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Best quality/price suit - Page 2

post #16 of 42
I was under the impression that WW Chan was MTM rather than true bespoke so they were based on some sort of template where bespoke would be more of a blank template... a beginner would likely not know what they wanted when it came to a bespoke suit.
post #17 of 42
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I was under the impression that WW Chan was MTM rather than true bespoke so they were based on some sort of template where bespoke would be more of a blank template... a beginner would likely not know what they wanted when it came to a bespoke suit.
I think this gets into the finer (and maybe unanswerable to the satisfaction of all) semantic point of what constitutes MTM vs bespoke vs custom. My understanding of MTM is that it is a process of altering a stock pattern to a customer's measurements, with the existing pattern being a constraint on the final product. My understanding of bespoke is that it is a multi-fitting process that takes into account nuances of posture and form, is not constrained by an existing pattern, and lets the customer specify a broad range of details. Custom (to me) falls in the middle of this continuum. My understanding of the way WW Chan works is that they use the customer's measurements to build a suit, but are not necessarily constrained by a preexisting pattern, which allows them to provide greater variability in the styles and adjustments they put into a final product. At least by the definitions I know, that is more than MTM and less than bespoke. Some people on the forum have described their work in HK (multiple fittings and adjustments) as bespoke, and their work on US visits (single measuring session, alterations possible on later visits) as MTM. I don't know how accurate a dichotomy that is. I certainly know that I've yet to set foot in their HK shop, but my suits are as well-constructed and well-fitting as the suit my friend got in HK, with two post-measurement fittings.
post #18 of 42
No, I believe WW Chan is true bespoke.  They start by creating a paper pattern for you and are not limited by existing "models" as are MTM.  The price is less than one would pay for MTM at, say, Barney's because labor costs are much lower and there is not the same spend on advertising, overheads, etc. In the end, while I would agree with earlier posters that a poorly made custom suit is a bad investment in the abstract, because a tailor is actually taking your measurements and ostensibly making the suit just for you, it seems more likely that you will get a better fit than by buying off the rack.  Buying off the rack, it is highly unlikely that you will get a perfect fit of all your dimensions and you will have to place yourself in the hands of a local tailor to do alterations that may or may not work out as you expected.  Even if your "custom" suit needs to be altered because of improper execution, at least from the outset it will generally (although not always) more closely fit your dimensions than an OTR suit.  As other posters have noted, if you look at some Hong Kong custom suits as works in progress when delivered, potentially needing further local tweaking, then one would expect the fit to be a lot better than OTR, potentially, unless you just happen to find that suitmaker that fits you perfectly. While many have praised certain suit brands on this board for their wonderful construction, the fact remains that if the suits do not fit the wearer properly, they will look decidedly subpar, despite their construction.  Certain photos posted on this board and AA (I will not name names) illustrate this proposition. As an addendum, many hong kong tailors charge $600-800 for a suit and they are not terrible quality by any means (in fact, some are quite a bit nicer than $1500 suits I've seen in Barneys, etc.).  So to suggest that it is a bad idea to go this route is ill-informed.
post #19 of 42
I think it really depends. One thing that seems obvious is that unless you are buying an OTR suit from ebay or an online retailer, that you are going to try the item on, and know the fit. While some individuals with different body types (most likely, bigger or smaller drop than the manufacturer anticipated) will have issues, some people can wear RTW suits w/o issues. The only alterations that I normally have to have done on RTW suits is inseam length and potentially taking in the waist of the pants, which isn't a big deal IMO. Most RTW jackets fit me perfectly, as I have almost perfect proportions of a 44R (32-33" length from collar down, 46-47" chest, 20-21" shoulders, 24-25" sleeve length) and it is just necessary to find a suit that has the right measurements, the right fabric, and the right look for me. While I think WW Chan is a great deal for the price, I have purchased four suits and their alterations (1 Brioni, 2 Belvest, 1 Oxxford) for the same price as a WW Chan suit, and IMO the fits are great.
post #20 of 42
My issue with a custom suit for a first time suit buyer is that he doesn't know what he wants, why else would he post here to ask? Therefore, if he goes the custom route, he will get whatever the creator THINKS he wants, or maybe what they think may be the best suit for him. While this may not be a bad situation, I would advise going the RTW route unless it's really necessary (unusual body type, want choices of specific, hard-to-get fabrics, want very specific features) to go MTM/bespoke.
post #21 of 42
Don't go true bespoke unless you really know what you want and have at least a rudimentary understanding and vocabulary about tailoring. Either that, or you go to a tailor you really trust. With a Savile Row house, at least you know what the default house model is.
post #22 of 42
drizzt3117, I understand your point, but I point out that you are in the distinct minority with respect to OTR fit.  For most people I see on the street, the OTR suit they are wearing fits them terribly -- they could certainly benefit from custom.  That is not to say that there exists no OTR maker that would fit -- there probably is one -- but if you are going to invest that much time to find the OTR suit that fits you perfectly, then why not just go custom?   You are lucky that OTR fits you so well, but you cannot generalize your situation -- it is not true for most people, and I fear that the advice to go OTR first really leads people astray -- they will buy garments that, in a short time, they will realize do not fit.  This was essentially my experience.
post #23 of 42
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I have purchased four suits and their alterations (1 Brioni, 2 Belvest, 1 Oxxford) for the same price as a WW Chan suit, and IMO the fits are great.
