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Solito Naples or just Zegna for suits

isfahanzh

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Hi, all dear observed eyes. I need to buy a suit, and I'm thinking of getting one tailored from Gennaro Solito in Naples. However, visiting Naples would disrupt the schedule of my trip to Italy. Alternatively, I can just buy a Zegna suit and have it altered to fit.

Do you think a visit to Solito would offer much better suit than buying one from Zegna and having it fitted? Fabric, shape, cut, how much better can I get?

I read a travel article about having suits made in Naples, and I thought "wow, how wonderful, I want to do it too". But I do need a new suit as I started to build my wardrobe not long ago. Newly graduated.

Fabric is no problem as I just want a virgin wool suit, and Zegna surely offers top quality fabric. I'm discussing schedule with Singor Solito. That's the biggest issue.

An ideal suit for me is a lot of hand-work, or even better, only hand-work. Fit, of course, I'm bit thin, a Dior suit fits me nice, but the brand, nah. Tried Canali, even the smallest size is too big. Interestingly, Burberry fits well.

If anything, I want a suit made by a good tailor. The "tailoring" experience is wonderful. I'm concerned that ready-to-wear suits like Zegna are too "factory", and the "handwork" might not be as good as Solito's. I'm not sure. Will a Solito suit exceeds a Zegna/ Dior suit in terms of "handwork" ?

As for style, I think both are fabulous. Thanks again.
 
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isfahanzh

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Excuse me, I didn't quite understand, what 10 ? could you please clarify, thank you.
 

unbelragazzo

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You asked a question that was free of units. I gave you an answer that was free of units.

What do you mean by "better"? What do you want? Do any Zegna suits fit you well? Do you like the look of a Zegna suit? Do you like the look of a Solito suit? What kind of fabric do you want that Zegna doesn't offer? Are you willing and able to deal with all the potential delays and difficulties that may result from getting a suit from Solito?

Sorry for the sarcasm earlier, but there's been a string of these "I want the best suit for $X" or "this brand or that brand, which is better" or "Is X worth the extra money" and they're getting irksome. These questions make no sense. There is a big market for suits, with many different kinds at many different prices. It's just like anything else...say....computers. There are lots of different kinds of computers. Nobody can tell you which one you should get without understanding all the things you want to use it for and which features you value most. Suit customers have needs and preferences that are even more varied. What's more, suit characteristics aren't easily measured like computer characteristics are. So when you ask, "how much better is a suit from Solito?" it's just not a question that makes any sense. What answer are you expecting? It's 12% better? What does that even mean?

If you have specific questions about Zegna and/or Solito suits, there are probably people here that can answer them. But you have to formulate well-defined questions to get well-defined answers.
 
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isfahanzh

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Thanks for inspiring. WOW, good questions. I read a travel article about having suits made in Naples, and I thought "wow, how wonderful, I want to do it too". But I do need a new suit as I started to build my wardrobe not long ago. Newly graduated. I think fabric is no problem as I just want a virgin wool suit. I'm discussing schedule with Singor Solito. That's the biggest issue.

An ideal suit for me is a lot of hand-work, or even better, only hand-work. Fit, of course, I'm bit thin, a Dior suit fits me nice, but the brand, nah. Tried Canali, even the smallest size is too big. Interestingly, Burberry fits well.

If anything, I want a suit made by a good tailor. The "tailoring" experience is wonderful. I'm concerned that ready-to-wear suits like Zegna are too "factory", and the "handwork" might not be as good as Solito's. I'm not sure. Will a Solito suit exceeds a Zegna/ Dior suit in terms of "handwork" ?
 

unbelragazzo

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I think I know the article you mean - I met the guy who wrote it. Nice guy.

Between Dior, Zegna, and Solito, you could hardly have picked three more different kinds of suits if you tried.

Dior suits, at least the image that comes into my mind when I think of them, makes skinny suits, with the scrawny lapels and cigarette-thin trousers. Zegna has a huge RTW line, with many different levels of quality and many different cuts and styles. But of the three makers you mention, Zegna is probably the most conventional, and I mean that in a good way. It looks like what most people think of when they think of a nice suit. Solito makes unpadded jackets in the Neapolitan style.

My guess is you just don't have time to do the Solito thing. What he's probably suggesting to you is that you come in day 1 to choose fabric and take measurements, day 2 or maybe day 3 to do a basted fitting (fabric lightly sewn together, jacket hasn't been "made" yet), and then he'll make it up based on that and send it to you. You should know that 1) it's best to have another fitting after the jacket has been made, called a "forward" fitting - unless you're staying much longer, you likely won't be able to do this; 2) a number of StyleForum members have had difficulty getting a hold of Solito when he owes them suits, and they often arrive much later than promised 3) I think his son speaks OK English, but Sr. does not speak english, and he's the one that's the tailor. 4) The son (perhaps Sr. too, I don't know) are traveling for much of September, so if you're planning on going then, you may be out of luck.

If there's a high end department store near you, my advice would be to go there and try on a bunch of Zegna stuff and see if you like it. The high-end Zegna suits are very well-made. Here's a blog post on their Couture line:

http://tuttofattoamano.blogspot.com/2009/04/look-under-hood-zegna-couture.html

Those suits are probably significantly more expensive than a Solito suit. I would guess that more of a Solito suit would be made by hand, but probably not in ways that you would ever recognize. What about the handwork do you like?

