Sartoria Formosa vs Kiton vs Brioni Fit, quality etc. what do you think?

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by christianch, Jun 11, 2014.

  1. christianch

    christianch Well-Known Member

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    Hello !
    I have just finished the adjustments to my first Formosa Suit: Navy plaid single breasted suit (http://www.nomanwalksalone.com/index.php/navy-plaid-single-breasted-suit-11oz-h-s-wool.html). I am very impressed by the quality and I really like the fit. I have ordered two more as the customer care at no man walks alone is excellent too. If you are a formosa suit owner what do you think ? how did it compare with the rest of your wardrobe?

    To me the felling vs a Brioni or a Kiton is that the construction is entirely hand made and you can really feel the artisanal manufacture much more than in a Brioni or Kiton. I would also like to learn from more experienced forum members and style experts how the Formosa style differs from e.g. the one of Kiton or Brioni in terms of lapels and overall appearance of the suit.

    Thanks in advance and sorry if the questions are fairly obvious. I really like to compare experiences.
     


  2. othertravel

    othertravel Senior member

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    I'd like to know this as well. Do the Formosa's have a Brioni-like Roman shoulder, or a soft Neapolitan shoulder ala Kiton?
     


  3. christianch

    christianch Well-Known Member

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    Formosa's have Neapolitan shoulder but different than Kiton I would say. Very different to Brioni in terms of fit. Brioni in the older models (nomentano, colosseo etc.) is a very relaxed fit. Formosa is not too slim fitted but clearly closer to Kiton - Napoli style. What is really special is the handmade that you can feel and see throughout. Brioni and Kiton are also handmade (or part of it ?) but they do look and feel very different. I would say that Formosa is like buying a bespoke without having to go through the whole process !!
     


  4. unbelragazzo

    unbelragazzo Jewfro Dubiously Honored

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    The NMWA Formosas and Brioni have hand-padded lapels, but Kiton uses machine-stitched canvas.

    NMWA has some models in a spalla camicia, some in a more classic soft shoulder.

    http://nomanwalksalone.tumblr.com/post/57157189444/quick-study-in-neapolitan-shoulders-when

    I think Kiton also has various shoulder styles.

    Kiton also has different silhouettes - they make a cut for the American market that's more generous and, to my eye, sack-like.

    The other difference is cloth. Kiton and Brioni use delicate luxury market-type cloths. Kiton in particular uses a lot of blends for their odd jackets, like silk-cashmere or whatever. But even their pure wool suits will generally use high super numbers.

    Greg's choices for the NMWA Formosas are more workhorse fabrics in heavier weights that, IMHO, wear and drape much better. The fresco is a good example - very durable, does not wrinkle easily, and because of the open weave wears cool despite the fact that it's not that lightweight. The extra weight in turn helps it drape better. It's a great cloth, but it's not the kind of thing that blows you away when you touch it in the store and there's a $7k price tag on it. Same thing for the Solaro, which is used often for bespoke but almost never RTW.

    Which brings me to the last point, which is price. Kiton and Brioni are going to cost $6k+ for a suit at retail, although of course you may get lucky with something on sale or used on eBay. With SF discount and tailoring credit, even without a sale NMWA is selling Formosa suits for under $2k.

    Disclaimer: I write for Greg's blog, so take that for what it's worth. I make no commission or anything like that from the suits selling though.
     
    Last edited: Jun 12, 2014


  5. unbelragazzo

    unbelragazzo Jewfro Dubiously Honored

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    Another word about cloth - Kiton bought the famed Carlo Barbera mill, so I would assume most of their fabrics come from this Italian mill. I don't know what Brioni's fabric sources are, but I would guess Italian. Zegna of course uses its own mills.

    Tailors, even in Naples, still prefer to work with English cloth because the additional body in the cloth allows it to drape and hold its shape better. Gennaro Formosa particularly likes Holland and Sherry, and for good reason IMHO. The cloths Greg chose for the Formosas are a mix, but there's a lot of English cloth in there, especially for F/W.
     


