How to fix a badly stained suit/tuxedo

 

Not long ago, a customer came to us with an unexpected problem. Mr Chia had tried to rescue his stained tuxedo with FAB powder. Unfortunately, conventional means are not always the answer to conventional problems.

“Recently, I try to remove the white stains from the lapel on my favourite tuxedo (which was tailor made for me in Japan) with FAB powder. And to my horror! Guess what happen? I pay a high price for my silly mistakes.” – Mr SC Chia

The tuxedo’s lapel became irreversibly stained with white dots. He washed it in lime water and even sent it for dry cleaning, all but to no avail. Mr Chia was distressed. He made it clear this beautiful Japanese bespoke tux was very special to him.

Fine tailoring is down to workmanship. We believed that we could replace the lapels without damaging the suit. It was also important to make the new lapels look like part of the original tuxedo so no one can tell the difference.

We quickly got to work. Here are the results:

“I have went through the Reviews in the Forum & few of the customers here show any pictures on the details of the works this fine Bespoke tailor has delivered. Just take a bit of your time to share some of their works with you guys. Noticed the hand stitching on the new Satin.

“Look at the new replacement silk satin & the great hand stitched works on my new lapel.”

“And finally a full view of my “new” tuxedo again which reveals the single breasted 2 buttons options.

The RESULT was a very pleasant & satisfying one! I Just can’t express my joy in words. I pay quite a substantial amount for this skillful Jobs. But the result was really worth the whole cost.

Thanks for the nice work, Jason and Grace!”

See other reviews from happy customers at our Facebook page

Need a real suit that can last you a lifetime? Request an appointment with our bespoke specialists now.

Charismatic Dress Tips for Mature Singaporean Men

Do you ever look in the mirror and think ‘surely, it isn’t over already’ and wonder how you can make yourself look more charismatic?

The truth is, many people give up far too early because they are simply unaware of what they can do to change their look. It isn’t as difficult as it sounds and is perfect for men in their mid 30s to 50s. As they say, “the clothes make the man”. Don’t believe me? Come down to Graziaa and see how we dress our customers!

 

Use different colours

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As you age, your hair and skin starts to go different shades meaning that the colors that didn’t suit you fifteen or twenty years ago may now work. As we grow older, we tend to move towards dull and boring colours that just show off the lines on our face and the circles under the eyes.

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However, if you start to wear more vibrant and bold colours you will be injecting a sense of youth into your attire. It is important to note that we aren’t saying that you have to walk around in luminous colours but instead, make some subtle changes, like a new colored scarf or tie that will turn some heads for the right reasons.

 

Update the wardrobe

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When we are kids, we have our clothes chosen for us and then as we grow older we tend to buy one or two lots of clothes and then just stop. For this reason, we hold on to clothes that we don’t wear or even worse, clothes that we do wear but do not fit into. When you next get the chance, go through your wardrobe and only keep the clothes you wear often. Then, go out and buy some new clothes that will increase your confidence.

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For some reason, we hold onto clothes that we don’t even like so over the next few months make it your aim to have a wardrobe full of clothes you love. If it comes to it, introduce a rule that says if an item isn’t worn for over a year it has to go. You should embrace your age and buy clothes that look good rather than trying to hold on to your younger days as the results can be tragic.

 

Add purpose to your life

A point that we touched upon earlier is that you have to feel young on the inside to then act young on the outside and the best way to do this is to find purpose. For most, this purpose will come from friends, family, other relationships, career, success, and more. As we grow, our purpose changes but that doesn’t mean we no longer have one. For example, over time we might lose our job, retire, get divorced, see the children leave the home, and more, but this doesn’t mean that we have lost our purpose, it means that we have to find a new one.

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For this reason, you have to get back out there and find what you enjoy to give your life purpose once again. Sure, life in Singapore is tough, with the rising cost of housing, having to raise the kids and working a full-time job. Not everyone is lucky enough to be sufficiently invested to semi-retire. However, that shouldn’t stop you from finding a little bit of personal time to enjoy the hobbies you love. Watch an EPL match during the weekend with your friends or finally get down to planning that fishing trip you’ve talked about for so long.

Some will say that you are a fool for looking after your appearance at an age where ‘it shouldn’t be done’ but you can be different in realising that a confident and happy you can affect the world in a number of different ways. Whether you are going to go back into the dating world, find a new job, embrace retirement, or whatever it may be.

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As mentioned, holding onto the past can be damaging and it is only when we embrace our position that we begin to understand how to feel good and dress well once more.

Ready to start dressing like a mature, charismatic man? Request an appointment with our bespoke specialists now.

Tips on Dressing for a Singaporean Job Interview

“What do I wear?” is the question many people would ask while getting ready for a job interview.

A good question to ask, as arguably what you wear will portray the kind of person you are and how serious you will be on the job. These play a vital role in dictating the final outcome of the interview. As Singaporeans, we are often afraid of overdressing in this conservative culture of ours, and many times end up leaving 0 impression upon the people we meet.

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In most situations, the interviewer can use your dressing as a way to gauge your social awareness and discipline. They won’t be able to tell how good you are in your technical, on-the-job skills, but your dressing definitely shows how in tuned you are with culture, setting and social etiquette. These soft skills are extremely important in customer facing roles or top level management where your job entails meeting with C-suites from other companies. You’re basically going to be the face of your company. And they won’t want a bad face.

 

Fret not. You don’t need to look perfect but try as much as possible not to wear something that will slack off your appearance. Of course, the role and company culture play a part in this too. Please don’t wear a formal suit if you’re going for an interview in a tech startup or role which is centred on creativity and innovation. It’s an open secret that corporates are horrible at innovation.

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Putting more thought into your appearance is one of the easiest ways to improve your social respects and the way people see you. Good grades do not make you the best candidate when it comes to interviews. As those of us who’ve been in business or the corporate world long enough will know, the soft skills/people skills get you far, FAR higher than technical knowledge will. Often times, your physical appearance and presentation skills is good enough to make you the first choice in an interview.

