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Borrelli v. kiton

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by JErwin, Jun 1, 2004.

  1. JErwin

    JErwin Active Member

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    There is a post at AA asking for comparisons of suits by Borrelli and Kiton. I thought I would pose the question here, and also throw Attolini into the mix. Can anyone comment on how these undoubtedly first-class suits compare? I've got some experience with Attolini, but not really with the other two. Thanks.
     
  2. marc37

    marc37 Senior member

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    Read this link to Andy's fashion forum; it'll give ya abit of info. http://www.askandyaboutclothes.com/F...?TOPIC_ID=2314 Borrelli has hand-stitched lapels, Kiton doesn't. Kiton is much more expensive. Kiton has alot finer material than Borrelli (Kiton is not the type of suit to be worn too much). Borrelli is relatively new: as it becomes established the prices will rise sharply with demand. l have not seen Kiton, but these are afew comments l have come accross. l love Borrelli. Kiton is for multi-millionaires. Borrelli is for people with fat salaries. Borrelli is better value for money. Great suits: better than Brioni [l think]. The seem along the back is totally hand-stitched. The back of the sleeves are totally hand stitched. Don't know about Attolini. Hope this helps alittle. Â [​IMG]
     
  3. JErwin

    JErwin Active Member

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    Great. Thanks.
     
  4. A Harris

    A Harris Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    Um, Kiton does have handstitched lapels.

    You are going to have a hard time proving any one of those three brands is better made than the other. They are, all three, very fine, top-tier suits.

    Better to differentiate on the basis of cut. I've never tried on Borrelli, but between Kiton and Attolini, I prefer Attolini. Most of the Kiton suits sold in the US are far too boxy for my tastes. Attolini on the other hand, markets some true Neopolitan jackets with the pleated shoulder, trademark breast pocket etc. Just acquired my first one and it is amazing. Not that Kiton can't make that sort of jacket - just that you rarely ever see them here.
     
  5. brescd01

    brescd01 Senior member

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    Can someone explain the logic to me of buying a 3-6000 dollar RTW suit when you could take that money to the finest tailor and get a suit made that fits perfectly, in the style and fabric of your choice? Even Raymond Partito "only" charges 4000/suit.

    Before people go ballistic (price seems to be the last taboo here), remember I am a guy who can easily see the reason people spend 800 dollars on RTW EG's (I have averaged 300 on my AS, CJ handgrade, and Albaladejos), and 200 dollars/bespoke shirt (I spend 115-150 at Harris, 50 at Jantzen-trying it-, and 60 at Land's End).

    On a separate subject (but related), I know I wrote before that over 500 was crazy for shoes, but maybe I was being a tightwad. I still think bespoke shoes are a stretch, even if I were loaded. What a hassle. I want to pay people money to SAVE me time.
     
  6. Alias

    Alias Senior member

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    Yeah, I agree. With the same amount of money for a Kiton or Borelli (at retail price, not on eBay) one can get a true bespoke suit.

    And bespoke shoes are recommended for 1) people with lots of money and 2) people with odd feet that won't be comfortable in anything else.
     
  7. kalra2411

    kalra2411 Senior member

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    I do not think that just because something claims to be fitted perfectly for you that it will be. This is namely due to the fact that they do not have as much experience, and hence the purpose of buying a off the rack suit.

    I would agree that a made to measure suit will, 90 % of the time, fit better than an off the rack suit. However, it sometimes can be the case that a made to measure suit will fit even better, especially with a few alterations.

    In addition, note that fact that fit is not the final word in a quality suit, and almost always a high end off the rack suit will be of a better construction and the fabric will be of a higher quality than a made to measure suit of the same price.
     
  8. kabert

    kabert Senior member

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    By the way, with talk of $3500 Kiton suits, I'm feel compelled once again (sorry) to note that that's really full retail price. Go to Neiman Marcus when they're having a sale and you can get a Kiton suit for $2200 or less. And, there are several EBay sellers who sell dozens and dozens of entirely brand new Kiton suits for $1800; Attolini suits for $1600; Brioni suits for $1300; Borrelli suits for $1000-1200; and Oxxford suits for $800-1200. If you know your size in those makes, you can obviously save an enormous amount of money. To find these Ebay sellers, go to ebay, search (for example) for "Attolini suit" and when the hits come up, sort by "highest price first" to find those that are generally the best sellers. Some of the sellers that list with low starting prices are also very good, but they're more often selling used suits (which can be even more of a bargain).
     
  9. marc37

    marc37 Senior member

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    Brescd01: you make a good point about be-spoke. Unfortunately, l live in a major city where be-spoke is not possible. (Hope the be-spoke experience pays off).

    What are Albaladejos? Are they by Vass?

    Look forward to seeing how a be-spoken Bresc01 likes his suit. A photo of these double monk Albaladejos would be good.
     
