Suit jackets are a closet staple for the professional businesswoman. Having a cut suit jacket that fits perfectly can make you look professional and well-dressed no matter how much you spent on the garment. Getting this look depends on several different factors such as size, arm length, shoulder width, torso length, body type and bust size. Discover a few tips on how to get a perfect fit when shopping for your next suit jacket.
Try on jackets that are the same size as your blouse size. The jacket should be easily buttoned and shouldn’t gap in-between the buttons. A good rule of thumb is that if you can’t run your hand between the jacket and your body when it is buttoned, then it is too tight.
There are two types of arm lengths for most women’s jackets. A full-length sleeve should fall to the top of the hand. To check for the right length you can put both arms out straight in front of you. If the sleeves pull up above your wrists, then they are too short. Three-quarter-length sleeves should fall halfway between the elbow and the wrist.
The shoulder seem of the jacket should meet with the natural edge of your shoulder. If the seam lies on your arm, then the shoulders are too wide. When trying on jackets, make sure to move around in them. If your arms cannot be raised above your head or rotated in a circle, then it is likely that the shoulder width is too narrow.
The length of the jacket depends on your body type. Try to find a jacket that falls on an area you would like to highlight. Avoid jacket hems that end at your widest point. For example, if you want to minimize large hips, find a jacket that falls just below or just above your hips instead of right on the area.
Bust size can be an important factor to whether a jacket fits properly. Large-breasted women should look for jackets that button below the breast to avoid gaping and to create a leaner looking line. They should also look for small lapels and hip pockets instead of breast pockets to avoid adding extra bulk to the area. Women with smaller breasts can opt for jackets that button all the way up and have bigger lapels. Bigger lapels can add more bulk to the area for an hourglass shape.