Section: Men's Style - Blog
So you've decided you want a custom made or bespoke men's suit. But which tailor should you choose? How can you make sure you'll get the quality and value you've paid for? We've compiled a list of the most important things to ask your tailor to help you make the right decision.
You simply can't go wrong if you ask your tailor the following questions before purchasing your next men's suit:
Think of this as their portfolio or resume. After all, you're hiring them to make you an expensive garment so you'll want to see finished samples of their custom tailored suits or bespoke suits. Scrutinize the stitching inside and out. Examine the button holes.
Feel the fabric and lining. Compare it to a suit you already own. Does it look and feel like quality?
Fabric choices affect the price dramatically. Ask your tailor if they stock different ranges of fabrics with varying Super counts like Super 100s, Super 120s and up Super 160s and above.
If they do, then you know you have many options, and they're not out to push you into a sale. Refer to Part 4 to learn how to pick your perfect suit fabric.
Also ask about the fabrics used for the lining of the jacket. Better quality suits use cellulose based fibres like Cupro or Bemberg - never polyester.
Ask your tailor how their suits are constructed. Are they fully fused (inferior), half-canvassed (good) or fully-canvassed, which is the best method, but one that is out of most people's price range.
If the tailor looks at you in bewilderment, it's probably better to walk away. Steer clear of tailors offering fully fused suits. Refer to Part 5 for a lesson in suit construction 101.
This question is about two things. Firstly, it's about the literal meaning, and secondly about whether the tailor can guide you into a look that suits you best. Many tailors fly-in from global locations and thus do not speak your language well enough for you to communicate your needs and requirements. Many times this results in your suit being produced with a design you did not want or ask for.
Secondly, a good tailor is also a stylist (not a sales person). They should be able to consider your height, weight, complexion and lifestyle and then recommend a suit style to complement you in all aspects.
Unlike buying off-the-rack, a good made to measure suit tailor keeps your body measurements on file so the next time you order a newlinen suit, shirt or men's jacket the process is a breeze. You won't need to get re-measured; all you need to do is select your fabric and style.
Always ask your tailor about their alteration policy. As each suit is uniquely made, sometimes things do go wrong.
A good quality tailor will offer you an alterations guarantee and offer to take care of the effort involved in getting the alterations done. They should also adjust your measurements on file to ensure a perfect fit for future garments.
If the tailor makes their suits in Asia (e.g. Bangkok, Singapore and so on,) there's usually no need to worry. These countries have well developed tailoring industries. However, there is a big difference between the suits made in Asia for local Asian markets and suits made in Asia for export markets. Tailors local to Bangkok, Singapore and Hong Kong typically use cheaper labour and materials, but a local bricks ‘n mortar tailor who sources from Asia usually opts for higher-quality. Suits made in Asia for export markets are generally of very good quality these days.
If the suits are made locally to you, including in Australia, the US, Canada, the UK, the Netherlands, Switzerland or Japan, expect the tailoring costs to be higher due to the high cost of labour in these countries. All you need to do is ask.
Always ask your tailor if they buy and stock their own fabric. If they do, you know they are the real deal and able to pass on to you the cost savings of buying fabric in bulk.
With your measurements kept on file, tailors that offer business shirts, as well as casual shirts, sports jackets, and blazers are allies for life.
These tailors can keep your wardrobe conveniently stocked with whatever it is you need in the future as well as everyday business suits. Who knows, one day they could even be making your wedding suit!
Another important thing to ask to see is recent client testimonials. It's one thing to sit and listen to what the tailor thinks of themselves and another to learn what their customers think. Always look for a name and photo with the testimonial, or better still, ask to see video testimonials as these simply can't lie.
The final thing to ask your local tailor: Can you offer me a good deal? Most will throw in a free custom made shirt, a free pair of cufflinks, or other incentives should you refer them business. A good local tailor is usually more than happy to help you out as they're interested in your long term business.
At Montagio Custom Tailoring, our goal is to establish long-term business relationships with our clients, which is why we offer world class custom service and expert tailoring. Call or stop by our showroom today to schedule your personal styling session. You'll never regret your investment in custom clothing when you do business with us.
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