CUSTOM GARMENTS Vs. OFF THE RACK: WHAT DO YOU CHOOSE? 


Manufacturers and retailers worldwide fall into these three categories:


  • Bespoke
  • Made to Measure (MTM)
  • Ready to wear (Tailored)

While there are various other ways to describe these categories we will stick with the most commonly used terms going forward. Being new to custom clothing or quality men’s clothing can be challenging and unforgiving but there is no better investment than investing in yourself. People will judge you by your appearance and in three to five minutes will either confirm or deny that initial impression. Making sure you are dressed properly for the setting will give you an edge in business and in life. Be weary though, your goal is not to stand out but to fit in professionally and that is wear the guys at Homer Reed Ltd. come in.

WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE?


When you go to a men’s store and the tailor fits you right there, you would be wearing a ready to wear suit or off the rack. 95% of men fall into this category and it is nothing to be ashamed of. You can get quality long lasting menswear off the rack, you just have to know wear to look. You also skip the wait.

The salesman or tailor did not measure you to make this garment specifically for you, he just made a general model fit correctly.


A Made to Measure (MTM) garment is by definition a custom garment. With a custom garments you get to pick everything from the fabric to the lining and we make you the model. Y ou will notice, the difference is in the fit. There aren't many things better than a Made to Measure garment unless you go bespoke.


Bespoke is a whole different breed of custom clothing. When you decide to create a true bespoke garment you will work with your tailor from start to finish and they will make your garment around you. If you can afford bespoke clothing you probably need a good tailor more than advice.

WHY MADE TO MEASURE:


Made to Measure men’s suits and sport coats are generally $200 more than off the rack garments of similar quality. The big advantage of MTM menswear is fit, especially for men with trouble finding a good fit off the rack. Big and tall men, short men, men with uncommon body shapes and especially men with disabilities will find the MTM suit a better option. 

When you walk into your local haberdasher, have a plan. By plan I don’t mean just what fabric or how much you want to spend. Made to Measure clothing takes time and effort if you want your suit or sportcoat to work for you. Typically MTM garments take five weeks from the initial fitting to the final fitting and start at $1,095 without the perks.


What perks you ask? 


With a custom suit or sportcoat you are paying for amazing fit but it needs to look like it feels. Functioning button-cuffs and contrast stitching on button holes and or lapel buttonholes will set you apart from the rest, even with a conservative garment. There are a few other options that can add some flair to any outfit.


  • Surgeon cuffs $40 (working button holes)
  • Luxury linings $25-$112 
  • Premium buttons $10-$30
  • Contrasting Felt-undercollar $15
  • Contrasting thread edge stitching $7-$27
  • Additional pocket $10

If you are pressed for time but still need a MTM suit there is an option for you. A company we (Homer Reed Ltd.) work with out of Canada has a service called expedited accumeasure wear we can complete your Made to Measure Suit, sport coat or trouser in two weeks.


Weather you dress for work, fun or both make sure you get to know your   local haberdasher. Local men's clothier near you will give the best service and appreciate the business the most. At the department stores you are lucky to even see a sales person until you check out, at local men’s clothing stores you will work with a salesman that has typically worked there for years with no intention of leaving or the proprietor. Local clothing stores are going to give you real advice instead of selling you.

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