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Style hack: new suit Rules

At some point you'll need to purchase a new suit. Perhaps you'll need it for a job interview, wedding, or some other occasion. Follow these new suit rules to look sharp and avoid blunders.

A new suit often comes with labels, tack stitches and tags attached. You'll need to remove them all before you wear your suit. Tack stitches (also known as baste stitches) are one or two small threads in a shape of an X which secures the vent(s) of your suit jacket, as shown above. The stitches are usually white but may come in other colors, be on the lookout just in case.


The vent is the slit at the back of suit jacket. Your jacket may have either a single vent or double vent. These stitches are temporary and should be removed before your suit is worn. These stitches prevent creasing during transit and ensure the jacket vent doesn't wrinkle while it's on the clothing rack.

To remove tack stitches, use a pair of scissors or seam ripper (shown below) and cut the stitch in the middle of the X. Do not rip the stitch from the garment, the fabric may tear. Remove them slowly and pull the remaining thread away with your fingers.


You may also see tack stitches on the shoulder seam of a new suit jacket. The dotted line of stitching you'll find across your new suit's shoulders is a throwback to a time when tailors would fit a suit on the spot, and then remove the threads when making other alterations. Nowadays, the stitching serves no purpose and you should remove them. Remove them slowly by cutting through the middle of a stitch and pulling the remaining thread away with your fingers.


When wearing your suit, you’ll notice that the pockets have been sewn together. This is done to make it look better on the rack, as the fabric will sit flat. Whatever you do leave the pockets shut and don’t cut the threads. If you do cut the threads, this will tempt you to stuff your pockets which will lead to stretching the shape of your jacket. However if you’re the type of guy who likes to wear a pocket square, then you can remove the stitching from the breast pocket.


Remove the sleeve label if there is one present. The label helps you easily identify the brand while it's on the sales rack. It's a faux pas to wear the suit with the label attached.

You may also see tack stitches on some outerwear like pea-coats and overcoats, they should be removed. Leaving the tack stitches on a new suit jacket is a common mistake many guys make so don't feel silly if you've done this in the past. Now you know the rules! If you're ever in doubt about what to remove, take the suit to a tailor. A good tailor will help you get your new suit ready to wear. Your tailor will also be able to help you with any fitting issues you may have with your new suit.

What blunders have you made with a new suit?

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Stay stylish friends...

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