 

Suits

Black suits for men are inappropriate for business; it looks more social than for business. Although the power conveys power and confidence, you’d want to avoid wearing it to interviews and business meetings. Stick to charcoal, grey or blue. These colors are less serious yet still formal enough to do business in. And of course, if you’re going to wear an ill-fitting jacket, it’s better not to wear one at all.

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Be in control of what you wear, so you will not start passing out wrong messages to the interviewer’s. The top button must be fastened when standing, with the best time to unbutton being when you sit. The second button should never be fastened.

Shirts

Wear only long sleeve, with a white shirt and a straight point collar. Don’t ever wear a short sleeve shirts with a tie to an interview. Shirt material also plays a big part. Generally, smooth, plain and shiny shirts are more formal, whereas rough, patterned and matt-looking shirts are mroe perfect for a Google/Facebook office interview.

One of the rules that govern what you wear for a business interview states you should wear a minimum of one pattern and two solids.

Ties

For the best choice in picking a tie, refrain from choosing pink or yellow. Burgundy will add more value to your look. Patterns on ties should be limited to three, so it will not look clumsy and unprofessional. A solid tie can be worn by anyone without prior knowledge of pattern mixing and matching.

 

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The tie ought to be long enough to reach your belt buckle, and don’t forget the all-important dimple! (the indentation under the knot.)

However, in general, ties are not required in Singapore unless you’re interviewing at a very corporate MNC or a high-level position in a global firm.

Socks

Wear socks that blend with your outfit and to prevent your skin from showing when you sit or cross your legs. Your trousers need to be long enough to cover your socks below the end.

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Belts

Only leather belts with small and silent buckles. Keep it simple. Leave the giant Hermes and Gucci logos at home. No one ever got hired because they had a huge H on their buckle. But there ARE cases of people getting rejected solely because of that. Remember, the interviewer is using your dressing to gauge your social skills. Loud designer stuff scream “new rich”. While the look you want to present is “sophisticated and cultured”.

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Shoes

Go for black, brown or cordovan classic lace-ups, shined, and in decent shape. This is one of the most important fashion factors that will bring out the solidness in your look.

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From the look  of your shoes alone, a trained eye is able to tell:

Your appreciation for value over price — Good men’s shoes might cost more, but are also far more value for money in the long term. Try Allen Edmonds, Church’s, Crockett & Jones, A.Testoni.

Your discipline and attention to details – A man who doesn’t even bother to shine his shoes for an interview will obviously not be disciplined enough to do many other small details required to win a big prize.

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Need help getting the RIGHT interview clothes? Contact us now.

4 Clothing Tips for Tanned Skin

With Singapore being sunny all-year round, it’s not hard for the sportier ones among us to get a tan relatively quickly. Sportsmen are sexy and working out is cool. No one likes a buffed-up bodybuilder that’s as fair as the Hainanese white chicken rice we eat.

Unfortunately, it’s well established that it’s easier to dress up with fairer skin. So how can the sporty bronze gods among us dress to kill?

Of course, bright colours have to be handled with care and balanced correctly otherwise the contrast will be too strong whilst darker colours can seem somewhat washed out. With this in mind, we have four simple tips that will allow you to get the balance right and ensure you look at the top of your game at all times. These four selections will work well as a unit but can also be dispersed to create a number of other options.

 

Navy Suit

Many people leave their suits in the wardrobe for occasions that ‘warrant’ it. Interviews, weddings, and big meetings do require a suit but they don’t have to be your only options so lose this restriction immediately. A suit might be overkill in today’s weather, but the jacket along made from breathable material will work even in Singapore.

The reason we have chosen navy for the colour is because it is extremely versatile and can be adjusted depending on the seriousness of the day; for example, if you have a meeting then a black tie will work perfectly but if you want to go for something more casual then you can lose the tie and undo the top button on your shirt.

It is important to note that the navy should be a solid navy as this will allow for more versatility with the clothes you are going to wear with it; ultimately, you want something that will lend itself to both formal and casual occasions.

 

Gingham Shirt

So if you do need something casual under the navy suit, one of the best options is a gingham shirt. With this option, you can be a little more daring and choose colours and patterns that you wouldn’t normally go for and the navy jacket will balance it perfectly. Gingham shirts are extremely popular and have been for some time but why is this the case? Because they suit everyone and can be worn for a variety of different occasions. Furthermore, the patterns will also hide any lack of ironing and will make you look slimmer.

Another benefit of the gingham shirt is that you can pair it with a range of different trousers; for example, it works just as well with jeans as it does with dress pants and even khakis. Although this style of shirt is generally considered to be casual, it can easily be spruced up with the top button done up and a smart tie.

 

Watch

Without even realising it, a watch can really finish off a look; a slim dress watch is perfect for a job interview as it promotes a level of professionalism whereas a more weighty classic option offers a more casual approach. When it comes to the wrist strap, a metal design is more formal whereas a leather strap is more casual. In terms of the face, a good bright colour can really show the watch off and bring you to attention. If you want to choose a watch that will fit both the formal and informal categories, a brown leather strap is recommended.

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Oxford Shoes

black oxford

Oxford shoes are a great option as they provide the ultimate balance between formal and casual; they work at a BBQ just as well as they work at a wedding. If you are worried about the colour, a darker brown can add a little spice to your outfit and is more versatile than a plain black. However, you should never go too far and choose a colour that grabs all the attention. Choose something that will be noticed as a part of your attire rather than being the main feature!

Style Tips for Men Above 40

 

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Do clothes make a difference? The way you present yourself matters a lot and this helps people have a good image and adds to personality you have. Here are some ways to look your best, even if you’re above 40. In fact, psychological studies have shown that men above 40 are often seen to be in their prime by members of the fairer sex. 

Natural is nice.

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Go with a more natural look if your hair is gray or thinning. Say no to comb-overs or wigs. To women, a bald man is more attractive than one with wigs. Do note that “bald” doesn’t mean “balding”! 

For those with serious hair thinning problems, “Balding is a condition. Bald is a CHOICE”.

Know your hat rules.

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You are not meant to leave your hat on your head when you are inside a building, eating indoors and when our marikita (national anthem) is being recited. Apart from that, try to never, ever wear a cap. Hats are for gentlemen. Leave the caps for kids and hip hop artists.

Match your accessories.

