Tailoring Men's Button-ups for Larger Chests

Anonymous asked: "I’ve gotten many questions from larger breasted folks wanting to know how to deal with their breasts in button-up situations, particularly around wearing men’s shirts.

"For example: I love button down shirts and polos, but I have a big chest and find it hard to pull off the outfits I put together because the buttons in the chest area are stressed or I look big around the middle from my chest creating a drape look with the shirt. I’d buy a binder, but they are a bit out of my price range. Any suggestions?” 

I decided to consult with Eric Powell from Ratio Clothing about this issue. Ratio Clothing is a handcrafted men’s shirt company located in Denver, Colorado who made me a shirt a few months ago. Eric said that everyone needs a good tailor because “Few of us are blessed with perfect sample size proportions.” He recommended Yelp reviews or menswear forums for some good reviews for tailors in your city. 

He says, “It sounds like the problem the reader is having is the same one that some athletic men have — getting a shirt to fit in the upper body (muscular pecs for men, breasts for women) can cause the lower portion of the shirt to be baggy. Made-to-measure solves that, of course, but bringing in the lower sides a bit on the shirt will allow it to fit while still maintaining the ‘look’ of the shirt.’” For larger breasted folks he suggests “sizing up a bit so that you get a good fit through the chest, and then have the tailor bring in sides of the shirt so that you end up with a better sideseam shape. In most cases, you’ll probably be looking at between $10-$20 per shirt.”

I think this brings hope to all of us looking to wear men’s button-ups and keep our breasts at bay.

Check out the tailoring tag for more info.

As Qwear's Founding Editor, Sonny’s work centers around envisioning a future in which the clothing people wear does not dictate their chances of survival. Sonny was awarded 2015 dapperQ of the Year and was the first trans blogger to be sponsored by Topman. In March 2016, Sonny spoke at South by South West's first official queer fashion panel.