custom dress pantsWhen you first put on a pair of pants that have been made especially for you, you will wonder why it took you so long to try out custom dress pants in the first place.

Custom made pants hang perfectly, cut to your exact length. You’re not working backwards as you would with a regular store-bought pair of pants by buying the slacks first and retrofitting the cut to your measurements and desired style.

You’re starting from the beginning, having the pants built for you and you alone from the ground up.

The cut or style of the pants and the fabrics used to make the pants are the two key things you need to think about before you head to your tailor.


You may be unclear why, but you do know that when you wear certain styles of pants, they look terrible on you. Certain styles simply look better on certain body types.

Knowing which styles work for you and which you should stay away from can help you on your custom dress pants journey.

Pleated vs. Flat-Front Pants

The battle between pleated plants vs. flat-front pants has been waged between designers for decades, and you and all the other men in the world have been caught in the middle. The minute that the design doctors have called in the time of death on pleated pants, some cocky new designer brings them back onto the scene. How do you choose?

Thanks to being made with more fabric than flat-front pants, pleated pants have permanent creases that run from the top of the pants all the way down to the cuff. Pants usually have a single pleat on each leg or double pleats. Pleats provide plenty of give as the wearer walks or bends his legs, with double pleats providing even more room to move around.

Anti-pleaters say no to pleats because they do too awesome a job of making the hips and torso look larger than they are. For men who are on the more slender side, this could be a good thing, but for people who don’t wish to add to their midsections or who carry a bit of weight in that area, pleats should be avoided.

Top designers who’ve successfully pushed pleats have done so by making newer pleated pants much more subtle and streamlined than their predecessors. The great thing about having custom dress pants made is that your tailor can make the pleats as subtle or as pronounced as you wish.

Flat-front pants are exactly what they sound like: pants that have a flat front at the top of the pants. They look very sleek and contemporary, offering the wearer a much more polished and fitted look. The down side to flat front pants is that they don’t have any extra fabric so it can be difficult to find a pair that fit perfectly.

It’s all too easy to find a pair of flat-front pants that bunch up around the hips or stretch too tightly across the front, especially if you carry a lot of weight in your mid-section.

This is where having custom dress pants made could be a game changer. Your tailor can design the perfect pair of flat-front pants that don’t bunch up around the waist or pull too tight against the front of your mid-section.

Cuffed or Non-Cuffed?

This is the next thing you’ll need to consider when it comes to designing your custom dress pants. Pleated pants have to come with cuffs or they’ll end up looking unfinished. The cuffs also help keep the pleats weighted down so that everything falls effortlessly into place.

When it comes to flat-front pants, the decision to go with or without cuffs is a personal one.

Generally speaking, if you’re not super tall, you may want to go the “no cuffs” route. Cuffs can sometimes make the shorter person look even shorter. Going the “no cuffs” route makes the wearer look longer and leaner since the pants will be one, long line of fabric.

Slim, Straight or Wide? 

This is generally a simple decision: if you’ve got a slim build, a slim fit will look nice and tailored, while wider pants are great for men who have larger upper bodies and want to create a more symmetrical look. Straight leg pants are a great choice for most body types.


While you may not think of it, pockets are another important consideration. Custom dress pants usually have slash pockets, also called angled pockets. Let your tailor know what you usually carry in your pockets so that he can create pockets that are big enough to hold your belongings, but not so big that they disrupt the style.

Whatever style you choose, avoid creating a suit that has too much room; you’ll end up looking sloppy or clownish.

custom dress pants


The types of fabrics you could use for your custom dress pants are endless. Ultimately, you’ll need to consider the event or environment you’ll be wearing the pants in as well as the time of year you’ll be wearing them.

Flannel: Flannel is an extremely popular material when it comes to men’s pants. The material feels nice and comfortable against the skin and it breathes pretty well – a fact that makes flannel pants a great choice year round.

Wool: Wool is an excellent material for men looking for strong, heavyweight material. It’s also extremely warm, making it a great choice for custom dress pants that will be worn in the winter. Worsted wool is a great option because it provides all of the warmth that you want from wool pants without all of the heaviness.

Cottons and Linens: Cotton suits and linen suits are your friends when the mercury rises. They are lightweight, allowing you plenty of room to move around while allowing your skin to breathe.  Cotton-linen blends give you slightly more structured looks that are less prone to wrinkling.

custom dress pants


Keep the following tips in mind when designing your custom dress pants.

  • Even if you decide to go the no cuffs route, always remember to have your custom dress pants hemmed. It just looks neater, and your tailor can design the hem to fall exactly as you wish.
  • Work with a tailor with plenty of experience. You’ll know that you’ll be getting the best value for your money. An experienced tailor will be able to look at you and figure out how to make the very best pants for your frame, even if you long for a style that traditionally “wouldn’t look good on you.”

Custom Dress Pants in Northern NJ

Ralph Lauretta

About Ralph Lauretta

Ralph is a co-owner of Sal Lauretta for Men. His areas of expertise include custom clothing as well as being the primary clothing buyer for the store. When not at work you can find him hanging out with his family, reorganizing his garage or watching a Denver Broncos game.

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