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Accessories such as shoes and belts ought to match the fabric and color. In addition, be careful to match your belt color to your shoes. They don’t have to be the exact same color and material, but they should be close. Matching your watch strap is optional. Wearing a black leather strapped watch with a full-grain brown belt is perfectly acceptable.

Take careful note of the materials too. In general, shinier materials are more formal, while fabrics are casual. Don’t get caught matching a black fabric belt with a black pair of Allen Edmond Park Avenues.

Upgrade your “Dad Jeans”.

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Jeans are classic and convenient. However, they do not always bring out the best look in a man. Start looking out for casual outfits and dress trousers for more formal occasions or khakis.

 

Singaporean men love wearing the legendary Jeans + T-shirt + Sports sneakers combo. Or the commonly seen Football Jersey + Berms + Sandals combo. It doesn’t take much to look better than that while still feeling comfortable.

Socks with style

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You’re not always going to be in formal business meetings, where you’re required to dress conservatively with matching sock colors. Take your chance to get fancier with socks when you head out for the evening or for friend gatherings. For the less adventurous ones, checkered socks look classic while adding a sense of style to your overall outfit.

Learn button rules.

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It is not ideal to button the bottom button on your suit, sport jacket, vest, or cardigan sweater. In all other cases, button up! It’s alright to leave the top button loose in less formal settings. But unbutton too much and you look like a rockstar wannabe. Buttoning all the way up to the neck without wearing a tie makes you look like a 20 year old punk that visits Thai discos. At 40, you’d want a more mature, sensible look.

Become an expert in pattern and color.

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Wearing different clothes with different colours and patterns will bring out your body in various ways, projecting how beautiful you look. For example, bold patterns expand anything they wrap. Vertical stripes make you look taller and solids in dark colours have a slimming effect

Fit is KING.

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Last but not least, FIT IS THE MOST IMPORTANT thing in dressing up. If there’s a choice between a poor fitting, well-made piece with good material, and a great fitting but poorly stitched one with bad material, the latter will always look better on you.

As far as clothes are concerned, if the fit is wrong, nothing else matters. Make sure you know your own fit.

Summer 2016 – Accessories for Men

Killer, warm weather in Singapore often brings about a time of frustration for men because it is hard to stand out in shorts and t-shirts. But you don’t have to drop all sense of style just because of the weather. Here are a few ways men can still look good, even in this unrelenting heat.

Hat – One way to stand out in the crowd is by equipping yourself with a fashionable hat. Of course, hats do provide function in that they protect your head and eyes from the sun’s rays and guard the face from summer rainstorms. Additionally, hats provide the ever-welcome shade you need to keep your face cool. Hats are easier to pull off if your style follows a more classic, “rich” look that turns heads wherever you go. It’s not easy to pull off and certainly not for everyone.

PS: Wearing a cap makes anyone look a lot less manly. Wearing a hat when you’re younger than 25 also gives off a more “Topman model” kinda vibe rather than that of a suave, sexy gentlemen.

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One consideration hats should be the air it provides. Nothing worse than wearing a hat that just makes you even hotter and gives you a sweaty head. We recommend trying a straw trilby or fedora.

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If you find the right style that suits your look, you will feel ten times more confident because it will be the focal point of your outfit; people will be admiring the hat and your confidence in pulling it off.

Watch – We are spending more on watches every single year and for good reason. Watches are both functional and stylish. 

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The watch you pick really depends on your style, setting and social circles.

In general, G-Shocks and metal bracelet Seikos and Tag Heuers go well with more athletic looks. Leather straps are extremely classy and should only be matched with long pants and covered shoes.

Watches and shoes are also the 2 main items that make a man. Go for products that last the test of time and are well manufactured. If you’re not a watch-snob that’s into mechanical movement and heritage, a quartz Citizen is just as good at telling time as a rare caliber Patek Phillipe.

Sportsmen, athletes: Tag Heuer, Rolex, Seiko, Citizen, Casio

Executives (who like to show a little brand flash): Tag Heuer, Breitling, Rolex

Tow Kays: Heavy Rolexes paired with thick gold bracelets

High-end Watch Brands: Patek Phillipe, Vacheron Constantin, Audemars Piguet

Watch-heads, appreciators: Jaeger LeCoultre, Gerard Perregaux, Grand Seiko

The above mentioned are watchmaker brands and should be part and parcel of every men’s wardrobe.

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Portfolio or Notebook – The weather is hot and you have to dress smart for work. The last thing you need is a bag weighing you down, holding the heat in. For this reason, we suggest a lightweight leather portfolio. Nowadays, there are a number of high-quality portfolios that have enough space for everything the modern man needs; pens, business cards, notebook, mobile phone, tablet, office papers, and more.

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Not only is it practical, it also allows you to transition from day to night easier than ever before. A smart suit with a tan leather portfolio will have all the women smiling and all the men shopping for one of their own; especially if they see a sleek watch on the wrist that is carrying it.

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Of course, the prices of these types of product can vary greatly depending on the size you choose as well as the quality of leather that goes with it. However, no-one can deny that it is a worthwhile, useful, productive purchase that you can use over and over again.

Before picking any leather good, it’d do you well to read up on the different qualities of leathers around.

Pro Tip: “Genuine Leather” doesn’t mean good leather. In fact, it’s often used by brand marketers to sell poor quality leather to you. Crappy leather stitched/glued together is still considered “genuine leather”. Look for products made from “FULL-GRAIN” leather. No cutting, no stitching no gluing. The actual piece of leather should be properly processed, tanned, oiled and used to make the product. Go for calf-leather for the safest, classic look. “Shell cordovan” is a top quality grade of leather and you should grab it if you ever manage to find a nice product made from it. Shell doesn’t get bad creases and is easy to shine.

 

 

 

 

Stylish Shirts for Men Attending an Outdoor Event in Summer

There are invites to barbecues, picnics, boating and more outdoor events to attend throughout any given summer.

Deciding what to wear for all these events can be challenging, even for the most stylish and impeccable man. The standard default of a conservative suit is much too formal, and the ultra-relaxed look of shorts and T-shirt simply does not look as put together as other cool and breezy options for summer.  