If it's the experience of having a bespoke suit made for you that you want, then you won't get that at Zegna. Where are you located? Do you have any plans to return to Italy in the future? Is there another Italian city where you'll be spending more time? Do you have an idea in your head (or in a picture) of what you want your suit to look like?
 

isfahanzh

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WOW, thanks for the detailed response. Here's the schedule I discussed with Solito :1.) Wednesday morning, fabric and measure, 2.) Thursday, first fitting, 3.)Friday,second fitting, 4.) Tuesday of the next week, take the finished suit. Do you think such a short time would compromise quality?

I will be in Italy for 9 days, and spend most of the time in Rome. Actually, you're right, I should think about having a suit tailored in Rome. Would you recommend some good tailors in Rome ? I mean, conventional style, hand-work, good fabric, decades of experience. I thought of Naples because it was a tourism backwater and the tailoring business might have not been "tainted" by mass tourism. But later I thought, as so many dandies (many Japanese and Koreans I know) go to Naples for suits, Napoli is no longer purely "community-based", or maybe just the same level of "community-based" as Rome.

Since my budget is bit tight, around 2500 USD to 3000 USD (2000 Euros to 2500 Euros) for a two-piece suit, I want the money goes to good tailoring skills and deeply-rooted community recognition, rather than rents (for instance, a london tailor) or big names (sure I still want acclaimed tailors, but not flashy ones). I think Georges de Paris is one type of tailor I like. Good, easy-going. Have him altered a coat. Good work.

Thank you again.
 

unbelragazzo

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I don't have any experience with tailors in Rome. The schedule sounds fine. If he says you'll be taking away a finished suit, then you can believe him. It's possible there will be some small alteration to be done on that Tuesday that he can do quickly. But I would try the suit on one more time in front of him (he'll probably ask you to do this anyway) to make sure everything looks ok. Rome is only an hour or two away from Naples by fast train, so if you don't mind going back and forth, you can still spend plenty of time in Rome. Check your exchange rates though, 2500 euro is more like 3300 dollars, and that's before considering any credit card international fees you might have to pay (usually nearly 3%).

Before you commit though, take a look around the forum and make sure you understand what a Solito suit is and looks like. It's different than the ones you're used to seeing. It doesn't have much structure to it at all. It'll feel almost like just wearing a cardigan or something. If you're slight of build and want your suit to give you the impression of a wider frame, it may not be what you're looking for. It's going to look relaxed rather than "sharp". If you're looking for your first suit out of school to wear to interviews and things like that, make sure you're comfortable with it having this look.
 

Stugotes

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An Italian - a napoletano at that - working in August?? Making a suit in less than a week? I'll believe it when I see it.

Oh, and yes, the good looking boy is right, the shape/style of the suit would be the complete opposite of what you're used to seeing from Dior or Burberry.
 
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Trompe le Monde

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 But I do need a new suit as I started to build my wardrobe not long ago. Newly graduated.</span>

so, do you really need a suit, or do you need the allure of someone making you a suit? i think you need to reconsider that first
 

unbelragazzo

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I'll speak up for the allure of having someone make you a suit. Maybe some people on here will think that's self-indulgent, but whatever, screw them. If you can afford it and it's something you want to do, do it. It can be a rewarding and satisfying luxury. I just want you to have an idea of the kind of suit you're going to end up with, and see if that matches the suit that you're dreaming of.

EDIT: I didn't mean for that to come off as sounding like I was telling Trompe to screw off. He's encouraging you to consider exactly why you want to do this, which is a good thing. But even if you decide that it's the experience that you want, it's nothing to be ashamed of in my view. If it makes you happy, then enjoy it.
 
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isfahanzh

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You are right. I actually have little knowledge of what a Solito suit would be. My knowledge of suits is limited (Going to buy the third suit...)

And yes, I'm slight of build and want my suit to give me the impression of a wider frame, the "Sharp“ look. So it seems a Solito suit might not be the one I shall be looking for. So what are my options?Pirozzi, Attolini, Panico, Gianni Marigliano?

One more thing, oh, you are so helpful. I found a post you wrote about [FONT=Helvetica, Arial, clean, sans-serif]Antonio Liverano. How much does a suit made him cost? [/FONT] I'd be more than delighted to spend time in Florence. What is Florentine style? What about other tailors in Florence? Is Florence a good place to get decent bespoke suit? good hand-work, money goes to skills not rents or commercial fame. It's been wonderful talking to you !
 

isfahanzh

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An Italian - a napoletano at that - working in August?? Making a suit in less than a week? I'll believe it when I see it.

Oh, and yes, the good looking boy is right, the shape/style of the suit would be the complete opposite of what you're used to seeing from Dior or Burberry.
Haha, I'm going in October. But due to the type of my work, I have to arrange my leave about two months ahead.
 

Stugotes

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Liverano starts at around 4000-4500 € / 6000$.

The only other sartoria I know of is Seminara.

Other tailors in Florence are kept a secret for some reason.
 
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