Either you mean each one of those suits, plus alterations, cost the same as a WW Chan suit, or I gotta go shopping with you. I wear either a 40R or a 38R in RTW, and typically need the sleeves shortened by about 3/4", the waist of the coat taken in a couple of inches, and the trouser waist taken in by 3-4"  So it isn't out of the question for me to get suits off the rack and have them altered.  But I find that spending 20 minutes with WW Chan to place an order, and getting to pick the details of the end product, is more fun and more convenient than trolling outlets and tracking online auctions, then taking a couple of trips to the tailor to get the alterations done.  And the end product, especially the pants, fits better than my most well-altered RTW suits. In fact, my latest WW Chan suit literally just came in the door 20 minutes ago.  3 button Super 130s navy pinstripe, side vents.  Needs steaming badly, but otherwise exactly what I wanted.
post #24 of 42
I think Cantarelli is the best suit for the money, by far. Quality is a bit better than Canali or Corneliani, and cut is far superior. If you want to go a bit higher on the price scale, then Castangia is your best bet.
post #25 of 42
I would go with the custom bit. some of the best tailors in the world are immigrants and do good work for reasonable prices. That said, if I was buying 3 suits I'd fly to Bangkok for 5 days and the cost difference would cover the trip. I travel for business to Asia and haven't bought an off the rack suit since I was 21.
post #26 of 42
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I would go with the custom bit. some of the best tailors in the world are immigrants and do good work for reasonable prices. That said, if I was buying 3 suits I'd fly to Bangkok for 5 days and the cost difference would cover the trip. I travel for business to Asia and haven't bought an off the rack suit since I was 21.
don't know about bangkok - i'd head for HK instead.
post #27 of 42
retro: No, I meant that I paid about $850 total for these suits and alterations (I bought them all on ebay) If you do a search you can find a wide variety of Oxxford for very low prices on ebay, it's harder to find Brioni and Belvest but if you keep looking you can sometimes find those items in the $100-300 price range. I don't mind fairly current models that are in more or less mint condition from reputable buyers, but many of the suits I buy online are NWT. I believe Chuck was selling a bunch of Oxxford suits for $250-350 or so.
post #28 of 42
I wasn't intending to bring up a RTW vs MTM/bespoke debate, although I think most people should consider the RTW route until they have a specific reason and the knowledge to go MTM/bespoke, but my primary point was that if an individual has no knowledge about suits, going bespoke is daunting. MTM would be better but he still has no information about materials, cut, or any tailoring principles, basically he doesn't know what he wants. While he may get a good suit anyways, why not try some RTW suits? If he can't easily find something that works for him, then he can always consider MTM/bespoke, and after he has a couple RTW suits, he will have a much better idea of what he wants. I spent 4 years working out of Asia as well but never really considered having anything custom made as I had no need.
post #29 of 42
I have to lean towards Mr Drizzt,  I think your discussion is fascinating. With all due respect,  I cant help but wonder if the gentleman being a first time suit buyer and formerly used to jeans and t-shits is lost or befuddled I wonder if a new poster even knows the acronyms being used here, sirs?  As to MTM. I used to get my blazers and suits MTM at trunk shows. Basically they take 32 measurements. I pick an existing fabric from the box. I  state I want it those measurements applied to let say a "Brizzo Classico" model. In about 4 weeks my Brizzo Classico arrives with those particular measurements and in the fabric I chose. BUT- I have an excellent tailor. I now take the Oxxford or what have you I bought to HIM. HE takes the measurements and HE doe the alterations. That Oxxford I bought looks just as good or better than the made to measure. I can also say ALL of my suits are now EXACTLY where "I" desire them as far as proper cuffage being shown. Now I know my measuremtns so I know whether that size 46 long or 44 long will fit me. I think in THIS case the same applies for a RTW ( ready to wear or off the rack )) suit. With a RTW the new suit buyer can get a suit that fits failry well. He takes it to a tailor and he has a darn near custom looking suit. 90% of the folks he meets will probably think it WAS made for him. Just take the time to ask around for a GOOD tailor. ALSO- keep in mind more than a few retail store especially in mid sized towns have SEEMSTRESSES NOT Tailors. Or many times the SALESPEOPLE will mark you suit for alterations. THAT will be the difference in a proper fit and a shabby one... a TAILOR versus a saleperson or seamstress.  I am not trying to take away from some very knowlegeable salepeople but when it comes right down to it I prefer a tailor who is MAKING the alterations to take my measurements Al you need to do after finding a tailor is pay attention to what some of the posters suggest for brands or styles of suits you are partial to and perhaps suggestions on the best place to buy them. Respectfully, John G.
post #30 of 42
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(Rabbi Mark @ 28 Sep. 2004, 09:14) custom, custom, custom. Once you shrug into a suit made expressly for you and have that Ahhhh ... feeling, you'll never go back. Even if the fabric is below standard, getting the fit done right and the hang just so is worth it. I have one suit made by a tailor in Romania (he's done three suits plus another three or four jackets for me) that was made from this totally disgusting navy blue fabric, 50-50 poly-wool I think, the same fabric from which the Romania Railroad conductors have their uniforms made. But every time I wear it I get a complement on how fantastic it fits, how great the cut is, etc. It's not hard to find a custom tailor in the $500-$800 range. Yes, more expensive than stuff off the rack on sale, etc., but even a mediocre custom suit will (a) last a lot longer and (b) fit a million times better. Go for a conservative grey or navy and jazz it up with color in the shirts and ties. But most of all, use your clothing to express yourself. Have fun with it.
Just as I would not advise a beginning pianist to get a Steinway D, I would advise a LOT of education and study before embarking on a custom suit. I finally, after three years, feel adequately prepared to know precisely what I want with regards to a custom suit. koji
I think you put it best. I too would like to one day embark into custom suits but right now I simply don't know enough to really take advantage of it, even though I do consider myself above average in the knowledge department. I would get a few RTW suits (members of this forum can help you find good deals), figure out what you like about each one, and then begin thinking about getting customs. I think you'll make a lot of mistakes that you'll regret later if you go custom right away, even if you think you know what you're talking about (I know I sure would).
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