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Do you hate fabric swatch books?

FidelCashflow

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I really dislike those little books of fabric swatches that manufacturers produce. It's so damn hard to visualize what an entire suit or jacket will look like based on a 4"x6" sample of cloth, especially when there are large checks involved. It makes the whole process very hit or miss.

My first bespoke suit turned out to be a nightmare since the fabric looked fantastic in the book, but overwhelmingly ugly in an entire suit.

My first MTM jacket actually turned out better than expected. I would have flipped past that swatch and NEVER given it a second thought in the book, but I saw a near identical RTW jacket first and fell in love with the fabric.

Even the salesperson who sold me the jacket told me it's a bit of a crap shoot when you're picking fabrics from little books. Does anyone else have this difficulty with those tiny swatch books?
 

a tailor

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yea its tough to picture what the suit will look like.
but picture those thousands of samples as thousands of suit lengths of cloth.
it would be a nightmare of a warehouse, not a tailor shop.
 

a tailor

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yea its tough to picture what the suit will look like.
but picture those thousands of samples as thousands of suit lengths of cloth.
it would be a nightmare of a warehouse, not a tailor shop.
 

LeonM

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I agree. It is difficult to visualize the whole suit from a swatch. It is a skill i don't have yet!

Leon
 

FidelCashflow

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The whole process has made me gunshy about picking a fabric out of a swatch book. From now on I'm only going to get something done if I've seen what a similar fabric looks like in a finished product.
 

Taxler

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If it's bespoke, you can ask to see the entire fabric length before the suit is cut. You may be out the cost of the fabric, but at least you have the chance to reconsider the choice.
 

indy116

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Same for paint. Can't visualize the entire room in the color.
 

0b5cur1ty

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Agree it's incredibly difficult. Looking at a someone else's finished suit (or shirt) in the same cloth is enormously helpful but, obviously, not always possible.
 

calvinloke

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My local tailor doesn't have swatch books. Instead he showed me the bolts.
 

Shirtmaven

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years ago, the smaller woolen houses would give the tailors fabric on consignment. sometimes they would give nice discounts and extended dating when tailors would buy stock for their shops.
today credit is quite tight and woolen house would rather keep the fabric in their warehouse then on someone else's shelf.
as discussed. it is easier to pick from a full length then a small swatch.
 

Golf_Nerd

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Originally Posted by Shirtmaven
... today credit is quite tight and woolen house would rather keep the fabric in their warehouse then on someone else's shelf.

No one is storing these days (storing causes costs and meanwhile the money isn't working, too).
 

Golf_Nerd

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Originally Posted by 0b5cur1ty
Agree it's incredibly difficult. Looking at a someone else's finished suit (or shirt) in the same cloth is enormously helpful but, obviously, not always possible.
+1 To become stylish is a longterm process and tributes have to paid.
 

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