Americans have the reputation – at least among Europeans – of being badly dressed. This sweeping statement is certainly not universally true across the entire United States; there are plenty of well-dressed people, especially in the more fashion-forward metropolises like, famously, New York City. But there is definitely more than a kernel of truth to this stereotype.
One thing I’ve noticed since returning to the US is not that Americans are badly dressed as such, but more that they are wearing clothing that is horrendously ill fitting. As in, how did you try that on, look at yourself in the mirror, and think that was okay to buy?
I’ve noticed this with men in particular, and especially white men when they are trying to dress formally for work or other occasions. Nothing looks more amateur and downright un-sexy than an ill fitting suit. European men often wear bespoke (custom made) suits or, if they buy a ready made suit, they will get it tailored so it fits their body smoothly.
The concept of the slender-cut suit seems not to exist among many American men, who buy the off-the-rack suits that leave them looking frumpy with folds of fabric bunched up in all sorts of awkward places (and a belt struggling unsuccessfully to hold it all together). And similarly, what’s up up with American men wearing khaki trousers that are several sizes too large? I saw a guy the other day whose khakis were so baggy, they were literally flapping in the wind…