Amid modern global Sartorialism spreading it’s way from Northern Europe to Southern Europe—from Stockholm to Naples—and several seeds of influence springing up in the Eastern United States; Toronto is not commonly referred to as a city of tailoring influence. With around 30 companies in its downtown neighbourhoods, Toronto offers an expansive palette that, if you know what you’re doing and if you know what you’re looking for, it can accommodate proper investment in your wardrobe; that essentially reflects your social reputation. Almost all of these thirty companies offer made to measure, or bespoke or some sort of custom suiting programs.
Just Because They Say It’s Bespoke, It Doesn’t Mean It Really Is Bespoke
To break it down, for an untrained eye, there are small things that will probably go undetected when comparing a made to measure suit to a bespoke suit. Though a consultation may be identical between the two, the measurements may even be the same; however, the differences in your suits construction are crucial. If you’re used to made to measure, once you try bespoke, the differences are so drastic that it should hit you instantaneously. The difference between bespoke and made to measure is severely important to understand today because as the word ‘bespoke’ gets thrown around and abused, it becomes more commonly misleading.
The biggest benefit to the client that bespoke provides over made to measure is the second fitting, where the fitter, or tailor, has assembled a half-made suit held together with temporary basted seams. The temporary stitches can be easily removed, to allow the garment to be adjusted according to the clients’ posture. The client puts this suit on so that the tailor can make sure all initial measurements are accurate and accounted for; any adjustments needed can be fixed on the spot. Seeing a tailor so dedicated to his work is a display within itself, as every wrinkle and every pull is fixed like a puzzle with undistracted focus.
Quality Takes Time
Made to measure can still accommodate for posture issues but not to the extent of a bespoke garment. The biggest struggle with perfecting a made to measure garment is the oceanic gap between the measurer and the tailor (or machine) overseas trying to assemble the garment according to the posture flaws dictated by the expert taking the measurements. A finished made to measure garment can, but not commonly, come in basted for the possibility to correct mistakes, however even in rare circumstance cannot provide sufficient tolerances. Whereas bespoke allows the craft to be perfected in person, sculpted on the person.
Due to all the extra time and work that goes in to creating a bespoke garment, don’t expect to pay any less than the outcome you’re looking to achieve; bespoke is a huge investment and is far from inexpensive. There are gentlemen that spend up to $2,000 on shoes by John Lobb or Saint Crispins and would never be caught dead in a Blake-stitched shoe, but when it comes to the clothing they drape over their bodies, it’s almost obvious that they spent all their money on their shoes. Made to measure should cost twice the price of ready to wear, and bespoke often costs twice the price of made to measure. We live in the unfortunate economic rut where shopping fast fashion is most ideal by public demand and the culture of being a gentleman is fighting not to becoming victim to extinction. Know how to ask the right questions, $1,300 for a ‘bespoke’ suit may be too good to be true.