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Good tailor in Vancouver?

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by office drone, Sep 16, 2006.

  1. Roger

    Roger Well-Known Member

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    I then decided to try Jantzen in Hong Kong due to their popularity on this board. I did one test shirt to lock down my pattern and I did two subsequent orders that totalled twelve shirts. The price is right at about $50-60 per shirt. The construction and pattern matching is excellent although the selection of high quality fabrics is limited.
    Geez, I don't see how you can beat that. For everyday work shirts, that's just great.

    If you want to go upscale a little and stay local, give Julie Minichiello a call at 604-985-9222. You can get a nice shirt for about $240-$250, with good fabric choice, or a really exceptional one (in something like 170s) for a little over $300. I haven't tried stripes, so can't comment on pattern-matching, but with my two shirts from them so far, the fit has been excellent, stitching, single-needle, 20 stitches to the inch, and all details exactly as ordered. I have a couple more planned with them with some Alumo cotton I ordered.
     
  2. Roger

    Roger Well-Known Member

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    On the subject of shirts, does anyone have a recomendation for a tailor or shirtmaker in Vancouver for taking in some shirts? I have a couple of shirts with fabric I really like, but they fit like tents.
    I would think that any shirtmaker could do this; actually, probably any seamstress. You could try Julie Minichiello in North Van who's overseen two new shirt projects for me. Your shirt would probably just go out to their shirtmaking shop and be altered by one of the seamstresses in that shop. I don't imagine the cost would be high, since it's a pretty straightforward job.
     
  3. clownmitts

    clownmitts Active Member

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    I then decided to try Jantzen in Hong Kong due to their popularity on this board. I did one test shirt to lock down my pattern and I did two subsequent orders that totalled twelve shirts. The price is right at about $50-60 per shirt. The construction and pattern matching is excellent although the selection of high quality fabrics is limited.

    About Jantzen, how did you get yourself measured up?
     
  4. CaptChaos

    CaptChaos Well-Known Member

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    About Jantzen, how did you get yourself measured up?

    Since I had some shirts that were made locally, I took the measurements from those, made some tweaks, and sent them to Jantzen. The test shirt I got back was perfect. I even specified things that were not listed on the Jantzen order page like arm hole size and arm width and it came as I asked.

    It would be more difficult to get correct if you didn't have a shirt that already fit you well.
     
  5. MI-6

    MI-6 Active Member

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  6. TheHoff

    TheHoff Well-Known Member

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    I've been going to the other Tony at European Custom and I've been pleased but I may give them a try. Sometimes I forget to get out cash first so maybe Modernize will believe in Interac.
     
  7. Roger

    Roger Well-Known Member

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    Very interesting, MI-6. I don't pretend to know of more than a very small number of the tailors in Vancouver and hadn't heard of Mr. Wong & Mr. Wong. Kind of a cool move, isn't it--going back to a location used by your family company in the 1920s, 30s, 40s, and 50s! I would not be surprised to hear that they're very competent tailors and would likely be worth a try for alterations at least. I wonder if any of the other Vancouverites on the forum know of them and the quality of their work.
     
  8. Roger

    Roger Well-Known Member

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    I've been going to the other Tony at European Custom and I've been pleased but I may give them a try. Sometimes I forget to get out cash first so maybe Modernize will believe in Interac.
    Hoff, how have you found Tony Tran? My sense was that he's probably pretty competent with the routine stuff (I've had him do pant alterations and cuffing), but maybe lacking Tony Arletto's sense of line and style.
     
  9. TheHoff

    TheHoff Well-Known Member

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    Hoff, how have you found Tony Tran? My sense was that he's probably pretty competent with the routine stuff (I've had him do pant alterations and cuffing), but maybe lacking Tony Arletto's sense of line and style.

    Unfortunately I've not been 100% satisfied. He is a pleasure to work with and is quite competent with, as you say, the basics. Sleeves, darts, hems, and jacket fittings have all gone well -- but he offered to de-pleat a pair of pants for me. I shouldn't have tested the procedure on a quality suit, so part of the blame goes to me, but I am not happy with the re-cut at all.

