Thursday, December 9, 2010
Online suit review: Tailor4Less.com
I have been trying to work up the courage to buy a made to measure suit online for some time now and I finally got around to it. I decided to start with Tailor4Less simply, and I know this isn't a very good reason, because they are the cheapest I could find. I wanted to try the cheapest first because I am dubious about how successful an online suit purchase will be. Online MTM shirts are one thing but suits are another. Custom shirts have become quite the successful online venture in the last few years and you can get some very good ones without all the hassle of high street or the time and money of full bespoke. Suits require far more skill however. If the shoulders are a tiny bit small on a shirt it isn't pleasant but the item is still a viable option. If a suit jacket is wrong across the shoulders however it will ruin the look of the whole jacket as it hangs and gets it's structure from them.
The website itself is very clean, nice and easy to navigate and all in all it's a fairly pleasant experience. They don't give you as much choice in the way of fabric or customisation as many of the other websites but they are also far cheaper than all of them. I decided that I'd go for a three-piece suit with the very resonable price tag of €215. This may seem like a bad idea for a test run but I decided that if anything is going to be wrong it will be the jacket in which case I'll have a pair of trousers and a waistcoat so the whole thing won't be a complete waste of time.
I chose a two button single breasted slim fit jacket with peak lapels and side vents. You are asked if you want the lapels cut short, medium or long and I decided to go with the last named. There is no option for slanted pockets so I had to settle with basic straight flapped ones (with a ticket pocket). Strangely there is no extra cost for working sleeve buttons so I chose those too.
The website has three main catagories of fabric to choose from. They say they are "100s", "130s" and "180s". I'm not sure how true to life these claims are so I got a basic dark blue called "Submerged" from their 100s range. The 130s and 180s ranges come with added costs of €20 and €40 respectively. As I said the fabric range isn't as extensive as most other websites but it is adequate enough as long as you don't want anything too unique.
Just a small point here in relation to the measuring. They are very helpful and give demonstratory images on how to measure all the various bits when you come to them and give you estimates for each which is a nice touch. They measure outer leg and inseam but not inside leg. This technically makes sense but it seems a bit odd nonetheless. Waiting to see if the measurements are right is the most nerve racking thing about this whole process.
I must confess now that I had a moment of weakness and ordered a purple and white striped shirt as well. I suppose it was partly to test two products in one go and partly to get a nice new shirt. I will add a brief point about that in my full review of the product.
They payment is simple enough and I quickly received emails confirming my order and payment. They claim that making the suit will take a week and it will be at my door a week after that. Postage is free on orders over €100 as well, which is nice. The order was placed five days ago so hopefully I can review the finished product in two weeks time.