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First time MTM - online vs. in store

paradoxical3

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I am about to jump into the world of MTM clothing after being frustrated with my Brooks Brother's Extra Slim Fit shirts. I am currently debating doing it in person vs. online.

I guess my main question is what the quality difference is. I have a very well known tailor nearby (he's been in the Wall Street Journal, etc) and MTM shirts start at $125 for the cheapest options. The way that it works is that the tailor himself does the fitting, but then he sends them to USA shops for production.

The downside for this is that I'm worried my money won't go as far as it would online in terms of fabric quality, buttons, etc. I also have no idea what the construction quality is - his shop has an excellent reputation nationally, but who knows who actually makes the shirts. The upside is twofold - first, I get the measurements done by someone who actually knows what they are doing. Second, I can begin to develop a relationship with the shop (I would like to get into custom suiting several months down the road).

Online MTM shirts start ridiculously cheap. I can get 2-3 MTM shirts for every one that I would get from the tailor shop. I can likely afford better fabric and details, but the fit may not be as good and the construction is one again a wild card.

There is a minimum order of 4 shirts at the tailor.

What should I do?
 

Sleven

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It seems that the tailor is known and wouldn't want to discredit his own work by sending it to a lower standards factory. Also, the relationship in person and that experience is definitely a more richer one than you would get online (obviously); this will allow for better garments in the future since you and the tailor can exchange visions to aid in ridding of your current frustrations. For $125, which is considerably low priced, is something I would definitely take advantage of for a MTM shirt.

Also, what is your current frustrations about the Brooks Brothers shirts?
 

unbelragazzo

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Given the low cost of the online tailors you could try one and see if it meets your standards, then move on to your local tailor if it does not. In my experience shirts can work out OK with online tailors, especially if you're willing and able to realize what needs to be changed on the test shirts they send you. For suits and jackets it's much more difficult. If you're unsure about the quality of your local tailor, I'm sure he would be happy to discuss with you how the shirts are constructed and show you a couple of finished samples.
 

paradoxical3

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It seems that the tailor is known and wouldn't want to discredit his own work by sending it to a lower standards factory. Also, the relationship in person and that experience is definitely a more richer one than you would get online (obviously); this will allow for better garments in the future since you and the tailor can exchange visions to aid in ridding of your current frustrations. For $125, which is considerably low priced, is something I would definitely take advantage of for a MTM shirt.
Also, what is your current frustrations about the Brooks Brothers shirts?
I like the fabric of the BB shirts, but they are just not well cut. I am 5'8, 145lbs and fairly athletic but not a bodybuilder or anything - I have a fairly normal athletic body. There is way too much fabric in the arms and waist of the BB shirts. If you do some searches on the forum, you'll find that this is a common complaint with the BB Extra Slim Fit shirts. Simply put, the Extra Slim Fit isn't very slim at all!

This is really an annoying problem, as I'd buy them all day long if they just fit better.

Given the low cost of the online tailors you could try one and see if it meets your standards, then move on to your local tailor if it does not. In my experience shirts can work out OK with online tailors, especially if you're willing and able to realize what needs to be changed on the test shirts they send you. For suits and jackets it's much more difficult. If you're unsure about the quality of your local tailor, I'm sure he would be happy to discuss with you how the shirts are constructed and show you a couple of finished samples.


I was thinking of this, but I don't really want to wait 4-6 weeks. Plus, if there's something wrong or I want to order another batch, that's another 4-6 weeks on top of that! I may wind up doing the minimum order with my tailor as well as one online....but again, a $500 investment (at bare minimum) is not insignificant.
 
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paradoxical3

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Is the tailor telling you he can do it faster?
No, but if I order an online MTM sample shirt to see if the quality is good enough, either way I wind up waiting 8-12 weeks instead of the 3-4 it would take to just get them from the tailor. If the quality is good enough, I'd have to order the rest of them (plus correct any possible errors). If it's not, I'll have wasted 4-6 weeks and still have to wait another 3-4 to get them from my tailor.

I think I'm just going to go ahead and take the leap of faith with the tailor. I'll certainly ask him if he has any samples to look at, but after reading so many horror stories about online MTM experiences (spent the last couple of hours reading and searching) I think I'll just spend the extra money and hope for the best.
 

Sleven

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Look forward to hearing how this all goes in the future!

I'm 6'0 165lbs and I share your frustration as well for I'm use to a skinny fit actually; Hopefully one day Claudio will make an Italian cut for BB ;]
 

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