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Looking for some suit brand recommendations

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by jrussmlr, Dec 22, 2009.

  1. jrussmlr

    jrussmlr New Member

    Messages:
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    Dec 22, 2009
    Hey everyone, first of all great forums here. I've been trolling for a while now and have always found helpful information.

    Starting in January I'll be interviewing for summer consulting internships at "top" firms, and I need to buy my first suit. I'm looking for a versatile, probably grey, business suit that would look OK in more social situations--I'd like it to look sharp. My only problem is that I have no idea where to start. I'd love to spend less than 500 bucks, but I'm not sure if that will get me something decent. I could spend more, up to 800, if necessary. What brands should I be looking for / which would fall within my price-range? I've been to the local Nordstrom's dept. store and they recommended John Varvatos, Polo "Lauren," and Hugo Boss suits. My dad recommended Jos. A Bank, but I've heard they're more traditional and maybe of questionable quality. What other brands should I look at? Where would I go to find these suits?

    I'm 21, 5'11" and 145 lbs. I wear a size 31 pair of jeans and have a pretty slim build overall.

    Any help is greatly appreciated, I'm in the dark here.
     
  2. kapay

    kapay Well-Known Member

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    Apr 12, 2006
    Location:
    Castro Valley, Oakland, San Francisco California
    If you're not gonna cough up at least 1g I would reccomend just sticking to retail brands like H&M, J. Crew, Express, or Banana Republic. Do your research on what slim fit suits they offer, then go to the stores and find which brand offers the BEST fit for your body by physically trying them on. I personally don't see the point of buying most department store brands as they're going to be roughly the same quality if not worse for more money. At $500-$800 the most important thing is FIT to give the appearance of a well tailored expensive suit.. I would go with 2 button charcoal grey or navy.
     
  3. jrussmlr

    jrussmlr New Member

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    Dec 22, 2009
    Thanks. As far as Banana Republic suits go--they're pretty inexpensive, all below $400. Are these a good deal for the money or would I get what I pay for?
     
  4. EZETHATSME

    EZETHATSME Well-Known Member

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    Oct 31, 2009
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    I've not purchased a BR suit, but from looking at them in the store, seems like you could do better for the money, or at least too much more. I like J. Crew for a bit more, at least in the price range you are looking at.

    What kapay said is right on regarding fit. A well fitting $500 suit will look nicer on you than a horrible fitting $1,000 suit.

    EZ
     
  5. jrussmlr

    jrussmlr New Member

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    OK, I'll look at J. Crew as well. In my browsing I've been seeing STP pop up a lot. What does that stand for?
     
  6. Glados1984

    Glados1984 Well-Known Member

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    Nov 21, 2009
    Location:
    UK
  7. Don Carlos

    Don Carlos Well-Known Member

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    OK, I'll look at J. Crew as well. In my browsing I've been seeing STP pop up a lot. What does that stand for?

    Sierra Trading Post.
     
  8. gram thorpe

    gram thorpe Active Member

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    Dec 16, 2009
    Hey about Reid & taylor?????? it also has wide range of collection.
     
  9. epic raccoon

    epic raccoon Well-Known Member

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    Location:
    New York, NY
    +1 on trying them on.

    If you'll use your suit for job interviews, try to find a more conservative cut suit rather than a fashion-forward one. Two or three button, lapels that aren't too skinny (which is the trend right now), trousers not skin tight.

    Make sure the suit fits in the shoulders as there is little that can be done if it doesn't fit here in terms of alterations. Have the pants hemmed at the proper height, and the waist of the jacket can be taken in if need be. Also please have the arms of the jacket done to the proper length or you'll look like you just picked your suit out of your father's closet. Jacket length is also important as well; if you're short or tall pick up an S or L size suit.

    Jos. A Bank may be a viable option but at < $800 I'd be going to Brooks Brothers, which will give you the best bang for your buck. Mall brands (especially Hugo Boss) are generally of questionable quality and have a high price tag. Also remember to factor in the cost of alterations, which will depend on where you live.

    As much as I've loved dealing with STP and I have ordered much from them, I would not suggest them for a suit for the simple reason that you should be able to try it on first.
     
  10. BareSolid

    BareSolid Well-Known Member

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    Location:
    England
    Steven Aver? That's what I was considering. There aer a lot of options there, like high armholes, natural shoulder, that someone like me would value.
     