  10. imageWIS

    imageWIS Senior member

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    Keeping in mind that I have never ordered a bespoke suit, but know many people (in real life, not on forum(s)) that have...

    I own both MTM / RTW suits / jackets...and can honestly say that a good enough tailor can make either one look as good as the other for the simple reason that the MTM are still based on standardized patterns and must be altered to properly fit, regardless how well the suit is cut and the measurements were properly interpreted by the factory that produced the MTM sartorial item.

    In my personal experience, suits that are not fused and have been basted by either human or machine or a combination of both are:

    A) better to alter as the tailor can manipulate the stitching more easily and with a greater degree of control than they can with a suit that is fused.

    B) Look better after it has been tailored because of not only the aforementioned in "˜A' but also because the tailor has been able to allow for a more natural contouring (regardless of cut, whether the suit is shaped like a Hickey-Freeman, or mimic's a suit from Dege) and roll of the lapels by controlling the pull of the fabric and lining.

    Plus, my RTW suits From Zegna Napoli Couture look, fit, and are better made than my MTM Polo Ralph Lauren suit from Corneliani, which is fused at the bottom, even though the lapels are not fused.

    I posted the Attolini / Borrelli / Kiton question previously, and still do not know which comes out on top. What I do know, is that the Borrelli's impressed me the most regarding fabrication, whereas the Attolini's impressed me more with the Neapolitan cut (which, with its high armholes and fitted cut fit my slim body perfectly), as well as the barchetta pocket. Of course Kiton is top tier and with the right alteration would look just as good as a Borrelli or Attolini.

    Jon.
     
  11. jcusey

    jcusey Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    I can think of several reasons:

    1. Predictability. With a RTW Kiton suit, you know exactly what you're going to get because you can see it right in front of you. Bespoke tailoring always involves to a greater or lesser extent a leap of faith.

    2. Convenience. A bespoke suit will probably take three or four fittings. If the alterations tailors know what they're doing, an RTW one should only require one. Three or four fittings can be a hassle even if you live close to the tailor's shop. Imagine what it would be like if you lived thousands of miles away.

    3. Speed. I'm not talking about instant gratification. Sometimes, you need a suit and you need it fast for whatever reason. Bespoke tailoring just isn't capable of satisfying you in such circumstances.

    4. Cost. This sort of bleeds into #2 above. A proper accounting of the cost of a bespoke suit has to include the cost of getting to the fittings. If your tailor is in London and you live in Houston, the suit will cost much more than the price the tailor charges you.

    5. Sales. Bespoke suits don't go on sale. RTW suits do.

    The bespoke shoemaking process is no more onerous to the customer than the bespoke tailoring process. It just goes back to what you want to spend your surplus money on. You're spending yours on bespoke suits. Good for you. As for me, bespoke suits don't excite me nearly as much as bespoke shoes, and I'll spend accordingly.
     
  12. Thracozaag

    Thracozaag Senior member

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    Do a search under "borrelli", naturlaut had a very nice thread about their suits.
     
  13. tdial

    tdial Senior member

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    I own two Kiton suits that I bought 3 years ago on sale at Neiman's. I wear suits to work everyday, though my Kiton's are reserved for special occasions (e.g., weddings, parties, etc.). The rest of my suits are predominantly Canali (great value) and Baldessarini (great discount when the Boss store in my local mall closed). Last week, I bought a linen Borrelli suit from an Ebay seller. When it arrived, I promply bought two more from him. They are, in my opinion, as well made, and in some ways, more to my liking than the Kitons I wear. The fabric, I would say, isn't as "luxurious" feeling as my Kitons, though one of the Borellis does have a silky smooth Kiton feel to it. And I have tried on a linen Brioni suit that was softer linen than the Borrelli I bought online.

    I took the Borrellis to my tailor today, because I have to get the sleeves altered (he's going from the shoulder, since they have working buttons). When he examined the Borrellis, he said they looked immaculately made to his eye. He asked me what I paid for them, and when I told him, he was somewhat blown away that a suit of that quality could be had for so little. I ended up paying an additional $350 bucks total to get the three suits perfectly fitting, but it was worth it.

    The Borrellis, much like the Kitons, are light, soft shouldered, and simply feel as if you don't even have a jacket on. The quality of the construction makes them feel as if they mold to your body. Like the Kitons, they have narrow arm holes and tapered sleeves, which I love. The pants, in my opinion, are better made than the Kiton suit pants I own. There appears to be much more handwork on the pockets and zipper area than the Kitons I own (take this for what its worth, as I am only comparing them to the 2 Kitons I have worn and own). And the main thing, at least for me, is they feel more durable than my Kiton suits. Of course the Kitons might be, and someone with more Kiton experience could prove me wrong, but that's just my intuition.
     
