Once, being of larger build meant that clothes shopping was an experience to be endured; not enjoyed. Fortunately, times have changed, and the wide array of men’s clothing available in categories like ‘plus size’ or ‘big and tall’ means that it’s never been easier for the amply-proportioned gentleman to buy clothes that fit!
But buying clothes that fit, and buying clothes that actually complement your style, are two very different things. Simply having a range to choose from doesn’t solve the fundamental question: ‘How should the larger man dress?’
So, to tackle that thorny issue we’re about to get back to basics and look at some underlying principles of style for the larger man.
Don’t Go Large
Larger men are often cautious about buying fitted clothing. If you’re self-conscious about your physique (or lack thereof) then it can be tempting to buy something loose and comfy. This is normally driven by the belief that it will hide your real figure safely away (perhaps leaving the outside world to believe there’s a six-pack in its place!)
The reality is, when large men buy even larger clothing, the impression is one of extra bulk. A smarter tactic is to pick out moderately fitted clothing that adds definition to your figure – without being skin tight.
Avoid Strong Patterns
Taking a big man, and dressing him in flamboyantly patterned clothing can create an impression that’s simply overwhelming! Taking that same man, and dressing him in something elegantly understated creates an impression that’s, well... elegantly understated!
So, hold back on the strong patterns and clashing, vibrant colours, and instead turn your focus to choices that are refined, easy on the eye, and essentially simple.
Does the idea of ‘simple elegance’ equal ‘dull and boring’ in your mind? It needn’t, and there are a variety of accessories that can complement a simple, understated look by adding just a hint of flair.
If you’re very broad, then hats and scarves can both distract from this, and add the impression of height. Scarves achieve this by adding vertical lines, while hats literally add an extra inch or two to your profile. The rules about bold colours and patterns can be turned aside here too, since a statement accessory that’s worn high on the body can draw attention up and away from your midriff.
Dress for the Here and Now
It’s fair to say that many big-built men are unhappy with their figures, and are seeking to change the way they look by dieting or taking up exercise. While self-improvement is a worthwhile aim, this kind of big ambition can sometimes hold us back from making more simple changes today.
If weight loss is on your long-term agenda, don’t let that hold you back from dressing in a way that brings out your best in the here and now.
Get to Know the Big and Tall Ranges
As we touched on earlier, the shopping experience for larger men has come a long way in recent years. Men’s fashion has finally got past the ‘small, medium, large’ model of sizing, and brands have acknowledged that many men need options that reach beyond this.
Enter the big and tall ranges! With leading menswear brands like D555 putting together collections that reach all the way up to 5XL, the savvy male shopper can at last avoid the continual disappointment of finding the perfect item – only to miss out on the perfect fit.