Why You Need a Custom Made Dress Shirt if You're a Big Guy

Many men truly hate wearing business clothes and hate shopping for them even more-and for some pretty good reasons. If you're anything other than a perfectly average body type, it's almost impossible to find a shirt that fits perfectly, and isn't in some way unattractive, uncomfortable, or-most frequently-both. This is especially true if you're on the heavier side.

plus size men looking at the mirror wearing short sleeve custom made shirt

Buying custom-made clothes can be intimidating, but don't dismiss it as an option only for the wealthy or uber-fashionable. If you have never worn a well-tailored, custom made dress shirt-if you've never owned a shirt that fits you properly from top to bottom-you don't know what you're missing.


This is the most obvious way that a custom shirt is superior, particularly on larger men. An off-the-rack shirt is most likely going to highlight extra weight.

chubby guy taking selfie wearing custom made blue dress shirt

Across the size spectrum, no two bodies are the same, so almost everyone has to compromise on something when buying a dress shirt-neck, length, chest, sleeves, etc-but unfortunately the larger you are the more obvious and awkward those faults will be.

chubby guy wearing white dress shirt with short necktie

Even when sizes go up in men's clothing, a garment's proportions don't really change, so having a larger belly means you simply have to size up and up.

You have to choose between a shirt that's too tight across the stomach (embarrassing and uncomfortable) or a shirt that's too large in the chest, shoulders, and sleeves (careless looking and sloppy, and sometimes even more unflattering).

This is NOT a choice a man should have to make!

plus size men wearing stripes custom made dress shirt

Only a custom shirt is going to fit your entire torso properly without strained or excessive fabric anywhere. It will look sharper, more professional, and more attractive. Rather than draw attention to a larger stomach or a less fit chest and arms, a well-fitting custom shirt will bring all of the focus to the width of your shoulders and your face.


You'll also have full control over every detail. If you've only ever bought shirts off the rack, you may not even realize how limited your choices are. Having a shirt custom made means that you can choose any color or pattern you like; you'll also be able to work with your tailor to decide on a variety of small details.

chubby guy fitting suit and dress shirt


having your choice of color and pattern is fantastic! You'll have something tailored not only to your body but also to your taste.

And the fabric is more than just color and pattern-you can take the weather into consideration, and control how thick or breathable the fabric is.

The look of the garment can change too; do you want something to hold its shape a little stiffer, or do you like a slightly softer drape? It's well known that darker fabric is flattering for larger bodies, but it's amazing how great a lighter-colored or patterned shirt with really crisp lines can look.

There are also many other details you can have control over. If you've been buying ready-made shirts, you may not even realize all the options a custom shirt can offer.

What kind of collar do you want?

What kind of buttons? What kind of cuffs?

How about pleats, or contrast stitching, or pockets?

old chubby guy fitting custom dress shirt and pants

It might feel like you'll go from no options to an overwhelming number of options, but a tailor will be able to simplify things and make recommendations based on what they learn about your needs, preferences, personal style, and body. You might enjoy thinking through every detail (should the collar be button-down, English or spread? Should the cuffs be square, rounded, barrel?) but you certainly don't have to.


A ready-made shirt is going to be cheaper-but that won't just be because it's mass-manufactured. It is also going to simply be of lower quality in both make and material.

When you buy a custom shirt, you know that you're getting high-quality fabric and construction as well as a perfect fit.

sewing custom made shirt plus size men

When you're looking at cost, don't forget that a custom made dress shirt is going to wear better and last longer-you won't have to worry about snags in the fabric, lost buttons or popped stitches. Well-enforced seams and gussets (those little triangles of hidden fabric on the side seams of a garment) offer a level of reliable sturdiness that is especially important for heavier men.

plus size man wearing dark blue shirt testing pants gusset

You'll be investing in quality material and stitching, and that means a shirt that you can be pleased with for many years to come.


No more shopping! Once you know your preferences and measurements, a new custom shirt is a matter of a phone call or a click.

No more dragging yourself through the aisles of ready made clothing thinking about which of your preferences you will sacrifice just to find something that is good enough, wasting your time and denting your confidence.

No more money wasted on those maybe-this-time shirts that you never end up wearing.


Men sometimes avoid taking off their suit jacket even in more casual environments because the dress shirt they're wearing is too tight around the stomach or too loose in the shoulders.

Many men claim to hate wearing ties, but what they really hate is the ill-fitting collar they have to try to make their ties work with.

plus size man wearing custom made black dress shirt

When you have a properly fitting shirt that you really like, it isn't just your shirt that looks better-it's all of you.

You will look fitter and more professional.

Even your posture and body language might improve-clothing that feels wrong or constraining in the arms or shoulders can actually change how you stand and gesture; experienced tailors will tell you that they observe again and again how much more comfortably men hold themselves when their clothes fit well and they aren't as self-conscious. 

plus size man wearing maroon custom made dress shirt with jeans in a bar

It's also good to remind yourself that your appearance is worth investing in. For many men, no matter their size, choosing clothes begins and ends with "it fits." And when you're a larger man buying ready-made clothes off the rack, making it all the way to "it fits" is hard enough!

But when you're able to look past that, when for the first time you can make past the "it fits" and get to "it looks good" AND "I like it", you will feel amazing.

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