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BlackLapel.com - any experience with them?

jbernard

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The best thing is if you don't like it, they will remake it and make sure you truly love it. It not let them know and they will fix it. Plus they are based in new York not china like most mtm places. On a jacket I had remade they even paid the shipping.
 

mingus2112

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I have a Navy suit from them and am extremely happy. I know it's useless without pictures, but I can't find any at the moment. I don't have any experience with other Made to Measure tailors, so I can't really compare.

I actually found them "out in the wild" when I saw one of the co-founders, Warren, at my regular tailor. He was there with a customer, and I was pretty impressed with the suit. So I made a note of the name on the garment bag (different name at the time) and looked it up later. This was last spring, before they launched their website. Turns out they were just in their development phase.

I met with Warren at his office (they're based in Manhattan) and he gave me all sorts of style advice. This was when I was first starting to improve my wardrobe. I exchanged several emails with him over the next several months "what do you think of this?" "how do you think this fits?" and this was all without making a single purchase. Warren is a genuinely nice guy and he really cares about the people as well as the product.

Ended up having a "man party" last August at my house in NJ. I pitched the idea to Warren and he loved it. It's basically a guy's version of a tupperware party. He came out to the house with swatches (wearing their Navy suit) and his girlfriend to help take measurements. We did a scotch tasting and several of my buddies ordered suits and or shirts.

As I understand it, they have a "less means more" type of model. A lot fewer fabric choices means they can buy in bigger bulk and get better fabrics. For me, the fact that I was dealing with an actual person (and IN PERSON) was worth the price increase over places like Indochino or Modern Tailor. It may be different for you.

Bottom line is that, although i'm THRILLED with my purchases (I have the suit and several shirts no - he even made me a blue shirt with cocktail cuffs!), i'm not the best person to judge quality. I CAN vouch for the people, though. I always feel like a shill when I write a review in favor of someone i've become friendly with - but I really can't say enough about the company. If you have the means, give them a shot.

-James
 

TheWraith

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I've spoken with them a few times as well. Their customer service is most excellent. I haven't made any commissions from them yet, though. I do believe, while the company is based in New York, that their tailoring is done in Asia (though feel free to correct me, anyone, if I am mistaken).
 

mingus2112

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I do believe, while the company is based in New York, that their tailoring is done in Asia (though feel free to correct me, anyone, if I am mistaken).

That is correct. Shanghai if I recall, but I could be mistaken.

-James
 

Jmm003

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The best thing is if you don't like it, they will remake it and make sure you truly love it. It not let them know and they will fix it. Plus they are based in new York not china like most mtm places. On a jacket I had remade they even paid the shipping.
Why'd you have it remade?

And can you comment on how low/high the arm-holes are?
 

jbernard

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Why'd you have it remade?

And can you comment on how low/high the arm-holes are? 

I put the shoulder a little bit higher than my tailor suggested and chest a little smaller than my tailor suggested. Ended up having shoulder dimples. Long story short just go with the measurements you actually measure and let black lapel make the jacket.

The arm holes are high. I don't have an exact measurement for you. But they are as high as my other m2m suits that I have been sized for in person. I did contact them because I was worried they were going to be too high. They said I could give them exact armhole measurements and they would make them to those measurements. So wether you want them high or low they will be happy to help.
 

Jmm003

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I placed an order today (8/7/12) for a fully canvassed Charcoal 2-piece suit. To have the suit fully canvassed cost an additional $200, and requires an extra week or so to make. The standard construct/delivery time is approximated at 3 weeks, so I hope mine arrives in 4-5. When it arrives, I will follow up with more information and photos.
 

TheWraith

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They're really good at offering extras not listed on their website. I've spoken with them a few times now, and they're really eager to please, which is nice to see.
 

TRIALnERROR

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I'm ready to pull the trigger on my first M2M suit. This will be added to my weekly rotation, so I'm most concerned with fit and durability. What is the consensus, Indochino or Black Lapel?
 

Jmm003

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I went with Black Lapel because of the half canvas and full canvas construction. Perceiving all other things to be equal, this was the tie-breaker for me. I really like a few of the Reda fabrics offered by Indochino in their Vincero line, but for $600+ I am weary of their "hybrid" construction method.
 

jbernard

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I'm ready to pull the trigger on my first M2M suit. This will be added to my weekly rotation, so I'm most concerned with fit and durability. What is the consensus, Indochino or Black Lapel?

I go through black lapel because my experience with them (3 suits) has been off the charts. An my experience with indochino was very bad. I can say with confidence black lapels suits are of better construction as well. My indochino suit basically fell apart in 1 - 2 months. My black lapel suits have lasted much longer and look brand new. I can also say my indochino suits are around the same quality as my Joseph a bank suit. And black lapel is around my Alexander's Custom Clothiers suit which cost double the price of the most expensive black lapel suit.
Also indochino will only do the customizations on their website. Black lapel will do almost anything you can think of. They even made someone an 8 button vest for their suit. If you don't like the size of the lapels they have on their website give them the measurements you want and they will make it for you.

Indochino and black lapel are not owned by the same people.
 

TRIALnERROR

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I went with Black Lapel because of the half canvas and full canvas construction. Perceiving all other things to be equal, this was the tie-breaker for me. I really like a few of the Reda fabrics offered by Indochino in their Vincero line, but for $600+ I am weary of their "hybrid" construction method.
I go through black lapel because my experience with them (3 suits) has been off the charts. An my experience with indochino was very bad. I can say with confidence black lapels suits are of better construction as well. My indochino suit basically fell apart in 1 - 2 months. My black lapel suits have lasted much longer and look brand new. I can also say my indochino suits are around the same quality as my Joseph a bank suit. And black lapel is around my Alexander's Custom Clothiers suit which cost double the price of the most expensive black lapel suit.
Also indochino will only do the customizations on their website. Black lapel will do almost anything you can think of. They even made someone an 8 button vest for their suit. If you don't like the size of the lapels they have on their website give them the measurements you want and they will make it for you.
Indochino and black lapel are not owned by the same people.
Thanks guys, this is exactly the kind of feedback I was looking for. I'm in the market for three suits, so I will order my first through BL until I get the exact fit, then order the remaining two.

jmm003: I too am concerned with Indochino's "hybrid" construction. In your opinion, is it worth the $150 upgrade to go full canvas or are the half-canvassed suits acceptable? What are the advantages of full vs. half? Does it extend the life or durability of the jacket?

jbernard: How long have you had your BL suits and how often would you say you wear them? As a recent grad, my wardrobe consists of mostly crappy JAB suits and I would like to replace them with BL. I'm hoping they will hold up over time. Do you know if anyone has any posts on their wear-and-tear?
 
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ZirconiumZephyr

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So, seems like the general concensus is that BL would be a better option compared to Indochino but what about Thick as Thieves?

I'm looking to get a basic suit and I think online MTM is my best option, what are peoples opinions?
 

TRIALnERROR

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So, seems like the general concensus is that BL would be a better option compared to Indochino but what about Thick as Thieves?

I'm looking to get a basic suit and I think online MTM is my best option, what are peoples opinions?
Thick as Thieves return/remake policy, or lack thereof, is a deal breaker for me (no alteration credit either). This is a tough pill to swallow considering the chances of the first suit fitting perfectly are slim to none. Not too mention their website is in need of a serious overhaul.
 
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