Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Quick Fix--Wearing Clothes that Fit

A few weeks ago, I ranted about guys wearing clothes that fit properly.  However, after ceaseless discussions with several guys, I am now at a stagnant point in my opinion as to how clothes should fit on men.  After a short photo session with some newly acquired items from the Original Penguin sale at Ruelala, I wanted to post my thoughts, and get some feedback from our readers (wherever they may be).

With the advent of designer jeans for women, it's not uncommon to find a pair of 7 for All Mankind or Citizens in the majority of closets today.  Why?  Women who have tried them just cannot go back.  The quality of cut, fabric, and fit is unsurpassed by most middling cheaper brands such as Old Navy or Gap.  The biggest aspect of designer jeans that I love?  The ratio of cotton and spandex that allows for a hugging fit, but not an overly tight one.  While I am not encouraging all men to sprint out to Nordstrom and snap up a pair of jeans for $200, I do think there is something to be said about cuts and fits of men's jeans.  The skinny leg has crossed over from women's fashion into men's fashion, and I certainly am not a fan.  However, I think a guy's frame can really benefit from a properly sized bootcut or straight cut pair of jeans. 
I think the above photos are a good example of how jeans can engulf someone's bottom half.  I will admit... the majority of men have differing objectives as to how they want their legs to look in pants than women.  Women obsess about every minute aspect of any body part looking too big, too small, too lumpy, too short, too long, etc.  One overarching concept that is unflattering on men and women?  Shapelessness.  We aren't looking for a pair of jeans that outline the shape of your package a la Jonah Hill trying on a pair of too tight jeans in Superbad, but throw us a bone here.  We want to know if a guy actually has an ass.
While I argued with my subject that these new jeans are still too big, I have to admit that there is a big improvement just through his choice in a bootcut style... rather than whatever he was wearing before (first picture).  I think if he just sized down from a 34 to a 33... it would make a huge difference.  If he sized down from a 34 to a 32, it would be even better.  However, this might be an uphill battle for me. 
Boom.  I think the above comparison says it all.  Left = bad.  Right = better.  I win.

The picture that I used in my "Buy Sh** that Fits" portion of the Men's clothing post in August demonstrates how pure my hatred is for shirts that fit poorly on guys.  The traditional dress shirt fit is not for every man.  In fact, it really is designed for this mythical American male figure who graduated from high school as a football star and then started working on a farm with a tractor every day.  THAT is how boxy and big these traditional dress shirt fits can be.  I think that a lot of men need to discover the "slim fit" or determine shirt brands or lines that taper off all that extra material, so that shirts aren't billowing like a sail in the wind behind them.  Calvin Klein, Hugo Boss, and a lot of modern designers carry this more flattering fit. 
I sometimes wonder if a lot of guys just ensure that said dress shirt can button up over their body... and proceed to grab that shirt and buy it.  I think length, collar, sleeves, and where a shirt's shoulder seams hit on a guy's body really make a difference.  This is Tailoring/Alterations 101, but a lot of guys might not care/notice.  I DO.  Thanks to my subject for making these Original Penguin plaid button-down shirts look so nice!  The above pictures are a great example of how I think a shirt can, not only fit well, but flatter a guy's body frame in a subtle manner.
Same goes for t-shirts.  Baggy. T-shirts. Are. The. Worst.  I can't say that enough.  They are the ultimate offender in making a guy look sloppy and unkempt.  Obviously, no one is going to tailor a t-shirt so that it fits your body perfectly.  However, if it just hangs on you, toss it aside.  So the above statements are my two cents on what I look for in the fit of men's clothing.  I'm at peace.  For now...
*Original Penguin Brand

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