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Bespoke, too cheap? - Page 2

post #16 of 32
I'm sorry, but I'm not very convinced. If you saw his coat and did not like it, I'd not be willing to take such a expensive plunge.
About your MTM option. At this price point I'd advise you to take a look at the MTM operation that Steeds is offering. They're one of the best tailoring operations around, offering a A&S inspired silhouette without the customer service drawback of A&S.
Take a look at their travel itinerary, perhaps you can get in touch with them at one of their trips.
post #17 of 32

Having seen those pictures, no, definitely not. You were right to describe them as just cloth covering bodies. The shoulders seem to be particularly unsubtle and ill-thought out too.

post #18 of 32

I just got one on dealfind for $900. The fit was spot on but the detail work was poor (i.e. I need to replace a trouser button after one wearing). However extra fittings were an option (I am in a different city) so I knew I was getting a MTM suit really and I am happy with what I got for the price.

 

A lot of people say bespoke when it is really MTM with extra fittings I find and I think a lot of the sewing is outsourced to other people.

 

Personally I am not a wealthy person so this is my only access to custom suiting so I am fine with it but I know what I am getting.

post #19 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nathan Parker View Post

Someone local promised me a bespoke suit for less than $1k. Haven't spoken with him in person yet, but is a decent bespoke suit even possible for that price? Not looking for anything special, just a medium to dark gray business type suit.

Not proper bespoke I suspect.
post #20 of 32
My tailor does full bespoke for around 1K but I provide the cloth, if I use his the price jumps to around 2K. Half the trade off is that I drop a bit further down the list of his current jobs and he works on my suits/jackets when time allows, which I am fine with. As others have said the OP does not describe bespoke as best as I can tell.
post #21 of 32
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Victor Elfo View Post

I'm sorry, but I'm not very convinced. If you saw his coat and did not like it, I'd not be willing to take such a expensive plunge.

 

Agreed, but I was trying to allow for a possible difference in taste. And for the idea of "a cobbler's children have no shoes." Still, in the poor light, the suit looked like a double-knit, and didn't really seem to fit well, although perhaps with his posture, nothing would have fit well. His market appears to be people with hard-to-fit body shapes who also don't have any point of reference of what a quality suit looks like and don't have any need in conforming to a traditional look. Even if he were capable of doing good work, I don't think I'd trust his recommendations on how the suit should look or fit. My instincts say "run!".

 

He did point out that my old suit jacket was too short, because it didn't cover my butt. I was appalled. I'm hoping this is a new development because of the increased size of my traps, and that I haven't been running around like that for years.

 

Quote:
Take a look at their travel itinerary, perhaps you can get in touch with them at one of their trips.

 

That's an interesting idea; my first thought was "Well, they're surely not coming HERE," but actually, they'll be in Nashville on the 23rd and that's only 3 hours away. I'm not sure it would be smart to wait that long, though; I had assumed I could always wear my old suit for an interview, and just leave the jacket unbuttoned, but now that I know that I look ridiculous in that suit, it's not an option. Still, I will ponder that attractive idea.

 

Thanks for the thoughts.


Edited by Nathan Parker - 10/4/13 at 8:20am
post #22 of 32

Do welcome. I don't have a first hand experience with Steed, but they do produce some of the best garments that I've ever seen, the customer service if top notch and the handwork is beautiful. You can take a look at some Steed's goodness here.

post #23 of 32
Thread Starter 

Ok, I visited another gentleman that does MTM. He had a small...shed...behind a beauty shop. This guy was better kempt than the other guy, but still his suit was something closer to what I'd expect on a pimp. Double-breasted plaid, very baggy pants, strapped shoes. Did he have a flower in his lapel? I don't remember. I struggled to keep an open mind.

 

He put a jacket on me and when the lapels puckered, he criticized my posture as being too erect and shoulders back, and had me hunch forward until the pucker went away. There, it was my fault the whole time. :-) Now, it is true that I've been working on my posture, because a physical therapist had pointed out that I had the forward shoulders typical of a computer user and that's only compounded by bench pressing. But I've been assured by others that what I achieve isn't weird, only unusual in its correctness. I was a bit annoyed that he was seeming to argue that I was wrong to be right. He then put some measuring device on my back to measure my posture and it only read “semi-erect”, which took some wind out of his sails. Strangely, I felt a little insulted by the “semi”, as if I weren't good enough. :-)

 

He pulled out some book of suit patterns and found a page that had a title of something like “full chest”, and there was a note on the page that said this typically caused puckering of the lapels, and this body shape was often paired with an erect posture. The diagram showed to corrections required to the suit, which was that the lapels needed to move a bit more towards the center of the chest in order to cover the pectoral muscles. The MTM manufacturer would be John H Daniel, located in Knoxville, TN. He said the suit he was wearing was made by them. Nail in coffin.

