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Don't Get Lost In The Suit Details

By Mark Ferguson

When considering what type of suit to purchase, it’s easy to gloss over some of the details. After a while all your options may start to blend into one. However, it’s these very minute differences that can make a world of difference in the look and feel of your suit. Below we’ve reviewed some of the finer points of suiting you may be tempted to overlook.

Need to Vent?

The tradition of having vents in a jacket can be attributed to the need for military men to have comfort while riding on horseback. To this day, most riding jackets are vented. However, for everyday use most men prefer a ventless back. In fact, since the 1970s, the ventless back has remained the most popular style. Men prefer its clean lines and trim contour. Still, the ventless back does have its downside. Most notably, it has a tendency toward creasing, especially if the wearer spends much time sitting down or putting his hands in his pockets.

That’s why some men prefer a center vent. This type of jacket was once popular amongst the Ivy League crowd. The problem with this style is that the vent opens with even the slightest tug. Because of this, the center vent is largely out of favor but it is often still used to conceal wider hips. Perhaps the best of both worlds is the side vent.

Because the slits are on the side, creasing in the back is not an issue. Also, when accessing pant pockets, there’s no worry about the back vent revealing the wearers’ rear end. Despite the obvious superiority of the side vent, it’s not as popular as you may think. This can largely be attributed to the need for better design, thus often resulting in a more expensive suit.


When it comes to lapels, almost any discussion should start with the peak lapel. This is the most formal type of lapel and it is often found on double-breasted suits. In addition, the peak lapel can be found on single-breasted suits, too. Because of its formality, it’s often seen on tailcoats, morning coats, and dinner jackets. On the other hand, suit jackets, blazers, and sport jackets often have a notched lapel. This type of lapel is attached to the collar to create a step perception. The notch can vary quite dramatically in size. The third most common type of lapel is the shawl. This collar, which is often known as the roll collar, is signified by its uninterrupted curve. These are typically scene on dinner jackets and tuxedos.

Straight Versus Slant Pockets

The slant of the pocket is a detail that many overlook. Straight pockets are fine when the wearer desires a boxy look. However, for a sexier look, pockets with a slant bring a subtle degree of panache and can add the appearance of more height to the wearer. The slant pocket originated as an English riding or “hacking” pocket and thus is often referred to by this name.

Don’t get lost in the details. When choosing your next suit, pay attention to these finer points for a better fit and finish that brings out your style.

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