Tailor-Made Suits for Ultimate Style by Irene Togher
Off-the-rack and designer suits can be stylish and of good quality. In fact, off-the-rack suits are perfect for most occasions. But there may be a time when you want a look that screams
individual style and taste. This is where the tailor-made suit comes in. Only with a suit specifically made for you can you express a truly individual style and get a perfect fit for your body.
Why, you may ask, would you go to such expense for just one suit? Is it worth the time, effort and money? Check out this list of benefits and decide for yourself:
Why Buy a Tailor-made Suit?
Individuality. You will never meet another man with the same suit as you. A tailor-made suit is made once and once only for you and only you. As a result, the suit becomes an expression of your individual style. Since you and the tailor design the suit from scratch, you can add touches that will make it stand out.
Perfect fit. Off-the-rack suits are cut for the "average" guy, as each particular designer defines "average." Chances are that you are not whatever "average" happens to mean to someone else. And while off-the-rack suits can be altered to suit your particular dimensions, they will never fit quite as well as one made specifically with you in mind
Tailor-made suits are different. Your tailor will take a host of measurements before she begins making the pattern and cutting the fabric. Throughout subsequent fittings she will adjust the fit to your exact dimensions. As a result, the suit will "hang" perfectly on your body.
A style that suits you. In collaboration with your tailor, you can find a suit that gives you a style that suits you best. Whether it's double-breasted or a tapered waist, dark fabric or lighter colors, the tailor can accommodate what best matches your features, coloring, height, weight, shoulder width and so on. A good tailor can also use clever design to compensate for any advantages nature may have withheld from you.
Longevity. Tailor-made suits are made from the best quality fabrics, with strict attention paid to the stitching. This will ensure that the suit lasts for many years, often a lot longer than the factory-made versions.
Prestige. Let's face it: tailor-made suits are expensive and, as such, are a measure of affluence and social status.
Choosing the Best Tailor
Having a suit made for you is one thing. Having a great tailor make your suit is quite another. How do you find this perfect tailor? Be prepared to do some research, as the input of your tailor will be immense. While you will have some say in the design of the suit, it will be the tailor's taste and ability that give the suit its final look and style.
Get recommendations. Recommendations are always useful in narrowing your list of potential tailors. Ask friends and work colleagues about tailors they use and why they enjoyed working with him or her. Their reasons for satisfaction may be different than yours.
Alternatively, call a fine men’s shop in your area and ask for the tailor they use. While there’s a difference between tailors who simply do alterations and those who build suits from scratch, most tailors will claim that they can do both.
If you hear of a great tailor in another town, call this tailor and ask for a recommendation in your town.
Find out the house style. Tailors tend to be limited in the type of suits they make, so study the style that they usually produce. If it is not something you like, look elsewhere. Choose the tailor who has made something close to the suit you want.
See a sample. Visit the tailor and ask to see a recent sample of a custom suit — one ready to be picked up. Study it. It will give you clues as to the ability of its maker.
The buttons and buttonholes will tell you all you need to know about a tailor. A quality hand-made suit will have hand-sewn buttonholes. The stitching should be so good that you can barely distinguish it from the fabric — neat and smooth on the front and rough at the back.
There should also be a buttonhole on the lapel, large enough to accommodate a flower. Even if you never use it, it should be there if you want a true tailor-made suit.
The buttons on the sleeves should line up, close enough to touch each other and close to the end of the cuff. This attention to detail — including the various "rules" regarding buttons and buttonholes — is what sets the best tailors apart from the rest.
Check rapport. Talk to the tailor and discuss your ideas. If you feel comfortable with him and his ideas, then you have probably found your tailor. It is essential to build a rapport with the person, as you must be comfortable enough to let him or her know what you prefer without feeling bullied.
Getting What You Want
Your suit will be made based on the tailor’s mental picture of what you describe and what he or she believes is best suited to your body type, so clearly articulate what you want. Ask questions to ensure that your ideas match the tailor’s understanding. Don’t rush through this step. It may take a lot of discussion and some adjustments, but there’s nothing worse than paying for an expensive suit that’s not what you had in mind. Here’s a basic outline of what you must think about throughout the production process:
Step One: Give it some time. A great suit is not made overnight. In addition to the time required for stitching and sewing, the tailor will need you to return several times for production fittings and alterations. In addition, you should reserve some pre-production time for articulating what you have in mind.
In other words, the process takes time. If you need a rush job, a tailor-made suit may not be your best option.
Step Two: Decide what you want. Do you want to make a statement? Don’t assume your tailor is tuned in to the latest styles. Review men’s fashion journals and tear out several photos of suits with the elements that you like (a button here, a cuff there, a new lapel). The more you show your tailor, the more likely he or she is to deliver what you want.
Do you need this suit to last a few years? Don’t be a slave to recent fashion. Consider a classic design that will age well and always look "in fashion." Most tailors will help you find a classic style that suits your frame.
