There are only a few places in the world where the term ‘bespoke suit’ has real meaning. Either you have one made in London or Hong Kong.
Tailors in Hong Kong who specialise in suits look up to London tailors for inspiration. At some point, Hong Kong tailors have made their mark and are now considered at par with their British counterparts.
The Bespoke Suit
Suits can easily be made or bought in shops and boutiques all over the world. However, even the best Italian suits are considered a shade below the quality of bespoke suits. A bespoke suit is one of a kind and specifically tailored for one person. It is made from scratch, starting from the measurements, patterns and fitting to the overall design and choice of materials.
The term ‘bespoke’ comes from ‘bespeak’, which means ‘to command’. In essence, the suit is commanded to be made for an individual, which was the way clothes were sewn centuries ago.
Hong Kong is also famous for the ’24-hour suits’, but quality takes time. It takes a tailor up to a week to sew a bespoke suit. During that time, the customer goes to the shop for two to three fittings. During the fitting, the cut pieces of clothes are pinned together to see if it will fit the customer. After the fittings, the cut pieces are sewn together. When delivered, expect the suit to be very comfortable and wear well.
Elegance and Tradition
A suit is made for life. It is no wonder that those who can afford it opt for bespoke suits. Customers go to great lengths to go to their tailor in Hong Kong to have a new suit made. These exclusive shops are Hong Kong attractions in their own right. Even though a lot of people cannot afford these suits, tourists still drop by Hong Kong tailors to take a look at the quaint shops with the staid facade.
Some of these tailors have been in the same location for a hundred years. Part of the mystique associated with their suits is the expertise and passion put into every suit. The suits exude the quality seldom found in off-the-rack clothing. Italian brand suits may be as expensive, and are supposed to be as comfortable, but the attention to detail and the whole process of sewing these bespoke creations make them another level higher than any ready-made clothing.
Magazines advise that men should have two suits made, and these would last at least 20 years. Fashions may change, but the quality of the suit, as well as the cut, stands the test of time. In the same manner, ties are also said to last a lifetime. Thin ties from the 1960s never lost their charm and are again in fashion. These would fit well with today’s suits.
There is a certain style to wearing an elegant suit. It comes from knowing that it is comfortable and made specifically for the person wearing it. Wearing a bespoke suit custom made by Hong Kong’s best tailors brings out the confidence in people.