Answer this question Flag as Save Cancel link controls layer. If you're going to also buy or rent a dress shirt, it's also important to take a neck measurement.
To allow for ease of movement, I will subtract 4 inches. My jacket is a US Size 46! The rule of thumb of 4 inches is for a "classic fit" jacket - a "slim fit" or close-fitting jacket might have just 2 inches of ease.
Keep the jacket as it was for the chest measurement and measure the waist, which is usually about midway between the underarm and the top of the pockets and usually near the second button from the bottom.
High-end suits tend to have a waist about 2 inches smaller than the chest. The jacket in the photo is 24 inches across the waist. This does not mean the man who wears this suit has a waist that measures 48 inches! The waist of a jacket also needs to allow ease of movement to accommodate the man, his trousers, and a shirt.
To get your next two measurements, flip the jacket over so the back of the jacket is facing you. To measure the length, start at the base of the collar at the seam where the collar joins the coat back. Measure from the collar seam down the back of the coat to the lower hem, with the fabric fully extended without stretching it.
This is the length. If a seller gives a measurement for the overall length, from top of collar down to the lower hem, you can subtract 1. Measure across the top of the back at the widest point between the seams that join the shoulders to the sleeves. The measurement should start at the line created by one seam and end at the other seam line. This would be roughly across the top of the shoulder blades. Fashion designers change the shoulder width, so consider the style of the jacket and the look you prefer.
A broader shoulder might work whereas a shoulder that is too narrow will pull. A tailor generally cannot widen the shoulders but may be able to pull them in an inch or so. Shortening a sleeve is the easiest and most common alteration to make. Before you measure a sleeve, look at the opening of the sleeve at the cuff hem. Notice if it has a slant — it often does. You will measure the sleeve starting at the middle of the slant.
That is your sleeve length. Advanced Tips about altering sleeves: It is very easy and therefore inexpensive for a tailor to shorten sleeves.
Do not avoid buying an otherwise well-fitting jacket just because the sleeves are too long! Lengthening sleeves, however, requires two bits of information: Take a chest measurement first by having your assistant place the measuring tape around your chest, just beneath your armpits and underneath your arms. Drape the tape around the chest in a circle going over the shoulder blades on your back.
Ask your assistant to write down the number, in inches, as your chest measurement. Take an overarm measurement by standing flat footed with your arms resting against your sides. Have your assistant place the tape measure over the outside of your upper arms across the thickest part of your chest.
Write this number down, in inches, as your overarm measurement. Note that the overarm measurement is sometimes referred to as the shoulder measurement. Subtract seven inches from your overarm measurement to get an O-chest measurement.
Compare the O-chest measurement with your first chest measurement and retain the larger of the two measurements. Keep in mind that suit jacket size generally follows chest size minus two so that a 44 inch chest measurement corresponds to a size 42 jacket and a 40 inch chest size corresponds to a size 38 jacket, and so forth.
Try on jackets in a few sizes to determine the best fit when it is your first time buying a suit coat and realize that sizes can vary by maker, so a size 38 in one brand may fit while a size 40 in another may provide the best fit.
There are two essential components when it comes to buying a suit: fit and size. Fit is the overall shape of that particular suit. Fit is the overall shape of that particular suit. Size is the number inside your jacket. The European size of a suit is 10 more than the US Size. For example, a size 50 (European) is equivalent to a size 40 (US). Typically the waist size of a suit pant is 6" less than the suit size. For example, a suit size 42 jacket comes with a 36" waist pant. a) it actually measures 42” and the suit jacket is therefore a size 38, or. b) it is actually a size 42 and they don’t know how to measure correctly. Or some combination thereof. To measure the chest of a jacket that fits you well, lay it on a clean flat surface and button it.