On the Street, there’s no question about it– a well-fitting suit looks the best, and you won’t be able to find the best fitting suit off the rack.So yeah, that $1,500 Canali suit you just bought was a waste of money. Even Patrick Bateman’s Valentinos were a waste of money. So what if the suit is some uber high quality thread? The fit is what’s most important.
These days you can find the best fitting suit from an ever growing list of companies that produce made to measure and bespoke suits, not some off the rack label.
The underlying concept is simple, really. Off the rack suits are not made specifically for your body, but for someone else’s.
Meanwhile, made to measure and bespoke suits are made for your body. And although bespoke suits still cost thousands of dollars, made to measure suits can now be had for under $500. Just a few years ago they were hard to come by for anything less than $1,000. Now you don’t even need to leave your desk to get one.
Check out companies like Indochino, Black Lapel, Knot Standard, and My Suit, just to name a few. Each of these companies have made to measure suits that start at less than $500 and Indochino’s even start at less than $400.
The online order process for each of the companies is rather similar, too.
Here’s how it works.
You get measured either by a tailor or a friend, submit your measurements to the company’s website and select your fabric and options.
Now, if that method deters you, fear not. If you are New York based, you can schedule in person fittings with Black Lapel and My Suit or many others shops in the city. Other cities also have their share of establishments as well, but make sure you do your research first.
Send off your measurements, and you’ll get an excellent suit back.
Now this doesn’t always work perfectly. Sometimes the suits are a bit off. To remedy this, every brand that I know of offers some type of tailoring credit to pay for alterations. And in case you were wondering, you will always need some alterations because it’s pretty much impossible to get the right fit the first time. Or, if needed, suits are remade at no additional cost.
However, some companies, like Indochino,are testing other methods to work on getting the right fit down the first time by establishing their travelling Tailor program. In fact, Indochino’s travelling Tailor series has been generating chatter among made to measure enthusiasts.
So far, the series has hit San Francisco and Chicago and is taking over Vanderbilt Hall at Grand Central all of this week (October 22-29th).
For these events, Indochino brings tailors, fabric samples and sample garments of not only suits but also trench coats, shirts and over coats. Basically, it is a made to measure suiting pop up shop. The events are unique to Indochino but are a presentation of how far made to measure suiting has come over the past few years.
Justin Jeffers is the editor of The Fine Young Gentleman.