3 piece suits and vests

Yes, it’s time to invest in a vest!  Vests are trending in again, they are tremendously versatile and make a great fashion statement.

Here are some of the things you should know about the fit of a vest, a 3 piece suit and it’s benefits.

  • An alternative look: If you wear the same suit one time with a vest and the next time without it, your look and presentation will be totally different.  So it is a great way to get more use out of your suit, as well others will not think that you are wearing the same suit all the time.
  • Totally changes the look of a two-piece suit:  Adding a vest, adds to the sophistication of a suit.  It gives the impression to others that you are more dressed up, or are dressing more seriously/professionally.
  • Still great when you are not wearing your jacket: A vest is a terrific look in the summer or the winter.   If you are hot, or just want to take your jacket off, everyone knows you are still wearing an impressive outfit.  The assumption is that your jacket is close by, and you are not just wearing a pant to work or and event.
  • Should the vest match your jacket:  Wearing a matching vest or a contrasting one, all depends on the look you want to project.  Wearing a 3 piece suit all in the same fabric is the dressiest option.  Wearing a patterned vest with a solid jacket or a solid vest with a patterned jacket, will make the look more casual.  In this last scenario, keeping all the fabrics in the same weight and or category of dressing, will keep your outfit very sharp.  Wearing a different weight or a tweed with a serge, etc., will again introduce a more fashionable/casual look.   Try experimenting with different looks, as it will expand your wardrobe options and give you more of an individual look.
  • Can I color block.  Some people say that a shorter guy should wear a more monochromatic look.  It is not true that wearing different colors in the same outfit, make short men look shorter.  Wearing a vest in a different color will only express your personal style and your sense of fashion.  Color blocking is simply a different look.  It is a more casual look, and it is a way of having fun with your wardrobe.  All the rules that shorter men have been told that they should and shouldn’t with their clothing is a bunch of bull … dressing fashionably has nothing to do with height (just make sure it fits properly).
  • Wearing a vest with jeans:  A vest can be a very “cool” look.  It is amazing with jeans or premium cotton pants.  Depending on the fabric and the color, it can dress up your casual pants, or make dress pant look for casual.   Your vest can be worn done up or undone (a more casual look), with a t-shirt, sport shirt, dress shirt or shirt and tie.  Have fun and try different looks, you will love the effects.
  • Choosing a style.  The most popular style for a vest is the single breasted five button vest.   In fashion magazines and the runways they are showing a single-breasted vest with a lapel.  This may look fashionable, but a lot of people when wearing a jacket do not like a lapel on a lapel (and it can also look too busy).  The stylists are also showing  double breasted vests, which is not nearly as wearable.   If wearing this model, make sure it is shorter (at your pant waist) or it will be uncomfortable when you sit.  This style does not look good undone, and should be worn more fitted.

Other things about wearing a vest that you should be aware of.

  • If wearing a vest, you should still wear a belt, as it will keep your pants in place. If you do not want to wear a belt, to keep you pants from slipping down, you can wear suspenders.
  • You can keep the fifth button done up or undone.
  • You should not be able to see your shirt at the bottom of the vest.  Wearing your vest too short is not a sophisticate/dressy/polished look.
  • A vest looks just as good with a plain front pant or a pleated one.
  • Wearing a vest undone with a sport shirt, is a great casual/fashionable look.
  • Wearing a vest with a sport jacket, is another great look, and a good way to change your jackets appearance.

If you have any questions about vests, from how to wear them to appropriate measurements and styling, please don’t hesitate to ask me.


Robbie Brown is a retail entrepreneur and fashion innovator.  He is currently building a retail concept called, ROBBIE BROWN, clothing for men up to 5’8” (a fashionable and better quality store for shorter men).