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Australian Members

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by earthdragon, Nov 18, 2008.

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  1. PapaRubbery

    PapaRubbery Senior member

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    Hi Michael,

    EDIT: You're not in Melb, ignore this paragraph!


    I'm not sure if you already know this, but MJ Bale are opening up in Melb in flinders lane in Nov.

    Also if you're in Melb, check out Tolley in Bourke street. They are just down from American tailors, and they have a good range of suits. Although their range of 36 chest suits are small/non-existent, but they can get them in. They offer a MTM service as well, which is about $1000 from memory. Frankly though, I'd stick to off the rack in the beginning, until you know what you want.

    I've got a suit from SuitSupply and it's great, but I was in a position to order different sizes and return the ones that didn't fit. This probably isn't the best option, especially in the beginning. Stick to MJ Bale, especially as you're a sydneysider!

    As someone else who is starting to enter the world of better dressing, I'd say start slow.

    Also for the shirts, check out MJ Bale's 5 for $240. Good selection of CBD-appropriate shirts in there.

    Cheers,

    Alex
     
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2012
  2. JimmyHoffa

    JimmyHoffa Senior member

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    Thanks Alex,

    I am reading pretty good things about Bale. I just read Charlie's Wardrobe blog about it (him being an ex-Herringbone man).

    The price point is pretty good!
     
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2012
  3. Petepan

    Petepan Senior member

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    I am not sure whether anyone else has brought this up, and at the risk of repeating:

    1. Posture is super important. I have a stoop I am trying hard to correct. The difference in dressing with correct posture is day versus night.
    2. Manners and behaviour. A bit nanny like, but true. No point looking brilliant if you act like a dick eg digging your nose on the train.
    3. Personal hygiene. Cut your nails, deodorant and clean hair/scalp. Your Italian handmade suit won't look too flash with dandruff on it.
    4. Exercise, and take care of health. A glowing healthy skin tone from exercise, rest and a good diet makes a huge difference.
    5. Fit is supreme, then everything else. Make sure things fit properly. Don't cut corners by trading off price.

    If you take care of the basics, everything else falls in place.
     
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2012
  4. Prof. B. Bear

    Prof. B. Bear Senior member

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    Those suits wouldn't happen to be "elite" would they?
     
  5. JimmyHoffa

    JimmyHoffa Senior member

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    Pete

    Thanks for the advice. It tells me the fact that a good suit is only a cog in a much larger machine for doing well in the workplace.

    About point 5. I don't hit shops up that much because I feel that the SA is really doing the hard sell or is questionable on their knowledge about fit. It is hard getting around that. It is also hard when you don't have many friends your age that know the good fit from the not-so-good.
     
  6. Journeyman

    Journeyman Senior member

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    Definitely "+1" on the no MTO for the first suit comment - particularly online MTO. I know that it sounds tempting and, of course, places like Elite Suits like to blather on about fabrics and canvassing and so on, but that is of no use if the suit doesn't fit.

    Buy some off-the-rack suits first, get them tailored, wear them for a while, get an idea as to what you like, what looks good on you, and what fits you well, and then go and get something made-to-order later. As has also been mentioned, whilst you'll pay a premium for a bricks-and-mortar MTO operation like P. Johnson or Deer Style, you will have a significantly higher chance of getting something that looks good and which fits you well, compared to online MTO operations.

    Personally, I'd skip Country Road as their suiting is absolutely abysmal and has been for quite a few years now. The jackets feel as though they are lined with cardboard, the lapels are skinny and some of the suits don't even have lapel buttonholes. Their shirts are pretty awful, too, with skinny, floppy collars. A far cry from the late 1990s when they had removable collar stays, pattern matching at the sleeveheads and (thin) mother of pearl buttons on some shirts...

    I think that MJ Bale make good suits - some of them are made in Japan and some (the cheaper ones) are made in China. They occasionally have some odd stylistic choices, such as last year's faded red chambray shirt that had a breast pocket on the inside of the chest or large, very visible pick stitching on shirt collars, done in contrasting collars. However, their more classically-styled shirts are nice and good value for money given the ridiculous prices typically charged for average-quality shirts in Australia. I know a couple of people who have an MJ Bale charcoal suit as a wardrobe staple and the suits look good and wear well.


    Agree with this, too. There's no point in wearing a Borrelli suit if you shamble along, looking like you've just been on a week-long bender.
     
  7. Henry Carter

    Henry Carter Senior member Affiliate Vendor

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    Hi Michael,

    Yep I did work there a few years ago on the weekends (this was before the buyout and when a lot was still made in Japan). Someone (maybe you?) also asked the other day about the MJ Bale Mudgee weave. I have it and just got married in it, also wearing it today. I'm very happy with it and it fits me slightly better than the Herringbone Osaka cut (more closed fronts, or quarters as some say) and a fraction more in the length.

    Hope that helps.

    Jason
     
  8. Petepan

    Petepan Senior member

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    Hehe, just to confuse Michael Sy a bit more, I support the notion of avoiding MTO or even tailoring if your body shape is not too unusual. I think Michael is not even at that stage yet. Quite a bit of knowledge and education is required, and time will take care of this. Start with RTW, try on different things, find something that you like, take it from there. It is a logical progression.