So what’s the answer? You’ve come to the right place! Here we offer a number of casual options for men going to outdoor social events in summertime.

Men’s Summer Shirts

Most any event held outdoors in the summer wouldn’t require you to wear a necktie, which means you can wear almost any type shirt you want.

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For summer you’ll want it to be comfortably dressy, breezy and light. You’ll want your hosts to think you put some effort into looking nice, so it better not resemble anything like a T-shirt, but a business shirt wouldn’t be appropriate either.   

Here are some styles to add to your wardrobe for summer outings:

Dress Shirts with a Light Pattern

For an easy style requiring no effort that works well for almost any occasion you might select a couple of dress shirts made of 100% cotton with a light or faded pattern on a pale background.

The advantage of these is that they are appropriate attire for both social and business events, so they perform double duty. They can be worn with a jacket and tie to the office, and then you can remove the tie for an after-work outdoor event.

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Because these shirts have long sleeves, you won’t worry about getting cold. When it’s warm out, you can just roll the sleeves up, which makes for a more casual look. Either way, a patterned dress shirt works well in social settings.

Dress shirts usually look best tucked in, but lately you see men wearing them untucked, especially younger men in casual settings. They’re flexible so you can customize your look to fit the formality of the occasion.

Classic Polo

The classic look for summertime casual is the collared polo shirt, which comes in several varieties of knit short-sleeved shirts. These are comfortable, very respectable and entirely safe for any outdoor occasion. You won’t look overly casual for an event with no mention of a dress code, and you can’t be accused of looking stuffy either.

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This is why the classic polo is the go-to shirt for many men. This is all well and good, but you can’t expect to stand out in a crowd. You can up the ante a bit by making sure yours fits well, as many men wear their polo shirts too baggy. This is a distinctively un-corporate looking style, which can be enhanced with a stylish watch or even a silver or gold ID bracelet.

Need a BESPOKE tailor that understands gentlemen’s style? Contact us now.

 

How to Dress Confidently in Singapore

 

Fashion can sometimes be fickle and even celebrities with a huge following in the world get ‘slammed’ for their choice of outfit. This often leaves most of us confused as to what looks good and what doesn’t. This can make us feel a lot less confident, and give up on trying to dress up well. However, we have a few tips for you that will help you to rebuild your confidence, keep you looking sharp at all times, allowing you to stand out in any crowd.

Keep To Your Fit

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It is easy to follow the styles of celebrities and buy clothes that do not fit comfortably but you should always put comfort first. For example, belts shouldn’t necessarily be needed to hold up your trousers. If they are, go for something slightly slimmer that feels comfortable around the waist and not baggy looking. Similarly, if your trousers are too tight, opt for something a bit looser.

 

For the upper body, simple T-shirts that show off the V-shaped torso go well with nearly everything and sometimes, a simple and plain look is the best way to go. Finally, your shoes should match the ‘comfortable’ description so paying extra for a nicer fit may be worth the investment in the long run. Clothing is mostly about comfort; the more comfortable you feel, the more confident you will feel and act.

Follow Someone

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No matter what you do in life, there will always be someone better than you and instead of feeling jealous, you should learn from what they do. We aren’t necessarily referring to famous models, celebrities and sports stars; it could be your neighbour, colleague, or even family member. Of course, if it is a family member, you shouldn’t exactly ‘copy’ their style but you can still learn from them.

 

Try to follow their style rather than the brand and as long as you remember to adhere to your size, it will be ‘your’ look. The best way to find out if the experiment has worked is to ask someone for his honest opinion. Keep experimenting until you find the perfect style for yourself.

Let The Occasion Choose

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We often try to find ‘a look’ that will work in all occasions but the best solution is to let the occasion choose your outfit. For example, if you are attending a casual event, choose a simple polo with jeans or khakis. If you need an extra layer, bomber jackets are always great options.

Furthermore, a light blazer with an informal shirt or polo can be worn if the occasion demands a business casual or smart/casual look. Finally, if the event is strictly formal, an attire consisting of a smart shirt, tie, jacket, trousers is in order. A pair of smart tan or black shoes will then finish the look perfectly but you can add accessories to set yourself apart like some neat cufflinks or a smart watch. If you let the occasion choose your attire, you can’t go too wrong.

Keep History As History

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It can be great to reminisce about old fashions and about what you used to wear when you were younger, but these should remain as fond memories rather than be seen as an attempt to bring them back once again. For example, T-shirts with loud pictures or writing, jeans with holes at the knee, logos that will divert the attention away from you; these are all informal and do not define smart in any way.

Furthermore, running shoes and slippers should be used for their intended purposes; these will help you stand out but for all the wrong reasons.

Need a BESPOKE tailor that understands gentlemen’s style? Contact us now.

3 Ways to Look Bigger Using Clothes

If you are a little on the skinny side, it can be hard to find clothes that don’t make you look, well…skinny. The instant advice in this scenario is normally to bulk up a little by attending the gym and lifting some weights but this process takes time and also some people feel as though they shouldn’t have to go to the gym to look bigger.

Of course, looking ‘strong’ is the ultimate aim for any guy because women look for strength in any potential partner and men admire strength in any other man because it shows that they can stand their ground. This begs a simple question; can you achieve a bulkier look without going to the gym? The answer is of course ‘yes’ and we have some simple tips to prove it.

Layer Up

This is a tip that is often not thought of or even forgotten but the science is simple; the more layers you put on, the bigger you will look because the material will build up.

In Singapore, this isn’t as easy as it sounds because of our weather. You’d have to consider the time of the day and the place you’re going to.
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This also doesn’t mean that you should wear a coat under your jumper from now on because this will add lumps as well as breadth so you have to be sensible – try going from thin to thick working outwards.

For example, you could wear an undershirt followed by a t-shirt followed by a shirt. Before, a shirt on its own would just drape off the skin and not really hold any shape but if you have an undershirt and a t-shirt underneath, it will give off a bigger, bulkier look.

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If you are wearing a jacket over a jumper, make sure that the colours don’t clash. Although you will look bigger, you will also be standing out for all the wrong reasons. Keep the colours simple or even the same if you are worried about a clash.

