An Introduction to the Suit Jacket

Without a doubt, the most elegant item of clothing in a man’s wardrobe is the suit jacket. It comes as part of a set with matching trousers and sometimes with a vest in the same or contrasting fabric.

There are two main types of suit jackets – the single-breasted jacket, usually with notch lapels and the double-breasted jacket, strictly with peak lapels. Occasionally, you may find a suit with a mandarin collar but it’s not mainstream. Shawl lapels are commonly use in a tuxedo jacket.

Single-breasted jackets have a single row of buttons down the front, usually two or three; there may be an occasional four, commonly for very tall men. The jacket’s front sides only overlap enough to permit buttoning.

A double-breasted jacket has two rows of buttons, and the front overlaps enough to allow both front sides to be attached to the opposite row of buttons. These jackets were all the rage in the 80s and seem to be going through a revival of sorts with some recent high-profile adopters in David Beckham, Jake Gyllenhaal and even Prince Charles. The current double-breasted jackets though are only remnants of their former selves – gone are the big shoulder pads, they are cut shorter and the bulk factor is removed altogether allowing shorter men the opportunity to don one without looking all swamped up.

Jacket Fit. The fit is the most important part of the jacket and I can’t stress that enough. People have different comfort levels with how tapered they wear their jackets. This is usually done at the waist to allow the jacket to closely follow the contours of the body. It all depends on how comfortable you feel in the look. You may have noticed men who power-dress, bankers and management consultants for instance all wear tapered jackets as it is what basically creates the image. To look good in a suit, you need not have your jackets fitted to that level unless you like it that way. Although be careful that it’s not too loose either as that creates the opposite effect of a shabby image. Make sure it’s shaped well on you and the fabric does not pinch at some corners and hang loose at others.

Here are a few things other you will want to look at to ensure the rest of your jacket fits well. The waist button should rest just below the natural waist of the wearer. The length of the jacket should be in line with the middle knuckle of the thumb and the back should rest just a little below the bottom. The cuffs should rest just a little above where the wrists. This leaves room for the shirt cuffs to be seen, usually around half an inch.

Jacket Shoulders. Jackets are usually built around the shoulders, and this structure is essential to the fit of the garment. The most important function of the jacket shoulders is to create symmetry. People come in different shapes and sizes and that is true of their shoulders too. Some men have extremely broad shoulders, others drooping and some will even have shoulders of different heights. There is absolutely nothing wrong with that and a well-stitched bespoke jacket will easily help to create symmetry. The padding of the shoulders is the place to start. Make sure the shoulder lines are well-defined but not exaggerated. For most people excessively large shoulder pads, for instance those that extend beyond the natural shoulder line creates a disproportionate look. On the other hand, if you naturally have small shoulders, having the shoulder pads very slightly extend beyond your shoulder line, will correct the look for you. It’s all down to your body type.

The thickness of the padding is the next thing to look at. If you naturally have shoulders of different heights, you can use the padding of varying thickness to easily correct that for you. As a general rule with shoulder padding, gone are the days when bulky shoulder pads were in trend. Today’s jackets largely have a thin padding with a slightly downward natural slant. Over-padding causes the neck and head to be engulfed by the jacket, and too thin padding does not allow the jacket to have the formal look that a suit jacket is supposed to create. What a bespoke jacket does is to create evenness and symmetry no matter what your natural shoulders are like.

Jacket Lapels. Lapels are the folded flaps of cloth on the front side of the jacket; a continuation of the jacket collar that stretches down to where the buttons begin. Lapels come in different styles and options. The most common variance of the lapels is the width. For a classic look, a moderate-width lapel is best and it works well on most occasions.

There are three basic types of lapels. The most common is the notched lapel and is the type used on single-breasted jackets. A suit jacket with notched lapels is often considered the most formal way of dressing and the type adopted by businessmen across the board. The second type, the peak lapel is more dressy than notched and commonly used on a double-breasted suit. Peak lapels create a broader and stronger silhouette with it’s fuller looking edges and arched angles – more of an occasion look and might be a bit much for the working day unless of course it comes on a double-breasted jacket. Shawl lapel is the third type and is usually found on tuxedo and dinner jackets. Here, the lapel and collar are not separate – the under collar is cut in one garment front with the centre back seam joining the two halves.

