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Custom Suiting Toronto

KWang94

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View attachment 1330163

Part 1:

A friend and I went to Sultan's Fine Fabrics one day in December so that he could pick out some fabrics for future commissions and he wanted my help narrowing some choices down and to provide my honest opinion. Sometimes this can be difficult because we all have our own different tastes and interests, the challenge is not necessarily telling a person 'yes' or 'no', but rather providing insight into its versatility. In the documentary O'Mast, one of the tailors was talking about how specific fabrics work for specific people, and when one of his bigger clients had selected a check, he admittedly told the client why it would not work for him. However, personally, my approach is different, because if I'm trying to let the customer choose his own fabrics, I'd want the fabric to call out to him, and not vise versa.

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As easy as it is to get distracted looking for fabrics for someone else, it's almost obvious you'll be easily driven into finding something for yourself. Piles of fabrics on shelves screaming Vicuña and baby cashmere, to silk/linen, to Loro Piana S170's; as boring as most of the patterns were, there were some more fun and playful fabrics laying around as you dig for them. And I dug pretty hard for some of them. I finalized on three rolls, a pink, blue, purple soft-like-flannel-esque tweed; a green, pink, purple silk/linen and a purple-based cashmere/wool check from Loro Piana (I have no purple currently, is purple my secret colour?). In all honesty, due to the stories and witnessing I had heard of and seen regarding the apparent Sultan-rip-offs, I decided I should stick to one so that see firsthand what I would gain from my own experience. Due to the current climate, being December, I decided to go with a winter fabric; and due to it being my first purchase from Sultan's, I decided to scrap the Loro Piana Cashmere. When I asked Sultan what mill it was from and what the composition was of the fabric, he replied "I don't know." Which to be honest, is more respectful than just making something up. So I bought it.

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The three fabrics I had chosen, hard to narrow down.

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The fabric I decided on.

Trying to decide what to do with my fabric, seeing that there are so many possible CMT options, I wanted to brainstorm a way to get it taken care of as soon as possible. The first thing that came to my mind was to get it made locally to save on the time that it would take shipping it overseas, and barely reminding myself that my friends Brenton & Co. were now a running business, I thought it wouldn't hurt to inquire if they could make it up for me before I could even consider them an option. I sent a message to my good friend James, the co-founder. James and I had worked together in the past and had a good on-and-off friendship that depended mostly on how busy our separate lives dictated us. The reply was that it should be something they could do and they asked me to swing by to drop it off.

Once the busyness of Pitti Uomo and returning to work settled down, I found time to finally stop by Brenton & Co. to drop off my jacket and so that I could get measured. Wanting to stay as true to their house-cut as possible, I wanted to only demand the specifications that truly mattered to me; a three button single breasted jacket, non-padded shoulder, jacket length, sleeve length, pocket style and lapel width (which can always be finalized during the first fitting). For the pockets I chose triple patch-pockets with the two on bottom having reversed box pleats, and the chest pocket without. They asked me if I wanted the shirring at the shoulder and because the fabric is a little on the heavier side, we mutually agreed that some would be nice but may not be too visible. They called the tailor who would draw up my pattern and cut it down to take my measurements. Having a background in Made-to-Measure, I am used to taking at least 20 different measurements for jackets for my clients, but with Brenton I counted maybe six, which was a bit surprising at first, but seeing as there are further fittings required, it made sense. Once the measurements were taken and my specifications were noted, I gave Brenton my money and we exchanged schedule availability to have me come back to document the cutting process in their workshop.

Over the weekend, it so happened to work out that they'd be cutting my jacket a little after the time I would get off work at Spier & Mackay, so I ran up to Yorkville to meet with Ira and James before walking over to their workshop. Once we reached the workshop, the tailor was waiting for us with his sheers in hand; before him, on a table, was my fabric sprawled out and folded in half, marked up with chalk-outlines of what I could tell was the right-half of my jacket; (you could easily tell my right sleeve outline, and my front-panel chest piece with the darting marked into it). Once the cutter cut out each individual piece, he would take his time to pattern match each panel to the folded-over fabric beneath it by holding the two pieces together with pins, once the checks all lined up he would cut the mirrored pattern out accordingly. It was a pretty exciting experience to see the cutting process in person.

