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French Tailoring Thread (e.g. Camps de Luca, Cifonelli, Smalto and etc.) - Page 59

post #871 of 1044
Kenjiro Suzuki used a similar sort of fitting garment on me. However, he asked me to try it on only after he'd taken a very thorough set of measurements, using the garment to identify any balance/body issues I might have. The garment seemed to be one tool that was part of his full fitting process. In that way, it was different from how I thought MTM worked, where the tailor seems to start from a set pattern and then figure out where deviations have to be made.
post #872 of 1044
To be perfectly clear here: Camps is refusing to alter it again, for the third time. I lost about 50 pounds, over the course of 18 months, and we already did alterations once, and then again, so this would be the third time. At the end of the second time, they already warned me that they didn't think it would be possible to do it a third time. That's where the ambiguity is: is it impossible technically, or is it that they just don't want to do it, because of the effort required?

I happened to have a wardrobe of 200 suits, and when I lost 50 pounds, I ended up having to sell about 100 of them, as some SF members are well aware, and I'm now having to pay to alter the majority of what's left, which is costing me an arm and a leg. So any savings I can make is truly appreciated.

My learning curve for alterations is quite high, as I've gone from a European 56 regular to a 54, and now even a 52 in some cases. I have done every alteration possible, with many different Taylor's, so I have a pretty good idea of what can or cannot be achieved. It so happens that in this case, I believe we can get the results I'm looking for. But that's just my own personal opinion, from my experience. CdL may disagree on feasability.

I won't begin to describe how many of my suits have been taken apart and put back together, but they are absolutely beautifully fitted now. So my gut tells me we can get it right. I invite members to see my blog, looking at selfies going back over the last two years, you can see me lose weight, and you can see my whole wardrobe get altered to follow my morphological transformation month after month: dirnelli.tumblr.com/archive

It may be that CdL are just too busy or understaffed to be able to accommodate this very demanding request from a very demanding customer, and I wouldn't fault them for it, I'm well aware that I'm probably the most difficult customer in Paris in terms of quality expectations.

Full disclosure: the discussion with CdL ended when I raised the issue of altering the shoulders. Keep in mind that's a six hour job for a tailor. Lorenzo will not be doing six hours of work on my shoulders. He will be doing something through the back, which I think will work, given what I've seen with the needles. So it's not like the one tailor is doing exactly what the other refused to do. But still, I appreciate that Lorenzo is stepping in to do a job on the suit of a competitor, that is very rare in this industry.

Guys, one final word on this: let's not make it into a heated online debate about what tailors should or shouldn't be expected to do, I respect anybody's after sales service, it's for each tailor to decide how much they want to do or not for each customer. I won't pass judgment. After all, I know that most tailors are losing money on me given how many fittings and alterations I request. Tailors only start to make money after they get through the first suit. If you only order one suit, as in my case, they've already lost money if I don't come back for two or three more. There's an economy of scale: it takes longer to make the first suit, then you speed up the process as you learn the customers measurements. Bespoke tailoring is a luxury industry in which tailors don't actually make that much money, given how long it takes for them to produce each suit, people aren't always aware of this, as it's quite paradoxical. Some tailors can decide to cut their losses at a certain stage. Believe me, I know: I have had tailors turn me down. On the other hand, they can be quite emotional and 'artistic' as well, I've seen many of them have changes of heart over the course of many years -- the relationship can be a roller coaster sometimes, the client and/or the tailor are in or out of favor with each other through the cycle.

I just had the exact opposite experience with the tailor Di Castri, who had refused a year ago to do anymore alterations on my 10 suits from him, and just a month ago, out of the blue, he said okay, and did 10 suits for free in a record two weeks to refit them to my new size, including some major shoulder work on one of them.

Go figure.
post #873 of 1044
Now I wonder how big a discount Camps will give to Cromps. After all, they seem to have enough customers as it is, despite the prices, and likely there's no need for paid or subsidised advertising.
post #874 of 1044
Quote:
Originally Posted by dirnelli View Post

I happened to have a wardrobe of 200 suits

Holy cow.



Given the raw amount of work for Di Castri, for instance, would discussion of compensation come in to play, or is it uncomfortable/awkward ground to ask a bespoke maker to be paid to do alterations?

