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Looking at a suit for evening use

post #1 of 18
Thread Starter 
Right now I have only one (non-tuxedo) suit: A dark navy Canali with a subtle windowpane pattern that fits me very well; it's a pretty versatile suit that can work for both interviews and semiformals/dinner parties.  I'm still in college, so nearly all my suit-wearing occasions gear toward the latter, so I've been looking for a more fashion forward suit to alternate with on evenings.  Picky as I am, my requirements are a slim cut, double vents, a ticket pocket, and a canvas front.  Ideally I've been looking for a black or a bold-color (purple, red, etc) pinstripe, but have had no luck finding something to meet my demands. However I did recently find a pretty stylish/fashion forward suit in my size that is a great buy (this is the one I asked you about, A. Harris) and has everything I'm looking for except two things.  1. It's a little full cut (not huge, think contemporary Italian... but I am a guy who probably could pull off a Dior without much trouble), and 2. it's navy (solid navy, unlike my Canali, but still).  I'm really tempted, but hesitant since suits are always a major purchase.  Mainly, how well could problem 1 be dealt with by a tailor (chest and shoulders are .5-1 inch bigger than my Canali, waist is a few inches more) and as for 2, would it be foolish for me to buy another blue suit at this point? Likewise, can anyone recommend some brands that might have suits fitting my specification?  The only ones I know of so far are Etro and Gucci, both of which I can't find a good selection in my price range (say $800 max, most likely at a discounted price I imagine).   Thanks.
post #2 of 18
here's my two cents, first of all, i think your requirements are very tasteful. i recommend you get yourself a black suit. you can wear it for many different occasions and it will go with just about anything (black with red pinstripes is a classic, but it will be a little less versatile). i always tell people to start out with black or gray. it sounds like you're a young guy, and you probably want a brand that you've heard of, but for $800 i would consider going to a tailor and having a suit made-to-measure. you'll get exactly what you want, though at that price you can't expect more than super 100s. if go this route be sure to be very specific about every detail. my first made to measure experience went bad because i didn't mention i wanted a snug fit, and the button stance wasn't as high as i would have liked. show him a good picture of what you want and he'll make it for you. if you want something ready to wear, i suggest you post what city you're in. maybe someone knows of a good store in your area.
post #3 of 18
I am probably in the minority here, but I agree with the old standby that the 1st 2 colors for suits you should get are navy and grey. I don't think you have to do solid/patterned, but I do think those 2 colors get you thru any situation easily if you made a good suit/ensemble choice. Personally I would like to try a black suit 1 day, but there are many other colors and patterns in line ahead of it.
post #4 of 18
Thread Starter 
Black or a cool pinstripe would be ideal, but I'm limited by my budget. Custom would be nice, but just because I can max out at $800 doesn't mean I want to, and finding a competent tailor and the time to deal with fittings is basically not a realistic option, especially since it is possible to get top quality suits for a few hundred at discount (spoiled by ebay/yoox/outlets). The suit I'm looking at is well under my budget max and fits my other specifications save color and cut (hopefully the latter can be balanced out by tailoring?). Bigbadbuff, I did just remember that I do have an old charcoal pinstripe suit of my dads, which fits fairly well, though it is fused and lacks much in terms of style... but that would probably fill the "gray" requirement for the the time being. That said, is splurging on another navy suit a bad idea at this point? I guess my main query is whether or not I should get this suit, as it fits the very elusive range of features and stylings I want but falls a little short of my ideals. Basically am I being too impulsive in wanting it or being too picky in turning down the deal? Thanks.
post #5 of 18
1. i said made to measure, not custom made. custom would be much more expensive. 2. very few of those suits on yoox have a canvas front. a suit a tailor would make for you would be of higher quality than 90% of the stuff on yoox. 3. if your canali fits you exactly the way you want it to, you could simply take it to the tailor and have him copy it, with a different fabric, of course. 4. it seems you're looking for that dior homme/helmut lang look, and believe me, you can get that at a tailor. 5. i've had made to measure suits ready three weeks after the first visit. i didn't post this to convince you, but i know a lot of other people might read this, and i didn't want them thinking tailor made suits were inferior in quality to brands with hip labels. quite the opposite is true.
post #6 of 18
p.s. if you want a hip label, how about this: "EXCLUSIVELY TAILORED FOR AYBOJS" beats having some other guy's name in your jacket.
post #7 of 18
The one problem with tailor made or MTM clothing is that you have to rely on good communication with the tailor to get what you want. And even then, unless you have some affinity for design, you may find out that it doesn't look so great after all, even if the tailor's handiwork is great, which it is not necessarily guaranteed to be. I haven't ever had the funds to do either, but I've had friends with bad experiences, although others have had very good experiences. The advantage of RTW is that WYSIWYG. You can try on different things, figure out what you like, don't like, etc... and make your decisions accordingly. As for the whole "fused front" canvas front thing - I personally have had both, and think that a fused front is not that inferior to a canvas front.
