or Connect
Styleforum › Forums › Men's Style › Classic Menswear › Who pays for bespoke if its wrong?
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Who pays for bespoke if its wrong? - Page 2

post #16 of 52
I think that while there are no guarantees, in the end, a little common sense can probably go a long way in avoiding problems: I likely wouldn't trust a tailor with my $4,000 investment unless he* was recommended by someone I trusted, and unless I came away from our initial conversation with a good feeling about his work process and general manner. *Are there any women menswear tailors out there? There must be, right...?
post #17 of 52
Quote:
As someone unfamiliar with the custom experience, my first time around, I would appreciate being fitted by a tailor who was eager to educate me on the benefits of one fit over another... but ultimately I would hope that they would respect my judgement about what makes me feel most comfortable.  If I'm uncomfortable in the clothes I'm wearing, I'm not likely to return, regardless of whether anyone else is convinced that it is the 'proper' fit.
There are two issues here: fit and silhouette. In certain respects, all suits should fit the same way no matter their silhouette.  For instance, if the jacket collar stands away from the shirt collar and refuses to lie flush against the shirt collar, then the jacket doesn't fit properly.  If there is a gathered "ridge" of cloth -- sort of a long, horizontal ripple -- high on the jacket's back, just below the collar, then the jacket doesn't fit properly. Other issues which seem like fit issues are more properly considered matters of silhouette.  Example: it is a hallmark of certain makers of the "Drape" silhouette to make a lightly padded (or wadded) natural shoulder that extends slightly (1/2" or so) beyond the physical shoulder.  This "extension" is meant to "droop" downward at the sleevehead, giving the shoulder a very rounded, natural look. Now, someone used to having their jacket's shoulders end right on the deltoid might consider this an example of improper fit.  In my view, this is incorrect.  It is more precisely a characteristic of a silhouette that this hypothetical customer doesn't like. All I'm saying is, know what you want before you order.  Know the tailor's style before you order.  That way, there will be no surprises, and everyone will be happy.
post #18 of 52
Quote:
Legally, you do not have to pay the full price if the suit is not what you contracted for. ...I would produce 1) the three pages of instructions that globetrotter mentions and show how certain conditions were not met and/or 2) expert witnesses to point out areas in which the suit is lacking in quality compared to what every bespoke suit must have.   ...If the court found certain areas of the suit lacking, he would not win.... ...You are not legally obliged to pay for something if it is not what you bargained for.
All of these are factual questions,  not easily dealt with in the abstract.  I have never partaken of the bespoke experience, but wonder if every tailor provides 3 pages of specs that she agrees the product that she will deliver will meet.   Manton's discussion of fit vs. silhouette is interesting.  Particulalry given the talk on this board that so few among the general popluation appreciate fine clothing, I would shudder at the thought of trying to convince a factfinder that the silhouette was not what the purchaser bargained for, particularly if (in a benchtrial) the judge were a fan of the Brooks Brother's sack suit, or (if in a jury trial), half of them were decked out in loose fit Gap jeans. Bic
post #19 of 52
As an employee of a contractor, and one who works on contract work, I can tell you there are a few iron clad rules that are in common between all trades, for everyone's benefit: 1. Get it in writing. 2. Get it in writing. 3. Get it in writing. The best way to assure that you never have to worry about this is to produce detailed specifications before the project commences. I know this can be boring, but believe me, the biggest conflicts we have had with customers were when they didn't have an architect and a detailed spec, and we 'misinterpreted' their hand-wave and couldn't read their mind properly. Best would be to find that three-page form that globetrotter has and copy it, and fill it out thoroughly for every project. Include drawings, photos, etc. More detail from the outset will exponentially decrease the chances of your being unhappy with the finished product, and in the case of a dispute, it is easily resolved. As for disputes, we tell our customers that if they are unhappy with the product, they should tell us, and if they are happy, they should tell their friends. Obviously an honorable person will give the contractor (tailor) a chance to fix the problem, or agree on a concession (lower price) to live with the problem. In the latter case, however, it is my experience that they are never as happy, as should be obvious. In the case of a suit, you can always refuse delivery of the product, and if you don't have good references for the tailor's reputation, you should buy it on a credit card so that you will have more power in dispute resolution.
post #20 of 52
it wasn't so much a form, my tailor has a simple drawing of a pair of pants, a jacket and a waistcoat, and then a chart for my measurements. if my measurements changed between orders, he would change them on the chart. then there were various notations - types of pockets, brace bottons, db or sb, label shape, vents, sleeve botton holes, etc. Then he gave me a copy and stapled a piece of fabric to it. If there was something unusual, for instance the shape of the waistcoat, the fabric for the lining, the type of botton, all went on the order form. I thought that this was common practice.
post #21 of 52
Quote:
In certain respects, all suits should fit the same way no matter their silhouette.  For instance, if the jacket collar stands away from the shirt collar and refuses to lie flush against the shirt collar, then the jacket doesn't fit properly.  If there is a gathered "ridge" of cloth -- sort of a long, horizontal ripple -- high on the jacket's back, just below the collar, then the jacket doesn't fit properly.  
Point taken, although I wasn't referring to such clear-cut issues as those.  What I was referring to were details such as how closely fitted the shirt 'should' be around one's waist or torso; while certain excesses might be ridiculous, I would imagine there might be a considerable degree of variation among individuals' tastes, no?