Step Three: Test your assumptions. Once you’ve decided on a basic style (i.e., double-breasted vs. single-breasted, two button vs. five button, pleated vs. straight trousers), try on an off-the-rack version of the basic style — and a few other styles — to get a more concrete idea of what your new suit might look like. There’s always a difference between what you thought would look good when you saw it in a photo and what actually compliments your frame.
Step Four: Explain what you’re looking for. Discuss your ideas with the tailor. Show the photos you’ve collected. Explain why you want the suit, what colors you prefer, styles you like, trends you've noticed that you like. A good tailor will listen to what you want and add a few suggestions based on what compliments your body type. If you’ve taken the time to find a great tailor, defer to his or her professional judgment and experience.
Step Five. Don’t forget personal touches. Once you and your tailor have decided on a basic style, add a few personal touches. Again, this is where your magazine tear-outs come in. While not every detail will suit you or "work" with the other touches you request, special buttons, pockets or a particular stitching will make the suit yours.
Step Six. Show up for multiple fittings. Your tailor will spend a few weeks on the initial production of the garment and will call you in for periodic fittings. These "check in" periods are designed to perfect the "hang" of the suit and will give you an idea of whether your tailor is headed in the right direction. During your three or four fittings, be sure to ask you tailor to adjust anything with which you are not comfortable. Don't leave it to the last fitting or it might be too late.
- a look that screams individual style and taste – вид, который говорит об индивидуальном стиле и вкусе
- to express a truly individual style – выразить настоящий индивидуальный стиль
- to stand out – выделяться
- to add touches – добавить, поправить
- the suit will ‘hang’ perfectly on your body – костюмчик будет отлично на вас сидеть
- a suit that gives you a style that suits you best – костюм, который дает вам самый подходящий стиль
- to adjust the fit top one’s exact dimensions – прилаживать посадку по чьим-то конкретным размерам
- to accommodate what best matches your features – добавить то, что больше всего согласуется с вашими чертами
- to use clever design to compensate for any advantages nature may have withheld from you – применить такой умный дизайн, который мог бы компенсировать то, чем обделила вас природа
- a style that suits your frame – стиль, подходящий вашему телосложению
- to compliment your frame – льстить вашему телосложению
- to get a perfect fit for one’s body – хорошо сидеть
- dimensions – размеры
- to take a host of measurements – снимать множество мерок
- to make the pattern – делать выкройку
- to cut the fabric – кроить материал
- throughout subsequent fittings – в течение последующих примерок
- to return several times for production fittings and alterations – несколько раз возвращаться для примерок и исправлений
- to build suits from scratch – шить костюмы с нуля
- to go to such expense – тратиться
- a measure of affluence and social status – измеритель богатства и социального статуса
- strict attention paid to the stitching – особое внимание к стежкам
- the immense input – огромный вклад
- to be limited in the type of suits one makes – быть ограниченным в типах костюмов, которые шьет (портной)
- to give some clues as to the ability of its master – дать кому-то ключи к пониманию мастерства портного
- to be made overnight – быть сделанным за одну ночь
- a buttonhole on the lapel – бутоньерка на отвороте
- to set the best tailors apart from the rest – отличать лучших портных от остальных
- your ideas match the tailor’s understanding – ваши идеи соответствуют пониманию портного
- to articulate what you have in mind – выразить то, что у вас в голове
- to review men’s fashion journals – просмотреть журналы мужской моды
- to tear out several photos – вырвать несколько фотографий
- a slave to recent fashion – раб писка моды
- to age well – не стареть
Ex.1. Find the meaning a-e for word expressions 1-5:
1. a slave to recent fashion
2. a host of measurements
3. production fittings and alterations
4. a measure of affluence and social status
5. a truly individual style
a. a sign of prosperity
b. a style that expresses you personality
c. a person who always follows fashion and wears only fashionable clothes
d. a great amount of measurements
e. subsequent fittings and possible changes that occur during the process of making a suit
Ex.2. Find English equivalents in the text.
бутоньерка на отвороте; особое внимание к стежкам; хорошо сидеть (о костюме); льстить вашему телосложению; в течение последующих примерок; огромный вклад; просмотреть журналы мужской моды; ваши идеи соответствуют пониманию портного; раб писка моды.
Ex.3. Match word combinations as they occur in the text
to make something
suits from scratch
a truly individual style
Ex.4. Rewrite the sentences using the vocabulary from the text.
- Since you and the tailor design the suit from scratch, you can add touches that will make it different from other suits.
- Recommendations are always useful in shortening your list of potential tailors.
- Together with your tailor, you can find a suit that gives you a style that suits you best.
- Tailors usually make only particular styles of suits, so study the style that they usually make.
- Be prepared to do some research, as the input of your tailor will be very significant.
- Consider a classic design that will never be old-fashioned.
- A great suit is not made quickly.
- Don’t think your tailor follows the latest styles.
- Most tailors will help you find a classic style that matches your body type.
- A good tailor can also use a clever design to hide all disadvantages your body type may have.
Ex.5. Find all synonyms for “ready-made clothes” and “tailor-made clothes”
Ex.6. Give a short summary of the text. Questions below may help you.
- What are the advantages of a tailor-made suit?
- How to find a good tailor?
- How to get the suit you want?