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True Bespoke in Italy: cost, approach

Capable

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I once seen a magazine with a picture of some business empire heir drinking booze and smoking on a yacht with his friend. With explanations as to what cigars are that, what yacht, what cognac, etc. Among the items on the picture, most likely that the guy has chosen cigars and cognac himself and everything else including his suit he left to the professionals.

So to know who is the professional becomes the most important.

Because, you know, there are people who claim to be such because they derive income from what they do. :)
 

OxxfordSJLINY

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Originally Posted by Capable
True.

No. I have no way of knowing - there are sure tailors in Israel, but I can't find any advice as to whether they make bespoke and how good they are. In Russia - no. You pay more, you get less, bad investment. Everyone flies abroad or measures here with major brand name houses, others buy MTM Hugo Boss or dress at Indian tailor's who has his shop in prime location and charges Italian rates, I still have his shirts that can not be buttoned at the collar - he said my neck is the problem, shouldn't be choosing that collar style, still calls me regularly to explain that suits will go up in price soon due to the financial crisis or that ordering now make follow the steps of successful and wealthy who did order already on his advice. I still laugh very much when I hear his cold-calling nephew, because I have been in India since then.

If you don't know the price and don't bargain, you can pay three time over the price over there. I believe you're expected too because paying whatever price is asked is part of being noble. Everyone is noble if he pays the price. You somehow elevate yourself up to the higher league if you agree with what the Indian tailor tells you.

His suit makes me look like having some vertebral problem and trousers are too tight at the ass and too skinny at the legs, but I paid $2500 because 'sir should have a good suit'.

A Russian aspiring young tailor I know did inspect the suit and said nothing, when I told him how much I paid he asked where is the establishment. He then assessed the fit and said nothing as well. He makes bespoke (though machine-stitched) suits for that kind of prices, actually cheaper as he is still young. They look of course way better that what I've described, yet due to lack of style and other factors this still isn't a way to go. As I said, there is no tailoring school over here.


It sounds like Russia is a dreadful place to buy locally custom tailored clothing and-if applicable-footwear.
frown.gif
 

lasbar

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Originally Posted by OxxfordSJLINY
It sounds like Russia is a dreadful place to buy locally custom tailored clothing and-if applicable-footwear.
frown.gif


It is the new land of opportunities or savage capitalism...

Some Russians have more money than taste.
 

OxxfordSJLINY

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Originally Posted by lasbar
It is the new land of opportunities or savage capitalism...

Some Russians have more money than taste.


But that also applies to some people that are of any backgrounds other than Russian.
 

banis

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Originally Posted by OxxfordSJLINY
It sounds like Russia is a dreadful place to buy locally custom tailored clothing and-if applicable-footwear.
frown.gif


Actually it is. It is much safer to go for RTW or MTM (but to be measured either by a very competent sales assistant, whom you fully trust or wait until some Italians come for taking measurements). Footwear is not a problem. The problem is that there are no qualified SA who will advise you on size/last. There is one little shoe shop in St. Petersburg, which is considered as the best shoe shop in Russia. It has a very qualified owner, who is always glad to assist with buying shoes that fit. It has also many different makers, that are only available in this shop, but nowhere else in Russia - Hungarian, Austrian, custom ordered English shoes, etc. But you always pay for what you get. Taking into account that here you usually pay about double price tha in US or Europe, this shop has even higher prices.

Originally Posted by lasbar
It is the new land of opportunities or savage capitalism...

Some Russians have more money than taste.


There are of course lots of opportunities, but not as many and easy ones that were in previous years.

Russians that have big money usually have taste. Not everyone, but more and more people develop their taste and style.
 