Quote:
My worst nightmare is when a new customer is used to wearing ill fitting garments and feel constricted by a shirt that fits well.
If the tailor considers the customer's tailoring preferences to be so unseemly that he would prefer to decline the job rather than compromise his reputation, I would think that that's something that could be easily determined rather early on, if not in the initial conversation. I'm not sure that these preferences need cause any great hardship on the tailor's part. But I guess in the end, we're all saying the same thing: know what you want, make it clear upfront, and get it in writing.
post #22 of 52
Quote:
What I was referring to were details such as how closely fitted the shirt 'should' be around one's waist or torso; while certain excesses might be ridiculous, I would imagine there might be a considerable degree of variation among individuals' tastes, no?
Sure.  There are basically two main remedies for the customer.  1) Seek out a firm whose "house style" is simlar to your taste; 2) Have a lengthy and detailed conversation about what you want before beginning the process.  Maybe there's even a third: bring some garment you really, really like to use it as an example.
Quote:
If the tailor considers the customer's tailoring preferences to be so unseemly that he would prefer to decline the job rather than compromise his reputation, I would think that that's something that could be easily determined rather early on, if not in the initial conversation.
This actually happens in the bespoke world.  I would venture to say that the better the tailor, the more it happens.
post #23 of 52
Quote:
MPS Changing a set of cuffs on a shirt is a simple thing to do. Remaking an entire jacket is very costly. Would you have kept the jacket if he had offered you some sort of accomadation?
Of course. What I really wanted was an admission of the mistake, a small apology and a suggestion of a way of fixing the problem. This tailor has served me very well over the years, and has refused to do certain things on suits (based on aesthetic principles). Simply ignoring a request is unacceptable.
post #24 of 52
What happens in the Darren/Spalla debacle to the original suit if it can't be saved? I've always wondered what happens when you return something to a store when you notice a defect. Can the store still sell it for full retail price, even though they know there's a flaw to it? Are you saying that Darren has to make an entirely new suit, with new fabrics and still put in the same amount of time for no extra cost? It seems like these tailors probably have to spend more time and effort on only a small number of clients to sastisfy them, which shortchanges everybody else.
post #25 of 52
Quote:
What happens in the Darren/Spalla debacle to the original suit if it can't be saved? I've always wondered what happens when you return something to a store when you notice a defect. Can the store still sell it for full retail price, even though they know there's a flaw to it?
It becomes pork. Someone else might buy it, or the tailor might give it away to another loyal customer when having a suit made. The latter used to occur in the past - one of my good friends has a suit of his grandfather's that was originally made for an Eastern prince in the 1930s.
post #26 of 52
If a tailor makes a clear mistake that can't be corrected short of recutting, like cutting a coat too short (this has happened to me) then he either needs to recut the coat, or refund the deposit. I suppose if a tailor flat out refused, then I could try legal recourse, but in the one experience like this that I had, it wasn't necessary. I appreciated the way he handled it, and that's why I went back despite the mistake. And it never happened again. In any case, I doubt I would go to court over one suit. The legal fees would probably exceed my deposit. Plus, I think our courts have better things to do. In cases where the dispute is more subjective, I don't really know what the remedy is or should be. I have had fit problems that I just refused to let slide. In the end, they were corrected without recutting. I don't think spending a lot of time on one customer shortchanges anyone. Bespoke is bespoke: it's supposed to be what the customer asked for, and it's supposed to fit. Also, a price is a price. Tailors of course can refuse to make future garments if they think a customer is too difficult. This happens, too.
post #27 of 52
I suppose I've been either lucky or undemanding but both of the two tailors I've used over the years have done business the same way. At each of them I walk into the shop, pick out a couple of swatches, ask them for double breasted and to put flaps on the pockets this time, and leave. It's their job to write things down, or not, as they wish. If I needed to dictate the process, I would feel I needed a different tailor. If there's a problem with the garment, like the collar being peak when I asked for notch, they re-make it as often as necessary without complaint. That happens less than one time out of ten, but if they complained, again, I'd feel I needed to change tailors. When I'm buying 4-6 garments a year they should be able to fix their mistakes. Will
post #28 of 52
I missed the earlier part of these exchanges, but was fascinated to see Logsdail mentioned. Years ago I had a suit measured, fitted several times and delivered in London, when Logsdail was still there. It became a tax deduction---didn't fit, darts were put in contrary to my request, etc etc. Best to walk away and NEVER do business with the tailor again. Had a similar experience in NYC with a longstanding custom tailor I patronized for years. Most London and NYC tailors cannot really deviae from the 'house' designs. Laziness and lack of skills I think. I only deal now with WW Chan & Sons, Hong Kong---they exceed London and NYC bespoke tailors in every respect.
post #29 of 52
I just reread that thread again. I think the problem originated in that Spalla provided the material to Darren, and therefore expected a much lower price. I'm assuming that the price of bespoke includes both the material and the work of the master tailor. I'm not sure how people decide what the cost will be if you provide your own material. It only seems reasonable that you wouldn't have to pay the full cost of the suit then.
post #30 of 52
Quote:
It only seems reasonable that you wouldn't have to pay the full cost of the suit then.
You don't. Not all tailors will work with cloth provided by the customer, but those who do offer a "cut, make and trim" price that is substantially lower than the full price.
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Classic Menswear
Styleforum › Forums › Men's Style › Classic Menswear › Who pays for bespoke if its wrong?