Made to Measure vs. Bespoke vs. Custom Made
February 16, 2010
Often times, words are misused to describe custom made suits. It never fails to make me flinch. Here is rundown of often misused terms:
It means a suit that has “been spoken for”. Bespoke is when one tailor creates a suit from scratch for one person. This usually takes multiple fittings as the pattern is drafted directly on the person. This art arises from Savile Row (UK) and is the most traditional way a suit is made.
Made to Measure
This is a completely different process than bespoke as it does not involve one on one tailors fitting you personally. Made to measure is based on pre-set patterns. The pre-set pattern is scaled up or down based on your measurements. This process is machine operated so mass orders are taken.
Main differences between each method:
- full bespoke starts at $2000, made to measure usually starts at $800
- nothing will fit you better than bespoke – everything is accounted for, made to measure is based on pre-set patterns and the cutting is automated, so it may still fit like an off the rack suit
- bespoke is mostly hand sewn using high quality construction, made to measure is a machine made garment
Nowadays there is much overlap as technology, and globalization have evened the playing field so obtaining suits that are bespoke quality at a lower price is possible. Much to the dismay of Savile Row tailors who have lost much business to this new way of suiting.
Custom Made is a very forgiving term that can be used to describe anything that has been tweaked to fit you based on your measurements and style options. When this term is used, it can mean a variety of things or a combination of methods.
What is a Savillian suit?
Our process is based on the Savile Row tradition as third generation tailors who studied in Savile Row create the suits from scratch. It is a hand crafted garment made of high quality construction. It is not drafted directly on the intended person and multiple experienced hands pass over the garment in two countries. Therefore it is not bespoke, yet since it is handcrafted and individually made, it is not made to measure. We simply refer to our suits as custom made.