Some styles don't cut it

December 29, 2005|By TANIKA WHITE

Many NBA players skew European when picking their ties and shoes but buy American when it comes to their suits.

It's not patriotism, though. It's practicality.

"It don't look right for a guy 6-9 or 6-11 to be in Versace, Armani," says Washington Wizards' forward Jared Jeffries, who wears a size 17 shoe. "Italian designers, that European cut, it looks crazy. It's too slim."

Size is one reason why most ball players, no matter their personal styles, have their suits custom made.

One favorite among players is Elevee Custom Clothing out of Van Nuys, Calif. Others find local tailors they trust and have them snip and sew away.

It's all that custom-making that goes a long way toward explaining the unexpected twists celebrity ball players bring to the traditional suit: the long coats; the myriad buttons; the unorthodox colors and fabrics - NBA fashion at its most fabulous.

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