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The Sartorialist Goes Shopping For Fashion Week -p2


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Monday, August 28, 2006

The Sartorialist Goes Shopping For Fashion Week -p2

Next stop - Ralph Lauren Mansion at 72nd St.

I really love the new Black Label suits.
I found a perfect 3-button blue suit with a faint white stripe, classic Ralph style but very slim cut. Since I have broad shoulders and a slim waist ,as you can see in the photo, we were faced with an arsenal of alterations but I was prepared with a gameplan.

First - Have the suit fit while wearing the shoes that I had just bought at Barneys (both the black and brown will look great). Getting a suit fitted wearing tennis shoes is just asking for trouble.

Second - The shirt (white spread collar with French cuffs) and we pinned the sleeves to the correct length (right at my wrist bone - I hate when they ride low on my hand). Then we pinned in the body of the shirt, I was a little surprised that the shirt was not more slim cut to begin with.

Third - The pants, we had to take the waist in a bit and taper the leg a bit. Once the legs have been tapered we will decide on the final length at the second fitting.
What i really love about the pants is that they are cut with side-taps and not belt loops! Just like the suit Cary Grant had on in North by Northwest.

Fourth - The jacket. Since the jacket has to work in harmony with the pants and shirt we waited until they were pinned in place at the correct measurements. Of course we had to remove the roll at the back neck of the jacket, then we pinned in the sides and shortened the sleeves (being very careful to get at least a 1/2 inch of cuff). The final alteration was to shorten the length of the jacket about a half inch. They will also re-steam the lapel so it rolls to the middle button.

I will be holding my breath hoping that all this works out correctly but I have had work done at Ralph Lauren before and it was superb.

My only rookie mistake I made while buying the suit. I had actually picked it out a few days before but when I went back for the alterations the salesperson was not there. Of course no other salesman wants to help you during the alterations for no commission so the Mens store manager was very kind to spend some time with me and he made sure I got what I needed, thanks Todd.

Now the real fun begins - buying ties and pocket squares for the suit.

Comments on "The Sartorialist Goes Shopping For Fashion Week -p2"


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (6:20 PM) : 

Do you have some pictures of the suit you could show us?


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (6:26 PM) : 

All I ask - in order to truly live vicariously through you - is that you post the grand total.


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (6:27 PM) : 

Congratulations Scott - sounds like a real adventure. Hope you dn't mind me suggesting you buy an ivory pocket square - silk - or Irish linen (of course, given my provenance...) instead of white. They always look better under evening lights. White is for crisp daytime wear. The tie... ahhh, that's your call fella... Good luck.


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (6:56 PM) : 

The suit looks smashing...and by the time you're done it sounds like it should fit great too.

A couple questions for the sarto / other readers:

1) You mention resteaming the lapel so it rolls to the second do you feel about this vs. 3 button suits that roll through the top button but only to half way between the top two buttons? Is this a difference in steaming or construction? 2) Did you notice if it was entirely canvassed, as there are rumors the black label suits are only partially canvassed?

And by the way...from an established reader of your site, but first time poster, GREAT BLOG.


Blogger EffingB said ... (6:58 PM) : 

It looks like you've been having a great time. I love it.


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (7:00 PM) : 

Forgive my ignorance, but what are side-taps?


Blogger MARIA H said ... (7:05 PM) : 

hehe,pocket squares...what if get some boots?


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (7:28 PM) : 

If you don't post the final price of the suit and all accessories, I'll never read this blog again. Ever.


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (7:43 PM) : 

You should never wear footwear when having trousers shortened! when in your bare feet, if you pin to the floor at the heel - the trouser length will be correct irrespective of what kind of shoe you wear ...


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (8:06 PM) : 

I am also wondering the final price tag, and how much more a totally custom-made suit would be. Seems like it will be almost custom-made by the time all of the alterations are done. I'd love to see a lime-green tie and/or pocket square.


Blogger The Sartorialist said ... (8:06 PM) : 

if I pin at my heel i will get a break and I don't want a break.

That is the problem with rules - everyone has different ones


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (9:08 PM) : 

Are there any rules regarding the length of women's trousers?

I love the blog. Thanks Sart!!!


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (9:49 PM) : 

Are the tags hanging from the jacket the alteration notes?
they are beautiful.


