Fashion Blogger... or Whatever

Man Crush Monday || Buying A PROPER Off-The- Rack Suit

Good morning MCMs,

 I remember when I first entered the styling game and I got my first male client.. my boyfriend at the time. He gave me the challenge of putting several suit looks together for him. Boy did I learn a lot. He knew all of this (kudos) but he didn't tell me anything. It was great because every time I style a man in a suit I know what to look for now. I want to give you a full guide on picking a proper fitting suit. Because let's just face it... you DON'T want to look like the guy on the right. Yikes.

Let me be frank.. and you need to remember this. BUYING AN OFF-THE-RACK SUIT IS NOT CHEAP, however it is an investments. Granted, it's not as expensive as having a tailor made suit prepared but if you want it to look good it will cost a pretty penny. Please, understand this. When you're ready to purchase a suit just spend the damn money. I can't stress enough how I can tell the difference in a cheap unfitting suit to a nice put together suit.  If you listen to what I'm saying you won't have to worry about buying another suit for a long time and it can be alternated several ways.

Measuring- The first time you buy a suit (button down shirts included) you need to be measured. Just like women can walk in Victoria's Secret and get their bra size measured a man can walk in a department store or menswear store and do the same. You can do it yourself with a measuring tape but I highly recommend you allow a professional do it. Here's what the associate will do.

Side note- Before you even go know your height and weight it is all a part of getting the proper fit, and make sure you wear a dress shirt. This is to give you an accurate idea of how the jacket is going to fit with other garments. The shoulder seam in the shirt can serve as a vantage point when measuring the width of your shoulders or your arm length, and the bulk of the shirt will ensure the jacket isn't too tight.

1 ) Measure you for a jacket 
  •  Over-arm shoulder width the over- Arm measurement will help create the width of the entire jacket from shoulder to shoulder. 
  • Measure your chest - The chest is an essential measurement to get the right body fit and flattering cut jacket.
  • Measure your arms - This is done to ensure the sleeves are not too long or too short.

2.) Measure you for pants 

*Tip* Always make sure you wear shoes when measuring for your pants, because dress choose change the way you stand and give you a little extra height. 
  • Measure your hips- This is too ensure the proper waist size for your pants. The associate isn't on any funny business, lift that shirt up :) 
  • Measure your outseam- this is the measurement of your outer-most leg of your pants trailing down from your hip to your ankle. It's all about ensuring you pick the proper pant length. It will all make sense in the end.
  • Measure your inseam - The associate is going to measure the inside of your leg from your groin all the way you your foot. Most of your jeans you already have should determine the inseam of your leg. This is another determination of how long your pants should be. 
Now that we have your measurements you're ready to pick out your suit. 

Suit and sport coast sizes have one number and one descriptive word (for example 38 short, 40 regular, 42 long) The number refers to your chest measurement, and the descriptive word refers to the length of the jacket. 

The paints are pretty much the same, your waist times inseam. (just like buying jeans) 

Here's a pretty good size chart describing your chest measurement's times the length of the jacket (source

Suit Length
Men's Suit & Sport Coat Size Conversions
Short (S)
5'4" to 5'7"
U.S. Chest Sizing
Regular (R)
5'7 1/2" to 5'11"
EU Chest Sizing
Long (L)
5'11 1/2" to 6'2 1/2"
Helpful Hints
X-Long (XL)
6'3" and up
• Tall suits are classified as X-Long (6'3" and up).
• Big suits are classified as 48 U.S. chest size and up.
• If your over-arm measurement is more than 7" larger than your chest measurement, choose a suit one size larger than your chest.
• Suits have what is called a "drop," which is the difference between the size of the jacket and the size of the pants. Classic-fit suits typically have a 6" drop, meaning that a size 38R jacket is paired with size 32 pants. Trim-fit suits typically have a 7" drop.
• Suit makers usually leave enough extra fabric at the seams to allow pants to be let out by 1" to 2". Pants can always be taken in.
Now, you have your jacket and pants. Here is a DETAILED charting system of how everything should look.

Remember a suit is supposed to fit not to snug of course. This is not the time for bagginess, save that for your jeans. I hope this helps any guys out there who have never purchased an off the rack suit. If this is nothing new to you congrats! I believe every man should have knowledge on this and every man should own a decent suit. As far as colors go you can never go wrong with a grey or khaki suit. Both colors are suitable for any season and can be alternated with just about any color combination. That's all I have for this Man Crush Monday... until next time guys.

.::Let's connect::.
Snapchat- AshleyTamarra

Making my dreams come true,


  1. Cátia RodriguesMay 18, 2015 at 9:54 AM

    This is very cool and informative! I really enjoyed!


  2. ahah i really can see me wearing a too small one, everytime i wear it's exactly like this, it's hard to be tall.

  3. I can only imagine... I hope this helps!

  4. nice post! I've seen one too many ill-fitted suits and it KILLS me!

  5. right!?! Geesh.. thanks for reading dear :)

  6. this is A VERY NICE POST

    new post :

  7. Great tips, sometimes shopping for the guys is more fun than shopping for yourself.

  8. woooo... i didn't know some of all these things, waoo now i know how to get a proper suit for him

  9. I knew all of these already :D
    Thanks for the post tho! I'm my boyfriend's personal stylist. He used to wear this kind of big shirts and slacks. I started by doing his shopping, then teaching him the tips. He ended up being the best dressed on their end of year party at work. And guess what, he doesn't need me again to do his shopping and one day he said to me "I can't believe I used to dress that way with such big stuffs". Lol.


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