Ryan Kelly is a personal haberdasher and wardrobe consultant at Astor & Black, a custom clothier specializing in hand-cut, expertly tailored suits. Kelly advised MD’s Drew Grossman about what men should know when buying a suit and what style means in his life.
What are some of the basics men should keep in mind when buying a suit?
There are three basic suits that every man should own. First you’ll need to get your navy, grey and black and then you can go on expanding your wardrobe from there.
Fit and cut are the most important thing when it comes to buying a suit. Fit over fabric, you can have a really expensive, nice suit, but if it’s too big for you and baggy then it will look terrible.
The British fit suit is really in right now. A short jacket, very tailored, with a wide lapel. This is a retro style that is coming back.
Also the double-breasted jacket is really popular these days. They are kind of funky and fun to wear.
Are there any pitfalls that men should stay away from?
You want to avoid baggy clothes. The more narrow in the leg, the better. You also don’t want your trousers to be too long. A two-inch cuff is in now, which means your pants will fall at about your ankle and allow your entire shoe to be seen.
The skinny lapel is trending out right now, which is kind of a good thing for men like myself who have bigger shoulders.
Who is making really good stuff right now?
Tom Ford’s got the whole color scheme down. Their spring/summer 2012 collection has a lot of bright colors and is a lot of fun.
What is the importance of style in your life?
I probably started consciously thinking about style at 14 when I got my first subscription to GQ. Now it’s my life. It’s up to me to bring my clients the newest trends so I really have to be on top of it. I’m constantly online and on blogs to find out what’s new and trending, it’s an everyday thing.