In the same way a good personal trainer can bring out the best in your body, an expert tailor can shape up your existing wardrobe so it fits you impeccably well. And in the world of bespoke tailoring, sewing artisans take the practice a step further, actually making custom clothing for you. From New York City to Fairfield, CT, this area is home to a number of renowned tailors who can tackle your sartorial needs. Here’s who to turn to whether you want a superbly cut suit or a couture-quality gown.
New York City
This Soho-based company makes sophisticated custom dress shirts, using not only a customer’s size but also style preferences. “Customers can choose from 400 fabrics, 20 collar styles, and dozens of other design options to create the exact shirt they want,” says founder Seph Skerritt. The brand is known for its e-commerce model: Proper Cloth’s customers simply log on to their website to select shirts, tweak their fit profiles and review past orders (making it easy to replace a beloved shirt that’s worn out). First-time clients in New York receive complimentary alterations so they can “dial in” a size, says Skerritt.
Turnaround times are less than two weeks, with prices ranging from $85 to $300, depending on fabric. propercloth.com
Jennifer Butler Designs
Fashion designer Jennifer Butler creates fall and spring collections for both men and women with a relaxed, modern aesthetic. “My clothes feel like pajamas, but cut a sleek line,” says Butler. “I give a wearable edge to everyday dressing.” Standouts include crisp coats and evening gowns, but if you can’t find what you’re looking for in her Mill Plain Road showroom, Butler will design a garment exclusively for you. “I do everything from cool suits to dresses that take you from the boardroom to the bar,” says Butler. “I don’t think you should be conscious of your clothes—you should just know that you look great.”
Price points vary by material, but jackets and blazers generally range from $500 to $1,000, pants and trousers from $250 to $400, day dresses from $350 to $600 and formal dresses from $450 to $3,000. jenniferbutler.com
Rye, NY, and Greenwich, CT
Master tailor Julio Tepan cut his teeth at the Art Institute of New York City and relies on that training when sketching designs and slicing into fabric. And the work is all done in his Rye and Greenwich studios. “We don’t send our garments to other countries. We make them right here at the store,” says Tepan. What he does source from overseas: fabrics from Italy and England, which have exquisite quality and durability.
Custom men’s suits range in price from $999 to $3,999, with many fabrics on the lower end of that scale. Tepan and his tailors (including his son Fernando) can also design bespoke dresses, coats and pants for women, from $300 to $3,000. sumisuratailor.com
Greenwich, CT and NYC
This modern Dutch menswear shop has three outposts in Manhattan and recently opened in Greenwich, CT, offering a wide selection of suits, as well as casual sweaters and leather goods. Their dress shirts are particularly popular and come in a variety of fits (from extra slim to regular) with choose-your-own detailing, such as mother-of-pearl buttons and hand-pleated shoulders (starting at $159 per shirt). In addition to the in-house tailoring service—usually done while a customer is waiting—clients in the Greenwich, Soho and Madison Avenue stores can opt for their “Made to Measure” service. Suits, jackets, pants and coats can be created from 600 different types of Italian fabric, including pure cashmere and linen, and shirts can be finished with monograms and 27 different collar styles. Not sure where to start? “I would suggest a Super 110 or 130 wool from the Vitale Barberis Canonico mill, for a year-round weight,” says Vice-President Nish de Gruiter.
Prices start at $1,049 for suits. Delivery takes four to six weeks for bespoke items. suitsupply.com
Photographs by: Jennifer Butler: David eSposito; Proper Cloth: Harrison Brunswick