Deadly sins? Well, maybe not. It's possible we're exaggerating just a little. These suiting faux pas may not encourage the 'big fella upstairs' to cue the fire and brimstone, but they certainly won't do you any favours in the fashion stakes. Take this advice and you'll be on your way to looking sharp.

When buying a suit, there are cardinal (again, sorry for the biblical reference) rules regarding fit. However, we believe it's the less obvious details that separate a good suit from an all-time fashion masterpiece that should be hanging behind a sheet of bullet proof glass in Paris' Louvre, and not in your wardrobe. Probably exaggerating, again. Sorry. Onward.

7 Deadly Sins of Suiting


#1 | THE TRIPLE BUTTONER

If you're a shorter guy please don't make the mistake of going for a 3-button jacket, it will make you look even shorter.  God help us, please don't button up all 3 buttons. Not a good look.

  • One Button - Popular with the Italian blazers, and also common-place on a tuxedo. Probably not the best option for work.
  • Two Buttons - The norm. The safe option for most blokes. Two button jacket can make you seem a little taller.
  • Three Buttons - Reserved for taller blokes. Six foot three+.

   


#2 | THE NO VENTER

Vent often, vent well. Jacket vents are the small vertical slits at the back of your jacket that allow for fall and movement. Choosing the wrong vent configuration can put a magnifying glass on your less flattering features.

  • No Vents - Traditionally reserved for dinner jackets, but not very common these days. Unless you really want this, avoid this uncomfortable option.
  • One Vent - A single vent in the centre of the jacket. This is a better option for slimmer blokes, as the jacket will hug your torso and provide a more tapered look.
  • Two Vents - A vent on either side of the jacket. The most common option and the best for most blokes. If you're a little big bigger, or have a big rear-end, this will be the most comfortable option.

   


#3 | THE SHAWL WORKER

Know your lapels. The wrong lapel can be less than flattering. When designing a suit you will typically be presented with 4 lapel options. Notch lapel, slim notch lapel, peak lapel and shawl lapel.

  • Notch Lapel - A notch lapel is when the bottom of the collar of the jacket and the top of the lapel connect at a 90 degree angle. This lapel suits all body types, and is a reliable "go to" for an everyday suit.
  • Slim Notch Lapel - As the name suggest, this variation of the standard notch is slimmer. That is, not as wide horizontally. It’s a good option if you're going for a more modern look or have a slimmer stature.
  • Peak Lapel - A throwback to the more traditional formal wear of the early 20th-century. A peak lapel refers to the edges of your lapel pointing towards your shoulders. Since this cut points upwards, it adds width to the shoulders is generally more appropriate for taller men.
  • Shawl Lapel - A shawl lapel is a curved lapel without any breaks or points like the notch lapel and peak lapel. While this lapel suits most body types, it's not advisable to wear this if you are round-faced. Additionally, these lapels are more common on tuxedos as opposed to suits; So it can look a little out of place in the office.

   


#4 | THE CROSS DRESSER 

A jacket that is too long can be disastrous. Not only does it look like a dress, it also makes you look much shorter than you actually are. Ensure that the length of your suit jacket is at a level where the end of it reaches the knuckle of your thumb when your hand is straight along your body. Conversely, if your jacket is too short, you'll look stouter than you are. Not a good look.  

 


#5 | THE LOW RIDER

Particularly for the younger guys who like to low-ride their jeans, this is not a good idea when wearing a suit. Suit pants should be worn on your waist, not higher and certainly not lower. The length of your trousers can afford to be a little shorter than normal trouser length for suits.    

 


#6 | THE TIME TRAVELLER

Look, for some more senior gentleman pleated suit pants are completely acceptable. However, for the younger blokes out there (and by younger we mean sub-sixty!) we have a message for you: This isn't 1955. Flat front (sometimes called "natural", or simply "no pleat") pants are the way to go, and you won't look 10 kegs heavier.  

 


#7 | THE FLASHER

Our advice is to keep it simple. Don't be that guy who thinks he's dressing like a #boss, but is actually just dripping in cheap accessories and looking tacky a hell. Before you start adding tie clips, pocket squares, and cuff links to your look we recommend you focus on mastering the basics. This means a solid-fitting suit and a shirt to match in a fool-proof color combo. As they say, "Learn the rules like a pro, so you can break them like an artist".