The Look

Style Profile with Colin Ward of Marc Allen Fine Clothiers

On the importance of the right fit in a suit, shopping for the stylish man in your life and the difference between casual and sloppy.


Describe your personal style.
I am very outfit oriented when dressing for the weekend or for work. I don’t enjoy big statement pieces, but rather subtly tied together pieces that complete an overall look. I put thought into everything I wear, even if just going to the grocery store. That doesn’t necessarily mean I’m in a three-piece suit at all times. But my shoes, sweater, shirt, coat and jeans all work together.

Tell us about your outfit.
My sport jacket is from Sartoria Partenopea, a Neapolitan company. My shirt is custom made by Marc Allen. My tie is from Dolce Punta. My trousers are Incotex Super 150s.

You measure men in suits for a living. What’s a common mistake men make when buying a suit?
I would say most young men today are buying their suits and jackets too small to look trendy. And most gentlemen buy their suits too large, which I think is probably for comfort reasons.

Fit is everything when it comes to a suit or jacket. A beautiful fabric cut with style is nothing without a great fit. Having a discerning eye looking over the entire garment is critical to achieving a proper fit.

Marc Allen recently introduced a new made-to-measure suit/sport coat program at a great price point. We’ve designed it to reflect a very contemporary, Italian style. And we’re offering it in a great variety of styles and fabrics.

Is casual Friday over? Is there a way to be professional yet casual?
Casual Friday has unfortunately gone a bit too far. Americans often confuse casual with sloppy. Business casual still means a great outfit put together with thought and some style.

Any tips for women with stylish men on their holiday lists? What makes for good gifts?
Accessories are great if you aren’t familiar with his sizes. If you want something beyond that, a sweater is often a safe bet as it doesn’t have as precise a fit as a shirt or a jacket. With our tailor shop we are often able to adjust items after purchase to make them fit correctly.

What are your style tips for men this holiday season?
Dressing to the season is extremely important and will keep you looking your very best. As the seasons change so do the fabrics. Flannel finishes and heavier cashmeres are perfect for this fall and winter. In the summer tropical weight wools, linen and cottons are necessary. This applies to work as well as to play.