    FWIW, the styles of MJ Bale and TM Lewin are just not for me. Country Road jackets are also pretty meh. The cuts and styles that I prefer are usually Italian. My best fitting jackets (aside from fully tailored ones) are Cavalli and Versace (gasp! horror!). The former is half-canvassed, the latter is fused.
     
  9. ColdEyedPugilist

    ColdEyedPugilist Senior member

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    Hi Jason

    Question about the brown floral print tie in your collection: Is it a macclesfield print? Looks very much like the kind of fabric Marinella or Cappelli would buy.

    Really tempted to get it...
     
  10. California Dreamer

    California Dreamer Senior member

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    A big yes to this one. Breaking my shoulder has totally screwed my posture, with one shoulder sitting slightly forward of the other. The effect is that shirts and jackets that fit just right on my right shoulder are about 1" too wide on the left. Weird.

    It bugs me now because I want to go to PJ and get a suit made, but I'm reluctant to do this unless I can figure out if this is a long-term problem or not. If the former, they can cater for it, but my new suit would probably look strange if it comes good in a few months.
     
  11. DartagnanRed

    DartagnanRed Senior member

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    I by no means am suggesting go Country Road, just that when you start out maybe you'll like it. It's kind of a symptom of Styleforum that when someone starts out there is this need to create a hierarchy of clothes. This was one of the first things I did, ranking everything on a scale of Lowes>Brioni for suits and Dunlop volleys>Edward Green/Vass for shoes. I immediately assumed canvassed=good, fused=bad and saw everything in terms of dichotomies.

    Took a long time to realise that most of this was wrong and led to me never being happy with what I purchased or wore. All the while I was telling myself that I was in to classical men's clothing because I wasn't vainly following trends and fashions like everyone else, when in reality I was just pursuing a different form of vanity trying to live up to the unspoken expectations of a forum on the internet and a clothing hierarchy in my head.

    Now, when I walk out the door I try to take a good look at what I'm wearing and ask "am I trying too hard here." Best sartorial decision I've made.
     
  12. JimmyHoffa

    JimmyHoffa Senior member

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    If MJ Bale gets the approval stamp from SF regulars than I am definitely interested. I probably did make a mistake going online MTM. Ah well, :(, hopefully it isn't one of the worst financial mistakes I make in life (ironic). The first MTM suit from Elite fits pretty well, but the stress of measurements might have not been worth the couple of hundred saved.

    Jason - I am reading a few articles from your blog, they are good reads.

    I wasn't the one that asked your about Bale, I only really gave them a look in after some good reviews here on the Australian thread. I am actually interested in the Mudgee weave. Looks like great quality for the price. Considering that you were prepared to get married in it speaks volumes. I will definitely try it on when I visit on Thursday.

    Pete

    My body shape is not unusual. I am 5'9 and 67kg. I don't have longer arms relative to my body, or one leg that is slightly longer than the other. I think I have longish legs, but all the pants I try on are always too long relative to waist (maybe they are made that way). My shoulders are not overly broad and I don't have a big waist line. I guess I got 'sucked into' the whole 'buy MTM superior suits online', where as I should have paid just that little bit more and tried suits on in-store and learned what a better fit really is.

    You also raise a good point about construction. It doesn't matter whether it is fully canvassed or fused, the make and fabric shouldn't take priority over fit - ever.

    Michael
     
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2012
  13. JimmyHoffa

    JimmyHoffa Senior member

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    It is good to know that someone has felt what I am feeling. Scary.
     
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2012
  14. Romp

    Romp Senior member

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    Do it Gerry. Love my Fox.
     
  15. Henry Carter

    Henry Carter Senior member Affiliate Vendor

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    Hey mate,

    They aren't macclesfield (screen printed in Como), but they do have a beautiful print finish and a great lightness about them being un-tipped. Very comfy in warmer weather.

    But yes very close in quality/feel to the couple of Marinella ties I have.
     
    1 person likes this.
  16. Petepan

    Petepan Senior member

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    Apologies for sloppy expression on my part. I mean that CR jackets are meh for me in terms of fit.

    But seriously, when I was 20 years old, my wardrobe was pretty basic, with the items often used below:

    1. Hanes white and black T-shirts;
    2. Chambray button down from Sportscraft;
    3. Navy wool blazer and tweed blazer (both thrifted);
    4. Levi's 501s and CR chinos;
    5. Doc Martens black leather and brown nubuck.
    6. One suit dark greenish (from Roger David, I think) worn probably two to three times per year.
     
  17. JimmyHoffa

    JimmyHoffa Senior member

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    You've seen the pictures. It is okay, but nothing special. If you are going to do it, you may as well get that 'wow factor'.
     
  18. lachyzee

    lachyzee Senior member

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    Last edited: Oct 15, 2012
  19. Gerry Nelson

    Gerry Nelson Senior member

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    Thanks, lachyzee - much appreciated!
     
  20. fxh

    fxh Senior member

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    Some of us can get away with it
     
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