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MTM in Shanghai: an experiment - Pics

kcheng

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A few weeks back, I took a trip up to Shanghai to visit some family there and decided it wasn't a bad time to get a suit made whilst i'm there. To make it a little more interesting, a decided not to go with Chan and made it an experiment to try out some recommended places. I know there are probably thousands of tailors in the world who do comparable suits at a similarly low price, but thought I'd share my experience with everyone here.

Ended up at a place down the river from the Bund called the Western Bund Indoor Textile Market (roughly translated) and took the dive on a 2-piece dark navy with a light pinstripe in a 130s 9oz? (tailor didn't sound too sure when he mentioned weight, but it sounds about right) fabric. Although the fabric wasn't a VBC or anything, I thought it was fairly decent. Single breasted, Canvassed, 2-button, with working button holes, single front pleat pants. Total risk was RMB600 (US$75). It seemed to me as being a reasonable experiment at a tenth of the cost of Chan's and others (given that my perception of the fabric was positive). The owner there also noted that if I had brought my own fabric, he would've charged RMB200 for the work (US$25) which seemed to me as a pretty good deal.

Initial thoughts
Downside: only 1 initial fitting, limited fabrics inhouse
Upside: Fairly reasonable in pricing, tailor was as knowledgeable as I could have expected an indoor market environment, 5 day turnover









I was actually positively surprised with the finished product considering it was a first time suit, with only an initial fitting. I thought the they put a little too much shoulder padding in, arm holes too low, sleeves maybe a tad too long.

Apologies for the poor quality of photos. Tried for a while to increase the lighting properly, to no avail. And also, I am standing a little tilted - which makes the pitch look a little off. Would appreciate some thoughts from fellow members as to what i could suggest to them to improve the suit the next time around.
 

clownmitts

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It looks pretty good if you ask me. For 75$, great deal!
 

zjpj83

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The jacket looks a little big, but at that price, who's complaining?
 

brescd01

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Besides Chan, are there any tailors that have connections to pre-Communist Shanghai?

Why is Chan in Shanghai? I know that their tailors supposedly originated there before they moved to Hong Kong (or some such connection), but why move there in the modern age? Was there something about Kilgour's suits being made in Shanghai? Who makes those?
 

whoopee

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Chan's connection to Shanghai is in its Shanghainese tailors employed in HK, where it began. Baromon were the most famous pre-1949 tailors in Shanghai, and they moved to HK. Haven't moved back as far as I know.

Labour is cheaper in Shanghai, of course. Also, Chan have always done a lot of business with expats and travelling businessmen, so Shanghai, with the continaul influx of foreign investment, is the logical next step. Not sure why they need three stores there, though.
 

LabelKing

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Baromon's Shanghai store is still extant; however, it is now state-owned and used to tailor bespoke Mao suits for officials, et al. Now it's sort of dodgy in that state-owned decrepit way.
 

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