RLBL - Installing Working Buttonholes

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by silvercitynyc, May 31, 2012.

  1. silvercitynyc

    silvercitynyc Senior member

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    Just picked up my first RLBL suit, and could not be more satisfied with the OTR fit. The sales associate at Bergdorf was absolutely shocked at how well it fit.

    So, the only thing that particularly bothers me is the sewed-on buttonholes on the jacket cuffs (and the "cheapness" of the buttons in general). So I'm curious to see what others who have RLBL suits have done with their jackets...

    First, is it an easily "screwed-up" process to have a tailor install working buttonholes?

    Second, would it be worth it for me to go source the buttons I like best, or just go with what a good tailor has in stock (I live in NYC)?
     
    Last edited: May 31, 2012


  2. theyare

    theyare Senior member

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    Tender Buttons on the upper east side near is a great spot to get nicer replacement buttons.
     


  3. yywwyy

    yywwyy Senior member

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    I suggest using a tailor who does bespoke than an alterations one.
     


  4. mafoofan

    mafoofan THE FOO Dubiously Honored

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    Poorly executed working buttonholes are a waste. In fact, I'd argue that they are only worthwhile if done excellently. After all, they serve no purpose other than to delight owners who search out such artisanal details.

    Excellently executed working buttonholes are very expensive and it's harder than you think to find someone who can do them--even in New York.
     


  5. silvercitynyc

    silvercitynyc Senior member

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    Have any tailor suggestions / approximate price range we're talking about here?

    As long as it's sub-$200 to have done well, I would spring for it...
     


  6. mafoofan

    mafoofan THE FOO Dubiously Honored

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    Given the time it takes to do them, I would not be surprised if it would cost over $200 and would be very, very skeptical of any job less than $100.

    Unfortunately, I do not have any specific recommendations. However, if it were me, and I absolutely insisted on having it done, I would go to Logsdail or Raphael and ask them to do it. It will cost you an arm and a leg, as each probably sends buttonhole work out to some old lady somewhere who does nothing but make small stitches all day and must recoup the additional expense of outsourcing.
     
    Last edited: May 31, 2012


  7. chogall

    chogall Senior member

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    Do you go to a bespoke tailor to hem your jeans as well?
    What experience do you have with low tier mediocre tailors that does working buttonholes?

    Usually $10-$15 per buttonhole. Easier to find tailors with buttons in stock instead of shopping for buttons yourself.
     


  8. browne78

    browne78 Member

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    This.

    Also all my jackets have working button holes but in my 15+ years of wearing suits I cannot think of a time where i needed to actually undo them. They are a nice touch but not what I would deem a necessity.

    If it fits nice, enjoy it and dont worry about the button openings, but rather the button quality if you must.
     


  9. mafoofan

    mafoofan THE FOO Dubiously Honored

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    Handsewn buttonholes are a thousand times more skill- and labor-intensive.


    None, directly. But I have not been impressed by what I've seen. Even amongst top bespoke tailors, there is a lot of variability when it comes to buttonhole execution.
     


  10. yywwyy

    yywwyy Senior member

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    Not sure if you're being serious or not with that question. Stitching button holes is magnitudes harder in difficulty than hemming jeans, right? Using a bespoke tailor is much better for many of the more-difficult operations. If you doubt that, I'll let your future experience explain that to you.

    Also, $15 per button hole would be $120 for typical-8 buttons, just as Mamoofan said. If you're paying that cost anyway, go look for a bespoke and reputable tailor who won't fuck up an irreversible operation. This isn't so hard to understand and you'll agree if you have a high-quality garment that you don't want to mess up.
     
    Last edited: May 31, 2012


  11. silvercitynyc

    silvercitynyc Senior member

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    Thinking about trying Bhambi's
     


  12. yywwyy

    yywwyy Senior member

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    Working button holes look much nicer though. I'd say it's worth it to get them on better suits. RLBL's are definately constructed with working button holes in mind, according to my tailor.

    Also, to the OP: I found buttons on my RLBL's to be fine. They're not awesome, but definitely good enough for RLBL. They often match the color of your suit though - maybe that's bothering you? Anyway, I hope it fits you better than your recent bespoke, which I thought fit terribly.
     


  13. yywwyy

    yywwyy Senior member

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    I've heard read good things on the forum. Make sure you think about how you want the buttons to be placed (kissing, overlaps, non-operlaping...etc). I believe the RLBL buttons are close together but spaced (no overlap), and if you give it to your tailor without mentioning, he'll probably just make buttonholes accordingly.
     
    Last edited: May 31, 2012


  14. mafoofan

    mafoofan THE FOO Dubiously Honored

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    Sure he wasn't just trying to sell you working buttonholes? I can't fathom how any suit could be more or less "constructed with working button holes in mind."
     


  15. yywwyy

    yywwyy Senior member

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    He's a trustworthy guy who's very close with me. I think he just meant that the quality is fine enough that it warrants working button holes. I wanted them done but he has some personal troubles atm and didn't have the time, unfortunately.
     
    Last edited: May 31, 2012


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