The Value of Tailoring Clothes

tape measure

photo via Flickr

Whether you’re purchasing clothes in-store or online, there’s a good chance whatever item(s) caught your eye won’t perfectly fit the contours of your body.

Clothes are generically designed to conform to “average” sizes, and the whole process of purchasing just about any item is a gamble, even if you have the opportunity to try it on first.

In a perfect world, every single pair of 32×30 pants would fit the exact same way—but instead, one pair drags over your shoelaces while another shows just a little too much of your sock as you stroll around the office.

And a medium-sized button-down shirt should always fit someone who already has half a dozen medium-sized button-down shirts decorating their closet.

But the world isn’t perfect; every other “medium” doesn’t taper perfectly. Even shirts that provide specific neck measurements and sleeve lengths aren’t consistent. Sometimes sizes we think will work need to be tweaked and altered. Most people allow the problem to slide. But those who want to maximize their wardrobe, look good, and squeeze every penny out of their original purchase have another option, one that’s been around since the dawn of clothing: the tailor.

Once you find a tailor you trust, fixing a sartorial setback feels surprisingly great. There doesn’t have to be anything wrong with the clothing, who designed it, or its fabric. This is simply a matter of upgrading your wardrobe with a few minor customizations.

Here are two shirts that could single-handedly rehabilitate any outfit if given a proper trimming.

Sierra Pacific Long-Sleeved Denim
Calvin Klein Slim Fit Cotton Stretch Striped Shirt

If the modern denim button-up (with a casual button-down collar) on the left doesn’t already fit, take it to the tailor and revise the cut. Get the sleeves trimmed down to where the bottom of your thumb meets your wrist and tighten the torso so that when the shirt’s tucked in, it doesn’t billow out over your belt.

Nearly all the same goes for the dress shirt and its trendy point collar on the right. Make sure the sleeves are a proper length and the torso is tapered to your body. This one’s already a slim fit, so the priority should be making sure the arm length is secure.

Trimming down your shirts doesn’t only make you look like someone who cares about how you look, it also presents a leaner upper body.

It’s always a possibility that these shirts will fit you the first time you put them on. But when it comes to your clothes, never hesitate to make a good thing even better. This is where the tailor can have a delicate, positive impact.

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: