The Return of the Double Breasted Suit

Tailoring in the late 80s and early 90s was dominated by the double-breasted suit.  If you grew up with the original Miami Vice as I did Crocket and Tubbs were often to be seen in a DBS.  DBS here is not Bond’s Aston Martin.  It’s the double-breasted suit.

Gordon Gekko of Wall Street fame also sported various DBs throughout the film. However, by the late 90s the DB had been overtaken by the three button single breasted suit, and subsequently the 2 button single breasted suit.

However, like all matters of style, the DB has been making a comeback and is the trendy suit of the moment. Unlike the 80s it is not yet ubiquitous and I suspect it will not regain its position as the default choice.  Nonetheless, it has over the last few years moved from being a retro 80s look used by a few designers to becoming the new hot kid on the block.

The DB is structurally different from the single-breasted jacket. The overlapping lapels can help to minimise a burgeoning waistline and accentuate the shoulders. It should, ideally, be tapered at the waist precisely to achieve that effect.

Traditionally the DB has 6 buttons and peak lapels. Modern interpretations of the DB may have fewer buttons but should ideally retain the traditional peak rather than notch lapels.

I confess that having sent the last of my DBs off to the charity shops at the end of the 90s I have not yet reintroduced the DB into my wardrobe.  However, I am keeping my eyes open for possibilities.  I reckon it is a gap that might need filling….

What do you think?

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5 thoughts on “The Return of the Double Breasted Suit

  1. I don’t get it… Just not for me I guess? Too much of a throwback or just, well: not for me! (Even cassock is single!)

    1. Love it. ‘Even my cassock is single.’

      Nonetheless, it might be worth trying one on next time you get a chance. The modern DBs tend to be cut on a slim block which is a more flattering fit than was the case last time the DB was popular.

      A couple of years ago T M Lewin was experimenting with a very fine example of the DB. I was pleasantly surprised when I tried it on how smart it looked. I had not expected that. I too expected it to be a throwback.

      However, not every style is for everyone. So if this us not your bag well done for determining what is not your style.

      Still, try one if you get a chance.

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