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!