Written by Menswear Style
Tips & Advice
11th April 2019
Why Fit, Function & Fabric Outweigh Fashion
In today’s world trends seem to come and go faster than ever. With funky launch titles like Spring Style, Summer Sizzle, Feeling Fall, and Wonderful Winter, a single trend can sometimes barely survive a year. For the practical man out there, this just won’t cut it. Most men opt for basic fashion staples that don’t go out of style because they either don’t have the money, time, or simply the patience to catch up with every single clothing trend that emerges upon the runways. In the realm of style, there are three main agreed-upon qualities that determine how your wardrobe will affect your appearance; known as The 3Fs: Fit, Function and Fabric. These three aspects form what we call the ‘Style Pyramid’, and they are what you should use to guide your shopping habits, and will get you the most bang for your buck.
The ‘Fit’ Can’t Be Overlooked
When choosing a clothing item, the fit is probably the most critical aspect. A good fit is one that feels like it can slide onto your body with comfort. The cut of the item should feel like it was tailored to flatter your frame, highlighting the features you want to emphasize, and drawing the attention away from the ones you want to conceal. After all, you don’t want to spend your day being constantly distracted by discomfort or unexpected mishaps caused by badly fitting clothes. Items that are too short, too long, too loose or too tight are all ill-fitting garments that will neither flatter your figure, nor guarantee comfort as you go about your day. When buying a new clothing item, you should spend enough time trying it on, sitting and walking in it, as well as stretching your arms and legs to test how the cut works for your shape.
Photo: Jonathan Daniel Pryce
The Importance of ‘Function’
Function is a fundamental cornerstone of the pyramid, and is the most straightforward and easy to understand. When purchasing a clothing item, take a good look at it and consider its purpose. Is this shirt meant for work? Are you going to wear it to weekend barbecues? Is it versatile enough to do both? Are these trousers smart enough for a formal dinner, or would you wear them on a countryside walk to the pub? To master the Style Pyramid, you have to make sure that the clothing you’re investing in is appropriate for you, and delivers the message you want to put out to the world. Check out Universal Works to discover a diverse range of garments that will help you recreate your wardrobe, striking a balance between options for work, fun, and everything in between.
Photo: Enrico Labriola
How ‘Fabric’ Blends In
Between fit and function, the fabric used to construct a garment can dramatically affect several things such as your item’s weight and texture; the way it drapes on your body; the way it feels after hours of being worn; in addition to the care it requires. When selecting a well-fitting, occasion-appropriate clothing item, don’t forget to also pay attention to the material it’s made of. Some people find wool too itchy; some prefer cotton as it allows for the skin to breathe; some struggle with sweat stains on silk and polyester; while many people just want non-iron fabrics for convenience.
Photo: The Style Stalker
Now that you have a basic understanding of the Style Pyramid, deciding on your next clothing purchase should be much simpler. Just remember that ‘fit’ defines how well your garments compliment your body type, ‘function’ allows you to better present yourself depending on the occasion, and ‘fabric’ can affect comfort, maintenance efforts and future care expenses. If you want to hit the jackpot, all three factors should have equal influences on your decision. However, if you have to prioritise, go by the order of fit, function, then fabric.
Photo: Vincenzo Grillo