Cardigans are extremely useful in Singapore. They add layer, make you look better and can easily be taken off when it gets too warm.

Jackets

Many people choose to stay away from smart suit or sports jackets because they think ‘well, if I can’t pull off a simple casual shirt, how am I going to pull off a suit jacket?’. However, this is the completely wrong mentality and if you have said this yourself, you haven’t thought it through properly.

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Is it just a coincidence that every man that wears a suit regularly looks good? Absolutely not; suits are designed to make men look good. For example, they have padding on the shoulders that keep shape no matter the wearer’s size meaning that they will instantly look bigger. It is important not to choose a jacket that has large padding though because these are intended for bigger guys and you will look like an rugby player. Pick proper fitting jackets. Not sure where to find an insanely handsome looking jacket? Custom make one with us here at Graziaa!

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Suit jackets are specifically designed to show off a good shape in the waist both in the side of the jacket and in the lapels. It couldn’t be more obvious yet many are still oblivious, the lapels are shaped in a ‘V’ to accentuate the same shape in your body. Also, the contrast in colour between the jacket and your shirt poking through will attract attention to the chest which is the broadest section of your body. The jacket is perfect for what you are trying to achieve and if you go for a double-breasted jacket the effect will be even stronger.

Choose Proper Fabrics

Fabrics can play an important role in making you look bigger as many can give off an illusion of your body shape; for example, texture fabrics suggest solid mass whereas smoother ones show your body more realistically. For this reason, glen check, denim, flannel, tweed, and corduroy are all brilliant options. As these textures are rough and unclear to look at, your body will look much bigger. They’re also comfortable enough to be worn even in Singapore’s often warm weather.

Need a BESPOKE tailor that understands gentlemen’s style. Contact us now.

A Guide To Men’s Socks

There used to be an old saying ‘you can tell a gentleman by his shoes’ and many believe that this still rings true, even in 2016. If this is the case, that means people will be looking at your feet and the shoes aren’t the only thing they will see, your socks will also be judged immediately. Many people believe that socks have a function of protecting the feet and that’s where it finishes but this isn’t true.

socks

Colours

There are some simple tips for colouring your socks that shouldn’t be forgotten if you want to look smart and sophisticated. Firstly, the sock should always be the finishing point of the trouser and not the starting point of the shoe. You don’t want people staring at your ankle so a good rule of thumb is to keep the sock the same colour as the trouser, if not darker.

mensocks

If you want to add a little colour to your sock, have a secondary colour that matches up with your tie, shirt, or pocket square. In truth, the sock shouldn’t actually be seen if you are aiming for a smart or even a casual look as the trouser should always cover them. Of course, if you are wearing shorts or are exercising, this doesn’t apply. In every other situation, you should never have to pull up your socks to hide the skin that is being shown by short trousers.

Casual Clothing

If you are wearing a casual outfit of jeans or chinos, the rule of matching the colour of these to your sock applies but you can add a little colour or even a fancy pattern. Crew socks that run up mid-calf are the most popular option here as they are perfectly weighted for a casual outfit. As long as you remember the key rule of ensuring your trousers are long enough, you won’t be showing off any skin when you sit down or bend over.

casualsocks

Patterns and textures should be welcome with casual attire and the more pattern – whether it is dots, stripes, checks, or anything else – the better.

casualmenssocks

Athletic Clothing

These are generally the same weight as casual socks but they have the added benefit of a padded sole for comfort; these would generally be all white or at least white with a small coloured pattern. The benefit of these socks is that they allow the foot to breathe and stops moisture from building up within; the natural fibre and cotton allows them this luxury.

athleticsocks

A common myth is that talc in the sock will prevent moisture but the opposite is actually true; if you want to use talc, make sure it goes in the shoe and not the sock. Most designs will be mid-calf but obviously some sports require different designs as you will see with the running sock that stops at the ankle. Furthermore, with most field sports, the sock will run well above the calf.

Dress Clothing

If you are attending a real dressy event, you may be tempted to add colour to your sock but this is a big no-no; keep them dark and simple. These types of sock will be a lot thinner, will provide a tight fit and will be extremely durable. Added nylon often provides this comfort along with the main material of cotton, wool, or even silk.

formalsocks

The design of dress socks can vary greatly and can range from mid-calf to well above the calf and near the knee. The most simple sock you can get will be plain with no texture with ribbed and cable options also available.

So there we have it, the guide to men’s socks. As mentioned, a gentleman really can be spotted by his shoes and if you have the perfect socks too, you will be set to impress.

Need a BESPOKE tailor that understands gentlemen’s style. Contact us now.

Difference Between a $500 and $1,000 Suit

The last thing a successful banker, lawyer or corporate executive wants to do is to look ignorant. And a key part of that lies in attention to detail and knowledge of the finer things in life.

Despite that, a growing number of Singaporean men find it hard to tell the difference between a $500 suit and a $1,000 one. Is it really possible to tell if someone is wearing a cheap suit just by looks alone?

Taken from www.articlesofstyle.com, the following shows model Townsend in his BEST FIT suit from H&M (after alteration!) versus a Michael Andrews bespoke suit. Overall, which looks smarter? You decide for yourself.

1

Do note the H&M suit was the BEST FIT one that’s already been altered to fit even better. Does that remind you of how you look in a suit?

If you’re a banker, lawyer or senior corporate professional, we sincerely suggest you fix this before your next major meeting.

If you’re just starting out, we strongly advice you get just 1-2 superb suits over multiple cheap and ill-fitting suits.

The thing is, you can walk into Zara, Hugo Boss or even 99% of tailors in Singapore and you’d get the same result. The question is, why?

The Fit

The most important element of a suit, or any garment for that matter, is how well it fits your body.

The biggest fundamental difference between these two price points: on the higher end you can afford to have the suit custom made for your body, versus choosing the “closest” fit off-the-rack.

