Fall 2013: The Chicago Suit

Fall 2013: The Chicago Suit

Carl Sandburg, esteemed American writer, is credited with coining the nickname “City of the Big Shoulders,” and while he probably wasn’t referring to the suits of the day (he was in fact praising Chicago’s industrial prowess at the turn of the 20th century), it wouldn’t be much of a stretch to think he was.

Our Chicago suit, like the city, is comfortable and built for about any body.  While it would be a misnomer to say the jacket has “Big Shoulders,” we can confidently say that our Chicago model can fit those shoulders. With the point-to-point measurement (suit speak for shoulder width) at 19” on the base model, it’s a relaxed and accommodating fit.

The extra room bodes especially well for those who are naturally built thicker through the chest and back, spend ample time in the gym,  or for the guy who doesn’t want to feel the jacket when he’s wearing it.  Whatever the case, the lack of padding and carefully crafted canvas interfacing provides shape and structure without the weight and thickness of a cheaply made suit.

Moving South on the jacket, the waist line gently suppresses to the 6” standard drop embraced by the suit making industry.  This differs greatly from suits of the past (ourselves included) that were cut in the “sack” manner, meaning a boxy fit. This look, rampant in the 1980’s and into the next decade, has all but been abandoned by most for a more flattering fit.

Other stylistic updates include a slightly retooled lapel, featuring a higher gorge line and revised lapel width.  The lapel width, sitting at 3 1/4,” is a perfect update to the exaggerated widths of yesterday without being on the bandwagon of  the narrow lapel fashion suits of today.  It’s the perfect width for the cut of the jacket, keeping all aspects in balance.

Still echoing the city, the Hart Schaffner Marx Chicago suit can fit any person, taste or style; the pants are no different.  It doesn’t matter if you’re a traditionalist or more modern, we offer options for pants that satisfy either taste. Current trends have placed flat front in the spot light. We recognize the shift in preferences, but also respect the gentlemen who demand a more classic look.  That is why the Chicago is available as a flat front as well as a double reverse pleat pant. And for the man in between classic and modern, we also carry a single reverse pleat option to help smooth the transition.

And as we depart our discussion on the Chicago suit, we’ll introduce another American staple in our next post: New York


2013 Collection: There is more to Fit than Meets the Eye

Our Chicago, New York, and Los Angeles Bodies

Above you’ll see a comparison of our three main bodies for the Fall 2013 season.  While they’re all a Hart Schaffner Marx suit, you’ll see they each encompass a different set of values.  Differences in the shoulders, waist suppression, and length are the most obvious visual cues, but there is more to fit than meets the eye.

The Chicago body, shown far left, is an easy-fitting suit for the man looking for comfort and longevity.  While traditional in fit, the styling of the garment reflects the change in times with subtle updates. The lapel width, gorge height, and jacket length have all been carefully considered, ensuring a look that won’t look dated after a couple seasons of wear.

The New York body, shown center, carries a fair amount of updates, all done quite discriminately, but without a hint of garishness. A higher armhole & slimmer sleeve highlight the increase in waist suppression, while the slightly shorter length and narrower shoulder are contemporary without being fashion forward. Its made for the man who is always on time, and this suit speaks to that.

The Los Angeles model, shown far right, challenges the notions of how a Hart Schaffner Marx suit ought to look and fit. Following current fashion trends, the LA is a full inch and a half shorter than its Chicago predecessor, and its body-contouring lines are far more physical in nature than the New York. Unlike other slim cut and fashion suits, the LA is constructed with the same quality and know-how of what one would expect from a traditional tailor, except this is nothing you’d ever expect to find from a traditional maker.

And we’re quite pleased with that. Following posts will consider each model in much greater detail.