Male clients are fun to work with since I find they are very open to trying new outfit combinations. Sometimes I think – hmmm the clothes all look the same, but with a little creativity this Image Consultant can make an everyday outfit looks grand!
It’s All About the Quality and Image
As a consultant, I always encourage all clients – especially men – to buy the highest quality clothes they can afford. The reasons I do this – especially for men – is that men tend to keep clothes longer and wear them out more often than women do. Buying good quality means a garment will look good and last longer.
I have worked with men with larger builds who are shorter or even men who are taller with slim builds. Both of these shapes deserve special attention. For instance, just like women, men do have an appropriate “rise” for their build and image. For instance, many men do not look good in a low-rise jean, especially if they are tall. The image looks as though they are wearing someone else’s pants. In reverse, a rise that is too long and goes to or beyond the waist looks off balance as well. So similar to women, and as your consultant, I try to find out the best rise in the first consultant appointment.
And of Course the Right Fit
In recent years, men’s clothing has shifted to a narrower silhouette. I do like it, for the right person. I find men with larger builds cannot wear the skinny jean and often look very off balance. For larger shapes, the wider, less-fitted leg is always more flattering – not too wide though! Always allow for stretch in pants and jeans, which often means you buy them snug. That way, as they stretch out, you won’t have a baggy seat. Check the amount of stretch such as Spandex, etc., in them.
Sometimes guys have a very large neck size, yet a thinner body than the garment has allowed. For this look, we either go down a size and the client does not button the shirt, or we buy the larger neck size and have the sizes tailored (taken in).
Suits are “nested” which means the jacket and pants come together, and the pants are always 6 (sometimes even 7 or 5 inches) inches lower than the jacket. For instance, a 38 regular jacket has pants in a 32 waist. Tailors can size up or down in the pants. If you want, however, suit separates can be more the exact size since you pick them out separately.
If you’ve never had a custom-made suit, you might consider it. I have some favorite vendors for this. When I say custom made: I don’t mean a sales person measures you and puts this into a website that figures your size. I am referring to an experienced tailor who evaluates your build, height, how your body shifts, etc. This expert will accommodate for common things such as one arm longer than the other; one shoulder heavier than or higher than the other; common gaps in clothing that occur when you wear them, etc. It’s truly an art form. And, picking out the fabrics is the best part…so fun!!
Another big improvement in buying clothing, especially for men, is the man “cuts” available in shirts. I love this! Long ago, before I even did styling, I shopped for my husband, who is very thin. We always went to Brooks Brothers that had the “slim” fit. This store is still a great option, and they actually have four fits now: Traditional, Slim, Milano, and Brooks has shirts at DXL men’s store in extended sizes as well.
Often the Milano fit is the best for very slim men. It’s great to have these options. Other stores also have slim fits now at Nordstrom, Macy’s and other men’s stores. Many of the shirts are even in non-iron.
Keep it sassy, Indy.
Beth Divine, AICI Certified Image Consultant and Personal Stylist