Jacket Sleeves Buttons. One of the things that distinguishes a bespoke jacket from an off-the-rack one is functioning sleeve buttons. In fact it has become fashionable to leave the last one unbuttoned as a statement to say that the jacket is custom-made. Most suits these days have four sleeve buttons but three is not uncommon. Regardless of the number, there should be at least as many of them as there are buttons on the waist, and they should be placed within a half-inch or so above the hem. Also sleeve buttons should always match the waist buttons.

Jacket Pockets. There are three typical styles of pockets on a jacket. The first is the jetted pockets. This type of pocket is sewn into the lining of the jacket and only a narrow horizontal slit appears on the side. As they appear nearly invisible, it contributes to a very sleek and polished look and frequently found on formal wear.

The second type of pocket is called the flap pocket. Flap pockets are like jetted pockets with an additional flap sewn into the top of the pocket, thus the name. It covers the pocket’s opening. Flap pockets are the most common type on suit jackets and nowadays is tailored such that the flaps can be tucked inside the pocket thus creating the jetted pocket appearance. This gives wearers’ the option of wearing the suit one day with the jetted pocket look and another with the flap pocket look.

There are also patch pockets, the least formal, and like the name suggests, a cloth is patched on the outside of the jacket to make it into a pocket.

Some bespoke jackets also come with a ticket pocket, another customisation that distinguishes a bespoke jacket from a ready-made one. It’s a smaller pocket placed above the standard pocket on the right side or occasionally on the left if that’s the wearer’s dominant hand.

Pockets are, usually, horizontally cut, but on some less formal jackets like the sports jacket you will find that they are made with a slight slant.

Moving up and common to all jackets is the breast pocket – basically a jetted pocket found on the upper-left chest. It’s purpose is not that of a pocket as such and is used more commonly for putting a display handkerchief or pocket square.

Inside pockets differ from jacket to jacket. Off-the-rack ones don’t often come with one. On a bespoke suit, it depends on the customisation requests but as a standard there is normally one on the left side and it is sewn into the lining. Some additional inside pockets for holding pens and/or credit cards are also not uncommon, another signature that the jacket is bespoke.

Jacket Vents. Vents are flap-like slit(s) in the back bottom of the jacket designed to accommodate freer movement while a person is seated for instance and for easier access to trouser pockets for the wallet. On the bespoke jacket there are three options – ventless, center vent and side vents.

Ventless jackets as the name suggests have no vent and is commonly found on Italian-style suits offering a sleek look for the back side of the jacket. Center vent is one single slit in the center of the jacket. A jacket with side vents has two vents, one on either side, usually where the trouser pockets are placed.

If there’s one point to take away after reading through the article, make sure it’s “fit”. A well-fitting suit covers a multitude of sins you may make in fabric, color and style.

Cheap Shoes and Women’s Sandals – Shop for Spring and Summer New Arrivals

Shopping for women’s sandals and cheap shoes is great.

They can give away so much about a person’s personality and character. With the many styles and fashion these days’ women’s shoes include something for everyone. And with spring and summer almost upon us what better reason is there to update your wardrobe with the new season’s arrivals?

This year as in the past, women’s sandalsare at the top of our lists. Heel sandals, flats, wedges, flip flops, and much more. A bold and bright colorful shoe seems to be leading the pack this season in all the styles of sandals. Prepare to put on your favorite pair of sexy heels, peep toe platforms, funky colored wedges, in all those glorious bright shades. Such as the greens and blues that is predicted to be the next popular colors…but also still popular are the pinks, turquoise and reds, and lets not forget the new design styles that are very popular, embellished with rhinestones, studding, and animal prints. The sky’s is the limit when it comes to women’s sandals.

Hot picks for flat women’s sandalsare the Gladiator style flats with multiple straps that circle the ankle, such as the Yoki Bianna Sandal, the colorful Qupid Lana-98 Fuchsia, or the unique Qupid Athena-416A Camel Leopard. Also the classic flip flops continue to be a top seller with its comfort style fit that is perfect for everyday wear. And with the bright and beautiful colors available you can now match them to any outfit in your closet.