 

He did put one OTR jacket on me and he said he thought he could make that fit me. In truth, it didn't pucker as badly as some, but I wasn't impressed with the drape. I asked if it was fully canvassed and he was dismissive of the advantages. I took that as a "no".

 

Overall, the guy was too pushy, offered too much advice that was contrary to what I'd read, didn't seem to demonstrate the sense of style that I would expect, and didn't have any examples of his work. I fled as gracefully as I could.

 

The only other candidate for a MTM is the lady I ordered some shirts from. I was initially reluctant to pursue this with her because she's more known for shirts than suits, and, yes, I had the idea that a man would know more about men's suit than a woman. But she was an elegant lady with refined tastes, and a delightful Argentine accent. Still, I'd like to see the shirts before I order a suit from her.

 

This has been a real education so far.

 

post #24 of 32
If you're in Memphis, why not go to James Davis https://www.facebook.com/pages/James-Davis/114905805252971
Great store with KNOWLEDGEABLE staff. I'm sure you can find a great suit that fits in your price range.
post #25 of 32
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by TonyThe Tailor View Post

If you're in Memphis, why not go to James Davis https://www.facebook.com/pages/James-Davis/114905805252971
Great store with KNOWLEDGEABLE staff. I'm sure you can find a great suit that fits in your price range.

 

I did. They're the ones that measured me for the Trands MTM. My salesperson was young and new, but he brought over the tailor who really seemed to know what he was doing, which gave me a confidence boost. I'm just a little leery of the unknown Trands brand. The fact that James Davis backs it does help and it's likely I'll go that way.

 

James Davis and Oak Hall have been the two upscale men's stores in Memphis since I was in high school; however, we always ended up buying from Oak Hall, so I tended to divide the world in to James Davis people and Oak Hall people. I feel a little bit like I'm dealing with the enemy.... :-)

post #26 of 32
This is all very interesting because I just had a client telling me he visited Memphis and everyone he met was dressed very formal. Maybe I should do a trunk show there.
post #27 of 32
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by David Reeves View Post

This is all very interesting because I just had a client telling me he visited Memphis and everyone he met was dressed very formal. Maybe I should do a trunk show there.

 

It's an interesting observation that Memphis is formal; I wouldn't have expected that. Lots of suits downtown, of course, but I've never worked in any environment in the last 15 years that wasn't business casual. When I'm in Starbucks out east, a guy in a suit stands out a bit, to me anyway. But there are three pretty nice mens' stores that seem to do a good business: Brooks Brothers, Oak Hall, and James Davis. But I do think there is a great lack of bespoke work done here. One of these guys who was offering MTM assured me that "Nobody's cutting in Memphis." Even on the MTM side, I've been striking out in the tweed jacket area.

 

I'm really not sure what a "Trunk show" entails. Google tells me it's an event to offer a preview of merchandise to store personnel or "select customers". You do something like what Steed is doing, traveling around, measuring people and having something made?

post #28 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nathan Parker View Post

Someone local promised me a bespoke suit for less than $1k. Haven't spoken with him in person yet, but is a decent bespoke suit even possible for that price? Not looking for anything special, just a medium to dark gray business type suit.

That's the classic internet online tailor.
post #29 of 32
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by MikeDT View Post


That's the classic internet online tailor.

 

I dunno, I'm a bit leery of purchasing such a complex item online; I ordered my first internet shirt the other day, and people usually say it takes a few shirts to get it right. I don't want to have to order a few suits to get that right. According to otctailor, I needed the barrel chest adjustment with erect posture, and I have a lot of shoulder slope, and one slopes more than another.

post #30 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nathan Parker View Post

I did. They're the ones that measured me for the Trands MTM. My salesperson was young and new, but he brought over the tailor who really seemed to know what he was doing, which gave me a confidence boost. I'm just a little leery of the unknown Trands brand. The fact that James Davis backs it does help and it's likely I'll go that way.

James Davis and Oak Hall have been the two upscale men's stores in Memphis since I was in high school; however, we always ended up buying from Oak Hall, so I tended to divide the world in to James Davis people and Oak Hall people. I feel a little bit like I'm dealing with the enemy.... :-)

This is why you go to specialty stores and established tailors to have suits made, they stand behind them. I get at least 1 "internet" suit a week in my shop to be fixed. it ends up costing them more than if they would have come to me in the first place.

Oak Hall is a very fine store too, I had just forgot about them.
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