Originally Posted by Bhowie
Please keep us updated this could be very promising.
OK, I got the Brioni shirt back from www.collarreplacement.com
$25 well spent!
I bought the Brioni shirt ($395 retail) last year for a great price at a NM last call. Even though it was marked "medium" it fit like a tent--it was so baggy I didn't want to wear it.
A few weeks ago, I sent it to Mike Maldonado
in San Antonio, Texas, the proprietor of collarreplacement.com. I am fortunate that I could send him a sample shirt, which was a MTM shirt that fit very well. Otherwise, one would have to send in measurements.
The shirt just came back, and this service is the best I've seen for improving baggy shirts. The shirt was recut. Mike said they took off about 2" all around. They managed to keep the Brioni pattern matching, and one would have to look really close to notice that it had been taken apart and re-stitched. The fit of the shirt is good. In fact, the fit is remarkably close to my bespoke shirt. On the downside, the armholes are still a bit big, and the stupid oversized breast pocket that Brioni put on the shirt looks a litte out of proportion. (Sorry, I have a personal aversion to pockets on dress shirts.) However, the results were still significantly better than the times I've taken shirts to local tailors for alterations. Most tailors will just take in the sides or narrow the sleeves a bit, not alter the yoke or anything else. And that alone will cost anywhere from $15 to $40.
Most importantly, I feel I can wear the shirt in public.
Mr. Maldonado tells me this is a popular service he provides, and many men find nice shirts on sale that don't fit, and he recuts them. This can work out very well for frugal shoppers. I've recently learned how much the fine fabrics in shirts like Borelli, Brioni, T & A go for, and it's $40 to $150 wholesale for the raw materials alone. So, if you get shirt on sale for cheap, and get it recut, you can get close to bespoke for a fraction of the cost.
A shirt can only be recut if it's too big. Even a collar that's too big can be recut. Maldonado, spilts it down the back and makes it smaller. This would be slightly noticeable, but I guess it works.
From what I can tell, the best candidate for a recut would be a shirt that fits well in the collar, and had sleeves that were slightly too long. Everything elso can be huge, but can be cut down. I also think it's better to start with a shirt without a breast pocket. The pocket on my shirt looked little out of proportion after the rest of the shirt was cut down.
Overall, if you are incredibly picky, you can spend $300+ for a bespoke shirt and it probably will fit better than a recut. But, if you are frugal and want champagne taste on a beer budget, recutting an on-sale RTW shirt is a great way to go IMHO.