~How to Measure For a Tuxedo~

Intro

We greatly prefer that you come and have one of our tuxedo specialists measure you for a tuxedo or at least go to a another professional, but if you just can't for some reason then follow the below as closely as possible. Throughout it's best that you get someone else to measure you while you stand up straight, head forward, yet still relaxed. It also helps to be standing with your back to a mirror so the measurer can check that the tape measure is even. The most important measurements are height, neck, chest, waist, sleeve, and outseam.

Height:

With the person standing with their back against the wall without shoes on, take a ruler and level it on top of their head with one end of it touching the wall and then measure from that point to the floor.

Weight:

Use a normal correctly calibrated scale on a hard flat surface. This measurement is usually only used as a check to see if the other more important measurements are in line.

Neck:

For the neck, wrap the tape measure around the thickest part with two fingers between the tape and the neck. You want the two fingers inbetween so there is at least some breathing space. Go up to the nearest half inch. This measurement usually ranges from 14 to 19 inches with 16 to 17 inches being the most common.

Sleeve:

For the sleeve, take the starting end of the tape measure and place it on the backbone at the base of the back of the neck. Bring it to the tip of one shoulder and with the person straight, yet relaxed, down their arm to the elbow and then to the wrist plus an inch. You want the extra inch past the wrist so the sleeve sits on the hand properly. Go up to the nearest inch. This measurement usually ranges from 32 to 37 inches with 34 to 35 inches being the most common.

Chest:

For the chest, wrap the tape measure around the person's back, under the arms, and around the largest part of the chest. Make sure the tape is level in the back, have the person drop their arms down naturally and then ask them to take a normal breath. Then measure up to the nearest inch. If the person is inbetween sizes (e.g. a 43 is inbetween a 42 and a 44) then the smaller size may look better, but it might be a bit too tight. You usually want to go with the bigger more comfortable size. The chest size is usually 6 inches more than one's waist size.

Overarm:

The overarm measurement is usually not necessary, but if you really want it, follow the chest instructions, but instead of under the arms, measure over the arms.

Insleeve:

The insleeve measurement is usually not necessary, but if you really want it, measure from where you want the armpit of the jacket to be to where your hand bends from your wrist.

Waist:

For the waist, wrap the tape measure around the part of the waist where they will be wearing their pants. If the person has a belt or a thick top on, get closer to the body with the tape measure. Otherwise, you might measure them a size too big. It also helps to ask their jean size because as long as they are comfortable with their jeans that's usually the size you want to go with. Beware that many males like to wear their pants extremely low. If they do or you think they at least might, make sure that you measure the waist at a respectable height and ask them to wear their pants there at least for the big day. Also note that if the person has a bit of a belly then they'll often wear the pants higher in the back and lower in the front so you probably want to measure them that way as well. Take care to take the measurement on the side rather than in the front to avoid making them uncomfortable.

Outseam:

For the outseam, place the starting end of the tape measure on the hip at the very top of where they will be wearing their pants and then with them standing straight run it down the side of the leg to where they want the trousers hemmed. People have varying preferences of where they want their pants hemmed, but you usually don't want too much of a fold in the front of pants for a formal occasion. Generally, you want an inch below the bottom of the ankle, but some people prefer to go right to the bottom of their heal.

Inseam:

The inseam is usually not necessary if you have the outseam, but if you really want to measure it, with a pair of pants that you're comfortable with on, measure from the crotch of the pants down to where you want it hemmed. See the outseam measurement for information on where to have it hemmed.

Seat:

The seat measurement is usually not necessary, but if you really want it, measure around the fullest part of the seat (buttocks).

Hat:

For hat sizes, wrap a tape measure around the forehead to the largest part of the back of the head. Go up to the nearest half inch.

Links:

Following are some other tuxedo measuring instructions. We prefer ours, but you might find the pictures and alternative wording at these links helpful.