  11. Coburn

    Coburn Well-Known Member

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    Apr 29, 2009
    Location:
    Seattle
    Try on a J Crew Ludlow. It's cut for a thin man.
     
  12. Don Carlos

    Don Carlos Well-Known Member

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    Steven Aver? That's what I was considering. There aer a lot of options there, like high armholes, natural shoulder, that someone like me would value.

    Online MTM for a first suit is a bit risky, even with a vendor as evidently reliable as Aver. I second the advice to go try on a bunch of off-the-rack suits to gauge your fit and sizing before buying anything. Brooks Bros works well, as would J Crew or even the SF-derided Banana. I would only buy BR suits at discount, though. They are fine suits for $200 when on sale, but poor suits for the full retail pricetag of $400-500.
     
  13. BareSolid

    BareSolid Well-Known Member

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    Location:
    England
    What is the slimmest cut of BB suits?

    I saw the Prince of Wales in a handsome DB and would like one like it.
     
  14. Hank Rearden

    Hank Rearden Well-Known Member

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    Jul 3, 2009
    If you have a Neiman's Last Call, Off 5th, or Nordstrom Rack in your neighborhood try going there. I recently purchased a fully canvassed Canali for $650ish from Nordstrom Rack and absolutely love it. Additionally they will likely have some Hickey Freeman and/or Burberry suits in your price range. At Off 5th on Saturday I saw an Isaia for just under a $900.

    I would stay away from Hugo Boss as you're paying a premium for the label. Joseph A. Bank catches a bunch of heat on this forum, and I personally don't own one, but a fairly stylish friend of mind told me that their 'signature gold' suits are half canvassed and because that store is in a state of perpetual sale you should be able to pick one up for well under $500 within a month.

    Finally I'm on Brooks Brothers mailing list and the day after Christmas they're having a massive store-wide sale. I don't remember the exact percentage on suits, but I bet you could pick one up for under $600 and that would be a big step up from JAB IMO.

    But, as many people have said before, go try the suits on and see what fits you well.
     
  15. jrussmlr

    jrussmlr New Member

    Messages:
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    Dec 22, 2009
    The after xmas sales might have some good stuff, yeah. My only worry is that the best, or most 'classic' suits never really go on sale. I guess I'll see. I'm going into Seattle downtown tonight to look around, here's where I plan on trying stuff on: Banana Republic, J. Crew, Brooks Brothers, H&amp;M, Nordstrom Rack, Macys. Anywhere else, maybe something people know is in downtown Seattle?
     
  16. jo-fu

    jo-fu Well-Known Member

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    Dec 2, 2009
    Whatever you get make sure you plan on spending ~150 getting it tailored (hopefully by someone you trust). Anything that fits you in the shoulders is going to be huge in the body and the sleeves probably too long.

    I saw those Banana Rep suits the other day and they looked like they should be at kmart. I also wouldn't rule out MTM if you have time to get it done.
     
  17. Don Carlos

    Don Carlos Well-Known Member

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    May 15, 2009
    If there's a Ralph Lauren outlet store anywhere near you, that might also be worth a visit. You never know what you're going to get there, but occasionally you'll stumble onto a great steal on a suit. At this time of year, though, most outlet stores have probably been thoroughly picked over. If you can wait till the first few weeks of 2010, they might get a fresh stock of unsold 2009 merch.
     
  18. furo

    furo Well-Known Member

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    Apr 6, 2009
    I think you're on the right track with the stores you have set up to visit. You probably will not find any smaller sized solid charcoal or navy suits in a store like Nordstrom Rack, NM Last Call, or Saks off 5th, unless you're willing to spend more money.

    You might find a solid Burberry suit for your price range. They are made in the USA of decent quality, and cut a bit slimmer than their big brother company - Hickey Freeman. You can try a Burberry Outlet, and they usually have a bunch of them at Saks off 5th (but again, you will have a tough time finding your size in a conservative color in those stores).
     
  19. mickey711

    mickey711 Well-Known Member

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    Thick as Theives offers high quality, well-fitting suits at reasonable prices. They should run you about $400-500 each, depending on the fabric, buttons and other options you can choose.
     
  20. furo

    furo Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    6,187
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    Apr 6, 2009
    Thick as Theives offers high quality, well-fitting suits at reasonable prices. They should run you about $400-500 each, depending on the fabric, buttons and other options you can choose.

    Would not recommend this option for a first suit unless you're in the LA area and can be fit/measured in person.
     

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