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The suiting thread


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#1 kotmj

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Posted 16 October 2011 - 01:56 AM

Let's kick off this thread with a jacket I found in the workshop. The owner of the jacket had brought it to a cutter to have it copied. The cutter, in turn, gave it to the coatmaker with a "Nah, copy."

To be clear upfront, I do not like this coat. Let's look at the coat.

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What catches the eye first is the barchetta breast pocket, immediately signalling a Neapolitan origin. The second element that announces itself is the miles upon miles of super-obvious pick stitching, which upon closer inspection, reveals a machine origin. Once upon a time when tailoring was still honest, pick stitching is supposed to be as inconspicuous as possible. It says so in every tailoring textbook. It also actually had a structural function of keeping edges crisp, or of holding pieces of cloth together. This particular pick stitching, OTOH, is purely decorative and is so loosely sewn, it has no hope of holding anything together.

What really bothers me about this pick stitching is that you find it even on the front dart. What purpose could it possibly play there? Indeed, it is unfortunate we need front darts to achieve shape, which is why tailors press it so flat so as to make it less obvious. Puttting in a row of that super-puckering pick stitching makes the darts draw attention to themselves.

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But notice also the severe puckering around the front of the sleevehead on both sides. It is clear the coat has been dry cleaned before, and by a second-rate dry cleaner at that.

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The buttonholes were machined, but I have to say they are very good imitations of hand-sewn buttonholes. The lapels are padded by machine. Everything about this jacket is machined. In the picture immediately above, you notice black and burgundy shapes in the blurry background. I shall have more to say about those.

They just could not let go of the pick stitching. You find more of that obnoxious stuff on the inside of the jacket. I have never seen anything more exuberantly pick stitched.

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Hah, made in Spain, eh? But why the barchetta? Here's why:

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Which explains everything.

The black and burgundy shapes belong to a very expensive jacket in the making.

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It represents the successful conclusion of a salesman's salesmanship, and it is an embodiment of somebody's dream of elegance. Both the cloth and the lining is Loro Piana. Unfortunately, it is black, and it is fused.

#2 terrorsquad

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Posted 17 October 2011 - 08:01 PM

hey there guys..im posting clearer pictures of my second fitting, same as in SF...looking back at it, there are actually a lot of issues with the suit that needs to be cleared up..would appreciate your guidance. Im sorry i couldnt post the pics here..tried but just couldnt..x idea why...

http://www.styleforu...ia#post_4888349

#3 kotmj

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Posted 17 October 2011 - 09:38 PM

Hi terrorsquad, I understand your problems posting pics here. I use photobucket myself.

A tailor once told me on a forum that shoulders are not permanently dropped. I have noticed this on my own body. My right shoulder only drops towards the evening, when I am tired. In the morning, my shoulders are even. I notice this with you as well.

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Look at the center back seam (marked out with the arrow). In one pic it is plumb, while in another it sways to one side indicating a dropped shoulder. So I think we should assume that you have very mobile shoulders and just cut the jacket for even shoulders.

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Above is the front view. I have taken the liberty to draw the gorge to my taste. It is reasonably high up without being extremely high, and the slope of the gorge (marked out in a brown line) is parallel to the shoulder slope (also in brown line). I would prefer to see wider lapels on you. Make them 3.5".

AL shortened the hem in the right side of pic. I prefer the unshortened hem on the left of pic. (You have very long arms dude.)

Also please ask for the sleeves to be shortened further, about 1/2" to 3/4" as marked out in the pic.

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Your shirt has a very tall collar. If this is the sort of collar you like, then the collar of the jacket should be raised to reflect this.

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The sleeves are very bad. The arrow at the top indicate that the pitch is wrong. Ask AL to chalk mark on the pocket mouth where the sleeve lies when you are wearing it (the line is marked out in pic). Then, remove jacket and drape on a dummy. Notice how much the sleeve is in front of the chalkmark. This is the amount to be corrected in the pitch.

The second arrow indicate a compression in the back of the sleeve. This indicates that the curvature of the sleeve is wrong. The sleeve was cut very curved. You, OTOH, have arms that hang straight down. The sleeve must be recut to be less curved.

So much for the jacket. I will comment on the trousers tomorrow. Tired for today.

#4 kotmj

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Posted 17 October 2011 - 09:46 PM

BTW, those are very, very nice black captoe Oxfords. What brand are they?