As you can see in the photo above, there are a number of noticeable fit compromises with Towni’s $200 suit even after having it altered:

  • The shoulder slopes are not adjusted for Townsend, causing a collar roll across the upper back/neck that’s so bad we can see it from the front (see the wrinkle at the top of Towni’s right shoulder, above where the lapels meet the collar).
  • The shoulders are too wide, causing that unsightly pad “cliff-dimple” (see his right shoulder).
  • The front chest is too big (notice the bulging extra fabric at right chest, where the body meets the bottom of the armhole)
  • Slight pulling at bottom of sleeves where they connect to the body of the jacket (see bottom of armhole on Towni’s left sleeve)
  • The trousers fit fairly well overall (although common problem areas are not visible: crotch, waistband, pockets…)

The Fabric

Fast-fashion retailers like H&M (Zara, Topman, etc) cut costs by ordering cheap synthetic fabrics in major bulk quantities. In this particular case, the suit is 85% polyester/15% viscose. The major downsides of this kind of man-made cloth (other than obvious look and feel) are breathability, shape retention, and reactions to cleaning and pressing agents.

For the bespoke suit, Townsend hand-picked a premium wool flannel/cashmere fabric designed and spun by Ariston in Naples Italy. It’s among the top 1% of the most luxurious fabrics in the world. Ariston also produces all of their cloth in limited quantity, which means Townsend here is one of only a handful of guys in the world to have this brown flannel glenplaid with overlayed burgundy windowpane.

Similarly, Graziaa bespoke suits use only the finest fabrics made of 100% wool or cashmere. We’re also the only tailor is Singapore recognized enough to be able to carry cloths from Ermenegildo Zegna, Scabal, Holland & Sherry, Dormeuil and Cerruti. See our fabric selection here.

The Tailoring

The $200 suit is machine made on an assembly line, where they pump out a couple hundred suits an hour. Ever been to your neighborhood tailor, or visited an express tailor at Far East Plaza? Despite their claims, 99% of tailors in Singapore do NOT do bespoke suits. Simply ask your tailor if your suit is going to be “fully canvassed”. All bespoke suits are.

The front body (chest, collar, stomach, shoulders) is “fused”, meaning it’s literally glued together using iron-on fabric adhesive. This quick-and-dirty manufacturing greatly limits the three-dimensional shape that the jacket can achieve and can eventually cause “bubbling” (like a poorly-administered window tint) after a few rounds of dry cleaning and pressing. Fused jackets have a dramatically shorter lifespan than canvased ones.

A quality bespoke suit is almost fully handmade with roughy 30 hours of hand labor by an experienced pattern cutter and master tailor. The front body is fully canvassed, meaning a skilled craftsman carefully cut, shaped and hand-set a custom piece of canvas/horse hair between the front plate, lapel facing and lining. This dramatically improves the lifespan of the jacket. It will break-in over time (like a good pair of shoes), eventually molding to the shape of the wearer’s body.

Final Word

Impressions matter. It will hurt a lot less if your $500 suit can look like a $1,000 suit. Unfortunately, as proven in the earlier photo, even a layman can tell the difference.

Up your suit game. Get a proper suit today. Contact us now.

Is It Smarter to Rent Men’s Wedding Suits?

A suit is the modern knight’s armor (guess where that’s from). And every man will be wearing his best suit on the big day.

But is it better to rent? Or make a bespoke suit?

Here are 3 key differences between buying and renting.

Value

Wedding suits are usually included in the package you sign up for. For example, the standard wedding package in Singapore will probably cost around $4,000. It will include the bride’s gowns, a photoshoot, an actual day video, and more. Some even throw in a free suit! Sounds like a bargain.

shops

Row of bridal shops along Tanjong Pagar road

Bespoke suits (the type that lawyers and CEOs wear) cost around $1,000 at Graziaa Tailor. This sounds expensive, until you realize you can only wear a rental suit for 1 day. By contrast, bespoke suits are the best fitting type of suits in the world and it’s pretty much yours to keep forever.

Unlike wedding dresses, a men’s suit will have uses even after your own wedding (friend’s wedding, dinner and dance, corporate events, business seminars).

Every man needs a good suit. What better time to get one?

Style

The main advantage suit rental has is that it allows you to go all out on style. Because you’d only be wearing it for one day, you can wear something as attention-seeking or outrageous as you like.

kpop

What better way to impress your wife than to look like a K’Pop star for a day?

However, when you’re making a bespoke suit, you’d have to pick designs that don’t get you mocked when worn outside your own wedding. Hence, you’d be limited to a much smaller color range and more classic, sharper cuts.

Looks

Along with the advantage of variety, rented suits come with the drawback of poor fitting. It’s funny how brides try to look their best, but grooms often look their worst during weddings.

notfitting

Are you really okay with an oversized or undersized suit for your wedding photoshoot?

Rental suits come as either adjustable suits, or made-to-measure options. A clever trick wedding planners use is to say “your suit will be stitched to your measurements”. The truth is, even if it’s sewn from scratch, it’d still be based on a suit template rather than your body shape.

goodfit

Or you can look sharp. Although you can’t pick anything outrageous anymore.

Rented suits will never fit perfectly because it’s made of only 2 instead of 3 layers. Bespoke suits have a 3rd layer in between called the “canvas”, which provides flexibility and ensures a good drape.

 

At the end of the day, renting or making depends on your preferences.

For those who are looking for something outrageous to stand out from the crowd, go with renting.

For the ones who want to look charming and get more value for money, make a bespoke suit.

Considering a bespoke wedding suit? Talk to us.

5 Ways To Check Quality of Men’s Suits

Everybody wants to look sharp in a suit. More importantly, nobody wants to be seen wearing a cheap suit at a grand event.

Great suits make James Bond, Barney Stinson and the boys from Mad Men look amazing. Compare that to the uncle you saw at your friend’s wedding. Who looks smarter? The secret is that it isn’t really the wearer. A good suit will make anyone look sharp. If someone doesn’t look smart in a suit, chances are, it’s the suit.

But how exactly do we know if a suit is high quality?

1 – Full Canvas

Most of the suits we see sold outside or by normal tailors have 2 layers. The bottom layer is the inside lining which is usually very thin, and the outermost can either be made of silk or wool for better suits.

