The folks at Alan David Custom Suits are well aware that the decision to purchase a custom suit can be a pricey one. This is the reason Alan David works harder than any of its competitors to find fabrics of the highest quality that can be made into stylish and comfortable custom suits. Unfortunately, not all custom suit manufacturers abide by these standards. Listed below are some common pitfalls that you should beware of when shopping for a custom suit.
Beware of custom suit makers who claim their garments are 100% “wrinkle resistant” and “stain proof.” Such garments are made of fabrics that have been dipped in chemicals. The chemicals prevent the fabrics from breathing, which makes the suits hot and suffocating during warmer temperatures. The same goes for Teflon suits, which have been described by some as “fabric saunas.” Natural fabrics such as cotton and wool that have been mixed with chemicals become stiff and stodgy, and are not very comfortable to wear.
Beware of custom suits that are entirely machine made and that are held together with fusables (i.e. glue and other adhesives). These suits tend to crumble after only a few washes, and are not as sturdy for the purposes of everyday wear and tear.
Beware of “the dry cleaner will take care of it”, or “all it needs is a little pressing”. If there is excessive wrinkling or pulling when you are fitting your custom suit, tailors will often tell you “all it needs is a good press”. Dry cleaning is not the answer to every problem with your custom suit. Cleaning or pressing the suit too frequently will cause it to deteriorate and shine up more quickly. When a suit pulls or creases, the problem will not disappear with a dry cleaning. You are better off getting it adjusted by your tailor with the correct alteration (of course, Alan David provides free alterations for the life of its custom suits).
Beware of custom suits made in Hong Kong. Hong Kong suits cannot even truly be called “custom.” Hong Kong produces “made-to-measure” suits, which means suits with preexisting patterns are simply tailored to fit new measurements. Additionally, Hong Kong tailors frequently contract their work to third-party factories. When purchasing a custom suit, make sure you get a swatch number you can refer back to. Many offshore custom tailors will sell you one fabric and deliver another.
Beware of inexperienced custom tailors. Measuring and fitting is an art, and can only be learned by doing, not observing. Don’t trust your garment to someone who doesn’t have the necessary experience to fit you correctly.
Beware of the lowest price. Low prices usually come with low quality. If a price seems too good to be true, it usually is. It is our experience that plus or minus 10%, you get what you pay for.
To learn more about common custom suit trap falls, please call Alan or Arnold at 212-227-4040.