit buttoning, while a double-breasted one has two rows of button with the front overlapping in such a way that both flaps are attached to the opposite rows of buttons. Though the choice between the two is based on personal taste, most men actually choose single-breasted suits. However, lanky men who are thin and tall will definitely benefit if they choose double-breasted suits. This is because double-breasted suits give an illusion of fuller appearance, adding more to the figure of the wearer. The opposite is true with single-breasted suits, making them perfect for bigger men.

2. Lapels. This part of the suit comes in different style thus giving men a number of different options. The most common issue about lapels is their width, which had seen so much change throughout the time. But the classic look always feature moderately wide lapels which are considered timeless by most fashion experts. In addition to its width, lapels are also classified into two styles: the notched and the peaked. Notched lapels have wide V-shaped openings where the lapel and collar join, while peaked ones flare out in a sharp point with a very narrow deep V at the joint. Both are considered classic and can be used by any man at different occasions. However, peaked lapels are more commonly used on double-breasted suits. But having a peaked lapel on a single-breasted suit will bring out more sense of formality to it.

3. Waist Buttons. A suit may come with one or two rows of buttons, depending whether it is single-breasted or double-breasted. It can also have different numbers of buttons, but the most common is two or three. The three-button suit is the most traditional style which got its cue from English riding jackets. This style gives an illusion of height, which is perfect for shorter men. When wearing a suit, it is common to fasten only the middle button when standing. Fastening all the buttons however give a more formal look to the outfit. The two-button suit is a recent innovation that gives an illusion of slimmer figure to the wearer because more of the shirt and tie can be seen.

4. Sleeve Buttons. Though very simple in appearance, this part of the suit actually has lots of history behind it. It is believed that sleeve buttons are made part of the suit to encourage the use of handkerchiefs. It is also there to allow men to wash their hands without removing their jackets, which is a grave social offense in the past. Traditionally, jackets sleeves have four buttons, sometimes three. Regardless of its number, it should always match the number of buttons on the waist of the suit. A good suit should always have functioning sleeve buttons and not just there for looks.

5. Jacket Pockets. There are also different styles of pocket that can be used for men's suits. But the most formal are the jetted pockets, which are sewn into the lining of the jacket with only narrow horizontal openings visible on the side of the jacket. Because of this, it gives a very sleek and polished appearance to the suit, thus perfect for formal occasions. Another type of jacket pockets commonly used are the flap pockets, though a bit less formal than jetted pockets. Flap pockets are exactly like jetted pockets, with the exception of the flaps sewn on top of the pockets. The most informal among the pocket types for suits is the patch pockets. As the name implies, these are pockets made by applying a patch on the outside of the jacket. Patch pockets are more common in summer suits as well as sports jackets.

6. Ticket Pocket. Some jackets, especially bespoke and made-to-measure suits also come with a ticket pocket which is above one of the side pockets. Not really common on most suits, this pocket usually serve as an indication of the suit's quality.

7. Breast Pocket. This part of the suit is where the handkerchief or pocket square is placed. A general rule about breast pocket is that only one item can be placed here. This is to avoid a sloppy appearance caused by the item places on it.

8. Vents. These are flap-like slits on the bottom of the jacket which accommodate more movement to the wearer, as well as offer easy access to the trouser pants. There are three common styles to vents: center, side or none. Ventless jackets are popular on continental suits that provide very sleek look to the back of the jacket. Center-vented jackets, which are popular on American suits, have single slit at the back. Lastly, side-vented jackets have two slits, one on either side. Though side-vented jackets are the most practical because of the comfort it provides, it is still the center-vented suits that are common.

Knowing these parts of the suit will definitely help you find the perfect suit for you. Finding which style works perfect for your body type and features is important for you to look good on the suit. But if you are still unsure on what to buy, maybe you can try out a Pal Zileri suit available from at a very affordable price.

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