  6. christianch

    christianch Well-Known Member

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    Many thanks for your explanation and comments which are very helpful and clear. For now I can only comment on the "Navy plaid single breasted suit, 11oz H&S wool" (I shall be receiving the fresco and solaro tomorrow or Monday) and the "Grey sharkskin single breasted suit, H&S 12oz wool" and I was totally impressed by the quality compared with my other suits from Brioni and one Kiton.

    I really like the definition of more "workhorse fabrics" which to me makes the whole suits more versatile and wearable.

    I have several Brioni suits (all bought new but not at the full price) and I think it should be well the case to talk about the "old" and "new" brioni. The current Brioni line is *very* slim fitted, especially the trousers to the point that unless you are very young or a model it simply won't fit. The old models (nomentano, parlamento, colloseo) have a very generous fit. I agree that the fabrics in Brioni suits are generally very high level.

    I own just 1 Kiton in 100% cashmere that I have bought new but heavily discounted. I have however tried several Kiton suits. Here in Europe the Kiton cut and fit is generally very fitted - not as fitted as the new Brioni - but still not for everyone. The one I bought in drop 7 was not as fitted and is okay and again the fabrics seems to be very high level.

    Still overall I think that the Formosa wins in terms of overall construction and wearability. I think that NMWA selected some amazing fabrics and it is obvious that the suits are handmade and very high level. I love the lapels in the Formosa and the feel of handmade. In terms of value I think that Formosa and the NMWA selection is simply unbeatable. I don't think that a Brioni or a Kiton, even the new collections at full price, offer an higher value. Some of then new fabrics used by Brioni and Kiton are very delicate and do not always look as good as the ones used by Formosa.
     


  7. marcodalondra

    marcodalondra Senior member

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    Kiton only partially uses Barbera cloth, as well as Moxon and specially made Loro Piana fabrics and Barbera still make for others. When I was buying cloth at Smith woollens in London last year, they were shipping a big parcell to Brioni (it was on the counter ready for the currier pick up). H&S is a favourite of many Neapolitan tailors, mine as well (Gianni Volpe), I believe also for good reasons.
     


  8. comrade

    comrade Senior member

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    Do I detect a little " rollino" in the shoulders?
     


  9. christianch

    christianch Well-Known Member

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    @comrade do you mean a construction difference or if I have some unsorted business with Kiton or Brioni ? :) I think Brioni has great pieces and if you or anyone finds it at a good price it is well worth the money. I have several Brioni's and some are truly amazing. I agree that some fabrics have a WOW factor. But I do love the fit and fabrics that NMWA has picked for the Formosa suits creates a unique value package (plus their customer service that is outstanding). So recently I bought mostly Formosa and only 1 Brioni.

    Kiton I have only 1 and generally it is not my fit/style. Formosa is way more "Napoli" in style!
     


  10. comrade

    comrade Senior member

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    I mean construction difference. Here is an extreme example of "rollino":

    http://www.styleforum.net/t/365000/lightbox/post/6656951/id/1000456

    Re: Brioni. Not for me. too structured with built-up shoulder. I wear the most natural shoulders available. In recent
    years I went from pure Ivy League shoulders to Neapolitan shoulders....To me more or less the same.
     


  11. SartodiNapoli

    SartodiNapoli Senior member

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    The Kiton suits i see almost daily being packaged for Usa are too big and extrapadded that looks Brioni.
     


  12. christianch

    christianch Well-Known Member

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    @comrade I don't think so. The Formosa I received seems to have the "spalla camicia" which I think looks better than the rollino!
     


  13. comrade

    comrade Senior member

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    Much better.
     


  14. EliodA

    EliodA Senior member

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    All depends on your physique. Soft shoulders are the iGent thing right now, but not it's not flattering for some.
     


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