We caught up with our Menswear Buying Assistant and tailoring guru, Alex McCart, to get the lowdown on finding the right fit for your suit. From the width of your jacket's sleeves to the length of your trousers, we've got your sartorial needs covered.

  • Jacket length - A longer jacket will create a classic look, whereas a shorter style will appear more contemporary. A shorter gentleman should always lean towards a shorter jacket as this will make his legs look longer, whereas it could go both ways for a taller chap.
  • Sleeve length - This is extremely important. If the sleeves are too long the whole jacket will look too big, even if the rest of the jacket fits. The correct sleeve length should finish at your wrist bone and should always have ½ inch of cuff showing. Putting your arms up to see if the sleeve length is too short is the incorrect thing to do; this should be measured at rest with your arms by your side.
  • Sleeve width - Make sure that the sleeve is not too tight around the bicep or the other extreme of being too loose.
  • Shoulder width - The width of the shoulder should sit on the break of your shoulder, any bigger will throw the proportions of the jacket out. This is especially the case if you have the waist tailored and too tight which will make the jacket look like it doesn't fit. If too tight you will also notice a slight pull through the back of the jacket.
  • Back neck - If the jacket is too tight through the top third of the jacket you will also notice a slight crease. This can be removed by a tailor in order to create a flat back.
  • Jacket waist- A more traditional jacket will not be as tailored at the waist. A more nipped in waist will always create a slimmer silhouette but make sure not to go too tight as this can begin to look quite feminine. Remember your shoulder width! A broad shoulder will not suit a really tight-waist jacket and if you're having the waist altered to make it narrower, this could lead the jacket to skirt.
  • Trouser waist-Remember you are wearing a formal suit not a pair of jeans, therefore the waist of your trousers should sit higher, just below your belly button will be a good indicator.
  • Seat- Make sure that this is not too tight as it will make sitting down uncomfortable. However too big will not look flattering at all.
Thigh and half bottom width- A slimmer trouser will add height, go as slim as you dare but don’t go spray on! Remember though the thinner the bottom the shorter the trouser needs to be in order to reduce the creasing. Meaning the trouser should sit on top of the shoe having no breaks at the back and one at the front. Trouser length- A wider trouser can sit lower down over the heel whereas a narrow trouser will need to sit on top of the shoe. Don’t adjust your trousers so that the length will be long enough when you sit down as standing up will be too long which is more important - buy some nice socks!


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