or Connect
Styleforum › Forums › Men's Style › Classic Menswear › How to define "value" in tailoring? $635 to perform alterations to one jacket - at Bill Cairo custom tailors in California - insane?
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

How to define "value" in tailoring? $635 to perform alterations to one jacket - at Bill Cairo...

post #1 of 55
Thread Starter 

So I got a $1,500 pure silk Canali blazer in a truly beautiful cream herringbone pattern for almost 90% off at an Off Saks outlet - $169 - in a 42R, which fits my chest - but is a tent everywhere else. 

 

I took it to a local high end tailor who comes highly recommended on this forum - also with a reputation for being expensive - and does a lot of bespoke suits - Bill Cairo Custom Tailor of San Marino - to see if it could be made to fit, or if I should just return it.

 

He said the jacket is "well balanced" - whatever that means, and set about pinning it up.

 

15 minutes later we decided to:

 

-Shorten the jacket 3/4 of an inch.

-Take the jacket in a lot to fit my drop, which is requiring taking material out of both the front and the rear - slicing it open at four side seams.  This also entails removing the patch pockets and placing them back on.

-Close both rear vents because after bringing it in the vents were going to "scissor" outwards

-Bringing the shoulders in 3/8 of an inch on each side.

-Bringing material up in the back to eliminate some wrinkling and a duck-tail effect over my ass.

 

I figure this is a total of 12 "changes" - and then I'm going to be in for $800 including purchase price, which seems like a decent value for a silk Canali in a classic style that should fit like a glove and last for many years.

 

But still - $635 in alterations?  The bespoke blazers at Bill Cairo start at $2,500, so i guess everything's relative. . .

 

I don't feel like he tried to "sell" me on the work, but he wouldn't negotiate the price.  He also turned down work on two other jackets I brought him, where he could have easily taken advantage of me instead and rung up a higher total ticket.

 

Do you get what you pay for at these high end tailors, or are there a lot of lesser-known clothing artists out there who can perform major surgery just as well for 1/2 the price?

 


Edited by lalaland - 4/27/12 at 12:41am
post #2 of 55
Sad thing is you pay for the consistency and reliability of their work, the jacket sounds like to undergo a recut so it is going to be expensive.

I would not worry too much as long as the garment fits, and as you also said the price you pay can't get you any bespoke.........
post #3 of 55
Sounds like a pretty extensive alteration; the shoulders in particular are probably the most expensive part. They also involve removing and reattaching the sleeves, which is one of the most difficult operations in the whole process of making a coat. It's not really surprising that it would cost so much to have it done properly.
post #4 of 55
Seems you have either been taken for an idiot or else it was so badly fitting that passing on it in the first place might have been better.

What ever this tailor's reputation, I am not convinced that such extensive work is satisfactory.
post #5 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by lalaland View Post

So I got a $1,500 pure silk Canali blazer in a truly beautiful cream herringbone pattern for almost 90% off at an Off Saks outlet - $169 - in a 42R, which fits my chest - but is a tent everywhere else. 

I can't get why someone would buy such an apparently badly fitting jacket in the first place.
Quote:
Originally Posted by lalaland View Post

I took it to a local high end tailor who comes highly recommended on this forum - also with a reputation for being expensive

Performing miracles probably is expensive.
post #6 of 55
Maybe it's just me, but that doesn't sound like a good deal at all. Judging by the large amount of $$$ shoulder work, I'd say you'd be better sizing down to fit your shoulders, and then letting out material in the chest. There's always at least 1-2" to let out between all the seams.
post #7 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by Birks and Grey Socks View Post

Maybe it's just me, but that doesn't sound like a good deal at all. Judging by the large amount of $$$ shoulder work, I'd say you'd be better sizing down to fit your shoulders, and then letting out material in the chest. There's always at least 1-2" to let out between all the seams.

+1. That's the better way
post #8 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by Birks and Grey Socks View Post

Maybe it's just me, but that doesn't sound like a good deal at all. Judging by the large amount of $$$ shoulder work, I'd say you'd be better sizing down to fit your shoulders, and then letting out material in the chest. There's always at least 1-2" to let out between all the seams.

nod[1].gif
post #9 of 55
Assuming the work is great.

Ask yourself, if that jacket was $800 on the rack would you have bought it? I think probably not.
post #10 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by JPHardy View Post

Assuming the work is great.
Ask yourself, if that jacket was $800 on the rack would you have bought it? I think probably not.

This^^.
And could you have bought 3 BETTER fitting jackets that needed some tailoring(assuming $800) and take to a just as good, regular priced tailor.

Also, please poast flicks of said jacket...next time...poast a b4 and after!!
post #11 of 55

You can get a brand new bespoke suit for that amount.

post #12 of 55
We better see some flicks....
post #13 of 55

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by lalaland View Post

So I got a $1,500 pure silk Canali blazer in a truly beautiful cream herringbone pattern for almost 90% off at an Off Saks outlet - $169 - in a 42R, which fits my chest - but is a tent everywhere else. 

 

 

 

Next time make sure it fits your shoulders, that way any other alterations you require shouldn't require major work thus keeping costs lower.

post #14 of 55
Bottom line sounds like you bought a jacket that was far too big. If you buy something that is completely off on sizing, your "value" is out the door, if you want it to fit you properly. I doubt you'd get that kind of extensive work done for much cheaper. At least, not from someone I'd trust to do that much reconstructive surgery.
post #15 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by lalaland View Post

So I got a $1,500 pure silk Canali blazer in a truly beautiful cream herringbone pattern for almost 90% off at an Off Saks outlet - $169 - in a 42R, which fits my chest - but is a tent everywhere else.

I took it to a local high end tailor who comes highly recommended on this forum - also with a reputation for being expensive - and does a lot of bespoke suits - Bill Cairo Custom Tailor of San Marino - to see if it could be made to fit, or if I should just return it.

He said the jacket is "well balanced" - whatever that means, and set about pinning it up.

15 minutes later we decided to:

-Shorten the jacket 3/4 of an inch.
-Take the jacket in a lot to fit my drop, which is requiring taking material out of both the front and the rear - slicing it open at four side seams.  This also entails removing the patch pockets and placing them back on.
-Close both rear vents because after bringing it in the vents were going to "scissor" outwards
-Bringing the shoulders in 3/8 of an inch on each side.
-Bringing material up in the back to eliminate some wrinkling and a duck-tail effect over my ass.

I figure this is a total of 12 "changes" - and then I'm going to be in for $800 including purchase price, which seems like a decent value for a silk Canali in a classic style that should fit like a glove and last for many years.

But still - $635 in alterations?  The bespoke blazers at Bill Cairo start at $2,500, so i guess everything's relative. . .

I don't feel like he tried to "sell" me on the work, but he wouldn't negotiate the price.  He also turned down work on two other jackets I brought him, where he could have easily taken advantage of me instead and rung up a higher total ticket.

Do you get what you pay for at these high end tailors, or are there a lot of lesser-known clothing artists out there who can perform major surgery just as well for 1/2 the price?


baldy[1].gif
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Classic Menswear
  • How to define "value" in tailoring? $635 to perform alterations to one jacket - at Bill Cairo custom tailors in California - insane?
Styleforum › Forums › Men's Style › Classic Menswear › How to define "value" in tailoring? $635 to perform alterations to one jacket - at Bill Cairo custom tailors in California - insane?