When you should go bespoke

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by Blackhood, Jul 28, 2013.

  1. bourbonbasted

    bourbonbasted Cyber Eliitist

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    It depends. For someone who doesn't wear "formal" clothes often, but enjoys clothes nonetheless, you can get away with a couple suits and a few sport coats/pants. While I agree you need to be some stage of well-off, many here see clothing as a hobby and take enjoyment from the process of learning, seeking and experimenting. While there are some that order bespoke as a matter of course, they are likely not interested in clothes on our level: Rather, that is just simply how they've always lived, only wearing custom clothes because that's all they know.

    Like anything else, if you plan on expenditures and map your resources (income, time, etc) around them, you should be able to enjoy bespoke clothing without eating Ramen every night. That said, if you ever find yourself questioning if you have enough, you don't.

    In terms of vanity: it's not that I'm vain, it's just that I'm better than everyone else.
     
    Last edited: Jul 29, 2013


  2. OxxfordSJLINY

    OxxfordSJLINY Senior member

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    A bit off topic-and I don't want to sound snide, but with the current exchange rate between the Great British Pound and the United States Dollar, £3,000 is approximately $4,500, not approximately $5,000.
     
    Last edited: Jul 29, 2013


  3. unbelragazzo

    unbelragazzo Jewfro Dubiously Honored

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    If you're paying that much for a suit, $4500 is approximately $5000.
     


  4. OxxfordSJLINY

    OxxfordSJLINY Senior member

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    Okay.
     


  5. Blackhood

    Blackhood Senior member

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    I'm glad you quoted the entire post to point out a 10% margin of error in a back-of-the-envelope equation.
     


  6. SuitRowCharles

    SuitRowCharles Member

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    This is my first post on Style Forum but I have really enjoyed reading through this interesting thread.

    As someone who worked for Gieves & Hawkes and then ran my own 'Made in England' bespoke tailoring business, I think it really boils down to personal choice.
    Strange one but we always found so many clients enjoyed choosing a fancy lining more so then anything else..lol. They would sit for ages going through the lining bunches, then call the wife is for her view..LOL. Small thing but really made buying bespoke truly unique.

    I think the other big factor was fit. Either they wanted a sharp cut or they found it hard to buy RTW due to their shape etc.

    Many of our previous clients purchased a bespoke suit for a one off event like a wedding etc. But some would only wear bespoke and never even think about RTW.

    Anyway, I think the points highlighted are perfect.

    The only possible negative element we have found in 15 years experience is people suddenly start to find issues with their bespoke suits that they would never have even seen before. This is were a 'peoples person' is needed to manage peoples 'sudden eye for detail'.

    But overall, I think everyone should try bespoke at least once in their lives as its a truly wonder experience.
     


  7. bourbonbasted

    bourbonbasted Cyber Eliitist

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    FTFY
     


  8. SuitRowCharles

    SuitRowCharles Member

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    Oh and forgot to mention, totally agree with all your points blackhood.

    Thumbs up for a great first read on styleforum...:)
     


  9. add911_11

    add911_11 Senior member

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    I find bespoke suits more durable, and they allow easier alternations. RTW does not allow radical changes.
     


  10. archetypal_yuppie

    archetypal_yuppie Senior member

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    I disagree on your first sentence, but the source of disagreement is going to come down to a difference in what we think it means to have "arrived."

    The barista is clearly a ludicrous example.

    I believe that for "mainline" bespoke (~$5K+/suit), it would be fairly egregious for a suit-wearing man making a quarter million/year to wear bespoke suits, pants, and jackets. It's not about whether you have the money, it's about whether it's a sensible use of the money, given all of the other competing uses. On SF, it may be somewhat common for people of lesser means to go bespoke, but that doesn't mean it makes sense to do so.

    Maybe you don't think $250K a year has "arrived," but that level of income equates to the top ~2.5% of *household* income in the U.S., so that would be a very tough definition for "arrival."

    Anyway, clearly subjective, and for some people, it's their obsession... But most people around the world don't save nearly as much as they ought to. But as far as the thread title goes, I think people should make a lot of money before they go that route for their wardrobe at large.
     


  11. SuitRowCharles

    SuitRowCharles Member

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    Yes very true. But there are limits to bespoke...:) Which we once had to kindly explain to a client who wanted his jacket button holes moving up 2 inches..
     


  12. poorsod

    poorsod Senior member

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    That will depend on the level of customer service. Rubinacci once completely recut and replaced the fronts of one of mafoofan's coats.
     


  13. Balfour

    Balfour Senior member

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    Quite right.

    This article by Will is instructive, where he estimates upkeep costs for an established bespoke wardrobe at $14,000 a year (http://asuitablewardrobe.dynend.com/2012/01/beau-brummels-on-14000-year.html).
     


  14. archetypal_yuppie

    archetypal_yuppie Senior member

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    To be fair, these people tend to fit the qualifier of "having a ton of cash." But their vanity may be lower.


    I could buy a Ferrari today. It would be assinine. Bespoke clothing would be much less assinine, but I prefer to allocate the marginal few hundreds or thousands of dollars a month to other purchases/dining/vacations/savings and the variety of other things that I think make more sense. Clearly, there is no magic number, but I think it is pretty fair to say that you need a ton of cash to go bespoke by default without ruining your financial future or short-changing the rest of your life. Should I have added those qualifiers as well? They seem obvious enough.
     


  15. SuitRowCharles

    SuitRowCharles Member

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    Very few sensible tailoring houses will do that for free.
     


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