Hot picks for the elegant and sexy look are of course the women’s high heel sandals. You can find a multitude of styles for any occasion such as weddings, proms, formal affairs, and a night out on the town or any other occasion that comes to mind. The most popular this season are the high heeled women’s sandalsembellished with beautiful rhinestones that give the shoe a chic elegant look such as, the All New Blossom Studio-57 Turquoise Women Dress Sandals, or the graceful Lasonia S4416 White Women Dress Sandals with rhinestone

Hot pumpswill always be a favorite, from the basic to the bright colorful platform styles. That is designed with attention to detail. They come is many different heights from low heel to stiletto, closed toe, open toe, even the new popular tear drop toe such as the Bamboo Magarita-02 Fuchsia Patent Women Platform Pumpswith the sweet little teardrop cutout. Depending on your tastes, women’s pumps come in all styles and colors to meet your personality. Such as your basic Black and whites, to bright pinks, greens, blues, and even your exotic animal prints

For the hot casual look in women’s sandals, Wedges will do the trick and are also on top of the new fashion trends. They are the prefect fit for your spring and summer outfits you can fine the sweet and sassy ones to fierce and bold to match your dresses, shorts, Capri’s, jeans or anything else you have in mind. They come in a Hugh selection of styles, colors, prints, and with your favorite types of heels such as cork, wood, covered, in sold colors, multicolor, and are designed for all day comfort wear.

Shop for spring and summer new arrivals, you can find all the above mentioned women’s sandals at shoeocean.com online. Or just enter the type of shoe you are looking for in the search bar, such as Cheap shoes, women’s sandals, women wedges sandals, ECT…

You will love the new arrivals and now is the time to shop.

The Birth and Immortality of the Mini Dress

With liberation ideologies popping up from one corner after another, the new generation of the 1950s, the post war era, came up with different ways to express themselves not only through speech but also through symbols and actions represented by revolution in music such as Rock and Roll and many others. The ideas and expressions found its way also to the fashion industry were breakthroughs like the mini dress was born.

The advent of the 1960’s coined the term “teenagers” were this age group became an integral part of the society unlike the 1950’s. Trend in fashion and clothing bend towards the teenage market were comfort became an important aspect of the attire. These new craving inevitably led to the evolution of the skirt were for the first time it was accepted to go shorter in direct contrast to the 1950’s were it was deemed taboo.

As stated, during that time, the shortening of the skirt arises from the current need or type of activity. Thus, in high energy activities like sports, shorter kinds of skirts are typically seen. The mobility it provides to the women is vital. Now accepted to the general sporting circles, fashion designers took the bold step of incorporating them to the casual woman attire, these includes John Bates, Mary Quant and Andre Courreges.

The mini dress became the talk of the town during Quant’s “mini Bazaar” and other designers like Yves St. Laurent immediately rode the band wagon. The wildfire-like popularity of the mini dress owes it to the popular TV. The shows during the 60’s attend to the tastes of women and the mini dress’ popularity crossed boundaries and oceans. The mini skirt was introduced to the United States by Rudi Gernreich.

During the 70’s, ‘maxis’ or skirts that run its full length returned. In an ironic fashion, the women who drive for changes in this era are pushing against the mini, the usual icon for women’s liberty back a decade before. The mini dress are commonly attributed to the lowering the status or perception of women towards the society.

The minis returned in full and increasing force during the 80’s. Along with constant exposure from media of various sorts, film, theatre, TV and musicals. Many musicians wear minis to draw further attention and interests, these include super stars like DeBarge, Madonna (‘Like a virgin’ video), group ‘Pepsi and Shirlie’.

The popularity of miniskirts and mini dresses continue in the boob-tube since the early 90’s to the 21st century and is still enjoying so much popularity today that transcends the film and TV industry, that it is already a common sight, like the characters of ‘Sex in the City’.

Now a staple in the skirt and dress industry, the mini while already in its golden 50’s still has a long way to go, it has become a classic and ageless attire. Now, with all the possible types, colors and styles, it continues to grow bigger. Any possible occasion has a perfect mini dress that can come with it, yes, even in wedding events. The modern trend also gets inspiration from the past as wearing jeans and leggings is always an option to more conservative ones. Sports, night outs, formal celebrations and the list goes on, for each of those, you can always count on your mini dress.

Since being born back in the 50’s, the mini will always here to stay, and even grow bigger.