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Is Vass quality control slipping?

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by Omega Man, Jun 23, 2009.

  1. gdl203

    gdl203 Senior member Dubiously Honored Affiliate Vendor

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    How's that?
    It's better - although it continues to imply, because of your own experience and assumptions you make on distribution channels, that others here are wrong in stating they noticed a slip in QC.

    I'm happy for you that your latest order was 100% correct and was in the exact same situation for my first 5 MTO Vass. However, my most recent experience - along with that of other serial Vass customers - does support (even though it doesn't conclusively prove it) the OP's assertion that QC has indeed recently deteriorated.

    For some reason, you seem to think that the fact that intermediaries on some of these orders have not done a good job at checking the final product somehow exonerates Vass. The reasoning is flawed - Vass QC still let something non-spec out whether the intermediary/retailer caught it or not.

    On the Co addressing the mistake, I'm in the same situation as Axelman. I told Eva the points that were wrong - she apologized for the mistakes and offered to "make it up" on my next order. Again, the mistakes were not such that I needed to return the shoes but others have had much worse. At least, let people express their frustrations without insinuating they're in the wrong and this kind of things happen with a store like Vass - because they never used to happen. The point of the thread is the trend, not a general statement about Vass.

    So yes - no doubt in my mind after my own experience and the ones I'm reading here - Vass QC has been slipping. Happy that your recent orders are fine and I'm sure that Eva & Co did notice that too and hope they are taking steps to ensure it gets better.
     
  2. dkzzzz

    dkzzzz Senior member

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    I' ve ordered recently, directly from Eva.
    Received my shoes in May.
    I got one medallion a little slipping to the side of the shoe: not centered properly. I can live with that and it is only noticeable when you are looking up close ,but I have no doubt that any reputable shoes maker or retailer would have considered my pair a "seconds".
    I am still not sure that I received my shoes in correct color (dark cognac) or Italian polished leather for that matter.
    So all in all I am ok with my shoes but their quality control is slipping, no doubt about that.


    Next time I order I will initiate order via e-mail but pick up in-person just to be sure.
     
  3. HRoi

    HRoi Senior member

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    reading this whole thread really makes me feel for Tom. i corresponded with him during the early days of this group buy and he seemed genuinely looking to just do the forum a favor.

    not blaming the OP, who deserves to get what he paid for, but this type of mess always seems to happen with these types of SF activities
     
  4. dkzzzz

    dkzzzz Senior member

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    reading this whole thread really makes me feel for Tom. i corresponded with him during the early days of this group buy and he seemed genuinely looking to just do the forum a favor.

    not blaming the OP, who deserves to get what he paid for, but this type of mess always seems to happen with these types of SF activities


    This whole thread has NOTHING to do with TOM or group buy.[​IMG]
     
  5. voxsartoria

    voxsartoria Senior member

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    It's better - although it continues to imply, because of your own experience and assumptions you make on distribution channels, that others here are wrong in stating they noticed a slip in QC.

    Hah! Final try?

    1. The reports of discrepancies between what people ordered from Vass and what they got from Vass are indisputable problems. The people who describe their problems cannot be incorrect since they are truthfully describing facts.

    2. The reports on StyleForvum of order discrepancies seem to have increased recently. This likely shows a fall in the quality of order fufillment. It could also be a phenomena brought out by more people buying Vass than before, thus increasing the sample pool, and/or by a rising share of remote or proxy purchases of Vass compared to the time when distribution was limited to bricks and mortar stores or from one designated distributor in at least North America.

    3. I offer my experience as just more data. I have a lot of Vass compared to many, and the ones that are MTO all came out perfectly, including very recently. My examples get tossed into the wider pool and affect the population assessement; my examples are not the entire population. This cannot be a case of invalidating anecdotes...all are relevant and contribute to understanding.

    4. Buyer beware: especially remotely; especially by proxy; especially from those who do not speak your language natively; especially when you order non-standard items; and most especially, when you deal with makers who might know more about making stuff than about selling stuff.

    My general advice about buying Vass away from retail shops is not to buy it if your tolerance for disappointment is low or if your budget is sensitive to mistakes in this price range. I have been comfortable buying Vass because (a) I started buying them from a real store where I tried on the shoes and handled them before purchasing them and (b) I feel that my current intermediary is rock solid.


    - B
     
  6. gdl203

    gdl203 Senior member Dubiously Honored Affiliate Vendor

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    My general advice about buying Vass in the US is not to buy it if your tolerance for disappointment is low or if your budget is sensitive to mistakes in this price range.
    That's fair and I tend to agree with this - now. In all honesty, do you think you would have given this same advice 6 months or a year ago before seeing any of the mistake reports that recently surfaced? I know I would not have - I would have recommended them without many caveats.
     
  7. voxsartoria

    voxsartoria Senior member

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    That's fair and I tend to agree with this - now.

    Goody.

    In all honesty, do you think you would have given this same advice 6 months or a year ago before seeing any of the mistake reports that recently surfaced? I know I would not have - I would have recommended them without many caveats.

    Hard to say. I never felt comfortable ordering from them directly precisely because I feared miscommunication and limited redress if there was a problem. I have only bought mine from Louis, from Gabor, and from another "official" buyer. I can't name the latter, but you can figure this out easily enough if you look at who offers a lot of Vass from time to time in the B&S subforum. All three ways cost more than the direct or proxy route...although not a lot more in my opinion.