DocHolliday

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Originally Posted by radicaldog
No offense taken. In fact I agree entirely with what you say. I'll even add that, in a way, the thought of a perfectly-fitting garment with no visible hand-stitching is quite alluring to me -- I'm a sucker for stealth & mystery.
I am from the South, where the past is not as distant as it is in other places. One time I decided to play Frankenstein with a RTW coat, so I took it to a local woman who had been trained in the old ways. She explained to me that doing the project right would require handwork and the cost would reflect that. I told her that was fine and left her to her devices. When I returned to pick up the coat, she had done nearly all of it by hand. Except, she noted proudly, the areas where the stitching would be visible. Those had all been done by machine.
 

lasbar

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Originally Posted by DocHolliday
I am from the South, where the past is not as distant as it is in other places. One time I decided to play Frankenstein with a RTW coat, so I took it to a local woman who had been trained in the old ways. She explained to me that doing the project right would require handwork and the cost would reflect that. I told her that was fine and left her to her devices. When I returned to pick up the coat, she had done nearly all of it by hand. Except, she noted proudly, the areas where the stitching would be visible. Those had all been done my machine.

I always been fascinated by the old south's charm and culture having myself very old family connections with Louisiana.

Is the sartorial culture and identity of this part of the USA is still very domiant in these states or is it diluted like everywhere else?
 

radicaldog

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Originally Posted by DocHolliday
I am from the South, where the past is not as distant as it is in other places. One time I decided to play Frankenstein with a RTW coat, so I took it to a local woman who had been trained in the old ways. She explained to me that doing the project right would require handwork and the cost would reflect that. I told her that was fine and left her to her devices. When I returned to pick up the coat, she had done nearly all of it by hand. Except, she noted proudly, the areas where the stitching would be visible. Those had all been done by machine.

Fascinating.
 

name

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Originally Posted by Capable

If all characteristics of a bespoke suit are present, all I need is a great cut, great style. In other words, what makes Italian-made suits Italian: when it is apparent that it flatters the wearer, looks stylish and sharp - unlike many US and Asian-made suits that may be well-made otherwise and unlike British bespoke, which on top of it being very costly, have a distinct style which is not to my taste.

I will ask for you to answer this yourself Very honestly. You speak of (see in bold) Italian style. Do you know EXACTLY what are you looking for in an "Italian style"? Words like "sharp" and "stylish" are very subjective and are often only clear to the individual--though sometimes not even that-- but you more than anyone else need to know exactly what you mean by these words and then convey them to your tailor. You may find that you tailor does not agree with these definitions or is not willing or can’t execute them. All of this will have to be in Italian (most cases) for the best results. Have you considered all of this?

Originally Posted by Capable
So, Italian bespoke, several names do get mentioned over and over again at this form, A. Caraceni and such (houses like Kiton, Zegna or Brioni I rule out due to them being bad value).


Zegna, actually is Not a bad value by any means provided of course you can fit into their RTW models. However, trying to have a zegna garment fit you does not always give the very best of results as with most RTW in general (especially if heavy alterations are needed.) But do consider this.

Originally Posted by radicaldog
True bespoke, lots of handwork, good results overall.

I would like to mention that while all of us like handwork, it is absolutely not needed to make a bespoke garment or a well fitting garment for that matter. *Most of us like to live in a romanticized dream world (I know I do) but true reality is that machines these days can do 98% of what was once only available to hand. Thousands of hand stitches are all wasted, say if, your sleeve pitch is not right or balance on trousers is off.

It is always beneficial to learn first what constitutes as a good fit* and then whether hand stitching is a requisite. Not the other way around.

* This is not directed at you racialdog. Just generally adding a few things here and there
smile.gif


**Good fit as it is understood classically. Applying 1940s ideology of good fit to garments produced today in Italy will have pretty horrendous results.

I liked this post. Tutee, if you are still reading this - what is your recommendation - what to look for as a good fit?
 

negusnegas

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Semi-necroposting, but I will be driving around northern/central Italy and was wondering if anybody had suggestions for decently affordable bespoke (likely big city stops include Rome, Venice or Milan). I am thinking in the Eur 1K ball park if possible.
 

negusnegas

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Isn't Mina in the 1,500 range? Also, that's why I mention the region since I will be traveling through Italy by car I am relatively flexible.
 

babygreenspots

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As prices go up in Asia, Italy might really start to be competitive. This could be quite an opportunity. I wonder if any of those smaller tailors would want to be based in Asian cities.
 

negusnegas

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Will be there for a little over a week so not very flexible.
 

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