post #8 of 18
I'm not sure I understand the difference between made-to-measure and custom. Can someone explain?
post #9 of 18
You're still in school, so I imagine that means you're still a young guy. That being the case, take it from a 38-year-old senior citizen that before too many years, you will find you have expanded a bit. It's part of life. So a suit that may be a bit big now, and can be tailored, can be let out in a few years when, not if, you "expand" Don't do like I did and drop a wad of cash on a closet full of 40Rs only to discover that 4 years later you are a 42R.
post #10 of 18
petermetro: on a custom made suit, the tailor makes a custom pattern for you from scratch. on a made to measure, he simply alters an existing pattern to your measurements and requirements. the real difference in price, though, is that the term "custom" implies a great deal of the stitching is done by hand (perhaps all of it). on a typical made to measure, only the most important parts are handsewn. where i go $700 gets you a super 100s suit with a hand stitched canvas front, hand stitched collar, and working button holes. i also buy ready to wear, mostly on impulse or if i need something on short notice. an isaia is a masterpiece and i would definitely buy one if i had the cash. i just think that in the under $1200 range, one is best served by going to a tailor, if one has the time.
post #11 of 18
matadorpoeta - I'm curious, where do you live and who is your tailor?? I'm most definitely all for the idea of custom clothing but in the sub-$1200 range I'm not so enthusiastic. It seems to me that the likelihood of aybojs finding a tailor that can cut him a good suit for less than $1000 is rather slim. I live in California and I can tell you that I have yet to hear of a tailor here that I would pay to cut me a suit - even in the $2000+ range. Also, aybojs wears a size 38r and he is looking for dark suits. That means he has more options in the off-price market than ANYONE. With a little resourcefulness and patience he could easily pick up three great-quality ready-to-wear suits for the price of one questionable custom-job. Since he doesn't have a lot of clothes that is probably going to be the best option for him.
post #12 of 18
Thread Starter 
I admit it, I'm weak. I just got a cool part-time job for the fall, so I broke down and bought the suit to "celebrate." Here it is if you're curious: The cut's not my ideal Lang/Dior slim size, but it has all the elusive features I wanted, and I figure I can get a tailor to take in the waist and clean it up a bit. Thanks to all, especially A. Harris, for the advice.
post #13 of 18
mr harris... i live in los angeles and my tailor is mr. young on wilshire blvd. the sign says "mr. young's." his son is a friend of mine, so i pay $500 for what he typically charges $750, which is his least expensive suit. his clients have included guns n' roses, tom bradley, john forsythe, and he has made a tuxedo for rod stewart (i believe it was the one he got married in). he's also made several suits for television game show hosts. most of his business is in the range of $3000 and up. there is a v.i.p. room in the back where he has the more exotic materials on display. his more expensive clothes are entirely hand stitched, right there in his shop. even the made to measure $750 suits he has made for me are done in the same place, with the same techniques, though with less hand work. btw, down the street, on wilshire and western ave. there is a place called v.i.p. tailors. their prices are lower but i am told they do very good work as well.
post #14 of 18
mr harris... i live in los angeles and my tailor is mr. young on wilshire blvd. the sign says "mr. young's." his son is a friend of mine, so i pay $500 for what he typically charges $750, which is his least expensive suit. his clients have included guns n' roses, tom bradley, john forsythe, and he has made a tuxedo for rod stewart (i believe it was the one he got married in).
Mr. Matadorpoeta: Please excuse my ignorance in Armerican culture, aren't all those you quoted rock stars? At $3000 range, I'd much prefer a tailor who is used to doing business with an old-fashioned English gent than Guns and Roses.... I myself think that for sub-$1000, one could find a decent off-the-rack suit that he could immediate judge its styling. There are enough choices out there; getting a tailored suit requires much more participation on your part -- your tailor merely executes your orders, thus you are your own victim. My rule for my friends is always the same: at least 10 good suits before 1 custom order. Obviously, Mr. Aybojs has ample knowledge; but for $800 I'd still recommend a ready-made --- no matter which tailor you use, you can't pick the good fabrics with only $800. I once parted one of my Isaia Super 150s tuxedos on eBay for $600+. If only you called me earlier......
post #15 of 18
naturlaut, you and the others were right. i saw the suit he picked up on ebay and it is very handsome. for under four hundred smacks he got a great deal. i recommended the mtm because he seemed to be rather picky, and so i figured it was the way to go. as it turned out, he didn't get the ticket pocket, or the silhouette he wanted, but he got himself a quality suit. i myself buy three-button suits ready to wear, and only go to mr. young for my signature one-button suits.
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