There’s no end to the number of people we see that make the same kind of suiting mistakes. It’s painstaking to see, especially so, because they could easily be avoided. It’s not only the novices to the suit that we see making them, but also those wearing them for special occasions, yes, even every day suit aficionados.
Now that’s probably got you thinking, “what mistakes?” Well, if you’ve started questioning whether you’re one of these people then fear not, we’ve addressed some of the commonly made suiting mistakes and also looked at how to avoid them in the future.
The sleeve length of suit jackets
The sleeve length on your suit jacket does and always will play a large role in how you look, as it can easily make a suit look too big or too small. Your jacket sleeve should suit on your wrist, and allow for around half an inch to to an inch of your dress shirt to creep out from underneath.
If the sleeve of your jacket is too long, then you’ll find your hands drowned by it, whereas if it is too short, then you will be looking like you’ve kept your good old blazer since high school.
The button closure of your suit jacket
Not all buttons on your suit jacket should be closed. The rule of thumb to follow is to always leave the bottom button open. That is, unless you are wearing a jacket with only a single button of course. In that case, of course, it should be closed, unless you sit down, which brings us to the second mistake, when it comes to buttons. Always, and we really mean always unbutton your jacket. The benefit of that is not aesthetically, but very much also for practical reasons. Undoing the buttons will help the jacket rest beside you as opposed to gathering on your abdomen (yes, your gut).
Also, if you are wearing a well-tailored jacket, then sitting down can in some cases even place a little strain on the buttons, which is something that you won’t want.
Jacket vent and pocket stitching
I believe all of us have been there. You’ve bought a brand new suit, and you’re proudly wearing it for the first time, all confident, all ready to conquer the world. But hey, what’s this now. Oh darn, you’ve forgotten to remove the stitching on the vents, or the pockets – or both! Now think about that awkward moment when your partner, your friend or even worse, another guest, that is attending the same event, has to remind you that it still needs cutting. Em-bar-ras-sing! If you’re planning on looking the part, then always prepare for it. Before you get dressed into that splendid new suit of yours, always give all aspects and parts of it a quick check.
The length of suit trousers
The length of the trousers work in a similar fashion to that of your jacket sleeve, in the sense that it really can dictate how well your outfit looks.
The ideal length of the trousers can generally be measured by looking at the break of the trouser, which is the degree to which the trouser rests on your shoes. There are 3 varying lengths (no break, half break and full break) that are often being taken into account.
Trousers with no break
Trousers with “no break” are those that come to the ankles and barely touch the shoes. While once upon a time these might have been simply considered as being short, there has been a growing trend for trousers with no break in recent years. This style can be worn with regular socks, or even sports socks for a bolder look, which leaves the ankles bare.
Trousers with half break
The “half break” length is the safer and perhaps the more common option when it comes to choosing the length of your trousers. It allows the trousers to rest comfortably on the shoe and tends to create a slight crease at the ankle.
If you aren’t certain about the trouser length, or you prefer to dress more conservatively, then we’d certainly recommend opting for a half break.
Trousers with full break
Finally, the “full break” allows for the trousers to sit well on the shoes, in many cases even covering a large part of the laces. The full break length is best left to be worn by taller gentleman, or those with long legs, as the gathering up of the material on the shoes can help to give a perception of them having shorter legs.
Opting for trousers which are longer than a full break, or shorter than a no break will certainly classify them as being misfitting.
Mismatching your leather accessories
Wearing shoes and belts with the right colour, matching with your suit, is crucial, and can often make for a simple way of perfecting your look. Getting this wrong however is a huge faux pas, which will undoubtedly stick out like a sore thumb. Don’t worry too much about getting the shades exactly the same though. Just make sure that a black belt always is teamed up with black shoes and a brown belt is teamed up with brown shoes.
If you want to be really particular about it you can also match the leather strap on your watch to that of your belt and shoes.
An end note
Having ticked off some of the most commonly made mistakes, you should now know if you yourself have fallen foul of them. Thankfully they’re all things that can be easily rectified so you can get back to looking your very best. If you need other style tips, feel free to follow our dress guide and blog section for more information.