View attachment 1330173

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The pins, in the above image, are holding the two layers of fabric together so the pattern-matching remains perfect.

View attachment 1330179

I now await the assembly of the basted fit so I can see the next step of the construction of my jacket so that I can document the remainder of the process. In total, Ira told me that the turn-around is four to six weeks and working in Made-to-Measure at Spier and Mackay, with our promised turn-around time of 6-8 weeks, it's more common that the customer gets their finished garment in 8-10, and if it's a personal order for me, I usually don't expect to see it for maybe three to four months. So, 4-6 weeks sounds like a pretty quick turn-around from my biased perspective. Once the assembly and fitting follow through, I'll have further information to report back.
Great read and great pics, man.
 

ForwardPleats

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Does anyone in Toronto do a traditional English/Savile Row* style house cut? Most things I seem to see in this thread are very Italian-inspired these days.

(*I know this is a nebulous, loaded term and there are differences between the equestrian, military, and drape schools on the Row, but generally speaking, I am looking for attributes like heavier canvas construction, built-up, roped shoulders, notch lapels with some belly, slanted gorge, swelled or draped chest, suppressed waist, flared skirt, tapered trousers with double forward pleats and side adjusters, etc.)
 
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induere_to

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Does anyone in Toronto do a traditional English/Savile Row* style house cut? Most things I seem to see in this thread are very Italian-inspired these days.

(*I know this is a nebulous, loaded term and there are differences between the equestrian, military, and drape schools on the Row, but generally speaking, I am looking for attributes like heavier canvas construction, built-up, roped shoulders, notch lapels with some belly, slanted gorge, swelled or draped chest, suppressed waist, flared skirt, tapered trousers with double forward pleats and side adjusters, etc.)
Sr. Francesco was probably the best English-cut tailor Toronto had but I guess since his retirement he's no longer an option. John Ferragamo has pretty heavily structured suits, most sophisticated that I have seen in Toronto. Brenton & Co. told me that their cut is also based off patterns from Savile Row.

Luckily, they're across the street from each other, so it doesn't hurt to check them out. Not sure how much it may help you, but it could help me if you happen to say your recommendation came from me. All the best.
 

KWang94

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Sr. Francesco was probably the best English-cut tailor Toronto had but I guess since his retirement he's no longer an option. John Ferragamo has pretty heavily structured suits, most sophisticated that I have seen in Toronto. Brenton & Co. told me that their cut is also based off patterns from Savile Row.

Luckily, they're across the street from each other, so it doesn't hurt to check them out. Not sure how much it may help you, but it could help me if you happen to say your recommendation came from me. All the best.
Does anyone in Toronto do a traditional English/Savile Row* style house cut? Most things I seem to see in this thread are very Italian-inspired these days.

(*I know this is a nebulous, loaded term and there are differences between the equestrian, military, and drape schools on the Row, but generally speaking, I am looking for attributes like heavier canvas construction, built-up, roped shoulders, notch lapels with some belly, slanted gorge, swelled or draped chest, suppressed waist, flared skirt, tapered trousers with double forward pleats and side adjusters, etc.)
You might want to consider giving GP Mazzotta a shot as well. He's described his house style to me as almost Sexton like.
 

ForwardPleats

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Sr. Francesco was probably the best English-cut tailor Toronto had but I guess since his retirement he's no longer an option. John Ferragamo has pretty heavily structured suits, most sophisticated that I have seen in Toronto. Brenton & Co. told me that their cut is also based off patterns from Savile Row.

Luckily, they're across the street from each other, so it doesn't hurt to check them out. Not sure how much it may help you, but it could help me if you happen to say your recommendation came from me. All the best.
Thanks a ton! I reached out to Brenton based on your recommendation. Since I am in London, ON and I wasn't planning on being up to Toronto for a while I contacted them by email. They were really responsive and patient with my nerdy questions. They let me know that they draw inspiration from Dege&Skinner for their house cut, which is right up my alley. I'm generally a big fan of the middle of the road military tailors like Gieves & Hawkes (especially back under Kathryn Sargent) and Dege &Skinner. I've booked a consultation for when my wife and I are in Toronto for March break.

