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Suit shopping for the new college grad

NJresNJres Registered User Posts: 5,900 Senior Member
edited January 2013 in Parent Cafe
I wasn't going to mention this, but today's Doonesbury just nailed this so hard I had to share. I didn't realize it was a big issue. We just went suit shopping with our son over the Christmas break. He insisted on trying on sizes that we felt were too small and too short. He would lecture us on what was the current "style" and would pull up internet articles with pictures on his phone to show us examples of men wearing suits that were too big and too long (typically old politicians) next to stylishly dressed young men (typically young actor types). We compromised a little bit (He is 6 ft tall and did not buy a size "short") and he looks great, but I just got a huge kick out of today's Doonesbury and wondered if other parents have recently gone through this.

I also warned my son that if today's style is "short" pants that could easily change in 6 months to "long" pants that drag on the ground. His sleeves and pants are not too short, but the suit is definitely on the tight side. He has a great physique so it looks good on him. I shudder to think of overweight men squeezing into small suits trying to be "stylish."

Today's Doonesbury when the old guy goes shopping:

Post edited by NJres on

Replies to: Suit shopping for the new college grad

  • PackMomPackMom Registered User Posts: 7,667 Senior Member
    My DH has lost some weight. I've been nagging him to get some slimmer jeans. I keep telling him he looks like an old man with his baggy jeans cinched tightly around his waist. He says "I like loose old man jeans".
  • musicmommusicmom Registered User Posts: 2,488 Senior Member
    Went through this two years ago with our new college grad son.
    He is all and slim and really anything looks good on him (unlike his ma!).
    I pressed for one size up on the shirt and he agreed after some discussion.
    The look is certainly shorter and tighter than it used to be.

    Ended up finding a bunch of nice stuff at Kohls.
  • SteveMASteveMA Registered User Posts: 6,079 Senior Member
    Really, suits that are too small are 'in'? I hope this goes out of style when our DS needs one. Our older boys have suits that fit them properly and aren't fashionistas anyway so we are good there. DS is a little more into fashion---but having sleeves too short drive him nuts so.....:D.
  • worrywartworrywart Registered User Posts: 1,783 Senior Member
    NJRes, this couldn't have been more timely for our household. Bought DS1 an interview suit over the holidays but he went by himself to get it altered. When he picked it up Friday, the jacket sleeves were so short that his entire shirt cuff showed. We insisted he take it back and have the sleeves lengthened. He said the tailor tried to convince him that that's the new style for slim cut suits. I'm not buying it. Think of all the "fads" that we shake our heads at afterward.
  • runnersmomrunnersmom Registered User Posts: 1,686 Senior Member
    OMG, just went through this and finally gave him a budget and told him to go buy a suit. My S is 6'3" and fluctuates between 175-190 depending on what he had for lunch. My H took him suit shopping and they came home one comment away from killing each other. My S likes the tighter, shorter Tom Ford look and my H is a classic Brooks Brothers guy all the way. He humored his dad by getting measured at BB, and then drove the tailor crazy by asking for it to be narrower, tighter etc. Needless to say, no suit at the amazing BB sale. Then I went with him, and though I could "see" the look he wanted, found myself preferring a looser fit. So, we sent him off with a budget and our well wishes! This past Friday he purchased a J Crew (great after holiday sale) navy three season wool suit. I got my preference on color and wool, but the jury's still out on the fit. He loves it! And as long as it's not too extreme, it will be fine for work in just about any field.
  • lizardlizard Registered User Posts: 3,410 Senior Member
    James Bond shows a little shirtsleeve at cuff and he's all business! A little tiny bit of shirt cuff showing with a business suit is fine, but for business you don't want so much shirt cuff showing that you look like Las Vegas crapshooter.

