What Makes a Shirt Perfectly Fit



The shirt is one of the most staple apparel in everyone’s closet. Either you have to attend a meeting or a party or just for casual wearing, you will get shirts for every occasion in the form of formal, casual, and designer shirts. 

With such different types of shirts available one thing is common for sure that a perfectly fitted shirt would greatly improve a lot upon the look of a person. Apart from looking good, it's going to enhance on the natural masculinity, make one look stronger, make one better and more competent individual 

Finding a perfectly fitted dress shirt can be difficult as not all bodies are the same. Although most of the brands try to offer different size variations of their shirts, it will most likely not give a perfect fit. 

Also read: Shirt Manufacturing Process

But fear not, there are things which if kept in mind during purchasing can get you to your closest fit.

1. Collar fit

It is probably the first most important measurement that should be considered in a dress shirt. On buttoned, the collar must touch the neck and there must be a gap of two fingers between the neck and collar. This ensures the wearer a perfect fit. Any less than this can become critical as during various movements it hampers breathing and ability to swallow properly as it will become very tight around the neck. Also, if several fingers can be squeezed in between, it means the collar is loose thus, compromising the aesthesis of the collar and the shirt.

2. Shoulder fit

The shoulder seam should always rest just at the edge of the shoulders. This adds with the aesthetics of the shirt as well as allows for maximum mobility of the arms comfortability.

A higher shoulder seam will make the sleeve tight around the shoulder and thus will restrict the movement of the arm. This also indicates that the shirt is too tight or of a smaller size than required. If the shoulder seam drops down it feels very loose and gives a droopy look compromising the aesthetics.

3. Torso fit 

The torso fit is very crucial as it covers the maximum part of the body and covers the chest, waist, and hip. The wearer should be able to button the shirt easily without any feeling of restraint along the rib cage. It should be snug but not too tight, giving a full range of motion. An allowance of 1-1.5 inches makes for a perfect fit for most of the people but can change according to body type or personal preferences.

If the shirt is too tight, wrinkles are seen when it is buttoned and there is a distortion on the placket making the inner garment visible between the buttons. If it too big, the fabric will accumulate around the waist giving a baggy look. Also, there will be excess fabric along the back and sides of the shirt on being tucked 

Tip: Button-down the shirt, and keep your arms down. If there is a pull on the buttons, it is too tight. 

4. Sleeve fit

A perfect sleeve should be a little looser on the upper arm and a little tighter around the wrist with the cuff. Just like the torso, the arm should fill out the sleeve of the shirt.

If it is too tight, the bending of the arm around the elbow will become difficult. Also, tightness in the shoulder restricts arm movement and thus becomes uncomfortable. If it is too loose, the fabric gets accumulated around the cuff folding and dropping around it. It also often means that there is a requirement of a smaller size shirt.

5. Sleeve length

Sleeve length is different than that of sleeve fit. A sleeve should always end at the break of the wrist and the cuff should cover the wrist bone. Also, a part of the cuff should be visible preferably 1-1.5cm on wearing a jacket or coat. It should look forth that the watch becomes visible with arm movement.

A short sleeve will make the wrist bone visible and the sleeve won’t be visible inside the jacket or coat. A long sleeve will drop the cuff below the wrist bone or to the palm. It makes for the entire cuff to be seen on wearing a jacket or coat and also the watch won’t be visible.

6. Sleeve cuff

The sleeve cuff should be covering the wrist bone around the wrist with a comfortable ease that will allow the cuff to move up or down depending on the arm movement. Also, it should have enough space to cover up a watch under the cuff.

If the cuff is too tight it will feel strangled around the wrist restricting its movement. It can also affect in pulling down the shoulder seam if the sleeve length is short. A looser cuff would allow for space of watch and a couple of fingers, again compromising the aesthetics. Luckily, there are most often two cuff buttons for adjusting the cuff according to the wrist.

Tip: If the cuff comes out of the hand without being unbuttoned, it is loose.

7. Shirt bottom length 

The shirt length should be long enough to be tucked but only if it is designed for. For such a case, the shirt should reach below the beltline for a couple of inches (preferably 2-3inches). If it is too long there would be extra fabric under the pant thus making uncomfortable at times. But good thing, it can be altered by a tailor as modifying it won’t affect the construction of the shirt.

Tip: tuck the shirt and raise the arms. If the shirt does not slip out of the pant mostly around the side seam, the length is just right. 

Often designer and casual dress shirts are not made to be tucked. the length of those reaches out just a few inches below the beltline (1.5-2 inches) or over the beltline.

These are the points that should be remembered while buying a dress shirt. Again, there is always an option for custom made tailored shirt which is intended to be fitted throughout the body.



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