I saw you on Instagram, you had your first basted fitting for your odd jacket discussed on the last page. Did things go well? Is a detailed post coming like you did after the measuring and cutting? I'm really curious since Brenton is so new and there is not a ton online about them yet.

You might want to consider giving GP Mazzotta a shot as well. He's described his house style to me as almost Sexton like.
Thanks for the response. That is good to know. I wrongly assumed that Mazzotta would fall within one of the Italian schools. Sexton is a bit too flamboyant for my tastes, but it might be fun in the future for an odd jacket.
 

induere_to

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Thanks a ton! I reached out to Brenton based on your recommendation. Since I am in London, ON and I wasn't planning on being up to Toronto for a while I contacted them by email. They were really responsive and patient with my nerdy questions. They let me know that they draw inspiration from Dege&Skinner for their house cut, which is right up my alley. I'm generally a big fan of the middle of the road military tailors like Gieves & Hawkes (especially back under Kathryn Sargent) and Dege &Skinner. I've booked a consultation for when my wife and I are in Toronto for March break.

I saw you on Instagram, you had your first basted fitting for your odd jacket discussed on the last page. Did things go well? Is a detailed post coming like you did after the measuring and cutting? I'm really curious since Brenton is so new and there is not a ton online about them yet.


Thanks for the response. That is good to know. I wrongly assumed that Mazzotta would fall within one of the Italian schools. Sexton is a bit too flamboyant for my tastes, but it might be fun in the future for an odd jacket.
I visited Ira yesterday and he had mentioned that someone had contacted them from StyleForum (being the only person they know on StyleForum, they presumed it was on my recommendation). I'm curious to know how it goes. I'm supposed to head to Los Angeles in two weeks but my wife is a little paranoid right now about the Virus situation so she may try talking me in to cancelling. However, if I'm here, I'd be willing to accompanying; my wife can't just take away the sun from me without a hard fought fight.

I want to write a Part II, but I'm not sure I have enough information at the moment and may have to wait until I go in to document the tailors stitching my jacket together and perform another fitting to make sure my requests have been accommodated for.
 

KWang94

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I visited Ira yesterday and he had mentioned that someone had contacted them from StyleForum (being the only person they know on StyleForum, they presumed it was on my recommendation). I'm curious to know how it goes. I'm supposed to head to Los Angeles in two weeks but my wife is a little paranoid right now about the Virus situation so she may try talking me in to cancelling. However, if I'm here, I'd be willing to accompanying; my wife can't just take away the sun from me without a hard fought fight.
Thanks a ton! I reached out to Brenton based on your recommendation. Since I am in London, ON and I wasn't planning on being up to Toronto for a while I contacted them by email. They were really responsive and patient with my nerdy questions. They let me know that they draw inspiration from Dege&Skinner for their house cut, which is right up my alley. I'm generally a big fan of the middle of the road military tailors like Gieves & Hawkes (especially back under Kathryn Sargent) and Dege &Skinner. I've booked a consultation for when my wife and I are in Toronto for March break.

I saw you on Instagram, you had your first basted fitting for your odd jacket discussed on the last page. Did things go well? Is a detailed post coming like you did after the measuring and cutting? I'm really curious since Brenton is so new and there is not a ton online about them yet.


Thanks for the response. That is good to know. I wrongly assumed that Mazzotta would fall within one of the Italian schools. Sexton is a bit too flamboyant for my tastes, but it might be fun in the future for an odd jacket.
I want to write a Part II, but I'm not sure I have enough information at the moment and may have to wait until I go in to document the tailors stitching my jacket together and perform another fitting to make sure my requests have been accommodated for.
If you guys are going after work, I'd love to go with you guys too if that's cool.
 

ForwardPleats

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I visited Ira yesterday and he had mentioned that someone had contacted them from StyleForum (being the only person they know on StyleForum, they presumed it was on my recommendation). I'm curious to know how it goes. I'm supposed to head to Los Angeles in two weeks but my wife is a little paranoid right now about the Virus situation so she may try talking me in to cancelling. However, if I'm here, I'd be willing to accompanying; my wife can't just take away the sun from me without a hard fought fight.

