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Bespoke suits

ninamyers

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Hi everyone-

I'm trying to help my bf in buying a suit. He's in law school and will need at least one fairly soon since interview season is coming up.

Both he and I are concerned because none of the "off the rack" suits seem to fit him very well. His dimensions are 46L jacket and 32 waist (he works out a lot and is pretty obsessive about it). He does have a Hugo Boss suit that seems to fit him decently that he got about a year ago; the cut on that one seemed better for his build than that of a lot of the boxy American brands (brooks brothers et al.)

So i guess my question is, does someone of his size need a bespoke suit? If so, is it possible to get one made with good quality fabric for <$1500-2000? He'd rather not spend a fortune on it if possible! And can anyone recommend any good tailors in the US who can help him out with this? Thanks!!
 

weeks

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I would question whether a law student is at a position where he needs a bespoke suit. I would think that he should probably look at OTR separates (something like BrooksEase) or perhaps MTM. I am a 3L myself, and while I would love to have a bespoke suit, I just don't think it makes sense for a law student.
 

odoreater

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With a 14 inch drop a lot of OTR stuff isn't going to fit him. But, I agree with weeks that bespoke is not the way to go for now - especially for an interview suit. I have a lot of experience with interviewing with law firms (I did about 30 on-campus interviews and about 15 callbacks) and I would think, imho, that an interviewee wearing a perfectly fitting bespoke suit would send the wrong message to employers. Instead, as weeks said, he should look into suit seperates. The whole idea behind an interview suit is that you don't want your interviewers to even notice what you are wearing and you don't want to draw attention to the way you are dressed. Once he gets the job and is working with a firm, then he can go bespoke if he wants to.
 

mikeber

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Dear nina,
I would advise to take it easy at first.
Nobody is going to judge a student by his first suit, unless it's something totally uncommon or bad looking.
So for a first suit, you may go for suit seperates and/or take the suit to be altered by a tailor.
 

teddieriley

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I agree with weeks. I'm a 3L myself and had a few suits for interviews. Although I work out quite regularly, I'm apparently no He-man like your bf. Although you say most OTR do not fit him well, has he had any of the suits tailored? I wear a 44R with a 33 waist and have bought OTR from Barneys Warehouse sales. I just take it to my tailor to take in the sides of the jacket, shorten the sleeves, hem the pants, and take in the waist. Cost about $90, but the suits fit quite well. The only problem you may have will be with the pants if you don't buy suit separates. If the drop is only 6-8, your bf is looking to take in the waist by 6-8 inches. This significant change will throw off the pockets and belt loops and won't result in nice pants.

But a bespoke suit at this point will be quite costly and isn't really necessary if the impetus is for upcoming interviews. You can get a smart suit if it's tailored properly.
 

ninamyers

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thanks everyone for the responses.

odoreater, if he does go with the separates like brooksease, will tailoring be able to correct the shoulder to stomach ratio discrepancy without making the jacket look ridiculous? he tried on a brooks brothers jacket recently and once the tailor showed him what it would look like it still looked pretty bad because the stomach area was just too big to begin with. any recommendations on less "boxy" separates that are still good quality?
 

cpac

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Made to Measure is your friend.

In that price range, there's a huge range of M2M offerings. And contrary to what's been said above, I think when interviewing in law school is a very good time to invest in a very nice suit.

So visit a better department store, mens store, or place like Brooks Brothers or Hickey Freeman that have M2M programs, and see what you like...
 

chorse123

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What city are you in or near? There are a number of made-to-measure options available for less than your price range around the country, and I'm sure there's one wherever you are. I think that given your boyfriend's sizing issues, he'd be better off with MTM than any ready-to-wear separates.
 

ninamyers

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Originally Posted by chorse123
What city are you in or near? There are a number of made-to-measure options available for less than your price range around the country, and I'm sure there's one wherever you are. I think that given your boyfriend's sizing issues, he'd be better off with MTM than any ready-to-wear separates.

chicago. yes, MTM does seem to be a better option at this point. can you recommend some good stores in the area?
 

cpac

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Go to any of the nicer department stores, or Brooks Brothers, and ask about made to measure programs. Others who know chicago better may have specific M2M suggestions. Also, it's a bit above your price range (M2M starting at around $2500 or so), but you could not get a better made suit than an Oxxford, and the factory is there in Chicago.
 

odoreater

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Originally Posted by ninamyers
thanks everyone for the responses.

odoreater, if he does go with the separates like brooksease, will tailoring be able to correct the shoulder to stomach ratio discrepancy without making the jacket look ridiculous? he tried on a brooks brothers jacket recently and once the tailor showed him what it would look like it still looked pretty bad because the stomach area was just too big to begin with. any recommendations on less "boxy" separates that are still good quality?


Hmm, not sure about that, but brooks brothers stuff is cut to be pretty boxy in the first place. I'm kind of loathe to say it, but he might be better off getting something like a calvin klein or lauren suit from macys.

But, if he can afford it, I'd agree with everyone else and say that MTM might be an option. On the one hand you don't want to look like a pretentious bood wearing a $2000 suit, but on the other, you also don't want to look silly in an ill-fitting suit which can be a problem for people that have an athletic build. So if he really can't find anything OTR that looks decent, then he might have to go MTM.

The problem with MTM though, is that for me personally, if I were to get an MTM suit I would want options on it that I wouldn't want on an interview suit (e.g., ticket pockets and other cool things like that). Basically, I wouldn't waste MTM money on an interview suit.

When I interviewed I wore a crappy navy Bachrach suit, white shirt with blue tie and clunky black shoes (this was pre-Styleforum days) and I don't think it hurt me one bit.
 

cpac

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Originally Posted by odoreater
The problem with MTM though, is that for me personally, if I were to get an MTM suit I would want options on it that I wouldn't want on an interview suit (e.g., ticket pockets and other cool things like that). Basically, I wouldn't waste MTM money on an interview suit.

I understand your point of view, but when you cant find OTR that fits well, the money is no longer "wasted" even if you just go with the basics. (I'm 6'5"-6'6" and my first M2M was a revellation).


OH.

And nina - I forgot. Another place to check out is Paul Stuart. They fall right into the sweek spot of your price point.
 

odoreater

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Originally Posted by cpac
I understand your point of view, but when you cant find OTR that fits well, the money is no longer "wasted" even if you just go with the basics. (I'm 6'5"-6'6" and my first M2M was a revellation).


Definitely. If you are going to err, err on the side of looking a little too nice rather than on the side of looking too sloppy. If nothing OTR fits to an acceptable level then you have to do what you have to do.
 

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