April 2, 2017

Dress for your frame

Dress for your frame


Small/thin frame:


The small frame is one of the hardest to properly dress off the rack in the United States for a couple of reasons.   First, most men here aren’t all that svelte, what with the option to supersize for only 75 cents more.  Secondly (and perhaps most pragmatically), shirts can always be taken in but letting them out is difficult if not impossible, so for a high-volume shirt maker like Ralph Lauren it makes more sense to offer a shirt anyone can buy and tailor than only a few people can fit into especially those offered at a lower price point.


With this in mind, it’s incredibly important that those with a small thin frame wear tailored clothes so as to best accentuate a manly figure as opposed to just looking like you’re being swallowed whole in a sail.

Medium frame:


The medium frame has the most options off the rack but will still need tailoring.  Many pieces will look OK off the rack, but a skilled tailor knows where to nip and tuck to accentuate the most manly aspects of your frame.  This is especially true in the waist of many shirts.  Since the medium frame won’t be swimming in fabric the way the small frame will it’s tempting to not have the excess fabric taken in, but this is a huge mistake.  The lack of shape from off the rack clothes will simply cause you to blend into the crowd.


Large frame:


When choosing clothes as a large man, it’s important to keep in mind that a very low wasit will cause your excess midsection to hang over, especially if you cinch the belt.   I always suggest at least a slightly higher waist with suspenders (buttoned not clip-on.  You’re an adult, right?).  This way, there’s no excess squishing at the waist and it gives a more sophisticated look that’s slightly reminiscent of a confident mafiso.  This may require more tailoring in the seat, but I assure you, the extra $15.00 will be well spent.


If wearing jeans or khakis, simply do your best looking in the mirror but remember to admire yourself in the mirror from all sides so you can make sure your clothes aren’t accentuating the wrong areas.

Polo/sport shirts:


Because of the shorter lengths of most polos and sport shirts, it’s imperative make sure that no portion of your midsection is hanging out below or could be flashed while walking.  With this in mind, I strongly suggest a guayabera as a go to sport shirt for larger men.  This gives off a strong yet relaxed vibe especially when paired with a hat and facial hair.


Lastly, with the larger frame I almost always suggest some facial hair to accentuate the masculinity of a large frame (and avoid the clash of a babyface) and a brimmed hat to add additional height.