Chatting with Rachael Ray:  The Fit Of Clothing

Last week, I spoke with Rachael Ray and Bob Harper about something that should never be neglected when it comes to fashion: the fit of your clothing. This can make or break your outfit. Proper fitting clothing should always accentuate your silhouette, not hide it. I always say that clothes shouldn’t be leading you, you should be leading the clothes. Here is a recap of my rules for knowing if your shirts and pants are fitting correctly:

Casual Shirts    

Sweaters, Henleys, polos, tee-shirts, and flannels (any shirt that you would leave untucked) shouldn’t pass the zipper of your pants. If this is happening, you are wearing shirts that are too big for your body. Casual shirts should hit right around the top of your zipper. If they aren’t, try going down a size. Just remember: you want to see clean lines in clothing, otherwise shirts that are too long can distort the proportions of your body and cause folding of fabric in places where it shouldn’t.

Dress Shirts

Whether it’s for work, special events, or formal occasions, you want to make sure the fit is spot on. When you tuck in a dress shirt, there shouldn’t be tons of excess fabric. There should be no more than two inches of fabric on each side of your shirt. If you have anything more than that, it’s just too big for your body.

Also, play with sizing. Many brands have different fits such as athletic, standard, tailored and/or fitted, so see what works best for your body type. One size does not necessarily fit all. Every company has different fits which makes it normal to sometimes be a size up or down from the usual size you wear. That is why I recommend trying on dress shirts in each different store so that you know what fits you best, and then you can just re-order them online to save yourself the trip.


The easiest way to know if your pants are fitting properly is by looking at your ankles. If you have tons of extra fabric bunching up, then your pants are too big. If you have a lot of creases and loose fabric when looking down at your pants, then you also know you’re wearing a size too large. Here is a great tip: the area around your zipper should have 2-3 inches of fabric. This will prevent you from appearing like you are drowning in fabric. When you’re wearing your pants, you should be able to fit two fingers in your waistline with little room to move them around. If you can fit anything more than that, the waist size is not right. Lastly, belts are meant to provide extra support, not hold your pants up. If you can tug on your pants without a belt and they fall down, then you know it’s too large. Use a belt to accentuate an already well-fitted pair of pants.