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1. Make sure the jacket fits you in the shoulders. It shouldn’t be overly large. It shouldn’t be too tight.
Most men will not buy a suit that is too tight in the shoulder area, but most men are buying a suit one to two sizes too large. Just go watch the movie “Crazy Stupid Love”.
There’s a great example of the difference of wearing something that fits you right in the shoulders.
The shoulders, to get those adjusted by the tailor, it’s kind of like heart surgery. It is one of the most difficult adjustments.
Maybe there is some tailor that has been able to make shoulders larger, but they can only make them smaller by so much. The cost is so high you might as well go look at another jacket, so that’s the shoulders.
2. Let’s talk about the neck. The neck area, you shouldn’t have a whole lot of material just sitting out.
It shouldn’t sit back from your shirt collar. If it does, it’s too large and you want to find a better fit. You can get this somewhat adjusted, but again, not an adjustment that you want to pay for if you can get a better fit right off the rack.
Another area you’re going to see in the neck is bunching in the back of the neck. This is a pretty easy fix. If you see a little bit of bunching, you should be able to get that adjusted for free at finer menswear stores.
If you’re buying this at a discount store or a thrift store, then you can just take it to a tailor and for a reasonable amount, you’re able to get that adjusted pretty easily.
3. Let’s talk about the chest and the torso, so that’s going to be the next area you want to focus on. It is okay if it’s a little bit tight or it is a little bit loose. What I mean by that is about an inch to at the most an inch and a half.
I’m going to say on the lower end if it’s tight because there’s usually not a whole lot of material in off-the-rack jackets that they can open up on the back, but if it’s lose, you can definitely bring it in about an inch and a half.
Now, why can’t you bring it in two to three inches? Technically, a tailor could make any jacket fit you in the torso area, but here’s the problem.
We start to change the lines of the jacket and we have issues with proportion, so that’s why weightlifters, bodybuilders, men that have a huge drop, perhaps they’ve got a 44-inch chest and they’ve got a 32-inch waist, so right there, 44 to 32, a 12-inch drop.
If you’ve got that type of a drop, then what we’re seeing is that almost no — you’re going to need to go custom.
The lines on most off-the-rack jackets just are not going to work for you and the adjustment would be too much in the torso.
4. Jacket length, now, I’m going to pull up a quick illustration. As you can see, I’ve got examples right here of a jacket being too short, a jacket being too long, a jacket being perfect.
You should be able to put your hands down by your shoulders and about where your thumb knuckle is at or you should be able to wring your hands around the bottom and you should be able to feel the bottom.
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