Following an excellent blog post yesterday by Izzy of A Suit that Fits (anyone ever thinks I look terrible in a suit, blame her, she's advised on most of them, actually I'd recommend the service to anyone) on dressing for the smaller person I thought I'd add a few thoughts for the larger man (and I don't mean "tall"). Let's face it, it's that time of year, we're all going to start piling on a few pounds sooner or later.
First, having met Izzy a few times, I can state it had never occurred to me that she was below average height. She might argue that this is because she's following her own advice and that's fine; I'd add that very few people are interested in other people's height once they've left primary school. It's probably true of weight as well - nobody outside the family is going to notice if you're carrying some extra poundage.
That said, you can be a bit careful so you don't draw attention to any expanding middle bits. Here are five suggestions, mirroring Izzy's five yesterday:
1. Don't fall for the old "vertical stripes make you look thinner" schtick - it's been proven that this doesn't actually work. You run the risk of your midriff looking like a contour map. Subtle pinstripes are fine, anything bolder will actually make you look larger.
2. Dark colours, in blocks, are better than patterns on suits for us fatties. Light colours, particularly on suits, will make your figure stand out a bit. Or a lot.
3. Izzy suggests avoiding layering too much as it draws attention to the smaller person's lack of stature. Fiddly shirts sticking out of jumpers, fashionable though they are considered, will have much the same effect on the midriff of a bigger person.
4. Izzy also suggests a good fit will make you look better if you're on the small side. This is even more vital if you're a bit big - the best way to get rid of the muffin top is of course to lose it; the second best way is to get clothes that won't make it spill over.
5. Get fit. This will overcome any awkwardness about being fat because you won't be any more - it's what I'm planning to do and I've already lost a little. The clever bit, though, is to talk to your tailor first about how much they charge for alterations and remakes of your clothes - get them to be as reasonable as you can without bankrupting them. Losing weight is a fine thing; the realisation that you've now got to replace your entire wardrobe is a costly result of a successful New Year's resolution.
Izzy is my usual consultant as A Suit That Fits - anyone who's interested can click this link to make an appointment or just look around.