Friends, what do you think of double-breasted suits?
Only for tall men? Only for thin men? Only for rich men?
Not that I follow fashion closely, but I do sense that the double-breasted suit is enjoying a renewed popularity, at least among the crowd that wears suits. I think the 1920's silhouette, with the lapels crossing high on the chest, the armholes high, and the overall cut extremely lean, is very becoming.
In the 1930's and 40's, the cut of all men's suits grew fuller. The lapels were wider, the shoulders broader, and you see more of the shirt and tie. These are small details, but in men's tailoring, those small details make a big difference. And these small details make me like the look a little less.
I just won vintage Butterick 5384, below, on eBay. As you can see, it includes a double-breasted jacket. The jacket is less boxy than the 1940's jacket above left, but not very different overall.
As I've mentioned, there's also this Thirties summer suit for Cathy in my sewing cue.
I wanted to make myself a casual cotton suit this month and I'm wondering if I should give double-breasted a go. When you think about it, the double-breasted suit jacket has a very similar silhouette to that of the men's peacoat I made this last winter.
If I have one misgiving about this look, it's that double-breasted suits read more formal. And unbuttoned, the jacket can look ungainly, as opposed to sporty, like a single-breasted blazer worn open does. It seems less versatile.
There's a reason you usually see double-breasted jackets buttoned, and paired with dress shirts and ties.
So what do you think? Do you like the look or is it just too costumey and/or formal-stuffy-snobby? Do you, or someone you know, wear double-breasted suits (or suit jackets)?
I'm a native New Yorker and sewing fanatic! I started sewing in 2009 and today make all my own clothes using vintage sewing machines and vintage patterns, in addition to sewing for private clients. Welcome to the warm and whimsical world of Male Pattern Boldness, where the conversation is sewing, style, fashion, fabric, and more!