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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello!

I am a blond and pale skinned Scandinavian in my best age (around 50). Unfortunately, I am also somewhat overweight (although not fat).

I have a question regarding suits, colours and patterns:


1: What colours will make me appear thinner?

2: Are there specific patterns that may have the same effect?

3: Is there any difference between single breasted or double breasted, two buttoned or three buttoned concerning the aspect above.

Hope to hear from you!
 

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Here's my opinons ....

1) Darker colors (navy and charcoal) are more thining than lighter colors such as tan, light blue etc.

2) Avoid plaids, checks. Dark colors above in pin stripes will give you more of a vertical appearance.

3) DB is only for the thin. Stick with 2 button sb, probably you'll need no vent or center vent.

If you're not fat as you say, start eating corectly and exercise a little, then you can wear dbs. Since my 50s when I had a small stroke, if one can ever say a small one, I have been on a low fat, high fiber diet. I have gone from 200 lbs to 165 lbs. I wear a suit every day and look ten years younger than my age. How old am I? Let's just say I've got 20+ years on you. Lose that weight. You wont regret it. Overweight people never look as good as thin people, no matter how they try to hide the weight.
 

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The cut of the jacket will be very important to hiding a few things. You want the shoulders to help create balance, and to have a small accent of suppression at the waist, but not so tapered that you can see any extra heft from the outside. Depending your waist size either a flat front or a single, not double, pleated trouser will help as well. I'd also look for a single vented jacket, which is probably more sliming, and as mentioned a longer lapel line. I think hacking pockets (which are slanted up) are more slimming.

Most importantly, if your not going made to measure/bespoke try on a few things and consult with the tailor about how to shape the jacket to get the best visual before you buy anything. You'll be able to tell when you look best and when something makes you look bad.
 

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Hello!

I am a blond and pale skinned Scandinavian in my best age (around 50). Unfortunately, I am also somewhat overweight (although not fat).

I have a question regarding suits, colours and patterns:

1: What colours will make me appear thinner?

2: Are there specific patterns that may have the same effect?

3: Is there any difference between single breasted or double breasted, two buttoned or three buttoned concerning the aspect above.

Hope to hear from you!
I think you've already received a great deal of excellent advice on this thread. And if I recall from earlier threads, you were considering the services of a bespoke tailor. A good bespoke tailor should be able to make you look your best, irrespective of your build. How do your plans stand in that regard?

After a lifetime of experience, I will share something it took me forty years to learn, if you carry extra weight, it's important to wear clothing that is a bit looser than you otherwise might. Counter-intuitively, snugger clothing will always make a heavier man look fatter, and looser clothing (Within reason.) will do the opposite.
 

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IMO DB jackets work well on overweight men. The visual line of the wrap at the front of the jacket helps obscure a paunch.

Which leads to a second observation. Always break up the waistline with a jacket that extends down to the hips, and when possible complement the jacket with high waisted trousers that provide a long line over the belly. Neither will make you thinner but your weight won't be as noticeable.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I think you've already received a great deal of excellent advice on this thread. And if I recall from earlier threads, you were considering the services of a bespoke tailor. A good bespoke tailor should be able to make you look your best, irrespective of your build. How do your plans stand in that regard?

After a lifetime of experience, I will share something it took me forty years to learn, if you carry extra weight, it's important to wear clothing that is a bit looser than you otherwise might. Counter-intuitively, snugger clothing will always make a heavier man look fatter, and looser clothing (Within reason.) will do the opposite.
Hello Flanderian. I have just received my first bespoke suit, in the glen check pattern (JJ minnis 12 ounce) observed in my avatar! And yes, my tailor made my jacket a bit looser than I had expected. In the beginning, it felt a bit strange, but after a week or so it felt really comfortable.

My next project will either be a green houndtooth jacket or a navy chalkstripe suit. I havent decided if it will be MTM or bespoke so far...
 

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Hello Flanderian. I have just received my first bespoke suit, in the glen check pattern (JJ minnis 12 ounce) observed in my avatar! And yes, my tailor made my jacket a bit looser than I had expected. In the beginning, it felt a bit strange, but after a week or so it felt really comfortable.

My next project will either be a green houndtooth jacket or a navy chalkstripe suit. I havent decided if it will be MTM or bespoke so far...
That's a beautiful fabric! I've spent some time enjoying Minnis' on-line bunches, and that is one I've found particularly appealing. It must be very flattering to your coloring.

