10 Rules for Buying a Bespoke Suit

#1: Fabric Comes First

There are a thousand ways to sew a suit, but the garment is ultimately only as good as its raw ingredients. Fabric selection is the most important decision you will make when designing your new bespoke suit. Not only does it determine how your suit will look and feel, but also how it will perform and last over time. Avoid anything with a synthetic blend. To start, look for a 100% worsted wool from a trusted mill in a “super 110s-120s” thread count for the best combination of luxury and durability.

#2: Understand which regional cut is best for your body

Every bespoke shop has their own opinion on how a suit should be cut to best flatter a man’s body.

For example, traditional British shops, like the esteemed tailors on Saville Row, tend to cut with larger allowances,  heavier cloth, a lower gorge line (the seam where the collar meets the lapel) and more overall structure to the jacket (stiffer chest canvas, thicker shoulder pads, etc).

By contrast, Italian tailors tend to prefer lighter cloth, smaller allowances (cut closer to the body), a higher gorge and a more “flexible” construction (softer shoulders, less padding, etc).

#3: Get to a stable body shape before ordering

A bespoke custom suit will probably be your best motivation to stay in shape.

#4: Get the fit right, the first time

If you have the option of paying more for a “higher level” that includes additional fittings, do it for your first suit. Once you have your pattern locked down, there is less need to do it again and your future orders will be a breeze.

#5: Match your style preferences with the experts

Match your style preferences, goals with your fashion consultant’s advice.  Converse with them about your styling decisions to achieve the best outcome for your suit.

#6: Avoid trends like the plague

You want your new investment to last 5-10 years (depending on how hard you wear your clothing), so keep the proportions classic and avoid anything “of the moment”.

The trouser hemline is a slightly different issue as this can be lengthened or shortened in a matter of minutes.

#7: Don’t get caught up in thread counts

Higher thread counts does not always equal better cloth.  This number – which represents the number of fibers spun into a unit measure of cloth – indicates only the “fineness” of the fibers. It can mean that a cloth will have a great “hand feel” and sheen, but what’s more important is its inverse relationship with durability.

The Super 110-130 range is the perfect balance between luxury and durability.

Super 180s and higher become very delicate, so should be reserved for special events once a month.

Additionally, “super 110s” from a quality mill can feel softer than a “super 180s” from a second rate fabric house anyway.

#8: Get the basics first, then build from there

Think of your first visit to a bespoke shop as the first step in building your new wardrobe. Start with versatile basics and slowly build out to seasonal fabrics with more personality. You can wear a solid blue or grey suit to the office three times a week and nobody will notice, but your co-workers will call you out if they keep seeing those purple pinstripes.

Also, don’t factor-in the suits you already have in your closet unless you love them and they fit very well. 90% of clients stop wearing their off-the-rack suits after going custom.

If you already have a strong base and are looking for something specific, don’t be afraid to bring a picture reference to show your salesperson.

#9: Take care of your investments

Ask your tailor for proper care instructions.

Generally speaking, dry clean your suits as infrequently as possible (only when their physically dirty from spills or sweat). Dry cleaning is a chemical wash that slowly erodes fabric – essentially scraping away the surface layer.

Otherwise, if the garment simply needs a “refresher”, have it steamed or pressed (which is much cheaper than dry cleaning and effectively cleans it using heat and steam anyway).

#10:  Contact Us Now

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