Taking measurements is a fairly simple process – a soft measuring tape and some basic instructions is all you need. But, measuring the man in your life requires a little more… Specifically, more permission and perhaps more convincing… So with that in mind, here are a few helpful answers to the inevitable questions that you will get when trying to convince the man in your life that he needs correctly fitted clothes:
“I thought size didn’t matter”
It is, if you want to buy clothes that fit so that you look your best. Specifically, you want your guy to look his best (a well-dressed man can be an excellent accessory!)
“But he hates shopping”
He won’t once he knows his actual size. Knowing his actual size will make it easier (and therefore more fun) to shop. A bonus: If you know his size, it will be easier for you to shop & buy him gifts.
Tell him he has your permission to have a Fit
Start at the top and working your way down. Don’t forget to write everything down as you go so he’ll have the list for later. Collar size: Simply measure around the base of his neck. If he intends to wear the shirt with a tie, the shirt size selected should closely match his exact collar measurement. However, a shirt to be worn without a tie may be purchased slightly larger (by about a 1/2 size) for comfort and a more casual look. Chest size: Have him relax his arms at his sides and measure around the fullest part of his chest with the tape measure just below his armpits. Overarm Measurement: Measure the circumference of his chest and arms (at the highest point of his shoulder blades). Subtract chest measurement from his overarm measurement. This measurement can be useful when buying a jacket or sportcoat – if the difference is 7 inches or greater, we recommend buying jackets one size larger for comfort and a better fit in the upper arms and shoulders. Arm: Have him bend his elbow 90 degrees and place his hand on his hip. Stand behind him and hold the tape at the center back of his neck. Measure across his shoulder to his elbow, and down to his wrist. The total length in inches is his sleeve length. Waist: Measure loosely (so he can breath) around his natural waistline. Many men wear trousers well below the natural waist, under the belly if they carry extra weight around the mid-section- but this can actually make him look heavier than he actually is. For belts, choose a size 1-2 inches larger than his actual waist size. Rise: Rise refers to the distance between the top of a trousers’ waistband and the top of the trouser leg’s inseam (at the crotch). Measure his favorite (and best fitting) pants by measuring along the trouser’s seam , or start from scratch (especially if his pants are too tight or too baggy through the buttocks, crotch and thighs). Guys under 5’9″ often benefit from short rise pants. Inseam: An inseam can be measured using a pair of pants that fit well. Measure from the crotch seam (where all the fabric meets), down the pant leg all the way to the end. If he does not have a pair of pants of the proper length right now, you’ll need at least pants that fit properly in the waist. From those you can judge where you want the pants to stop. Proper length may vary whether your man is wearing jeans or crisp dress pants, but never by more than an inch and a half. Also, you will want to take the inseam for each leg if you want to have custom pants made because the length may not be the same for each leg. Lastly, if his current trousers are regular rise and you are considering a switch to short rise, keep in mind that the new placement of the crotch will affect the inseam length- adjust accordingly. And if he’s really stubborn…
- Remind him how much more fun it could be taking measurements with you, than visiting his tailor
- Bribe him – a favorite meal, a massage, whatever it takes!
- Because you said so!
- Swap – he can take your measurements next*…
*It can’t hurt (too many women are slaves to the number on the tag – it’s important to know your size, too – Plus, how much better will it be when his gifts to you are actually the right size.) Or a final option: Feeling frisky? Offer to take measurements… wearing nothing but the measuring tape. We doubt he’ll say no.