Freddy Vandecasteele

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by dapperdude, Apr 29, 2007.

  1. dapperdude

    dapperdude Senior member

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    Freddy Vandecasteele in Los Angeles has been mentioned on a couple of SF threads, so I recently visited him to have some shirts made. I highly recommend him to SF'ers in the LA area, for those looking for bespoke/MTM shirts.

    I went in for measurements, and selected one of his many fabrics. In a few days, he made a "fitting" shirt, which I came in and tried on. He looks at it, determines how much fabric to take in, then he does some alterations. The total turnaround time was just over a week, from the initial measurements to the final shirt.

    The first shirt, a light purple button down collar with blue windowpane pattern, is a little too tight in the chest, but otherwise very nice looking and fits well. I've ordered a blue/white striped shirt w/ a straight collar, and asked for the next one to be loosened up a bit in the chest. When I get it, I'll post some more notes and maybe some pictures (if I can figure out how to shrink the photos from my camera down to an acceptable size for the forum).

    This was my first time ordering custom shirts. Freddy is a pleasure to work with, and I will probably order more.

    At one time in my life, I would have told you I would never pay $150+ for a shirt. Today, my budget will only allow me to order a few shirts, but I think it's worth it to have a few nice shirts that fit really well. I've always had problems with the fit of OTR shirts, and I need to wear dress shirts to work every day. I'm glad there is a local option for me, as I would be nervous taking my own measurements and ordering online.
     
  2. dapperdude

    dapperdude Senior member

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    Some pics. The second one turned out great.
     
  3. StanleyVanBuren

    StanleyVanBuren Thumb Raider

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    I like the pink check pattern. I wouldn't have gone for a button-down collar on a $150+ dress shirt myself, but the pattern makes up for it. And of course, the fit looks good as well.
     
  4. southbound35

    southbound35 Senior member

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    The fit does look great. Glad you've found a local source.
     
  5. Holdfast

    Holdfast Senior member

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    Looks nice. I'm delighted you've found someone local you can build a good working relationship with.
     
  6. Tomasso

    Tomasso Senior member

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    I wouldn't have gone for a button-down collar on a $150+ dress shirt myself

    Should a BD not be of the same quality and fit as a dress shirt? My shirtmaker makes all of my shirts, from formal to sport.
     
  7. StanleyVanBuren

    StanleyVanBuren Thumb Raider

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    Should a BD not be of the same quality and fit as a dress shirt? My shirtmaker makes all of my shirts, from formal to sport.

    Of course it should. But here, the poster specified that these were meant to be dress shirts.

    Ultimately it's a matter of personal preference, and this shirt is fine; the BD-collar dress shirt is widely accepted in America despite its lack of formality.
     
  8. itsstillmatt

    itsstillmatt The Liberator Dubiously Honored

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    Should a BD not be of the same quality and fit as a dress shirt? My shirtmaker makes all of my shirts, from formal to sport.
    +1, well +3/4. I also go to another shirtmaker for certain buttondowns because they really get a particular style of shirt that I want sometimes.
     
  9. dapperdude

    dapperdude Senior member

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    "Of course it should. But here, the poster specified that these were meant to be dress shirts."

    I should have been more specific. I work in a very casual environment, where open-collar dress shirts are as dressy as it gets. Even then, I frequently see people (mostly inexperienced kids), wear a straight collar with the collar spread wide open, curled up without the collar stays, and sometimes the top two buttons unbuttoned with a t-shirt visible. Or a button-down collar with the collar unbuttoned. Or stripy Amjack-looking "dress" shirts from the Gap or Express. All this is just completely ridiculous, and my new button-down collar shirt is a cut above a straight/spread collar worn the way I described. Even though it's casual, I'd like to look nice and serve as an example for how to dress right.
     
  10. dapperdude

    dapperdude Senior member

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    BTW, I've switched to v-neck tee's since I took that picture.
     
  11. StanleyVanBuren

    StanleyVanBuren Thumb Raider

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    BTW, I've switched to v-neck tee's since I took that picture.

    Even better. [​IMG]
     
  12. Freddy Vandecasteele

    Freddy Vandecasteele Senior member

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    Try the no "Tshirt" and the shirt looks even better
    Freddy Vandecasteele
     
  13. teddieriley

    teddieriley Senior member

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    I recently had the pleasure of meeting Freddy and commissioning a shirt from him. I visited his workshop in Studio City to have my measurements taken and select a fabric, and I subsequently returned to have a fitting with a "try on" on shirt he had made. As part of his process, the "try on" shirt was not quite finished, allowing Freddy to make necessary adjustments. Knowing I am difficult to fit because of my broad sloping shoulders and larger chest, Freddy was spot on with the first shirt. He anticipated having to adjust the cuff length, because he measured almost a 1" difference between my left and right side, but he didn't even have to adjust that. He made me a great fitting collar and made it a bit higher, appreciating both how having a well-fitting collar is important to the look of the shirt and my preference to have it showing under a suit jacket (a problem I have with many RTW shirts in which the collar becomes hidden). We did notice that he should take in about an 1 1/2" -2" in the body to eliminate the bellowing effect in the back, but that is a relatively minor adjustment, and the balance of the shirt is excellent. There was no need for him to add side pleats to the yoke or darts to achieve the fitted effect. I was quite impressed that he got it on the first shot for the most part, and he was willing to adjust anything during the fitting, whether it be neck size, collar, chest, or shoulder measurements. The fabric was excellent, and when he handed the shirt for me to try on, I knew I was holding a very substantial and well made garment.

    Not hiding my excitement for knowing I found a great shirtmaker and looking to order more shirts, Freddy encouraged me to wear the first shirt a few times first and get it laundered to make sure there wasn't anything else I wanted to tweak before placing a multiple shirt order. Having been in the business for so long, he suggested I might find a thing or two I may want adjusted since regular wearing of the shirt is the true test rather than 5 minutes in his workshop looking in a mirror. I think that it's great he will be very easy to work with to accomodate any issues or idiosyncracies I might have with respect to how I want my shirts to fit or look. Bottom line is the first shirt looks to be fantastic, and I'm quite pleased that I don't have to tinker with 3 or 4 shirts to get it right.

    He is definitely a craftsmen with a keen sense to customer service and satisfaction. I can't recommend him more highly. I look forward to take delivery by the middle of next week. I will post a separate thread when I receive the shirts and post some pics.
     
  14. Tomasso

    Tomasso Senior member

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    ^^^^

    A paragraph or two would make for easier reading. [​IMG]
     
  15. dapperdude

    dapperdude Senior member

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    Try the no "Tshirt" and the shirt looks even better
    Freddy Vandecasteele


    I tried it last week, and although it was more comfortable and improved the fit, I noticed that I sweat a lot.

    I guess I will just have to wash my shirts more frequently.
     

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