    Look for Less: James Bond’s Suit from Skyfall | Primer
  • momofthreeboysmomofthreeboys Registered User Posts: 15,425 Senior Member
    Classic fit is always best (IMO), always appropriate and always acceptable and fortunately H drilled that into the boys' heads. Young and older men that are fit can always wear a trimmer fit suit or sportcoat, but jackets should never pull across the shoulders or pull if buttoned no matter what the style. H says no more than 1/2" or so if the shirt sleeves below the arms. He just walked by and i showed him this thread and he grimmaced and said that he had seen some of the silly jackets these days...but Nehru jackets were big for a second, too among a certain group.
  • my-3-sonsmy-3-sons Registered User Posts: 2,794 Senior Member
    Yes, yes, yes! My fashionista S1 prefers the new look while I sometimes think his clothes look too small. He was married earlier this year and a "discussion" took place in the tuxedo store over the proper fit.
  • deb922deb922 Registered User Posts: 4,689 Senior Member
    Now I know why my D's boyfriend looked like he was squeezed into his suit. I thought he wanted to wear a smaller size than he is lol!
  • KajonKajon Registered User Posts: 4,380 Senior Member
    I personally do not like the new shorter and tighter look for men's suits. I might grow into the concept, but only on guys shorter than 5'8'. For a taller kid, I would go with the classic Brooks Brothers jacket (single vent) and compromise on a slimmer / modern cut (not skinny) pant. In my old lady opinion, I think the shorter, too tight jackets with a double vent give guys a bubble butt. I do, however, love the trend of colorful socks!
  • runnersmomrunnersmom Registered User Posts: 1,686 Senior Member
    Interesting, and since I haven't seen S's new suit I don't know what cut he decided on, but when he was being fitted in one of the BB lines with a narrower cut, the single vent did not work for him. The problem for him is the difference between his shoulders (very wide) and his waist. To get a jacket that fits across the shoulders properly (even in his opinion), the body is too wide and boxy. When the tailor tried to take in the body to get the fit he wanted, the single vent opened up and could not be made to fit properly. He promised me that the suit pants fit like his jeans, and "no, mom, not the grey painted-on jeans!" I do know he has very particular feelings about how much cuff should show, and he does not favor the really tight fits that don't allow movement and look obviously too small. But then again, I like a longer pant than he does. He barely wants a break and as long as the back covers the top of the shoe he's happy. You know what, I gave up! My time to dress him had come to an end :(
  • HImomHImom Registered User Posts: 29,727 Senior Member
    To the best of my knowledge, the ONLY suit that really fits S which he owns is the one H bought just after he graduated from college many, many decades ago. It fit S perfectly, better than the outfit his HS had him wear from graduation. He has not had much success shopping for suits that fit his 5'7" 120 (or less) pound frame. He does buy dress shirts that fit him well from Express and other stores. Many of his slacks were purchased by him in Thailand, where others share his physique. I don't think he needs to wear a suit very often, thankfully. He really does "swim" in clothing unless it's "slim" but is very particular about what he wants it to look like while he's wearing it. He tries on and buys all of his own clothing with his own money. He does look good in it, so I am just glad he has found styles and brands that work for him.

    Hope he is able to acquire another suit that fits properly when he decides he needs one. Did buy him a nice wool coat this Christmas, but he didn't like the collar so had to return it at Macy's.
  • oldfortoldfort Registered User Posts: 21,028 Senior Member
    H has been wearing his suits tight and legs shorter for 5 years now. It is an European look. They also tend to wear colorful socks with their shorter pants. The lining of suit is also of different color sometimes. I used to think they looked strange, but H's tailor refused to make his suits bigger. H tends to get 2 pairs of pants with his suit.
  • momofthreeboysmomofthreeboys Registered User Posts: 15,425 Senior Member
    ^^Do the pants still break at the top of the shoe or are they wearing pants that don't hit the top of the shoe? I don't know that I've "seen" this shorter pant look. I have seen the jackets that we're talking about.

    This jacket is shorter - used to be that guys fingertips would just curl under the bottom of the suit coat, but at least the jacket isn't pulling and looking too tight:

    Soho Dress Blazer - Armani Exchange

    This is what my husband thinks is goofy looking (and I have to agree) it looks like he bought the wrong size jacket. But I'm not seeing the pants.
    Striped Tweed BlazerOnline Exclusive - Suiting Shop - Mens - Armani Exchange
  • SteveMASteveMA Registered User Posts: 6,079 Senior Member
    HImom--your son sounds like our oldest. We actually found him a suit at Kohl's that fit right off the rack. He had a last minute interview and we didn't have time to go shopping so we checked there and found that. It actually looks really nice on him and fits him in the classic fit style :D.
This discussion has been closed.