5 Professional Tailoring Tips That Will Help Men Look the Part

We caught up with Garrison Bespoke’s David Tran for a little insight when it comes to dressing for the workplace for the young professional man….

You finally landed a big boy job.

You’re taking on a growing number of clients and making a good impression at the office with your commitment and drive.

The only problem is, you don’t quite look the part.

Your trousers are baggy, your sleeves are too long, and – worst of all – your shoulders belong on a football field.

For a young professional that’s got his head on straight, your wardrobe is sending all the wrong messages. Luckily for you, there are a few easy fixes that a tailor can execute to sharpen the look of any suit.

They’re quick, cheap, and may even land you a date with that pretty temp down the hall…

1. Hemmed Trouser ($15-20)
Hemming the trouser is probably the easiest part of tailoring a suit; yet, men often get it wrong or don’t bother with it at all. Smarten up. Take your trouser to a tailor and ask for a “half break” – not too short, not too long. The break should rest just above your shoe and shouldn’t bunch up when standing straight.

2. Shortened Sleeves ($15-20)
People see your hands a lot more than you think (i.e. colleagues, clients, customers, etc.). If your sleeves aren’t tailored, you’ve got a problem. You want at least half an inch of your shirt to show underneath the sleeve of your jacket to show everyone else you mean business.

3. Tailored Waist ($25-50)
Just like women, men have shapes. Part of the reason men often get kicked off the shape spectrum is because they wear suits that don’t flatter their natural frames. If the suit you’re wearing makes you look like a straight line, it’s not helping you make your case. Take your jacket to a tailor and get it cinched at the waist – enough for it to look like you went the extra mile, but leaving enough room for air.

4. Smooth Shoulders ($25-40)
Dealing with a client that just won’t take you seriously? It’s probably because you look more Tim Tebow than Mike Ross. Watch out for padding in the shoulders when it comes to suit jackets (or use it sparingly if you need a little extra support). These days, a natural line from the neck to the arm is more flattering than looking like a box. When making any necessary adjustment, remember that your top seam should run parallel to the shoulder and cut off right where the shoulder meets the arm.  

5. Proper Jacket Length ($25-30)
Here’s where things can get a little tricky – but, hey, if you got through the interview, hopefully you can tailor the length of a jacket. Avoid trends and stick to the general rule that (in most cases) works: with your arms resting on your sides, your jacket should cut off where it meets your knuckles. This may vary depending on height, so if you’re not sure where to make the cut, ask your tailor for an expert opinion.

All in, these five tailoring tips will cost you around $150. Before you head over to any old tailor in your neighbourhood, however, find out whether or not they specialize in tailoring men’s suits. Don’t be afraid to shop around. Ask questions about the quality of work provided and always try and negotiate prices. In the end, if the alterations are costing more than the suit itself, it may be time to purchase a new garment altogether.


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All images from: Garrison Bespoke

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