We talked to three experts who know a thing or two about how a coat should fit.
Brunello Cucinelli, fashion designer:
“The easiest fix a tailor can make to a coat is to take in the waist — it will instantly give it more shape. The length is also very important. A coat should hit right above the knee.”
Brian Trunzo, co-owner of Carson Street Clothiers:
“The traditional rule of sleeve length is that it should hit at the base of the thumb, but I like to have it a little higher — a centimeter and a half or two — so you can see the cuff. I don’t mind if it’s a little shorter than what the old guard says is right. But know that the shoulder is the death knell: If it doesn’t fit you in the shoulders, you’re in trouble. It’s possible to trim down a shoulder, but it’s labour-intensive and expensive, and so few tailors are going to be able to do it, it’s just not worth your time.”
Joseph Ting, Details’ New York City tailor:
“The only thing that can’t be fixed is if the coat is small — you won’t have enough seam allowance to open it up. Also, I often taper the sleeves. When you look at a coat from the side, the whole thing looks better if the sleeve is slimmer.”
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