#5 kenterong

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Posted 17 October 2011 - 10:35 PM

looking at these cloths for my next suit. looking for a not-so-dark shade of grey actually but the pictures aren't very helpful.

not sure exactly when i'll be making the suit, but i figure i can't really pass up on the opportunity to save some money on the shipping costs, when my relative will be in london for a week for work.

http://www.ebay.co.u...=item519b4dcc7f --> color seems like the right one, but i believe the cloth may be a bit too dense for our weather.

http://www.ebay.co.u...=item45fd893a82 --> i'm leaning a lot towards this one because it's the cheapest of the lot (on a per meter basis), plus it's also the lightest (about 9.5oz). color may be a bit darker than what i have in mind.

http://www.huddersfi...egory=18&ID=144 --> it's a dugdale so i'm assuming the quality is assured. price is quite okay, i suppose. color may be a bit darker too, but at least it should be quite accurate on the website. maybe i can go one shade lighter.

by the way, i'm trying to get the most mileage out of this grey suit, which will be worn mostly for formal occasions. i'm also thinking of pairing up the grey pants with my navy blue DB once in a while.

#6 terrorsquad

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Posted 17 October 2011 - 10:46 PM

The oxfords are loakes 1880.thanks a lot kotmj.I'll give him a call tomorrow and tell him what to do.went to his shop at 10am but he was x there yet.

#7 kotmj

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Posted 18 October 2011 - 10:48 AM

looking at these cloths for my next suit. looking for a not-so-dark shade of grey actually but the pictures aren't very helpful.

not sure exactly when i'll be making the suit, but i figure i can't really pass up on the opportunity to save some money on the shipping costs, when my relative will be in london for a week for work.

http://www.ebay.co.u...=item519b4dcc7f --> color seems like the right one, but i believe the cloth may be a bit too dense for our weather.

http://www.ebay.co.u...=item45fd893a82 --> i'm leaning a lot towards this one because it's the cheapest of the lot (on a per meter basis), plus it's also the lightest (about 9.5oz). color may be a bit darker than what i have in mind.

http://www.huddersfi...egory=18&ID=144 --> it's a dugdale so i'm assuming the quality is assured. price is quite okay, i suppose. color may be a bit darker too, but at least it should be quite accurate on the website. maybe i can go one shade lighter.

by the way, i'm trying to get the most mileage out of this grey suit, which will be worn mostly for formal occasions. i'm also thinking of pairing up the grey pants with my navy blue DB once in a while.


The Dugdale 8961 is great as a business suit, but you can't really pair that with a navy jacket. It's too dark a shade for that.

The 8934, 8938 and 8960 are more suitable for pairing with navy but they are a lighter shade than 8961. If there is a group photo and the others are wearing black you will stand out as the guy in the grey suit. (You will also look more sophisticated, but that is a different story.)

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Posted 18 October 2011 - 11:00 AM

i personally will go for the 8960.the colour looks classy.And i agree with kotmj, anytime your flanked by black suits and your wearing grey, you definitely will stand out.As a matter of fact, do you think the 8960 will go with my navy suit kotmj?Maybe that will be the fabric for my 2nd suit.

#9 kotmj

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Posted 18 October 2011 - 11:23 AM

i personally will go for the 8960.the colour looks classy.And i agree with kotmj, anytime your flanked by black suits and your wearing grey, you definitely will stand out.As a matter of fact, do you think the 8960 will go with my navy suit kotmj?Maybe that will be the fabric for my 2nd suit.


Well, kenterong wants to use the trousers from his grey suit to wear with his navy DB.

I like the 8960 too, it has a melange of shades that make it more interesting to look at than a flat grey.

#10 kenterong

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Posted 18 October 2011 - 11:27 AM

yeah, i was looking at the dugdale 8960 too but wasn't too sure if it would be suitable as a formal business suit. but it would definitely pair better with a navy jacket.

what about the other two cloths? to be honest, the dunhill looks quite attractive too, but the color may not be accurately depicted.

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Posted 18 October 2011 - 11:51 AM

I have personally seen grey suits similiar to the 8960 used by CEO's in high level meetings.I think the colour is very versatile, though the Dunhill is fefinitely a colour for a more formal business suit.

