Choosing the appropriate lapel width to your body shape is an important decision when deciding the look of your jacket.
Widths change with fashion but there are some things to think about when choosing and how it effects the look of your body type.
Your lapels should ideally match the proportion of your chest and shoulders.
One theory is that the width should extend to a fraction less than the halfway mark between the collar and the shoulder line.
Here are some things to consider when choosing the width of your lapel
Skinny- tends to flatter the slimmer body type, narrow faces, or those without broad chests. They can add to the already slim nature of the wearers appearance. Narrow lapels were popular among the ‘hip’ crowd int he 1960’s.
Regular– The regular lapel is a timeless classic. This is the lapel width of most off-the-peg suits, so it may be that you want to choose a skinny or wide lapel to stand out, to be more distinctive.
Wide – The classic rule is that wide lapels are better suited for the larger gentleman, or those with a wider face or chest. However a wide lapel, especially with a peak can add some dominance to the stance of a smaller person. Wide lapels were originally popularised in the overly large ‘Zoot Suits’ of the early 1940’s and were symbolic of a rebellion against wartime material shortages. They have been popular with American Hispanic and Afro-American cultures.
When thinking about lapel width, you should also consider tie width. The golden rule is to Match the widest point of your tie to the eldest point of your suit lapel.
It’s also worth considering your shirt collar. This should also be in line with the width of your lapel.