Suit Fit Types: Which Fit is Best For You? - Joseph Abboud
- by Off The Cuff
- June 23, 2023
- 6 min read
From suit colors to styles and beyond, there’s an endless array of options available to men who want a classy and stylish suit.
Let’s add one more to the list: Suit fit types.
Depending on your build and style preferences, you’ve got many different suit fits to choose from—below, we’ll dive into three of the most common types. But first, let’s talk about the importance of how any suit should fit you.
How Should Your Suit Fit?
No matter what type of suit or what color suit you choose, there’s one thing you need to remember—how your suit fits is the most important part.
Starting at the top, your jacket collar should be gently resting on the back of your shirt collar. They should be lightly touching each other with a minimal gap between every layer. This gives your neck area a more natural look.
Moving to the shoulders, you want them to lay flat with the seam lining up directly on the top part of your shoulder bone. That seam is a good indicator of fit—closer to your neck is too small, and further away is too big.
Your jacket closure should gently hold you in and you should be able to fasten it without any strain and without any significant wrinkling—you want to avoid the “X” crease that forms from a suit jacket that’s too small!
The sleeves are one of the first things that people notice about a suit jacket fit. The basic rule of thumb is that you want about a half-inch of your shirt cuff to show below your suit sleeve. Anywhere in that area is fine, as long as it’s not too long or short.
While your arms are resting at your sides, your jacket length should drape just past your waist and land comfortably near the middle of your thumb knuckle. Any longer and you risk looking like a kid wearing grandpa’s suit jacket!
Now we get to the trousers with the seat—it should lay naturally across your backside with no creasing or folds visible. Too big and the fabric will start creating U-shaped, sagging folds. Too small and horizontal wrinkles begin to form.
Last we have the trouser length: A standard trouser break gently touches the top of the shoes and creates a subtle wrinkle near the ankle. There’s some wiggle room here—for slimmer trousers, a no-break look (trousers that don’t quite touch the shoes) can look great, as long as you’re not showing too much sock. Conversely, you can go for a bit more break on looser trousers, just don’t go past the heel of your dress shoes.
While it’s true that you can alter most parts of your suit fit, some parts are harder to alter than others. For example, your trouser length is quite easy to shorten. However, the shoulders are something you should try and get correct on the first go around since they’re much harder to alter.
Which of the Suit Fit Types is Best For You?
Now that you know how a suit should fit your body, what types of fits are available to you?
Below, we’ll talk about three different common suit fit types:
- Classic fit
- Slim fit
- Modern fit
Traditionalists rejoice: When it comes to suiting up, the classics still hold up to this day.
A classic fit suit is characterized by a traditional and comfortable silhouette, designed to enhance the physique without sacrificing ease of movement. Classic fit suits are known for their balanced proportions, making them suitable for a wide range of body types and ages.
One of the key features of classic fit suits is their generous cut, which allows for a more relaxed fit without compromising on style. The jacket typically has a roomy chest and waist, providing comfort and freedom of movement, while the trousers have a higher rise and fuller legs.
The result? A polished and dignified appearance, making classic fit suits appropriate for formal occasions, business settings, or even as a daily ensemble for the discerning gentleman.
Who it’s best for: Classic fit suits can be worn by anyone! They’re highly versatile and can flatter almost any figure. However, they’re best for the man who prefers to look good but still wants a little more wiggle room and maximum comfort.
Slim fit suits have gained immense popularity in recent years, offering a modern and sleek alternative to the classic fit.
As the name suggests, slim-fit suits are tailored with a closer cut to the body, creating a trim and streamlined silhouette that accentuates the wearer's physique. They provide a more fitted and contemporary look, perfect for those who prefer a sharper and more tailored appearance.
The jacket on a slim-fit suit is narrower in the chest and waist, creating a more tapered and fitted look. Moving below, the trousers feature a lower rise and a slimmer leg, often with a narrower hem. This tailored fit creates a sense of sharpness and sophistication, projecting a modern and fashion-forward image.
Who it’s best for: Surprise: Slimmer men will likely prefer a slim-fit suit, as it will accentuate their physique and provide a sleek look. Conversely, men with a larger build may prefer a classic or modern fit suit.
There’s always a happy in-between—even with suits. The modern fit suit gives you exactly that: A balance between the roomier classic fit and the sleek and trim slim fit.
Modern fit suits offer the updated and fashion-conscious silhouette of slim-fit suits while still maintaining the comfort and ease of movement of a classic fit. These suits cater to individuals who seek a versatile and stylish option that blends the best of both worlds.
Let’s start with the jacket: It’s slightly more fitted than a classic fit suit, with a tapered waist and a trimmer silhouette, creating a modern and streamlined look.
Modern-fit trousers offer slimmer legs but still provide more room compared to slim-fit suits, ensuring comfort without compromising on style. This contemporary fit offers a polished and refined appearance that suits a variety of body types. Versatility and adaptability are the name of the game with modern fit suits!
Who it’s best for: Just about anyone can wear a well-tailored or bespoke modern-fit suit—it works great for slimmer men who still love a classic cut, but it also suits men with a larger build who want a sleek look with extra room.
Types of Suit Pants
Your suit pants follow the same fit criteria as the jackets in the fits listed above. However, there’s one more aspect to consider when choosing your trousers: Whether you want flat-front pants or pleated pants.
Flat-front trousers are a contemporary and streamlined alternative to pleated trousers, offering a sleek and modern look. They feature a clean front without any pleats or folds, creating a smooth and uninterrupted appearance. Flat-front trousers have gained popularity over the past decade for their minimalist and tailored aesthetic—often appealing to individuals who prefer a more modern and sleek style.
The key feature of flat-front trousers is their sleek and slimming silhouette—without the additional fabric from pleats, they provide a more fitted and streamlined look, accentuating the natural shape of the wearer's body. Flat-front trousers are all about providing a cleaner and sharper appearance, projecting a contemporary and fashion-forward image.
Who it’s best for: Slimmer men will definitely love flat-front pants, since they accentuate the calves and thighs a little more than pleated pants. However, anyone can wear flat-front trousers if that’s the style they prefer!
The tried and true classic—pleated trousers are the look that everyone knows and loves when they think of suit pants.
These trousers are characterized by pleats— folds of fabric sewn at the waistband, allowing for extra room and comfort around the hips and thighs. Pleated trousers have been a staple in menswear for decades and continue to be favored for their timeless appeal and refined look.
Pleats allow for additional fabric, providing ease of movement and a more comfortable feel. They create a subtle visual interest and add a sense of depth and dimension to the front of the trousers, enhancing the overall sophistication of the look.
Who it’s best for: Again, anyone can take advantage of pleated trousers. However, men with a larger build will likely prefer the extra room provided by the pleats. They’re also an attractive option for those who prefer the classic suiting look!
Get the Perfect Suit for Any Occasion From Joseph Abboud
No matter what type of suit you want, we can help. Joseph Abboud’s Bespoke Suiting process will get you started with a stylish suit today. Go with made-to-measure pieces, explore ready-to-wear styles, or begin your journey with a bespoke creation where we’ll take your exact measurements and get you the suit of your dreams. The choice is yours!
Ready to look your absolute best? Learn more about how Joseph Abboud’s bespoke suit process takes your style game to the next level.