You would think CdL would do the alterations if you paid them for their time, assuming they consider it possible...
post #875 of 1044
For what it's worth, at bespoke rates, Lorenzo estimated the shoulder width alteration to be equivalent of €1500.

A good rate for shoulder width alteration at a corner shop in Paris would be 90€, and I've done a bunch of those at that price with great success.

I now even have a secret negotiated rate of 50€ somewhere known only to myself.
post #876 of 1044
Frankly, I'll have to side with the CdL folks here - asking them to alter an old garment for a third time is pretty ballsy on your part.
post #877 of 1044
I know. Worth a try.
post #878 of 1044
In my defense, I just don't have an extra €6000 lying around to order another suit. And I can't afford to throw away the €6000 investment that has already been made. I am not a Russian oligarch or an African dictator, sorry to disappoint. wink.gif
post #879 of 1044
I'm still shocked by 200 suits.
post #880 of 1044
I guess you can say that I paid my dues to understand what this whole suit jazz was about.

Now you're looking at a guy who has no more qualms about wearing bespoke one day and fused RTW the next. Style is not about how much you spend, I learned that the hard way.

Some people want to own only few suits, but only the most expensive. I disagree, because it can become repetitive, even if each item is a masterpiece.

Having a broad range at different levels of price and quality allows you to have a wider palette to create from.

The tailor's part is only step 1. The real creative leap depends on what each client does with the tailor's work IRL -- that's when the fun starts.

I do regret spending so much, but I have no regrets about having a large wardrobe.

When you love clothes, it's great to create something new everyday, to surprise yourself.

That's why I started to blog selfies: to keep track of my wins & fails, to learn from my mistakes.

So my advice is: build up huge wardrobes to choose from, but do it by thrifting to keep the cost down. Thanks to eBay, Yoox and SF classified, everybody can manage to do it.

If you know how to buy well, you can even resell at cost and keep rolling over for ever and ever, without worrying about storage.
post #881 of 1044
Also, must have a large closet!

I have ~5 suits and ~6 sportcoats and they are getting squeezed frown.gif ...NYC
post #882 of 1044
Quote:
Originally Posted by dirnelli View Post

I guess you can say that I paid my dues to understand what this whole suit jazz was about.

Now you're looking at a guy who has no more qualms about wearing bespoke one day and fused RTW the next. Style is not about how much you spend, I learned that the hard way.

Some people want to own only few suits, but only the most expensive. I disagree, because it can become repetitive, even if each item is a masterpiece.

Having a broad range at different levels of price and quality allows you to have a wider palette to create from.

The tailor's part is only step 1. The real creative leap depends on what each client does with the tailor's work IRL -- that's when the fun starts.

I do regret spending so much, but I have no regrets about having a large wardrobe.

When you love clothes, it's great to create something new everyday, to surprise yourself.

That's why I started to blog selfies: to keep track of my wins & fails, to learn from my mistakes.

So my advice is: build up huge wardrobes to choose from, but do it by thrifting to keep the cost down. Thanks to eBay, Yoox and SF classified, everybody can manage to do it.

If you know how to buy well, you can even resell at cost and keep rolling over for ever and ever, without worrying about storage.


So true.. unfortunately for me I have to always buy NWT or brand new.. used items dont work for me in terms of the pants.. I need a full 38 to 40 inches of an inseam to work.. most used ones in my size go only to about 32-34.. and forget finding my size on SF market place.. so while others have options others not as much

post #883 of 1044
pour Reginald


post #884 of 1044
Quote:
Originally Posted by dirnelli View Post

If you know how to buy well, you can even resell at cost and keep rolling over for ever and ever, without worrying about storage.

spoo does this.
post #885 of 1044
I really love reading this thread as I have never been exposed to French tailoring and am now completely smitten with the fishmouth lapel. Getting a suit done at Camps, Cifo or Smalto is out of the question, too rich for my blood. frown.gif So I did the next best thing and had my tailor in Hong Kong make a copy from pictures on this thread.

Had my first fitting yesterday, but from the photo you can't really see the fishmouth lapels, I am a bit worried that they might get the collar wrong (not lapel) as it is somewhat larger than usual.




Will post pics when it's done.
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