Bespoke suits have a 3rd layer in between the inner and outer layers. This layer is known as a canvas. That’s where the terms “full canvassed suit” and “half canvassed suit” come from.

canvascompare

The inside structure of a fully canvassed suit is typically tailored specifically to fit perfectly, which is also the most tedious process when it comes to making a suit. This prevents it from getting stuck to the other two layers. Due to the way it shifts around freely whenever you move your body, anyone wearing a fully canvassed suit naturally looks like their suit molds to fit their body shape, instead of the other way around.

In non-bespoke suits, the inside structure and outside material are stuck together with glue and hence, the fit will always be stiff due to the missing layer.

2 – Lining

goodlining

To reduce weathering effects on the suit’s outer fabric, mainly from perspiration, a firm lining is essential. The construction of the inner suit can also be well-hidden, which in turn enables the wearer to move freely and flexibly.  Ideally, the pant-leg lining of the trousers should stretch all the way down, at the very minimum to knee level, so that it can last longer.

3 – Shoulders

The construction of the shoulder should complement the build of the body. Sloping shoulders may need padding to lift the area. Narrow shoulders with a gut may want to slightly extend the horizontal shoulder area to offset things a bit. A body with a strong V shape, may shun strong shoulders in favor of more balance. But, a good shoulder construction is not too big (no sagging shoulder crown over the shoulder line) and not too small (provides relative ease in moving arms from front to back).

Let’s see it in pictures.

badshoulder

The above suit is obviously made of good material. One look at it and we can tell the material is posh. But upon further inspection, anyone on the street will be able to tell that it’s a cheap suit from the way the shoulder dimples even when the wearer’s arm is fully at rest.

jamesbondshoulder

Now let’s compare this to Daniel Crag’s James Bond suit. The bespoke nature of his suit allow such a high degree of flexibility that even in this highly dramatic pose, it still maintains most of it’s shape. Then again, he is wearing the Brioni, which we’ve mentioned as one of the top 5 suit brands around.

A good bespoke suit will let you raise your arms or move around without the shoulders looking stiff and floating up. Non-bespoke suits are unable to reproduce this due to the missing canvas layer. This is how even layman on the street are able to subconsciously tell if a suit is quality or cheap.

4 – Hand-Stitching

unevenstitches

You can easily buy machine stitched suits from a shop, but a real bespoke suit is always sewn with human hands. When you wear a machine stitched suit, you will find that it feels more uncomfortable since you cannot move as freely compared to wearing a hand sewn suit.

Find and compare 2 suits side by side. Try to lightly tug the suit apart. You will notice that hand stitches retain the elasticity while machine stitches feel far more rigid and stuff. The waistband and sleeves especially, must be stitched with bare hands.

handstitches

Good suits are obvious from the hand stitches, or pick stitching, visible at places like the lapels’ sides. Every handmade suit has a unique identity thanks to such imperfect stitching, since without using machines, you can never create a flawless line of stitches equally apart from each other.

But beware of fakes, as the latest trend actually involves adding fake stitching to the lower end suits, which serves no real purpose other than appearing more pleasing to the eyes.

5 – Pockets

pocketslining

There is a huge difference between a hand-stitched pocket and one sewn using machines. The hand-sewn ones mostly last longer and will not fly off after extended usage. Every pocket, be it the flap, the ticket or the jetted one, should always be sewn by hand to ensure that the jacket can stay smooth and lasting. Even the trouser pockets should be hand-stitched together to the waistband so that ugly lumps and sags will not appear, and they will have much better support to achieve a nice-looking line.

Look out for the stitching on a suit’s pocket to gauge the durability and quality. As pockets is a part not many tailors pay attention to, you can be sure that a good tailor who sews these well can be trusted to do a good job for the rest of the suit.

 

Looking for a bespoke suit in Singapore? Talk to us.

Top 5 Men’s Suit Brands In The World

The difference between a top end, bespoke suit and a made-to-measure suit at your tailor is clearly visible to the naked eye. The reason is explained by Desmond Merrion, who makes bespoke suits costing $50,000, promising to personally place every single stitch by hand, pledging that no machine will ever touch the garment at any stage.

“This hand making is the absolute pinnacle in tailoring. The finished suit will appear as if it has not been hand-crafted, but sculpted around your torso.”

For the successful gentlemen with a penchant for the finest things in life, here’s a quick rundown on the top 5 suit brands in the world. These are like the Ferraris of the mens clothing world. But it’s always good to dream.

 

ERMENEGILDO ZEGNA BESPOKE SUITS

zegna

Unknown to many, top labels such as such as Gucci, Yves Saint Laurent and Tom Ford all use designs from Ermenegildo Zegna.

Ermenegildo Zegna is one of the best brands in the business today. The Italian luxury fashion house has a rich history dating back over 100 years and it is now the largest menswear brand in the world.

It remains a family-owned business to this day and the suits produced by the brand are out of this world. A bespoke suit from Ermenegildo Zegna is likely to cost in excess of $20,000. Even a made-to-measure suit will set you back by $6,000. Zegna suits are built to last and as stylish as anything else out there.

Graziaa is one of the only bespoke Ermenegildo Zegna suitmakers in Singapore, with prices starting from $4,500.

 

 

BRIONI VANQUISH II

brioni

The Brioni Vanquish II is one of the most famous men’s suits in the world after it was strictly limited to just 100 suits when it was designed.

Brioni is famous for clothing James Bond in the more recent spy movies, making the fashion house famous all over the world for its sharp tailoring and excellent fit. With Pierce Brosnan and Daniel Craig among the actors to have worn Brioni suits while playing James Bond in hit films, the profile of Brioni as a suitmaker is through the roof.

The suit is crafted from one of the world’s finest cloths which is produced by UK-based Dormeuil. The stitching is made out of white gold, making this suit stand out from the crowd, while some of the rarest fibres in the world, such as qiviuk, pashmina and vicuna, are used to create the handmade outfits.

 

BROOKS BROTHERS CUSTOM SUITS

brooksbrothers

Known for being the oldest men’s clothier in the United States, Brooks Brothers is a 200-year-old brand that has quality written all over it. Brooks Brothers has provided clothing for 39 out of the 44 presidents of the United States, including the incumbent, Barack Obama.

The clothing brand is also used by the designers of the hit TV show Mad Men to fit out characters such as Don Draper and Roger Sterling.