  14. discostu004

    discostu004 Senior member Affiliate Vendor

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    great thread. just a few comments:
    i've never owned Borrelli in either jkt or suit so i can't speak to them but i have a customer who does own it and loves it.

    while i love the Kitons and the one Attolini i have (in the hard to find size 55L) i must say my 2 Luciano Barbera jackets and 1 Barbera 3-pc suit fits me like Barbera used me as their model for 54L. Just unbelievable to me that Barbera doesn't have the same demand or even close to the same demand as Kiton/Attolini. I was talking to a friend who buys from me and i was describing my mocha windowpane Barbera sportcoat and he said he had the same one and that it got more compliments than anything he owns (and he owns upwards of 50 Kitons).
     
  15. imageWIS

    imageWIS Senior member

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    I'm sure Kiton's last a long time when rotate 50 of them.

    Jon.
     
  16. brescd01

    brescd01 Senior member

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    Okay, okay Jcusey, cool your jets. Bespoke shoes are the BEST.

    I think that the RTW vs bespoke equation must factor in one's body. My body sucks. If you have the slim body much RTW clothing looks best on, you are in luck.

    There is one thing however that RTW will NEVER have, and that is choice of fabric. The fabric that I selected was exactly what I wanted. It is my taste, as is the jacket's construction. That means a lot because it fits into the style I said each of us must cultivate. I would be very interested for someone who has had suits bespoke tailored by the best, to blow by blow compare them to an off the rack Borelli or Castagna.

    So far as Ebay, I know all about that. But I need to know what size I am for each manufacturer, and this is knowledge I do not possess at present. Funny that people warned me away from bespoke until I learn more, when I think that doing bespoke has been much easier for me, in terms of time and knowledge required. People have warned that without taste we can ask a tailor to do something awful, but I am not clear what that is about, because I brought pictures of perfectly reasonable looking suits that were classic but current.

    But that fabric choice thing, hard to beat that experience of getting exactly what one dreams of. To me, 2600 dollars for PRECISELY what I want is better than 1500 dollars for APPROXIMATELY what I want on Ebay, and that is what the Attolini's cost there and without no refunds permitted.

    Albaladejos are a Spanish shoe that is a recent arrival in the US and just opened a boutique in Paris one year ago. The quality of the double monk I have is comparable to the CJ handgrade double monk I have too, and cost 380 dollars delivered from Paris. Reportedly, the web sites will be upgraded within a month to have the whole line available for viewing.
     
  17. JErwin

    JErwin Active Member

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    Lance--
    Good point about LB suits. I think I remember someone here saying that they are made in a facility owned by one of the Attolini clan. That said, they seem to have a distinctive silhouette, and a more attractive price.
     
  18. BGW

    BGW Senior member

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    Dr. Bresch

    You are correct that bespoke is great for someone of your unconventinoal body type, and someone who is particular about the fabric of their suit (although MTM accrues this benefit).

    I plan on taking the bespoke plunge myself, but that is because I like you treasure having a ton of "creative control" over the suit making process and enjoy the artisanal value of bespoke suit making.

    That being said, it is not at all obvious that bespoke is better than RTW for everyone. I find your question a tad arrogant for someone who has never actually worn a bespoke suit.

    You note that "To me, 2600 dollars for PRECISELY what I want is better than 1500 dollars for APPROXIMATELY what I want on Ebay."

    Why would anyone eat tuna fish when they could eat lobster? If you are not price sensitive, then of course bespoke is the way to go. I strongly doubt that a 75% premium for a modest increase in fit and fabric choice would even find majority support amongst most Americans in our income bracket.

    Second, you are presenting an unrealistic, idealized version of bespoke. I hate to break it to you, but it is unlikely that you will get "precisely what [you] want" from your tailor. Buying bespoke requires buying a good before you have a chance to see the finished product and inspect it. It also requires creating a coherent vision of a suit, translating your vision of a new into words, communicating that effectively to your tailor, and then them implementing that vision without error. Many many posters who have experienced bespoke, even from some of the top names in the world, came away dissatisfied with their garment because. To ignore these people's experience is foolhardy.

    Third, RTW arguably meets many people's (those with less idiosyncratic preferences than us) needs more closely than bespoke for two reasons.

    Quality -- Top name RTW is made by extremely talented tailors. RTW tailors can further improve their garment through specialization of labor. It is actually rather odd to think one tailor should make the entire suit. What bespoke maker prices within $2000 of Oxxford matches them in terms of construction quality and consistency?

    Diversity -- Men can get an approximation of their wants through the market. There is a great diversity of RTW suit designs on the market right now. One can have most of their wants met through selecting a firm whose product matches their desires.
     
  19. offshore observer

    offshore observer Active Member

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  20. johnnynorman3

    johnnynorman3 Senior member

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    Right now the Brooks Brothers Golden Fleece's are right in my target price range; but I've also got an appointment with W.W. Chan here in the U.S. coming up in about 2.5 weeks. The price will roughly be equivalent. If I had to choose one, should I go with the MTM Chan or the RTW Brooks? Seems like you all have a diversity of opinion here.
     

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