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Head Spinning Over Deciding on First 'Legitimate' Suit

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 

I am a new member of the site, however I have been a regular reader of the forums for some time now. I recently graduated from optometry school and finally have the $ to purchase a better wardrobe. I would like to start with a really nice suit. I have read so many forum topics on this that my head is spinning, eyes are crossing and I think I am on information overload.

 

I'm 5'8", 165 with an athletic, muscular build. I know they aren't high quality shirts, but Express 1MX fitted Small is a perfect fit on me (only a tad narrow in the shoulders).

 

Before reading the forum, I knew absolutely nothing about suits. However, I believe that I would definitely like light-weight wool, slim fitting, fully canvassed, flat front pants. I don't wear a suit to work and will only be wearing it for office parties, weddings, funerals, formal events etc...so it is ok that it not be overly conservative/traditional.

 

I would like to spend $750 or less (the lower the better as I still have a considerable amount of loan $ to pay off).

 

I live in Baton Rouge, Louisiana and there are not many options available to try on the designers mentioned as the best suits on this forum. All we have are department stores, Burlington Coat Factory, Marshalls, JAB, MW etc. Trying on suit coats in stores I've found that the fits are quite variable and so I'm tentative to order online...however, it seems that if I want quality I will have to.

 

Thank you in advance for your thoughts/advice.

post #2 of 9
Fully canvassed at that price? Benjamin on ehaberdasher.com. I don't own one, but many on here like them.
post #3 of 9
Thread Starter 

I didn't even know what canvassing was a couple of months ago. This site has really educated me. From reading on the forum, the Benjamin suits on ehaberdasher.com and the Thick as Thieves suits both peak my interest. Do you think it's ok to go this route for my first suit? It seems that most are in agreement that the RLBL suits are great quality and a nice slim-fit, but some said that there was too much padding in the shoulders. Do they sell these at RL Factory Outlets? There is one a 3 hour drive from me.

post #4 of 9
Doubt they have much of that at the outlet. It's probably mostly Lauren stuff. But you could call them and ask. Consider SuitSupply too. They have free shipping both ways, so if the fit doesn't work out, you can always send it back.
post #5 of 9
Kent Wang, Ehaberdasher, Thick and Theives. All 3 would do you well. You could also look for something like Isaia or Zegna off ebay.
post #6 of 9
Thread Starter 

Thank you Gauss17.

post #7 of 9
Thread Starter 

So which of these suits are the best quality, slim fit design?

 

1. Benjamin Sartorial

2. Thick as Thieves

3. Indochina Essential

4. Kent Wang

post #8 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gauss17 View Post

Kent Wang, Ehaberdasher, Thick and Theives. All 3 would do you well. You could also look for something like Isaia or Zegna off ebay.


Kent Wang is starting to do suits - he'll send you a stock size then you tell him what to tweak then it's made for you (or so I read). But you're limited on fabrics. To compare, TaT will go from scratch from all measurements (or so I read). But you have more to choose from. Seeing that you haven't run the gamut of highs and lows of OTR suits to have developed a strong sense of what works and what doesn't, I would strongly suggest starting with something you can physically try on. Yes, that means you may spend a few bucks on shipping, but there are a lot of places out there with no or dirt cheap shipping. If you have to spend $20-30 on sending back a couple of items just consider it a small investment to get a better return, same as cost of alterations. At your price range, you're in that Suit Supply, J Crew, Brooks Brothers (on sale) or Benjamin (ehaberdasher) area as others have mentioned. You might luck into something on Ebay, but again you're taking a chance that it actually fits, is of a recent season, looks like it does in the picture, etc, and if you hate it you'll probably have less chance, if any, to return compared to an online shop.

RE: Express - do their shirts look like normal dress shirts, or do they have a satin-y sheen that would fit in better at a club or high school dance? And please tell us you're not buying the dark blue/green/purple/turquoise colors. I haven't set foot in one of those stores in 8 years so I'm just curious for curiosity sake. If it's the latter I'd suggest something new.
Edited by CousinDonuts - 4/23/12 at 2:23pm
post #9 of 9
Thread Starter 

Thank you for your advice.

 

I only have a couple Express shirts, they are not satiny 97% cotton, 3% spandex. I have one in white, black and Lavender. I have never been to a tailor in my life, but these shirts fit me better than any OTR shirt I've ever tried on. Absolutely no billowing (I have a very tapered physique).
 

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