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (10:20 PM) : 

i am disappointment. you go out and buy a black suit!!! I wish you had gotten some thing different.


Blogger pete h said ... (10:34 PM) : 

Long time reader, first post.

How will RL shorten the sleeves on your shirt? I plan on altering some shirts. Thanks!

Also, congrats on all your success Scott! This is a great blog.


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (10:48 PM) : 

When all is said and done, get someone to take YOUR picture in this suit!


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (11:15 PM) : 

Why are people so interested in the price of the suit? If you really wanted to know, you could've called the store. Anyway, who cares how much it costs? What's most important is how it feels on and how it looks.

This is a big deal...getting a gig with and GQ are major, we all know money is gonna get spent. Big money because it's a big deal.

I personally don't want to know. The mystery is much more fun.


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (11:45 PM) : 

It looks like the sleeves had to be shortened quite a bit, and you are sortening the jacket. Was this a long, why not just get a regular? Just curious, it seems that by shortening the jacket you change the way it was designed to look.


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (12:08 AM) : 

hey sart what size jacket do you wear?


Blogger Vesper Lynd said ... (12:44 AM) : 

of course you know my obsession with Ralph and the suit will indeed be beautiful - ps, who cares how much it is? custom is custom, and Ralph should never be questioned...


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (1:28 AM) : 

Could we change the seemingly default use of the word "rules" to "guidelines"? Mostly the "rules" we speak of are "rules of thumb", more of a recommendation than a rule-not-to-be-broken type of rule. I see that these guidelines exist because of tried and true associations with proper fittings, various relationships of apparel to our bodies that work better, or best, compared to other less sartorially optimal options. With that in mind, my questions for you are: What guideline might you have used, dear Sart, when deciding to shorten the jacket 1/2"? It's hard for me to imagine what your reason might have been for this, after you previously stated that the only consideration you give to this length is that the jacket cover one's butt. Was there 1/2" too much cloth back there...or what? What kind of recommendations did you entertain from the tailor? Requests: self-portraits of you in the finished and fitted ensemble and, yes, excuse the guilty pleasure of requesting to know the expenses incurred. "Inquiring minds want to know." ;-) - JCH


Blogger Petya K. Grady said ... (2:16 AM) : 

Is it OK to wear the same suit + a wide variety of accessories for a week (or within a short period of time)? Most people I've asked seem to think that's fine as long as the shirts/blouses and accessories you wear it with are different enough from each other.


Blogger kiarella said ... (4:57 AM) : 

May I suggest a Marinella tie? I think Barneys carries them, otherwise you can buy it in Milan- the store is in via S.Maria alla Porta,5 tel. 02/86467036 - unless you are in Naples and you want to visit their original store in Mura di Chiaia.....


Blogger Kelly said ... (7:27 AM) : 

You are adorable.

You know, some think fashion is frivolous. In truth though, a person who spends time on the personal details not only conveys respect for himself, but for others around him. I know in this crazy world, where bad things happen all the time, I appreciate seeing beautiful and cultivated things--like a well tailored suit and a great pair of shoes.

Carry on, Sart!


Blogger The Sartorialist said ... (8:58 AM) : 

Couple of notes on your great comments

- The suit, shirt, ties (solid navy silk, solid navy knit)
and alterations came to around $2400.

- I did have the sleeve and jacket shortened. Right now I hate a jkt that is too long so I only shortened it a bit and the sleeve should be just right.

- The suit is not black it is navy but i can go black or brown with the accessories to change up the look - I will need to do that since I will only have two suits and a sportscoat in Europe for 20-ish days of shows.

- I will do a photo diary again on the blog when I'm in Europe so you will see the suit and then get sick of the suit!

-I'm saving some money for shopping in Milan

-I told the tailor what I wanted done but I listened to him about how it should be executed - as in how much to taper the pants etc.

-I also just bought a beautiful Boglioli navy pinstripe suit that i will do a post about when I get it altered. It is much more trad italian in cut and feel but will have a overall slim feel like the RL suit.


Blogger Alice Olive said ... (8:59 AM) : 

I completely agree with Ex Isle Of View! I love reading all these details!