    The shoes themselves are beautifully made, particularly for the price, and have that romance of hand construction that is like a siren call to many.


    - B
     
  8. Michael Ay329

    Michael Ay329 Senior member

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    I always thought Gabor was the direct route as a Vass agent.

    Back in December of 2008, I e-mailed Vass, and Gabor responded (his e-mail was the same one that I originally sent Vass). I met him at my home for a personal fitting (I tried on some shoes in my size and he made suggestions as to how I would fit on a U last).

    He timely contacted me as to whether certain designs could be made and he even updated me when there was a shortage of a certain color leather I ordered....just in case I wanted another color instead of waiting further

    Full payment made on March 11, 2009, and am looking forward to delivery of my MTO order
     
  9. Uncle Jam's Army

    Uncle Jam's Army Well-Known Member

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    Received my two pairs from Tom on 6/15 that were off the shelf. They were perfect, exactly as advertised by Tom. I now have a MTO shoe I am waiting on (due about Aug. 1), that I hope arrive as ordered, but I have no reason to believe (experiences above notwithstanding) from my dealings with Tom that it will be anything different than the first two shoes.
     
  10. Montesquieu

    Montesquieu Senior member

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    I'll add my experience in support of quality control. I've placed two MTO orders directly from Vass, one in-person in Budapest, one remotely by email with Eva. The first was 2.5 years ago and the second 1.5. All eight pair of shoes arrived perfectly as requested.

    I don't understand why so many in the US go to such lengths to buy indirectly an artisinal product designed to be MTO directly. The shoes mean more to the owner who has visited the store and dealt directly with the institution. If dealing directly with them isn't practical, I would suggest switching to shoemakers that specialize in selling through third parties.
     
  11. mafoofan

    mafoofan Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    I'll add my experience in support of quality control. I've placed two MTO orders directly from Vass, one in-person in Budapest, one remotely by email with Eva. The first was 2.5 years ago and the second 1.5. All eight pair of shoes arrived perfectly as requested.

    I don't understand why so many in the US go to such lengths to buy indirectly an artisinal product designed to be MTO directly. The shoes mean more to the owner who has visited the store and dealt directly with the institution. If dealing directly with them isn't practical, I would suggest switching to shoemakers that specialize in selling through third parties.


    What are the implications of this analysis for remote bespoke?
     
  12. fritzl

    fritzl Senior member

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    What are the implications of this analysis for remote bespoke?

    just don't do it.
     
  13. Montesquieu

    Montesquieu Senior member

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    What are the implications of this analysis for remote bespoke?

    That's a question on the top of my mind the past few months. I'm moving from Europe back to the US, and I want to continue buying bespoke despite the distance. My approach has been to perfect my patterns at a handful of tailors (three in Naples - jackets/suits, shirts, and trousers - and one on Savile Row) who will henceforth take remote orders from me. Each has 2-4 orders now under their belts, and I'm hoping that they'll be able to execute well-fitting garments without fittings. If that doesn't work, then I'll simply need to plan (semi?)annual trips to Europe.

    As for shoes, I was comfortable buying remote, direct MTO with Vass, EG, and G&G after my initial in-person trials and orders. All have turned out well.

    My experiences with (third-party) retail MTO - a Castangia jacket and four Attolini garments - have not delivered the fit, quality, and value of going direct. I won't do that again. From now on, I will strive to visit the manufacturer first, in-person, to esablish a fit and relationship before considering buying remotely. Retailers have consistently screwed up MTO in my experience. I like working with the artisan/brand/tailor directly and doing so in-person before considering remote.
     
  14. voxsartoria

    voxsartoria Senior member

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    That's a question on the top of my mind the past few months. I'm moving from Europe back to the US, and I want to continue buying bespoke despite the distance. My approach has been to perfect my patterns at a handful of tailors (three in Naples - jackets.

    I like working with the artisan/brand/tailor directly and doing so in-person before considering remote.


    As long as your weight and posture remain stable and you have a good alterations tailor locally, I think this can work reasonably well. Your main enemy is going to be the effects from the slight variations in construction and in the different behavior of the fabrics.

    But, it is quite farsighted of you to think ahead like this to take advantage of your travels this way.

    - B
     
  15. Montesquieu

    Montesquieu Senior member

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    As long as your weight and posture remain stable and you have a good alterations tailor locally, I think this can work reasonably well. Your main enemy is going to be the effects from the slight variations in construction and in the different behavior of the fabrics.

    But, it is quite farsighted of you to think ahead like this to take advantage of your travels this way.

    - B


    I hope you're right. My Savile Row relationship is with your friend Edwin. I have confidence that things will work well with him, even if he doesn't start visiting San Francisco.
     
  16. 888style

    888style Senior member

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    So raising prices will result in more manageable order load? What a load of .... Just make less mistakes, so you don't have to re-do some of these mistake orders. And didn't the Japanese invent this concept years and years ago??? [​IMG]
     
  17. sho'nuff

    sho'nuff Senior member

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    raising prices lowers the demand.

    lowering the demand makes it more manageable for them to keep up the schedule of orders without with less errors.
     
  18. voxsartoria

    voxsartoria Senior member

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    I hope you're right. My Savile Row relationship is with your friend Edwin. I have confidence that things will work well with him, even if he doesn't start visiting San Francisco.

    Please wear a tie when you relent to Bingey's stag parties.

    - B
     

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