I've found that for some odd reason, perhaps the geometric regularity, glen checks and houndstooth checks can flatter a heavier man. Seems to break up the mass.

I'm a big fan of green and houndstooth, so the two together sound good, and should work with your coloring. Navy chalk stripes are another classic I love, and are very flattering to me. But my coloring is the opposite of yours, (Gray hair, olive skin and brown eyes.) Paler, blond haired fellows can sometimes look a bit washed out in it. However, if your complexion is ruddy (Containing red or pink tones.) it should work.

I've always made a point when selecting a fabric to hold next to my face in a mirror to try and get an idea how it might work. If your tailor has the fabric in his shop, you can drape it over your shoulder and get a much better idea. I wouldn't be shy about it, or feel it's too vain, it's a substantial investment, and both you and your tailor want you to look good in it!
 

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Dark colors. Strips or checks that are long downward.

DB with long lapels and lower button stance, this helps show more shirt. Checks can make the coat busy and people don't notice the extra weigth.

SB with regular button stance, 3 button roll to 2 - 2 1/2 with big roll (big roll is a large distraction). If this is custom/bespoke these are adjustable at the first fitting to determine best location for buttons.

A good tailor can make you appear thin.
 

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And if he can't, he can at least make you look good. A good tailor and a good shirtmaker can do favors even for really big guys -

https://imagecache2.allposters.com/images/pic/PEPH/JG1B1~Jackie-Gleason-Posters.jpg
There are a number of big guys in the past who look great in tailored suits. Today there are fewer people who wear tailored and fewer tailors, at that, to make them.

Even checks look good on big guys under the right cutter and tailor. Both these guys can infuse so much into a suit that it looks terrific.
 

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Perspective

As Pichao stated, he is not that overweight...and he is also living is Sweden, where as far as I know (and I may be ignorant having never been) the people are genarally a lot thinner than they are here in North America. What he may consider slightly overweight, may not be what we consider slightly overweight. I'm a muscular 145-150lbs standing at 5'9.5 and most people think I'm too skinny (just ask my mother) but I may be considered normal somewhere else.

Having said that, When I was married 3 years ago, I was 200 lbs and through a much better diet, and a running regiment, I've gradually gitten myself to the point I'm at now. When I was heavier I was wearing a 44 R suit. The suits were not slim, or even snug, but they fit comfortably. As a gradually slid down the scale, the suits became more tapered and shorter. So if you're looking to hide just a bit of belly I would go with slightly longer jackets, and less tapered than you might usually wear. A single pleat may also help...but for gosh sakes, don't be the guy that wears his pants so low the b.o. is noticeable (belly overlap).
 

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There are a number of big guys in the past who look great in tailored suits. Today there are fewer people who wear tailored and fewer tailors, at that, to make them.

Even checks look good on big guys under the right cutter and tailor. Both these guys can infuse so much into a suit that it looks terrific.
Yes, there were, and Gleason at his best dressed very well. I'd be surprised if there are cutters remaining, even at the bespoke level, that can cut jackets and trousers as flattering as some of those he wore. I couldn't find any decent full length photos, but his pants were cut just as well. You can see in the photo though how beautifully balanced and precise the proportions are. A point of note is the taper of the sleeve to its cuff. Large guys require more taper for both sleeves and slacks for the cut to be flattering.

It's sad that this lost art may well just be indicative of a general decline in the talent in the profession over all. Very sad.
 

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Yes, there were, and Gleason at his best dressed very well. I'd be surprised if there are cutters remaining, even at the bespoke level, that can cut jackets and trousers as flattering as some of those he wore. I couldn't find any decent full length photos, but his pants were cut just as well. You can see in the photo though how beautifully balanced and precise the proportions are. A point of note is the taper of the sleeve to its cuff. Large guys require more taper for both sleeves and slacks for the cut to be flattering.

It's sad that this lost art may well just be indicative of a general decline in the talent in the profession over all. Very sad.
I think there are few who can living today. I think some of the talent is just born with it. And it takes time to figure out the odds and ends of the details per person. Where fat is placed isn't the same for all of them. And it is progression to get the best. Some tailors produce as fast as possible while others really think of it as an art. There are some rules that help but, rules of themselves don't make art. So it comes down to what the interest of the tailor is and, if you like his art work, if he's an artist.

As far as a lost art goes I don't know of any living tailor that uses a sleeve roll on the sleeves anymore.
 
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