Monday, July 1, 2013

Fitting the Light Gray Suit

Like any suit, light gray outfits should hang close to the body without billowing. The suit should never be tight enough to pinch or wrinkle at any point, but men want to avoid excess fabric that waves or flaps when their body moves. Lighter colors can be particularly susceptible to a "breezy" impression; a closer fit helps keep them looking trim and flattering.

If you're on the go a lot, your bespoke suit can be a virtual bat-belt, holding papers, pens, phone, PDA, keys, cigarettes, wallet, and loose cash all secure and readily accessible. Almost all sport coats have the standard two inside pockets; many have additional ones for pens or cash. A custom made coat can have whatever pocket configuration its wearer desires, such as special pockets for a security badge, pocket watch, or cigar. Men have even had their jackets made with an iPod pocket, complete with a port for the headphone wire. While some claim that putting anything in a jacket's outside pockets throws its drape askew and should be avoided, this can usually be remedied by load-balancing: keys on the right, phone on the left, etc. The inside pockets can hold significant weight without affecting how the fabric hangs, but whatever you put in them will be right against your chest with the jacket closed, so it's not the best place for a bulky key-chain.

The sport coat is a remarkably versatile garment. It is the working man's suit and the thinking man's pullover. In this twenty-first century, it guarantees its wearer a sharp, handsome look wherever he goes.

Heavier suits in light gray are rarer, and almost always wool flannel. Many are more casual versions of the "Man in the Gray Flannel Suit" business classic -- dressed-down adaptations of traditional mid-20th century menswear. They tend to feature soft, napped wool and untapered "sack" jackets. Good quality wool flannel makes these extremely comfortable garments, excellent for prolonged wear on a weekend or evening out in the fall or a sunny winter day.

Light gray is strictly a single-breasted jacket color. The formality of a double-breasted suit jacket or three-piece suit would look silly in such a casual shade. Even a three-button or 3/2 style jacket may be pushing it -- two buttons, low down on the body, are the best option for a light gray suit. The deep "V" shape and good expanse of shirtfront emphasizes the relaxed nature of the garment. A single-breasted, two-button jacket in a casual color like light gray can be worn without a necktie without looking incomplete, something of a rarity in matched suits.

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