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The Tailors' Thread: Fit Feedback and Alteration Suggestions

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by emptym, Sep 14, 2011.

  1. TweedyProf

    TweedyProf Senior member Dubiously Honored

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  2. ShawnBC

    ShawnBC Senior member

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    Thanks you for the reply OTCtailor! I'm going to mention this to my tailor when the time comes for the alterations! [​IMG]
     
  3. throw4five

    throw4five Member

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    So i just received a SuitSupply Washington 40S in the mail today. The sales rep at SS wanted to get me in a 38S but I felt like I was going to rip the jacket in half when I moved my arms. I think the 40 fits me in the shoulders and chest, but is very big everywhere else. Below are some pictures of me in the suit. I would appreciate as much feedback as I can get regarding what needs tailored, and any other general information that you may deem relevant. Feel free to be very critical if you want, I won't be offended. I look forward to your replies; thanks!

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  4. throw4five

    throw4five Member

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    bump. anybody? I've received some feedback on the suitsupply thread, and even they recommend getting the expert opinions of this thread.
     
  5. wojt

    wojt Senior member

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    IMO overall the jacket doesn't seem that big so it's not bad
    obviously pants need to be shorter
    photo implies there's maybe too much room in the legs too so maybe you could also slim then a bit
    if the shoulders fit you can slim the jacket via side seams, let experienced tailor do that
    if you don't have any perfernce regarding sleeve length maybe it would be better if some of the cuff of the shirt was showing
     
    Last edited: Apr 15, 2014
  6. MisterFu

    MisterFu Senior member

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    Last edited: Apr 15, 2014
  7. NeedForTweed123

    NeedForTweed123 Senior member

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    Can excess fabric in the lap be reduced? I have two pairs of dress pants that need to be taken in at the waist and tapered a little bit as well as shortened slightly. These pants both have double outward pleats and a 12.5 inch rise. Will the excess fabric just go away when they are altered in other ways?
     
  8. wojt

    wojt Senior member

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    taking in dress pants at the waist by a reasonable amount is an easy fix, contrary to say jeans
     
  9. NeedForTweed123

    NeedForTweed123 Senior member

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    Okay I just wasn't sure if it required it's own fix. So then I assume the excess fabric when sitting is just excess waist fabric that bunches up?
     
  10. throw4five

    throw4five Member

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    I bought the suit under the impression you alluded to regarding the shoulders and chest--as long as they fit correctly, the rest of the suit can be made to fit properly. I did factor in the cost of significant alterations to the price of the suit when I made the purchase. I wonder if it would end up being about the same price to just go MTM from the start with SS?

    Regarding tailors, that's actually an issue in itself; I've recently found what seems to be a good tailor locally. He has all the characteristics I think of when an old-world tailor comes to mind: cloth measuring tape forever around his neck, big band music in the background, been tailoring for 60 years. I also have some reservations about him though: he's had another suit of mine I just purchased for over 2 weeks now, every time I go in to pick it up, he's either forgotten to do something, or tailored it to the wrong measurements. I'm honestly starting to wonder if he's suffering from a little bit of alzheimer's; which I feel really bad about, because that disease seams like one of the worst ways to go...

    I was considering taking the suit back to SS to get tailored because they know the style of the suit. My local guy is classically trained and may have a hard time capturing the essence of the fashion-forward SS look. There is another Ukrainian lady who seams to have a good business, but from the looks of her shop, she specializes in women's apparel, so I wonder how well she can make a man's suit fit well. You aren't the first person I've read state the SS tailors aren't really worth their weight in needles and threads, so I'm stuck between a women's tailor (who gets very good reviews for her women's work) and an older gentleman who seems to mess the job up a few times before he gets it correct.

    Regarding the suit itself, is there a point at which, even though the shoulders and chest fit, the rest of the suit is just too baggy to tailor; a point at which the amount of cloth that would need to be removed may make a good-looking suit an improbable result?
     
  11. wojt

    wojt Senior member

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    I wish I could tell you that, but I don't know. Best would be to visit a good tailor who alters suits and/or sews them himself. He will tell you what he can do safely. It should be relatively cheap to fix, if it's fixable(from what you say it should be fixable at least to an extent).
     
    Last edited: Apr 15, 2014
  12. MisterFu

    MisterFu Senior member

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    I have no personal experience with SS MTM, but at least you'd be starting with some basic measurements that are specific to your height, build and, I assume, shoulder width and slope. I would ask over in the SS thread and see what other people say.

    As for your tailor, I'd check his workload; he might just have more work than he can reasonably handle. My tailor is excellent, but I still have to keep after him and, on more than one occasion, he has been seriously late in delivery (though, he has never mis-measured one of my items). Also, just because he has the tape around the neck and looks the part, doesn't mean he actually knows what he is doing. My tailor keeps his tape measures (he seems to have amassed about 20 of them) on a hook next to the fitting area and, based on how he dresses, you'd never guess his profession (and there is no music at all, just a stiflingly stuffy workshop). I would be very wary of the other tailor simply because if she doesn't have a background in men's tailoring, you are asking for trouble.