I want to write a Part II, but I'm not sure I have enough information at the moment and may have to wait until I go in to document the tailors stitching my jacket together and perform another fitting to make sure my requests have been accommodated for.
If you guys are going after work, I'd love to go with you guys too if that's cool.
I would be more than happy to have either of you gentlemen along if you would like. I think I am booked in for the afternoon on Thursday, March 19 if either of you are available then. (Although I do hope induere_to ends up getting his planned California sunshine! My wife is paranoid enough about us going to Toronto with the Coronavirus situation, so I sympathize.) If you are available, just send me a PM and we can confirm details.

If the consult goes well and I feel like Brenton&Co is a good fit, the idea I currently have in my mind is to check off one of the classics I have always wanted - a midweight navy serge (perhaps 12-13oz) button two single-breasted suit with hacking pockets (including ticket pocket) and well-tapered pleated trousers with turn-ups.
 

induere_to

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I would be more than happy to have either of you gentlemen along if you would like. I think I am booked in for the afternoon on Thursday, March 19 if either of you are available then. (Although I do hope induere_to ends up getting his planned California sunshine! My wife is paranoid enough about us going to Toronto with the Coronavirus situation, so I sympathize.) If you are available, just send me a PM and we can confirm details.

If the consult goes well and I feel like Brenton&Co is a good fit, the idea I currently have in my mind is to check off one of the classics I have always wanted - a midweight navy serge (perhaps 12-13oz) button two single-breasted suit with hacking pockets (including ticket pocket) and well-tapered pleated trousers with turn-ups.
Plans unfortunately had to cancel due to this pseudo-pandemic paranoia. Because Los Angeles tourist attractions are all closing until the end of the month, there was no other reason for me not to cancel this trip. There's what, over 12 million people in Los Angeles? and 30 or 40 cases now? The paranoia is getting a little out of hand...
 
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breakaway01

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Plans unfortunately had to cancel due to this pseudo-pandemic paranoia. Because Los Angeles tourist attractions are all closing until the end of the month, there was no other reason for me not to cancel this trip. There's what, over 12 million people in Los Angeles? and 30 or 40 cases now? The paranoia is getting a little out of hand...

Anyways, I'll be here when you're ready, I decided to take a role at Brenton & Co for the time being. If you have any questions, feel free to reach out.
I know this is not the place for this but as a physician and virologist I am saying that this is very, very real and we all need to take this seriously. Modeling tells us that there are thousands of undiagnosed cases in the US because we has been very far behind the curve on testing. Action now will pay off later.
 

Ebichuman

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Plans unfortunately had to cancel due to this pseudo-pandemic paranoia. Because Los Angeles tourist attractions are all closing until the end of the month, there was no other reason for me not to cancel this trip. There's what, over 12 million people in Los Angeles? and 30 or 40 cases now? The paranoia is getting a little out of hand...

Anyways, I'll be here when you're ready, I decided to take a role at Brenton & Co for the time being. If you have any questions, feel free to reach out.
Stick to commenting on menswear, man.
 

ForwardPleats

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Plans unfortunately had to cancel due to this pseudo-pandemic paranoia. Because Los Angeles tourist attractions are all closing until the end of the month, there was no other reason for me not to cancel this trip. There's what, over 12 million people in Los Angeles? and 30 or 40 cases now? The paranoia is getting a little out of hand...
We had to cancel our trip to Toronto because I am in the high risk group. I'm on immunosuppressant medications and also have asthma, so I'm locked down for the time being. Am looking forward to rescheduling when this passes.
 

induere_to

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We had to cancel our trip to Toronto because I am in the high risk group. I'm on immunosuppressant medications and also have asthma, so I'm locked down for the time being. Am looking forward to rescheduling when this passes.
Completely understandable. I'm on a medication that weakens my immune system, and I've had chronic asthma since birth. Doesn't help that all the illness symptoms are all symptoms I have felt daily since I was kid.
 

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