Finding a suit that fits perfectly is a challenge, and making sure it’s tailored just right can sometimes feel like a herculean task. It’s hard to carve out time in your busy schedule to shop for a suit and have it altered to fit your body perfectly. That’s why, thanks to fashion’s ever-evolving relationship with technology, the online custom suit market is booming. In fact, today, there are close to 50 e-tailors who can create a bespoke suit in a matter of weeks with little hassle on your part. However, all are not created equal: In the past year a few of these e-tailors have begun to incorporate original enhancements to make tailoring and figuring out self-measuring guidelines easy enough for any man to follow.
If you’re strapped for time or simply impatient, these custom suit e-tailors are your saving grace. Here are the three best bespoke e-tailors that you should know about.
1. Knot Standard
New York based e-tailor Knot Standard launched in 2010, and offers suits (starting at $495), shirts, and accessories. The tailor raised the online suit-buying convenience bar by letting customers choose from four different methods of getting measured. Options you have when it comes to tailoring are you can mail in a great-fitting suit you already own for the tailors to copy, input your self-made measurements online, bring the company’s measuring sheet to a tailor, or use a webcam. If you ever run into any problems, advisors from the company are there to help you 24/7.
Last summer, the company launched a higher-tech/easier way to figure out your measurements by using a webcam measuring tool that allows men to pose at home in a dark, fitted outfit against a white background while holding a CD or DVD (if you have one lying around) at your belly button for scale. After a few minutes, the system creates a full-body scan, which then compares it to a database of thousands of records. The measurements are then rounded out and adjusted to account for your clothing, posture, and breathing that renders a final 3D image of your likeness. Welcome to the future.
Indochino is a pioneer in the online, self-measuring custom-suit business, and it continues to expand its range of customized shirts and suits while maintaining a relatively low price point — suits starting at $449. This Vancouver based e-tailor, which launched in 2007, introduced its popular Ultimate Tech Collection in January 2013, featuring Italian merino wool suits treated with an invisible stain-blocking, wrinkle-resistant nanotech finish. The collection also features an inside, touch-responsive smartphone pocket with an unobtrusive earphone hole in the label, so you can listen to music or talk hands free.
3. Arden Reed
With humble beginnings (the idea started in a college dorm room with a successful Kickstarter campaign), Arden Reed made its e-commerce debut in 2012 by selling suits (starting at $497) and shirts. Customers of the site can follow a detailed measurement guide and submit their own stats online, or book an appointment for a 3D body scan inside Arden Reed’s roving Tailor Truck. The Tailor Truck, inspired by the food-truck movement that’s taken New York City by storm (Arden Reed is New York-based), the truck was funded by another Kickstarter campaign, launching it into the world of mobile retail. The truck has toured major cities on the West Coast, but is based in NYC. The truck carries a display case, waiting area, and a fitting area with a 3D body scanner that takes a 1.5 million-point full body scan to get your exact measurements. Think of it as a lunch-break suit fitting.