If you read this blog at all, you know that I review products (like a specific pair of chinos) and companies (like online custom shirt makers) and tell you what I like and don’t like about various garments and manufacturers.
Recently, however, I’ve had a few requests to focus more on specific stores that are good for shorter men and, more importantly, which pieces of clothing from those stores are worth buying.
So, this will become a long (and probably never-ending) series of articles, and I’m going to start with one of my favorites – Banana Republic.
Banana Republic is one of my favorite clothing stores. They make several items that are great for gentlemen of short stature, whether you are skinny or less than svelte.
What NOT to Buy from Banana Republic
If you are under 5’6″ you will want to avoid BR polo shirts. While they fit great in the chest and arms, and they are very high quality, they are just too long. You shouldn’t wear polo shirts that are longer than 28″ (at the longest). They should go just past your belt or waist line. Unfortunately, BR polos are not made with the shorter man in mind.
Also, stay away from any BR pants that are “relaxed” or “boot cut”. These will be too baggy and will not flatter the short body type.
Similarly, I find their “modern” fit to be too loose and baggy. If you are on the slimmer side, avoid their “modern” fit pants. If you have large thighs or are generally a little bigger (wider), you can give this fit a shot, but I would go to the store and try it on before buying.
What to Buy from Banana Republic
Now that we covered what not to buy from Banana Republic, let’s talk about what works. First, I love their crew neck and v-neck sweaters, both in wool and cashmere. These are perfect for wearing over dress shirts during the cooler months of the year. The sleeves aren’t too long, and it’s okay if they bunch up a little bit.
BR also makes great pants for short men. Their “straight” fit and “vintage straight” fit (which is slimmer) are great. Here are my favorites:
In order, here are the names of the pants in the photos:
- Straight-Fit Dark-Wash Five-Pocket Jean
- Emerson Vintage Straight Chino (check out my detailed review of these)
- Slim Fit Chino
- Heritage Wool Suit Pant
- Tailored Wool Suit Pant
- Heritage Premium Slim-Fit Selvedge Jean
So, as you can see, I pretty much stick with pants and sweaters when it comes to Banana Republic. Their shirts tend to be too long, both in the arms (button downs) and torso (polos and tees). All things considered, Banana Republic is a great clothing store for men under 5’8″.
Do you shop at Banana Republic? Let me know what you think of their clothes or if I missed anything by leaving a comment below!
I’m 5’4″. Muscular build. I find I shop at Banana Republic often. So often I’m a Luxe cardholder. The main benefit is the free tailoring. I really like the slim fit Traveller jeans in Japanese selvage denim. Just got a black pair. Unfortunately they only came in 30″ length. So thankful for the tailoring. I have had to spend more money than the “average” man on tailoring in general. Though secretly, l enjoy clothes tailored to my size. Very bespoke. Just found your site. Looking forward to what you bring to the table, or rather, the closet.
Jas rai says
Hi Brock, this is what I needed! Iam just 5:5.I do shopping in so,many stores but the problem is in sizes.finally I get this store name modestman.com,I wanna try in this store!!!! i live in United States in charlotte nc could you please help me Brock to find out this store near by me.
Thank you! This is exactly what I needed! Please do more of these store type posts.
Glad to hear it. Will do more of these in the future.
I am about 5’6″ and weigh about 170 with a very muscular chest, neck and shoulders, as well as thighs, and I buy almost all of my clothes at J. Crew, other than jeans and cords and the occasional chino, which I get from Levi’s. I’ve bought a few things from BR and none of them ever fit comfortably.
Thanks for this segment Brock. I am nearly exactly the same height/weight as you so this really helps. Much appreciated!
Hello Brock, excellent site. I am of the shorter stature and have had a hard time sourcing clothes and shoes that fit. I too shop at Banana Republic and do think they make some pants and sweaters well for shorter men. My only pet peeve is that here in Canada, Banana Republic and Gap both only offer pants length size down to 30″ only. Never 29″ or 28″ like down in the States. I wonder why? Check out the difference between bananarepublic.ca vs bananarepublic.com . Finally, due to my body fit, I find that I fit the Gavin better than the Emerson.
Ps – Now that I have discovered your site, I will be an avid reader.
Thanks for your comment! That’s weird that BR Cananda doesn’t go past 30″ for pants length. The good thing is, with the chinos at least, you can just roll them instead of spending the $10-20 to get them hemmed.
Between the Gavin, Emerson and new slim chinos, every guy should be able to find something that suits them. Supposedly, Bonobos is also good for guys with thicker legs and thighs.
Glad to hear you will continue to follow the site. Hit me up with an email if you have any ideas for future posts.
recently purchased a cashmere/silk vneck sweater from BR and its probably the best fitting sweater I’ve purchased. But I’m also 5’5ish and 110lb, so the slimness of sweater may not be good for bigger dudes.
Hey Don – glad to hear it! I’m a little bigger (5’6″ and 130 lbs) and their sweaters fit me perfectly as well.