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Quality of Golden Trumpeter Suits?(H,S&M)

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
How do Hart,Schaffner & Marx "Golden Trumpeter" suits compare to its American counterparts,Oxxford and Hickey Freeman in quality? I complimented an associate on a handsome single breasted navy suit and he told me it was a "Golden Trumpeter".He opened his jacket to reveal a beautifully detailed,topstitched lining,much like a Kiton or Brioni.I was very impressed with the cut and quality of his suit,and wondered how it compared in quality and price to Oxxford,and top of the line Hickey Freeman?
post #2 of 11
I think that, for what they are, HSM Gold Trumpeters are very nice suits. I own two of them, and have been very pleased. Both of mine are fused, but the fusing is very light and has not puckered or otherwise come unglued. The fit is also very good for me. They are definitely "business" suits (ala Hickey Freeman), but I own a black one (ducking now) that I wouldn't hesitate to wear out at night or to a social event. I believe that if you buy a HSM Gold Trumpeter, you're getting a well constructed, top quality fused suit. If this is what you want, you could do a lot worse. Jeff
post #3 of 11
You are talking two completely different classes of suits ( or three). The Oxxford is the top of the line for american made suits. It has full canvas lining, hand stitching, hand cut, etc. The H.F would be next as it has a free floating canvas ( or some have half canvas linings )etc. It is inbetween quaility and price of Oxxford and Hart. It is closer price wise to H.S.M. and though it is not fused probably a bit closer quaility wise to Hart than to Oxxford. The H.S.M gold trumpeter is the least of the three. HOWEVER, especially if you can get them on sale or at a trunk sale where you can get the gold trumpeters made to measure at about 40% - 42.5 %  off retail, you are getting an excellent quaility suit for the money.   I have a number of gold trumpeter suits for "normal or everyday wear".  All are good quaility super 120 to super 140s wool and have a very light fusing. Even those that are 15 years old show no "bubbling" due to the fusing.   The stitching is well done. As I am sure you saw the material on a gold trumpeter is folded over on the inside to cover where you place your pen and your inner pocket areas.   The thread is of excellent quaility. As mentioned I have never known it to "rot" even from years of wear and dry cleaning. ( of course proper care, airing out and NOT over frequent dry cleaning helps with this).  The lining is not of the cheap acetate variety but of an intermediate quailty rayon.  If you look into the arm/sleeve area you will notice good overall construction and not weak craftsmanship.   Its only my opinion, but for a fused suit I do not know of any brand name/line better for the money. As I stated, if you can find a local trunk show when they are offering discounted prices you can get a 1000-1400 retail suit for under 500 in my geographic area.  I am able to choose the fabric I want. The suits are shipped to my house when they are completed. I usually receive the suits in 3-4 weeks at most. I can take them back to the store for any final alterations or tweaks at my convenience. Alterations are free for life at any HSM retailer.( this policy may have been discontinued by now) 36 measurements are taken ( hence the made to measure ) when the suit is ordered. From my limited experience this is a plus because the few times I have looked into made to measure with other lines or brands of suits, all have taken less than 30 individual measurements, one only took 20 measurements. It is my understanding that this is HSM's policy and not the policy of the store where I purchase the HSM suits.  Especially if you are not "average build" ( if such an animal exists) those extra measurements can truly make a suit look well tailored, Too, if you wear a long, It seems H.S.M gives you a bit more length in the jacket than many other lines. Also, as do Hickey and Oxxford, you get a little extra room in the chest compared to many other designers. For example a 44 will have the same chest size as a 46 in many other lines. This isnt a major issue but it helps especially if you have a small waist. H.S.M Gold trumpeters also come in Athletic cut which is a blessing as well even going made to measure. Hopefully this may help some in your descission, Respectfully,  John G.
post #4 of 11
John G's discussion of HS&M is excellent. I would rate the brands as follows: 1. Oxxford--the most hand made suit in America and possibly the world. The starting price is about $2,200. The best of the best. 2. Hickey Freeman--the next step below Oxxford. Two clothing professionals that I respect have told me independently that HF is the best value in top of the line suits. Not as much handwork as Oxxford, and many steps and procedures have been mechanized over the years to keep the price steady. I understand that its custom line has a good amount of handwork. Has a broad range of styles and can fit almost anyone according to my clothing friends. Starting price for RTW can be as low as $1,000 at some stores. 3. Hart, Schaffner & Marx--I have no personal experience. My impression that it is a good, respectable suit, but it is a notch or two below HF. Has a lower base price than HF. My overall impression is that you won't go wrong with any of these brands. They all have the same basic look. Good luck.
post #5 of 11
It's a respectable suit -- nothing more, nothing less. The second suit I ever bought -- and my first "nice" suit -- was a Gold Trumpeteer that I got on sale for $235. It was a great dark grey prince of wales two-button. I'd be proud to wear a bespoke suit in that exact same fabric. Alas, once I got a taste of the lightness of full canvas, I gave it to a friend who needed a suit. FWIW, the Gold Trumpeteer retails for about $650 in my local department store. So, I don't know where the $1100 - $1400 claim is coming from.
