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I am sure you have walked into an apparel shop, seen two shirts of the same size and fabric, and instantly loved them. On trying them on, you ended up loving one more than the other because of how it looked on you. The reason you loved one more lies, not in the fit or style but most likely drape.


The drape style is a rather tricky concept to explain. We might all know and trust it, but pointing it out loud can be challenging. The best way to understand it is by studying Indian men’s styles. The dhoti pants and shoulder ensembles they rock have a unique yet breathtaking drape that we can incorporate into our style. And no, I don’t mean you should start dressing in shawls and dhoti pants. Instead, observe how these pieces fold and move around their bodies and how they flatter their build.


Used as a styling technique, a good drape in any man’s clothing makes an outfit look smart and sophisticated while providing a casually relaxing yet flattering effect.


Simply put, it has more to do with how a cloth item envelope falls and moves around your body. It might have to do with fitting, but in most cases, it is all about how the maker manipulates the fabric to that effect and the type of fabric. The best example is that shirt you bought that fits you perfectly but has a rather weird feel and look every time you move around in it.


Drape in men’s clothing has a lot to do with the quality of the fabric used. The higher the fabric quality used, the more elegant the drape in the final product, provided the maker has the skill to make a good drape.


Traditionally, draping was done to create perfect shapes around the waist and shoulders in men’s top wear. And although this is still the case today, the style has been diversified to cater to almost any piece of men’s clothing. This is because stylists today understand that structure and a good fit plus drape equals perfection in men’s fashion. This explains why we have dress pants today and suits with a perfect fluid drape accentuating our build and taking our style a level higher.


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As the draped silhouette continues to take men’s wardrobes by storm, manufacturers are taking advantage of its flattering effect on our bodies and marking up the cost of such items. This is because most of us don’t have it in our checklist for things we look for when buying clothes, but the designer knows you will always go for items with a natural drape.


The concept is widely loved and adored by men with big bodies because they love clothes with a relaxed fit. A loose piece of clothing shows an excellent drape compared to how a skinny cut will.


So next time you walk into an apparel shop, consider taking a fitting piece but with a natural and fluid drape rather than go for a larger size.


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