And for the record, I also concur on fixing the trouser length when in the shoes you'll wear them with. I prefer my trousers slightly longer than usual and can only achieve that with a tailor when I wear the right shoes.


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (10:09 AM) : 

I too want to know what side-taps are.


Blogger SophieA said ... (10:38 AM) : 


I'm so glad you featured the Ralph Lauren line. He's my favorite designer. And remember if you ever need an extra hand....


Blogger ENID P. said ... (12:18 PM) : 

Superb jacket...



Blogger blackbird said ... (1:37 PM) : 

You convinced me...
my husband needs a new suit and I just don't want to go to Barneys again.

I've been enjoying your posts immensely.


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (2:27 PM) : 

I used to work at Polo and was also very excited about my Black Label suit purchase. I got one from the 1st collection (2004), black, two-button with side vents and side tabs. I love it! However, because I'm so slim I required A LOT of alterations. The suit is now PERFECT, I wore it recently and it's fabulous.

Side note: I saw Thom Browne on the C subway train yesterday. It's so refreshing to see a designer who really WEARS his look. He had on his signature grey suit with short pants, paired with a white shirt, grey tie and black oxfords with short black ancle socks. He was surrounded by so many drab, rain-soaked commuters and he was so crisp and chic. I said hello and he was very gracious.


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (3:19 PM) : 

Yes, please, define side taps?

Anonymous, moving the roll line by steaming is not (in my experience) usually successful. Suit jackets have a stay tape inside along the roll line which-- without getting into the engineering details-- is why it rolls where it does. Wherever you steam it to, it will always be inclined to move back to its original position.


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (4:34 PM) : 

you should have asked one of your oldest friends for proper tailoring terminology before posting your column. there is no such thing as "side taps"...several people were actually referring to "pistol straps.

while I am sure the RLBL suit is fine, personally I cannot wait to hear more on the BOGLIOLI suit. I think this is the best sartorial lines out of italy right now. too bad they do not have their own show room here in N. America...cheers


Blogger The Sartorialist said ... (5:09 PM) : 

to Anon 4:23
if this is who I think it is then you truly are my oldest friend, you are also the wrinkliest, baldest, and chubbiest friend.

Sorry if I choose not to call them "pistol straps" , the last guy to call them that was Biggy...oops, I know he didn't just say that!!

besides why would i quote someone that calls chicks "birds"


Blogger Lady Apple said ... (5:24 PM) : 

oooh, i love suits that have a pinstripe on it. it sounds like yours was like that with a subtle one.


Blogger Elizabeth said ... (5:56 PM) : 

What a great adventure. Have fun!


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (9:37 PM) : 

Side taps, pistol straps, whatever you might wish to call them, I still want to know what they are.


Blogger mack11211 said ... (10:12 AM) : 

One stray question, since you have had alterations to your shirt as well as to your suit. Many men omit the former, with sad results.

How much larger is the shirt chest measure than your own?


Blogger tartanscot said ... (5:07 PM) : 

side tabs (and/or taps, pistols) are "buckle-like" features located above each hip on the waistband of trousers that do not have belt loops. They allow the wearer to adjust the size of the pant slightly by opening or tightening the buckle.
Does that answer your question ?



Anonymous Anonymous said ... (4:43 PM) : 

I don't know if this is the right place to ask for advice, but I'm in the process of looking for a suit, and I want something with a very slim fit like Zegna or Dolce and Gabbana. Unfortunately, my budget is around $800. I tried on a Hugo Boss at Nordstrom's and the taylor pinned it for me, but it still seemed too formless. Part of the problem may be that I'm tall and thin with broad shoulders and a narrow waist. Is it ever recommended to drop a size to get that slim look, or is that courting disaster? Or does anyone know of an Italian fit suit I can get for 800 bucks?
-Thanks, A fashion neophyte


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (10:34 AM) : 

Dear Sart,

I know what you mean about RL Black Label. I just got my first one last season and not only do I love the cut (I can't believe you had to taper the leg!), but the fabric was sensational. I think there is a little elastic in the yarn, giving it such a great hand and stretch that makes me want to sleep in it.

enjoy it!
from, JR


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (1:30 AM) : 

Nice suit. I like it.
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Blogger Unknown said ... (7:00 AM) : 

Fiction is good about really love the new Black Label suits,the pictures are also great to see,


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