post #6 of 11
I noticed Mr "johnnynorman3's" comment about price and thought i would clarify it. I apologize if it seemed misleading.  In my demographic area the Gold trumpeters range between 730 and 850 depending on material naturally.  But when visiting a friend in San Deigo last year the offerings I saw at a couple of different stores were all in the 1k to 1100 range.  Too, since I do opt for a "premium" material usually of super 130's or super 140's, that adds a premium of 100.00 plus on average to the suit. ( The average Gold Trumpeter is either super 110s or super 120s wool. And yes sirs, I realize that IS a relative or even moot point in many cases .)  Again, there is a premium for the made to measure. It also ranges between  50 to 100 from what I understand.  I failed to mention this earlier, you can get a vest going the made to measure or  simply buying the suits at trunk shows. This also adds  100.00 to 175.00  to the cost. One style of vest even retails for 250.00 if I recall.  Add that all up and you will easily hit the 1100 to 1400 dollar price range. BUT, for a 3 piece lightly fused very good quaility suit that is well made, made to measure and on average cost 500.00 or less tax title and all delivered to your doorstep, that is not so bad.   Finally, and this is DEFINITELY taken with a grain of salt,many of the offerings I have seen on Ebay show a NWT of 1k to 1.4 K price.  Granted, thanks to many of you fine gentleman here and at Mr Andy's board over the years I now know better on looking for quaility. Still, all things considered, I DO stand behind the Hart Shcaffner and Marx Gold Trumpeters. That is even with knowing the suits have been sneered at somewhat over the time on both boards.  I was raised in an old fashioned middle class family. A predominately rural area. Lots of farmers. Back when we had the marketing company , it was hard to fina another brand of suit of that quality for that price ( or comparative price back then) that you didn't have to be afraid to walk out into the field or the milking barn with. You didn't have to cringe at sitting on the milking stool for a piece of pie and not have to fret over a tear or a major stain.  You were expected to look good. But if one is that much of a "pretty boy " or "clothes horse" business would go elsewhere. And we have a LOT of millionaire farmers.  That is why to this day I still keep them in my closet. The sheer quaility and utility of the suits for the price point. I even have a black one that I still love wearing out for an evening of movies and of  "pub slumming/ dive hopping" with friends. ( hey if it gets trashed I would regret it but at least it isnt my oxxfords.) Respectfully,  John G. P.S>  btw, my apology for sounding like a commercial or going off on a semi rant. I realize it does NOT happen so much on these boards. But I do get irked sometimes at the way some "look down upon" those who don't ask about the free floating canvas suit  or the Kiton shirts as opposed to the H.S.M or "X" brand.  I love would love to be able to wear nothing but Kiton's and Oxxford's and Isaia's etc everday of the week. But each does serve a purpose. And not everyone has the same needs or income levels.
post #7 of 11
Tis true. I don't recall anyone knocking HSM. Without doubt they are a far superior product to most everything else you can find in that retail price range.
post #8 of 11
What style.
post #9 of 11
Quote:
I was raised in an old fashioned middle class family. A predominately rural area. Lots of farmers. Back when we had the marketing company , it was hard to fina another brand of suit of that quality for that price ( or comparative price back then) that you didn't have to be afraid to walk out into the field or the milking barn with. You didn't have to cringe at sitting on the milking stool for a piece of pie and not have to fret over a tear or a major stain.  You were expected to look good. But if one is that much of a "pretty boy " or "clothes horse" business would go elsewhere. And we have a LOT of millionaire farmers.
Finally, a SF member familiar with farmers.  Are you able to refute the sartorial stereotypes perpetuated by ernest and others?
post #10 of 11
I have a few HSM Gold Trumpeteer suits, and have been very pleased overall. HartMarx, the parent company, also makes Hickey Freeman. I also have a Hickey Freeman sportcoat (on sale at Barney's warehouse sale) which is one of my favorites in style, pattern, fabric, construction and fit...it's a three button model, double vented, decent roll to the lapel...actually the HSM suits are like that too.
Quote:
36 measurements are taken ( hence the made to measure ) when the suit is ordered.
JohnG - where are you located/what store is this? When I did my HSM MTM, there was nowhere near this level of attention. I just realized I have another HSM GT suit - several years ago, HartMarx had a real factory store in Reading PA, called something like "National Discount Brands." It was HSM for the tailored clothing and several of their other brands - like Nicklaus - for the sports clothing. I picked up a nice (too?) conservative HSM GT blue with subtle grey and red overplaid suit for something like $200. I often see HSM at Nordstorm Rack at very good prices. Re: Oxxford - as everyone else said, different league altogether. I do have a NWT Oxxford sport coat from EBay, around $400, I still need to get it altered. -edit- comment about Nordstrom Rack.
post #11 of 11
Quote:
But when visiting a friend in San Deigo last year the offerings I saw at a couple of different stores were all in the 1k to 1100 range.
I can attest to this. There are several stores in La Jolla who sell mediocre clothes at ridiculous markups. I used to do a few collaborations at UCSD, and during my spare time in La Jolla, where I lived, browsed the few shops that were there. The physical Goclothing of goclothing.com was there (unimpressive - a typical "streetwear" store catering to a young, clubbly demographic with mediocre buyers and no distinct vision.) There was one reasonable men's clothing store, but generally overpriced and with a poor selection compared to any similar store in L.A., and about three or four stores masquerading as haberdasheries with outdated merchandise and Zegna selling at about 30-40% higher than at the flagship Rodeo Drive Zegna store.
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