Notably, Ralph Lauren also started his long and successful career in the world of fashion by working as a salesman at the Brooks Brothers Madison Avenue store.

 

DESMOND MERRION SUPREME BESPOKE

desmondmerrion

Desmond Merrion is one of the most famous designers on London’s Savile Row, which is home to some of the top tailors in the world.

Merrion himself is passionate about the production of each suit, promising that he will personally place every single stitch in your suit by hand, pledging that no machine will ever touch the garment at any stage.

He adds: “This hand making is the absolute pinnacle in tailoring. Your suit will take me so long to make, it cannot be measured in man hours. It will take MONTHS of my time to make the perfectly crafted suit. The finished suit will appear as if it has not been hand-crafted, but sculpted around your torso.”

A Desmond Merrion suit typically costs $50,000.

Graziaa is one of the few tailors in Singapore trained in the U.K in Savile Row techniques. It remains the only bespoke tailor with such a history that still 100% hand-stitches every suit in Singapore.

 

WILLIAM FIORAVANTI BESPOKE SUIT

fioravanti

Each William Fioravanti bespoke suit is individually designed, cut and sewn by hand on the premises and buyers can even watch some of the process first hand.

Buying a William Fioravanti bespoke suit is a long process, but it needs to be to create the best possible men’s suit. It begins with a personal consultation, where buyers can select from the world’s most elegant fabrics on display.

Measurements are then taken before the expert tailors design a pattern exclusively for the customer, before three fittings are held to make sure that the suit fits perfectly.

When so much time and effort goes into the creation of a stylish suit, you know it is worth the cash and a William Fioravanti bespoke suit typically costs around $22,000.

 

Need a bespoke suit in Singapore? Talk to us.

The Men’s Guide to Buying Jeans

A great pair of jeans is key to any man’s wardrobe. They can be dressed up for an evening on the town or a smart casual Friday at work. The can also be dressed down for a relaxed Saturday afternoon with a t-shirt.

What makes a great pair of jeans though?

There are many factors to consider when looking for the perfect pair of jeans, but first you have to understand the common mistakes that men make when picking a pair of jeans. First, men typically don’t have the patience for shopping, so this can lead to a bad decision on jeans. They must take the time to understand what type of jeans look good on them, and this varies depending on the man. Secondly, not all men have access to a good selection, which might have to do with their location. So you might have to venture out a bit to find the right pair. Finally, they may not have the knowledge they need regarding fit, wash, size, material, etc.

Fit

Let’s start by looking at some common fits. “Fit” refers to the cut and shape of the jeans, and the right fit for you will be highly dependent upon your body type, as the right fit will play up your good features.

  • Skinny – The latest trend in jeans is a fit that hugs the body a bit more, and skinny is on the extreme side of this. This fit will hug the body from the waist to the hem at the bottom. These typically come in a low rise or mid rise cut.
  • Slim – The stepbrother to skinny, but not nearly as tight – giving you more room throughout. These are typically available in a mid rise cut, and will slim down from the thigh to the hem.
  • Regular – These tend to come in a mid rise cut, and are more of a straight-legged jean, with a straight cut from the knee to the hem, leaving more of a leg opening.
  • Relaxed – These are called relaxed for a reason, they aren’t going to hug the body at any point and will feel loose throughout.
  • Loose – This is the roomiest fit, leaving ample room in the butt, thighs, and legs for men of larger body types.

Rise

Now let’s look at the rise. “Rise” is how high the waist comes up the torso on a pair of jeans. Though it is rare to find a rise measurement on a pair of jeans, rise is measured by the length between the bottom of the crotch and the top of the waistband. There are typically three types of rise in a pair of jeans: Low, medium, and high.

  • Low rise – worn lower, typically on the hips. This means that you might have to buy a larger or smaller waist size, depending on the difference between sizes in your waist and your hips.
  • Medium rise – this would be a “regular” type of rise that will place the waistband right around the belly button. This is a good option for a pair of jeans that you will want to tuck a shirt into.
  • High rise – the waistband will come higher than the belly button on these, and are best for men with a larger belly. They will help slim the front, but you should avoid tucking your shirt in with these.

Size

When it comes to size, there are two measurements that you need to pay attention to, waist and inseam. You will typically see a set of numbers on a pair of jeans that looks like this: “34 x 32”. The first number will be the waist measurement for this pair of jeans and the second number will be the inseam – or length. The inseam measurement is taken from crotch to hem.

Sizing is pretty simple on a pair of jeans, but one thing you will find is that the sizing will vary depending on the brand. That’s why it’s important to always try your jeans on before you buy them – it will save you frustration later on.

Wash

There are several types of washes available to choose from. Wash refers to the look of the denim after it has gone through treatments to achieve that specific look. Raw denim has not been washed or treated and are a deep indigo color. Different brands will have their own names for their washes, but keep in mind that a classic dark blue pair of jeans is often the best choice for a staple pair.

Body Types

  • Thin – for those with a thinner frame, it’s best to look for a slim fit or straight leg jean, depending on preference. Either a low or mid-rise will look great on you; avoid the high rise at all costs. Any of the larger fits will look sloppy and detract from your overall look.
  • Athletic – again, a slim fit jean with a straight leg will likely be your best bet. If you like the boot cut, you can typically get away with it because you have the best body type to pull it off. Again, you should stick to the low or mid-rise styles. Avoid large rear pockets and elaborate stitching that will detract from your athletic build.
  • Muscular – those with a muscular build will typically have larger thigh and calf muscles, so they will need a little more room in the legs. A regular fit will suit your body type nicely. Stick to a mid rise jean and you will accentuate your toned behind.
  • Large Waist – those with a little extra padding can have their choice of a regular fit or a relaxed fit to give extra room throughout. This will keep you from feeling the squeeze. You can get away with a higher rise jean if you like, and you might even look at a straight leg as long as the bottom opening isn’t too large.

How do they feel, look?

This is what matters. Remember that a great pair of jeans will accentuate your looks, they will go with almost anything, and they will be comfortable – eventually. It may take some time to wear them in like a good pair of boots, but they will form to your body and some point and become like a second skin.