There has been no better replacement for suits when it comes to mens fashion and there is still none to be seen in the near future too. Many argue that the suits fashion is dying among the younger generation and the glorious days of the tailored suits are over. This may be true to some extent but the suits are a long way from their extinction. Even today when you need to attend a important business event or a wedding or simply a date night you immediately reel back to the classic style for saving. Thus suits are an inevitable part in the mens fashion and there is no doubt in that.
What makes people think that the peak of suits is over is that the corporate world which was the great influencer in the promotion of suits have started accepting casual garments into the atmosphere. The fashion world also has started to become more accepting and that means you will not have to follow the strict dress codes anymore and wear which suits you and which you feel comfortable in. But even today you do not see a man attending a meeting or going to office dressed in shorts and t-shirt. The basic etiquette still remains and while that remains the suits will always be in style no matter the changes the fashion and the corporate world undergo.
Now when it comes to suits, for a proper look the fit of the suit is what matters the most. The first thing that everyone notes when it comes to this ensemble is the suit jacket. It is the one that catches the eye of anyone at first sight and therefore it is important that you have to get it right so that you make the best first impression.
Basically the suit jackets are the ones that include complex tailoring aspects when compared to any other components of the suit. They are made of numerous details and every detail contributes significantly to the whole look. Therefore they should be selected with proper care so that the garment looks good on you. Now as we said before the suits aren't a new style and have been in mens clothing history for quite some time. This means that they have undergone some inevitably changes to have managed to stay relevant even now after centuries of its origin. Let us get to know some history of this famous garment before getting in to the details.
The suit jacket has ruled the mens fashion like no other garment because of its practicality and versatile use. The jacket we have now is the evolutionary model and the design has been said to be originated somewhere around the middle ages. It is said to have first been used by the farmers. The first said model is considered to be single breasted with a maximum provision of two buttons. The tapered shape along with the provision of buttons and buttonholes is traced back to as ancient as the 13th century. Those days the suit jacket that we know of now was known as the coat. It's main purpose was to protect the wearer from cold and other adverse weather elements. The shape and design of the jackets of that time are extremely similar to the ones that we call now as overcoats. These jackets were long and sometimes even reached the knees. The material used at those times were of best quality and the fabrics were heavily embroidered and designs were intricate. These garments were common among the elites of that time and they sure wanted to show off their wealth by the fabrics and garments that they wore. These long coats were called as frock coats and started out among the French elites which soon spread among the English. As time went the frock coat attained a more tapered shape and also detailed provisions like lapels and collars were incorporated. This modified version was known to be tailcoats. The tailcoat fashion continued till the late 19th century but the length was reduced considerably.
By the end of the 19th century lounge suit was born and this was the time that the smoking jacket and tuxedos also came into fashion. The 1880s marked a great change in the aspect of mens garments. After all these years the basic structure of the suit jacket has remained the same.
The length and the fit of the jacket is what has changed all over these years while the basic skeletal structure remaining the same. Even into the 20th century the suit jackets only changed in the type of fit. For example during the war times that is around the 1940s the fit wasn't that great since there was a lack of better tailoring and such things. Also at the time of great depression the elegant details of the suit jacket was lost. Then came the rock and roll age and by the end of the 20th century that is along 1980s and 1990s the fit became loose after which the tapered fit returned in style. So while the suit jackets and suits as a whole have been changing in style all these times they have never once gone out of style completely and their staple place in mens fashion is to be continued.
As we said before suit jacket is one of the most intricately designed garment and the details on it is important. The very first thing you should decide before going for a purchase is the style which you need. The suits jackets are available in two basic styles - single breasted and double breasted ones. The single breasted style is more versatile since you can wear them to both formal and casual events given the color is appropriate. The single breasted suit jacket single row of buttons and the maximum number of buttons on it is one to four. The single breasted suit jackets are mostly provided with notch lapels and it is considered to be more casual of the two. The next style is the double breasted one and it is considered to be more formal than the single breasted style. The double breasted suit jackets have four to eight buttons in the front and they are provided in two rows. They mostly are provided with peak lapels and is best to be worn for very formal events like business meetings or conferences. The double breasted suit jackets are always to be worn fully buttoned up with the exception of the last button and can be only removed while sitting. If you aren't a person who suits up often like for daily office then it may be best for you to go with single breasted styles.
The next detail is the number of buttons on the suit jacket. The single breasted styles are the most common ones and they mostly come with one to three buttons on the front. The two button suit jacket is the most classic version and is the one that is mostly preferred. The single button type are mostly for tuxedos. You can select the number of buttons on the suit jacket depending upon your body type and height. If you are a tall person then you can go with three button jackets since the high neck will balance out the extra inches on you. If you are on the shorter side then it may be best for you to go with two button ones since the deep neck can give a illusion of elongated upper torso. The single buttoned jackets are always to be worn buttoned except while sitting. As for the two and three button styles you should always leave the bottom button unbuttoned for the free movement of the hips and leg portion. The next detail on the list is the lapels on the jacket. Now this is a major provision since it is the basic factor that distinguishes a suit jacket from a tuxedo jacket. While the lapels on the suit jacket are made of the same material as the jacket, it is not the case with tuxedos. The lapels on the tuxedo jacket are faced with materials like satin or grosgrain which gives them a sheen. This material is also are given as stripes along the sides of the legs of tuxedo pants. The suit jacket and pants do not have such facings and this is the major difference between the two.
As for the lapels on the suit jackets there are different styles of it. Peak lapels and notch lapels are the common ones on a suit jacket. Notch lapels are the most popular among the two while the peak lapels are considered to be the more formal one among the two. Apart from these styles there is also an option of shawl collars on suit jackets but it is very rare. Shawl collars are more common among blazers and tuxedos than on suit jackets.
The suit jackets always come with the provision of pockets and they are provided at the chest and hip areas. There are different types of pockets like for example patch pockets, ticket pockets, flap pockets and jetted pockets. The breast pocket is mostly of the jetted type and this type of pocket is considered to be the most formal choice. Apart from this flap pockets are also very popular and is mostly provided in the hip pockets. It is in the breast pocket that the pocket squares are to be kept if included.As for the sleeve buttons it may be about one to four in number with the formal factor of the suit jacket increasing with the number of buttons. The material with which the suit jackets are made is also important point to note. They are produced in different fabrics like wool, cotton, Cashmere, silk, linen and even velvet. Another thing is the inner lining of the jacket. Lined suit jackets are more durable and drape around the body properly but the unlined ones are the ones that are expensive because of the craftmanship.
When glancing through history we have noted that one of the most important thing when it comes to the suit jacket is the fit of it. The first thing is the length of the jacket. The length of the jacket should be level with the knuckles when you let your arms at the side. The shoulder line of the jacket should be end at the end as the natural shoulder. The middle portion of the jacket shouldn't be straining at the buttoning area and also at the same time not too loose. The sleeve length of the jacket should be such that a half inch of your shirt sleeves peek out. As for the use of the suit jacket you can wear them properly as a full suit but you can also use it as separates. If you have the right color you can use them as casuals and pair them with jeans and t-shirts. You can also wear them as smart casuals like with a roll up sweater and chinos or simply with a button down shirt and chinos. Nowadays young people even wear suit jackets with shorts but only try out the style of you are confident enough. As for the color of the suit jackets it depends on the purpose of the garment. If you intend to use it only for formal events then it may be best to keep it to classic colors like black, navy, dark grey and charcoal. But if for casual purposes you can go with lighter shades like beige, tan and cream.
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