    He has successfully slimmed down other pants for me with a re-cut but the de-pleating was a mistake. I do plan to take the pants back to him to see if he can repair them. I'm sure he will do so at no charge so I shouldn't pass judgment until he has a chance to fix the problem. I've never spoken with Tony Arletto but I think I will ask for him to join us to look at the pants so hopefully he will oversee the final product.

    In regards to line or style I can't say as the most I've had done are shrink-to-fit type of changes.
     
  10. office drone

    office drone Well-Known Member

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    Hoff, how have you found Tony Tran? My sense was that he's probably pretty competent with the routine stuff (I've had him do pant alterations and cuffing), but maybe lacking Tony Arletto's sense of line and style.

    Very true my friend. Whenever I go there, it seems Tony Tran is always there...hardly ever see Mr. Arletto anymore.
     
  11. MI-6

    MI-6 Active Member

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    I called them up yesterday asking about their price. He said that a 2 piece suit would be starting from $650+taxes. I don't know what kind of fabric they have though. I may check them out when I get a chance. It seems Vancouver is no where close to the choices in HK. Too bad I don't know when I will be going to HK. [​IMG]
     
  12. Roger

    Roger Well-Known Member

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    There are other options for MTM in Vancouver (which is what you will get--not bespoke--from pretty much any of the tailors here). The Zegna store has a MTM program. I think Harry Rosen does this with Samuelsohn or Coppley, and Barron Lee, at Madison Lee (corner of Burrard and Pender) has a Belvest MTM program. These would run you considerably more than the $650 you noted, but the results would be much better too.

    BTW, I think that Tony Arletto is now in what might be called semi-retirement. If you wanted to connect with him, you could call up and make an appointment, but don't necessarily expect to see him by just dropping in.
     
  13. TheHoff

    TheHoff Well-Known Member

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    I called them up yesterday asking about their price. He said that a 2 piece suit would be starting from $650+taxes. I don't know what kind of fabric they have though. I may check them out when I get a chance. It seems Vancouver is no where close to the choices in HK. Too bad I don't know when I will be going to HK. [​IMG]
    Interesting history on Modernize Tailors: http://www.asiancanadian.net/2007/04...-restored.html And a video: http://www.city.vancouver.bc.ca/Grea...et&storyid=204 I think the $650 starting price is meant to get the uninitiated in the door. The "stash" of vintage fabrics sounds interesting (read: we have lots of old stock); I'm going to stop by today for some alterations and check out the goods.
     
  14. MI-6

    MI-6 Active Member

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  15. MI-6

    MI-6 Active Member

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    There are other options for MTM in Vancouver (which is what you will get--not bespoke--from pretty much any of the tailors here). The Zegna store has a MTM program. I think Harry Rosen does this with Samuelsohn or Coppley, and Barron Lee, at Madison Lee (corner of Burrard and Pender) has a Belvest MTM program. These would run you considerably more than the $650 you noted, but the results would be much better too.

    BTW, I think that Tony Arletto is now in what might be called semi-retirement. If you wanted to connect with him, you could call up and make an appointment, but don't necessarily expect to see him by just dropping in.


    Does those MTM programs allow for specific armhole sizes? I want to get a high armhole suit.
     
  16. Roger

    Roger Well-Known Member

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    Does those MTM programs allow for specific armhole sizes? I want to get a high armhole suit.
    I honestly don't know. I haven't had a MTM suit done. It might be that you'd have more success going to an individual tailor (like Tony Arletto, or Frank, at Minichiello in N. Van) and asking for that adaptation of their stock pattern. It's the fact that they will, in all likelihood, work from their own stock pattern that takes their work out of the realm of bespoke. With large programs like the Zegna and Belvest ones, for example, they may not allow much variation (except for size, of course, and a few fitting features), but with a smaller MTM suitmaker, there may be more flexibility. The problem, however, with the small guy (or any MTM program, I guess) is that you are stuck with a pattern you might not really like. I'm thinking that with Tony Arletto out of the picture much of the time now, Frank (don't know his last name) over at Minichiello might be a better bet--although I know nothing about Modernize Tailors, who may be better still.
     
