You called? MTM shirts in Vancouver, eh? Well, Tattersall is right; I have been researching this lately. I'll give you a list with some annotation.Chevalier Creations
. I've had one shirt made by Gabriel (the shirtmaker and owner)--my one and only bespoke shirt. I think the workmanship is pretty good, but his prices may be higher than your range. I'd imagine he'd charge somewhat more than $200 for a good linen shirt. Gabriel has re-located his business in the past 4 months from his original location on Seymour St. to somewhere else, but I don't know where that is. I'd imagine he'd keep his old phone number (for convenience of customers): 604-687-8428.
Let me now give you four shirtmakers I've talked with, and in the case of the third and fourth, seen their operations. On the basis of what I know at this point, I think I'd rank them in this order:1. Minichiello
- 127 W. Esplanade, North Vancouver; 604-985-9222. Paul Minichiello built up a good reputation for tailoring (suits, jackets, shirts) over a long period. He now is in semi-retirement, but the business is being continued by his daughter, Julie. I think I'll have my next shirt done by them; Julie seems great--very knowledgeable and approachable. I'd guess that they could do a good linen shirt for $200 or very close to it.2. Andy Yuen
. Andy is a fairly young guy starting out in the bespoke clothing business in Vancouver. He lives in Kitsilano, and his phone number is: 604-731-8080. I've spoken to Andy, and have heard good things about his work (he doesn't do the sewing, but organizes everything else and does the fitting). Haven't checked out his fabrics yet. Should be able to do this for around $200 I think.3. Angelo Papa
. 1501 Commercial Drive; 604-253-7633. Operates out of a hole in the wall on Commercial Drive. Store lacks ambience, we might say, but his shirts look OK, and he does have a decent fabric selection. I'm pretty sure that he could do a shirt for you for around $200.4. Steven Chan
. 3015 Cambie Street; 604-874-8616. Definitely not first-class, but seems competent, and could, I think, make a linen shirt for you for probably somewhat less than $200.
In addition, I've just recently visited Madison Men's Wear
, 1050 W. Pender in the Bentall Building; 604-683-2122. They offer MTM shirts, but they just do the measuring, with the manufacture taking place in the East (probably Toronto). The most reasonably-priced of their lines are shirts made by the Royal Shirt Co., and I expect that a nice linen shirt would probably cost more than $200--more like $275+, I'd think. Another well-known source of good MTM shirts in Vancouver is the Zegna shop
in Pacific Centre. You will get a good MTM shirt there, but won't get it for $200. I'd think more like $300+ for a nice linen shirt. And certainly Houserichichi's suggestion of Harry Rosen
is a good one. I think in Harry Rosen's case, the shirts are made in the East (they might even use Royal Shirt Co. as Madison do), and I think I'd be surprised if they could do what you want for $200 (although I could be wrong about this).
Two other points: (a) It's hard to distinguish between true bespoke
when it comes to what we might term "custom" shirt. If the shirtmaker (the "chemisier") creates a unique pattern for you based on your measurements and preferences, it is bespoke. If s/he takes your measurements and then simply goes with an existing pattern (properly scaled for your measurements), it is MTM. I suspect that much of what is described as bespoke is actually MTM (Tattersall twigged me to this). Although bespoke is the more desirable in the minds of most, MTM is probably more than good enough for most men who want a good fit, but don't have a lot of advanced ideas about style features. (b) There are dozens of shirtmakers in Vancouver. Most are pretty basic and make cheap shirts. I dropped into the shop of one the other day near the corner of Burrard and 8th. The shirtmaker, a woman, knew nothing about different grades of cotton or of the better mills, and was churning out shirts for around $80. She was using 2-ply 100s for most of this, as far as I could tell.
My recommendation would be to first talk to Julie Minichiello and see what she can do for you. If that doesn't work out for some reason, call Andy Yuen, and, after that, Angelo Papa. I think that one of these will pan out for you.
Best of luck and please keep us informed of your adventures in the wonderful (and sometimes confusing!) world of MTM or bespoke shirts!