Suits has got to be one of my favorite shows of all time! Maybe it’s because of its sarcastic protagonist, or perhaps because of the way he dresses. Harvey Specter is undoubtedly one of the sharpest dressed men in television, and to help you become one of the best dressed men in any room, I wanted to break down his personal style. If for anything else, to recommend a solid show.
For starters, his suit game is STRONG! With a capital S, T, R, O, N, and G. Honestly, watching this show is the reason why I fell in love with wearing suits. It is not just that he wears suits, but the way that wears them.
We all know that a man in a suit just evokes a certain level of presence, you can tell he just makes things happen by the suit they wear. Granted, in this modern day and age of Zuckerberg, Musk, among many other high achievers that have done away with this iconography of entrepreneurship; there is still a high regard for this piece of clothing. Therefore, it should find a place in your closet.
What Makes His Style So Classic?
At the risk of sounding technical, there is no way to talk about Harvey style without going over the construction of his suits. Let’s start with the tailoring, his suits are fit to his body shape. There is nothing more disturbing than an ill-fitting suit. It should not be so loose that you are swimming in, or so tight that it restricts your movement. For men and women alike, a well fitted suit can perform magic. I will talk more about women’s fit, when I cover another character of this show, so stay tuned for that. (Pro tip: even if you are on a budget, just make sure that you pay for the tailoring option wherever you buy your suits; it will make it look more expensive.) For instance, a suit cinched at the waist will make your shoulders appear wider, and you will look more powerful. Another feature that Harvey’s suits have that makes his shoulders appear wider is the wide peak lapel. Think of Superman’s crest flaring upward. The wide peak lapel mimics that “S on my chest” effect by creating the look of a powerful shield in the front of your jacket. Psst, Batman don’t be jealous, you are still the GOAT.
While I am in the topic of tailoring, make sure your pants are tapered at the bottom, and sit right above your shoes. We all have seen that guy with pants that are too long for him. You have seen that guy. Don’t be that guy. For a more modern look, they can sit about 3/4” to a 1” above your shoes, that way you can show off your stylish socks.
Other small details that make his look so elegant, and timeless are the two buttons. Anything more than that you will look like a 1940’s Pentecostal church pastor. Praise Jesus, but it’s not a good look. Also, the pocket square. Though not always required, it adds a touch of elegance, and can make you stand out from the crowd. For extra points, make sure it matches the colors of your tie. It doesn’t have to be the same pattern of the tie, which can make the look a little tacky, but a similar color scheme is acceptable.
Talking about ties, 3” to 3 3/4” is the best look. NO SKINNY TIES! Please! They will never be a thing. It’s ok, if you had some. I rocked them too. We all can’t be perfect. Also, anything wider than 3 1/4”, you will like Donald Trump. Who the f**k wants to look like that guy? All kidding aside, the reason skinny ties are not classic or elegant is because they take away from that “S on my chest” look I spoke about earlier. Think of your suit as an armor, an extension of your body. Skinny ties make you look skinnier than you are, if you are slim like me. If you are a wider person, it can make you look awkward because the tie is too small for a large chest. You want to fill that space nicely with your tie.
Color schemes are very important in this decision to invest in a suit. If you are just starting, keep your choices in the dark blues, dark grays like charcoal, and medium gray. Black suits have been going more and more out of style in these modern times. Once you get the hang of those colors, you can explore more fun options like salmon, dark greens, lighter blues, but it should be your third or fourth suit after you have the basics covered.
There are going to be times where you don’t want to, or need to wear a suit, and Harvey’s casual game is also on point. The rules on fit also apply here as they did with the suits, but there is a lot more freedom in the execution. For starters, the outfits do not need to be so fitted to the shape of your body. Shirts can be a little loose, and be wore tucked, and untucked. However, make sure that you don’t wear a dress shirt untucked. Dress shirts are cut longer at the bottom to prevent them from sliding off your pants. Casual shirts are cut shorter and should fall mid to top of the crotch. You can’t sell the merchandise if you don’t show the package, know what I mean.
But don’t show too much package, pants shouldn’t be so tight that we think we are in Egypt with that camel tail. Pants should be relaxed at the crotch and tapered at the leg. A few brands that offer great fits are Levi’s 511 Slim Tapered Jeans, Gap’s Slim and Skinny fit, and J Crew 484 Slim Fit. I personally love the quality of Mott and Bow’s Skinny Fit Jeans. Even though it’s categorized as “Skinny”, I have found that some of the colors can be a little relaxed on the crotch and tapered at the bottom. If you are not comfortable with skinny fits, any of the other slim fit options are a nice choice.
When it comes to other tops, your choices are endless. You can go more casual with a great fitting blank t-shirt. Graphic tees are a little childish, unless they are vintage rock band shirts. Those will never go out of style. Just use them sparingly. Perhaps on quick weekend getaway, the beach, or to run quick errands. To elevate this look, you can throw a cardigan, or replace it with a sweater.
Color schemes should stay muted for the most part. Think dark blue, light blue, hunter green, maroons, etc. However, you can have some fun with chinos or shorts during the summer. It’s ok after you have built a respectable wardrobe, to throw in some mint, salmon, or light teal pants into the mix.
Taking Care of Your Body is Sexy
Now, this all means nothing if your body is not right. In order to build that Harvey Specter confidence, you must work out. Exercising is a crucial part on the fit of our clothes. If you want your clothes to fit the best way possible, you want to start with a great foundation, which is your body shape. I can’t recommend this enough. I know during this pandemic, we have all let ourselves go a little bit, or a lot of bits. I know I fell victim to this, and I am making a change. I urge you to make that change as well! You will feel a thousand percent the difference, in your confidence, your self-image, and the way you feel when you look at the mirror. My goal is to help you look, and feel better, and be the best version of yourself you can be. I am on that journey right there with you. What are you going to do next?
With lots of Love,