The dunhill looks ok though.But im x so sure about the quality.I still remember what gshen told me,anything from ebay is a gamble.And seeing that it will be close to RM700 , thats a bit of a gamble. At least with dugdales you have the option of feeling the cloth at AL or Bespoked. For dugdales, minus the shipping, it should be around RM650..

#12 kenterong

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Posted 18 October 2011 - 12:24 PM

yeah i have the same mixed feeling about the dunhill too. that's why i've been considering the dugdale as well. will probably go to ALT a bit later to collect my jacket (if the cuffs have been repaired) and have a look at the 8960 and 8961.

#13 kotmj

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Posted 18 October 2011 - 12:40 PM

I've seen the Dunhill in person (twice). It is a solid, good cloth if somewhat unremarkable. The Capitalist has a suit in it -- he tells me it is his least favourite. He prefers ultrasoft supers. The great advantage of the Dunhill is the price.

AL does not have the New Fine Worsted books. The guy who runs the Dugdale online shop fucked up again and sent two copies of the English Classics book. It is his third fuck up that I know of. First, a while back he recommended something totally inappropriate to a forumer. Second, he sent the wrong books to AL. Third, he sent the wrong cloth to terrorsquad. You have to be careful of that guy.

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Posted 18 October 2011 - 02:26 PM

And might i add a forth, he still hasnt deposited into my paypal account the balance of 15 pounds that he has promised 3 weeks ago.And its getting a bit expensive calling the UK everytime to remind him.

Btw, i just came back from AL.Did i just bump into you kenterong?Anyway, i had a 1 hour discussion with AL on my suit. I tried back my jacket and when i saw it again, you were right kotmj, there is no need to shorten it again. I asked him to maintain the current length as it is the right balance with my height and my super long arms.

I also asked him to amend the sleeves. Your point on the cut of the sleeve and the pitch was conveyed to AL.I tried it, he marked where my hand were hanging near the pocket mouth and we put the jacket on the dummy. No wonder there were a lot of bunches, the difference was quite big from where my hand where hanging to where it was on the dummy.

I also pointed out that my hands hung straight and he took the point and will amend it. Currently, it was cut too curvy.I also pointed out that i wear a high collar and he also promised to amend it.

All in all, it was a fruitfull 1 hour with him. I even tried on my pants when he insisted. I pointed out there were still bunches and it did not hang perfectly. He said he will loosen it up as it was too tight.I will be having my 3rd fitting this saturday.

I also brought him my TM Lewin shirt to alter as it was too big. He commented on the workmanship as it is quite bad. I told him it was expected as its made in Vietnam and its mass produced. I will be bringing him a Borelli and a T&A to copy soon as i plan to comission from him a shirt.

#15 kenterong

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Posted 18 October 2011 - 02:47 PM

yes, i went to ALT to collect my jacket around 2pm. must've been you exiting the shop just now as i was going in. not too happy with the working cuffs, so i'm really praying hard kotmj will graduate into a coatmaker real soon!

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Posted 18 October 2011 - 02:51 PM

haha..it was my shabby day today..whats wrong with your working cuffs?

#17 terrorsquad

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Posted 18 October 2011 - 04:47 PM

guys, is 2.4 meters enough to make a blazer?ive been looking at the Hwa Seng send fabric clearance and im eyeing the minnis cloth...

#18 kotmj

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Posted 18 October 2011 - 05:00 PM

kenterong, I'm pretty sure you'll get over your disappointment soon. There have been many instances when I've been disappointed, in fact every garment I have bugs me in some way. Such is life with products made by one person for another person.

But after a while the bugs fade from conscioussness.

#19 kotmj

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Posted 18 October 2011 - 05:03 PM

guys, is 2.4 meters enough to make a blazer?ive been looking at the Hwa Seng send fabric clearance and im eyeing the minnis cloth...

Could be enough, though certainly borderline. Give AL a call.

#20 kenterong

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Posted 18 October 2011 - 06:11 PM

kotmj, you're quite right. overall, it is still a pretty good suit that i got. and i believe i still owe you some pictures of it.

terrorsquad, AL initially gave me cuffs with working buttonholes. but the cuffs themselves don't open, so what's the point then, right?

i took the jacket back to AL to have it remedied last weekend. when i collected it today, i got my working cuffs, with what looks like machine stitches that were improperly done. but i suppose the saving grace is that they're not obvious to the 99% of the population, who don't know what working cuffs are.




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