A Quick Guide to Menswear Proportions
October 14th, 2014
Tailoring is, literally, a game of inches. And it’s all about proportions.
Here’s a quick tip on pairing collars, ties and jackets together: they look best if they are the same width.
Here’s two examples.
Slim & Minimal
A collar is measured from the neckband seam to the point along one side. A lapel is measured perpendicular to the roll line at it’s widest point. A tie is measured straight across at its widest point.
In this look they all measure exactly 2.5″, which is on the quite-narrow side for all three, but together the narrow lines complement each other. The slim and minimal proportions create a sharp look that portrays neatness and attention to detail. Finish it off with just a touch of pocket square and if you’re going with a tie bar keep it petite.
The narrow lapel and short collar is also great for a slimmer/smaller guy, like my man Dennis who studied under the king of shrunken-proportions Thom Browne and nails the minimalist look.
Big & Bold
What a difference an inch can make… Jokes aside, here the lapel, collar and tie are each 3.5″. That extra inch makes for a decidedly differently look; more luxurious, dandy, and expressive. Perhaps a little more in-your-face.
The longer “power collar” sits higher up on the neck, making it great for taller guys. Not so good, however, for guys with short necks (or big muscular shoulders/traps). The collar should never get too close to the chin/jawline.
Personally, I like the lapel to cover roughly half the distance across the chest from the roll-line to the shoulder. Therefore, at my size (6’2″ 195 lbs) I prefer these slightly larger proportions. It feels more balanced.
Stay tailored my friends. Just remember: it’s all about proportions, and an inch can make a difference.
Yours in style,