    A good tailor will understand what fits (regardless of fashion) and will generally work with their customer to deliver what they want. I have mostly traditional fitting clothes, but I do have a few (several from SS specifically) "fashion forward" items and my tailor (who is in his mid to late 60's) had no issue understanding what they were about and even commented that the SS items I brought him were "very nice, modern look".

    As for when is a suit to baggy, I can't speak for the professionals on this thread, but I have been amazed at what my tailor has managed to salvage. Suits that, after losing quite a bit of weight, were terribly baggy, square and ill-fitting were made literally better than the original MTM results. These were expensive (and beautiful suits), so I was willing to spend hundreds of dollars to have them substantially reworked. I wouldn't pay for that level of surgery on a just purchased OTR piece.

    Also, whereabouts do you live?
     
  13. logan858

    logan858 Active Member

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    Ok, I have a question for any of the tailors out there. I often see suits that bulge at the lapels, and i've wondered what exactly is causing this. It seems more common in slim fitting suits, but I can easily find slimmer fits which avoid this, without giving up anything in the fit. I've also at different times seen it on more generous cuts, and with bigger guys.


    Now, obviously this suit fits like garbage, in a couple different areas, but i'm only concerned with *why* he is getting that effect across the chest and lapels.
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    now here's a tom ford, very slim, and yet there is no bulging (or rather very little comparatively) in the lapels.
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    what exactly is causing this, is it the chest, shoulders, etc, or is it different in different cases? I have seen the odd suit doing this on bigger guys too where the shoulders are actually an inch or so too big, but where the guy has a really big chest, and the lapels continue to bulge like this.
     
  14. Isolation

    Isolation Senior member

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    I feel like my previous photos of this jacket was not very indicative so I took a new set. Somehow manage to screw up and forgot to adjust my tie properly, but whatever.

    Thanks for the feedback so far. What do people think of the value of the tailor considering the cost, and do you think I should try find a different one?

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  15. OTCtailor

    OTCtailor Senior member

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    To have this done right, you simply need to take it to a qualified tailor. The jacket and trousers need quite a bit of work to get them to a point where they'll fit.

    Also, only very carefully and superficially take advice from anyone in this thread who does not actually make garments or take them apart/put them back together because they don't know what they're talking about.

    The folks you can listen to are: Despos, a tailor, jefferyd, Rory Duffy (these guys are all bespoke level tailors)

    And me, I am not a bespoke tailor but I am a dedicated menswear only alterations tailor. Therefore, my skill is limited and you probably won't see me comment on something my skillset can't deal with.
     
    1 person likes this.
  16. OTCtailor

    OTCtailor Senior member

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    To answer the first question...

    No.

    Pleated trousers intentionally contain extra fullness in the lap to do precisely what yours are doing when you sit down!
    If you don't want that to happen, you need to have the pleats removed or buy flat fronts.

    Again, only loosely take the advice of folks in this thread who are not actual garment technicians. It only creates confusion.
     
  17. OTCtailor

    OTCtailor Senior member

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    In the first photo, it looks like the model is pulling his shoulders backward in a pose. In a slim fitted jacket, there's obviously very little wearing ease over the chest (and the rest of the body), so much of any movement will create what may appear to be a fitting problem especially when photographed.
    However, if it's actually because of the posture of the person, lapel popping usually occurs for 2 reasons. 1 is that there may not be enough fullness over the fore parts to cover the chest. When someone has a barrel chest, a pattern alteration is done to induce fullness over the chest. 2 is a front balance that is not a correct length. A big chest needs horizontal and vertical fullness. If those two issues are combined, it's going to be worse.
    If you see a skinny guy with no chest at all having these popping lapels, it is probably the latter reason. If the front balance is not the right length over the chest, the lapels will easily fan away from the chest when the chest is expanded or shoulders pulled back.
     
  18. throw4five

    throw4five Member

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    Thank you OTC. Do you have a guesstimate to the total cost for this level of undertaking? I figure the trousers will need hemmed, waist taken in, upper and lower leg tapered, and I guess the seat/crotch taken in as well. The jacket will probably need the waist suppressed and possibly the length decreased.

    If you had a chance to look at the pictures I posted, and based on my rough idea of what will need altered, do you think it's worth altering; or is it too much for a SS suit fresh off the rack?
     
  19. throw4five

    throw4five Member

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    Thanks for your reply Fu; I appreciate the feedback. I didn't mean to imply that tape around his neck and/or jazz music was a sufficient or necessary condition for him being a good tailor, I was just trying to convey that I got the feeling he knew what he was doing based on the overall atmosphere of his shop (I didn't mention the newspaper article from 30 years ago praising his work he had framed on the wall or the myriad other items that deemed him legitimate in my mind).

    I live in south-central PA...driving distance to Baltimore/DC and Philly if you were going to suggest going to the nearest big city.
     
  20. NeedForTweed123

    NeedForTweed123 Senior member

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    The only reason I ask is because I actually prefer the look of pleats on high rise trousers, but wasn't sure if there should be excess fabric or not because I'm used to low rise flat front jeans & chinos and this is my first pair of pants with pleats & a high rise. I just always hear that excess fabric is the result of a bad fit.
     

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