When you are wearing a shirt around the house or want a t-shirt to wear under workwear, you don’t give a lot of thought to the style or the fit. But if you want to wear a smart shirt or t-shirt, then there are a lot more considerations than just choosing the right color to match your outfit. So how do you choose the perfect shirt for any occasion?
Understanding body shape
The key to getting the best affordable and quality blank t-shirts, colored or even graphic print shirts are understanding your body shape and how it impacts the top you are wearing. It also helps if you have a few basic measurements that help you use the sizing guide that most websites offer to get the perfect top.
There are five basic body shapes:
- Inverted triangle
Some of these are pretty self-explanatory – rectangular means where your shoulder and waist are roughly the same widths while oval shapes typically have a larger frame with a slightly softer middle. The trapezoid features wider shoulders than the waist while the inverted triangle is the more extreme version of this with much wider shoulders than the waist. The triangle is the other way around – wider waist and narrower shoulders.
Choosing the right shirt
Once you have an idea of your body size and a few basic measurements, then you can start looking at the right fit t-shirt. When trying on a t-shirt, the seam between shoulder and arm should line up exactly with your joint. Too small and the seam will be too close to the neck while too big and it will be down your arm.
The length of the t-shirt is a personal preference but according to the stylists, the ideal length will just be on or above the waistline of your trousers. You may want to go a little longer with shirts, generally sitting at the bottom of any pocket on the back of your jeans – this means they can be tucked in if required and will stay put during normal movement.
Many shops will give their t-shirts a name for the fit and these can be helpful if you know roughly what they mean. There’s no standard for these fit names so a slim fit for one shop could be bigger than a slim fit for another. Athletic fit is another example of a type of fit that can look great when you get the right size, especially if you want to show off your efforts at the gym.
Baggy t-shirts have come back into fashion recently but there’s an art to getting them – don’t just buy one or two sizes bigger to enjoy this trend. Instead, look for t-shirts that call themselves baggy or loose fit and buy your normal size.
Getting the right t-shirt
Sometimes all this style stuff doesn’t matter – you find the perfect, affordable t-shirt and that’s the end of it. But if you do want to wear a t-shirt for a smarter occasion, then getting the right fit is all-important.