  17. TheHoff

    TheHoff Well-Known Member

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    I went to see the Venerable Modernize Tailors today. The shop is in a renovated building on Pender and Carrall -- a quick buzz at the door and I was let in to a good size lobby with a glassed in workroom where you could see the brothers and apprentice at work. After describing the alterations I was after, I was passed on to Bill Wong. A spry gentleman in his 80's, he had obviously been at this a long, long, long time.

    I was sized up for a jacket alteration and a few shirt darts and sleeve corrections and then I spoke to him about MTM suitings. I was underwhelmed by the fabrics to say the least. The price started at $650 and went to $800 when I asked for their finest book of wools. Off the top of my head I was looking for something summery perhaps with a windowpane but there was nothing available. I asked about charges if I supplied the material and was quoted $500-600. If I ran across a fabric I loved I would probably take a stab with this as there isn't much to lose at this price and it would be interesting to see the Wong's experience at work. Since this isn't in my near future, I didn't inquire about a house style but I get the feeling he would try and imitate any jacket you supplied.

    The shop was busy and customers other than me (3 or 4 came in) were all greeted with a smile and by name... obviously a shop that keeps the clientele. I wasn't amazed at the turn around -- 2 weeks for a few simple things -- but I understand how some services are indemand and they can set their own timeframes. Bill did give me pointers on how he preferred the sleeve length on the more casual jacket I brought in and also said I should not nip the waist -- where as Tony would've nipped it anyway. Having made the trek out there, I would probably go back to Tony Tran at European Custom for these sort of things as the timeframe is faster and he is quite competent with them.
     
  18. TheHoff

    TheHoff Well-Known Member

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    And since this is a good and active Vancouver thread, I should put in a good word for Busy Bee gold dry cleaning in south False Creek. I read a recommendation for them in one of the local magazines and they lived up to the billing. The owner talked with me for 15 minutes about the care of linen -- and he was able to get out the entire plate of fried appetizers and aoili that a waitress thought my linen required. I nearly lost the use of my pants but they are now back in service.
     
  19. Roger

    Roger Well-Known Member

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    And since this is a good and active Vancouver thread, I should put in a good word for Busy Bee gold dry cleaning in south False Creek. I read a recommendation for them in one of the local magazines and they lived up to the billing. The owner talked with me for 15 minutes about the care of linen -- and he was able to get out the entire plate of fried appetizers and aoili that a waitress thought my linen required. I nearly lost the use of my pants but they are now back in service.
    LOL [​IMG] . Jeez, that's going above and beyond. Well, as long as we are into a general Vancouver sartorial thread and on the subject of dry cleaning, I've been very happy with Fletcher's at the corner of Broadway and Arbutus. My wife dropped off a fairly delicate linen coat for cleaning and got a phone call the next day from them in which they went over with her some reasons for not dry cleaning the garment--it didn't really need it that much, and any dry cleaning would compromise the waterproof sealing that had been done to the linen fabric. I was impressed. I've had all my really good stuff--Kiton and Brioni--cleaned by them, and they go over it with you and are extremely careful. No food served however. [​IMG]
     
  20. TheHoff

    TheHoff Well-Known Member

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    I was going to start a Vancouver Sales Thread but I figured that would be dead quick so I'll just post here. I browsed the Harry Rosen and Holt Renfrew summer sales in Vancouver. Abso...lutely....nothing.......interesting..........

    Ok a few slight temptations:

    Holt -- everything up to 40% off. Which usually meant 10-20% on most things. Charvet ties down to $124. Yay.

    The new Ralph Lauren store was as lifeless as before. The only RLPL gear I saw were socks.

    Canali had a few nice suits in the sales racks. Some nice fabrics in normal sizes at $1100... which all considered is a pretty good deal for Vancouver.

    Harry Rosen -- Summer sale as well but about the same story. The shoe selection is still better since Holt's actually managed to get worse when they moved. Rosen had just a few Canali shoes on sale and no AE's. Nothing caught my eye except for one Canali that only had one size -- a burnt brown derby in sz 8 -- only one available at $399 down from 5 something. Obviously not a great deal but I'm trying to find something positive.

    The Bay -- 20% off Ray-Bans, my only purchase today [​IMG]
     

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