10 OF THE BEST MEN'S READY TO WEAR SUIT LABELS
HOW TO DRESS BESPOKE WITHOUT ACTUALLY BUYING BESPOKE
Dressing smart can be tough when you want to spend wisely without settling for the usual greys and navys. Granted we don’t all have the luxury of going bespoke and sometimes you just haven’t got the time for it - but that doesn’t mean you can’t dress sharp without breaking the bank. In fact, there are many men who choose to go bespoke and the end results can sometimes be a little off. So here’s how to dress bespoke without actually going bespoke.
E. Zegna is a little more on the high end of the ready to wear collections, but they are a luxury fashion house so you know you can guarantee their garments will be well made. With over 100 years in the industry (now in the fourth generation of the family) they are worth the investment (if you want high quality fabrics and modern design in one). They produce not only materials from their personal wool mill in Italy for their own suits but also for the likes of Tom Ford. With starting prices around £1000 you’ll understand why when you hear their suits are made from 100 pieces of fabric - while simple button holes take hours to get that desired precision.
One thing Boggi Milano has which a lot of others RTW suit brands don’t is their fairly reasonably price tag. Although their quality may not be to the same standard as other Italian labels you can’t really complain since they have a coherent price tag (anywhere between £300 to £800), which for a suit that can last you a many years, it’s not going to be breaking the bank anytime soon. The smart fact about Boggi is that they use fabrics from other Italian brands such as Lardini, Caruso and Isaia - so their styles are frequently changing.
Aside from their impeccable British bespoke collection, Hardy Aimes' RTW collection offers style and is fairly contemporary. With clients such as Dermot O’Leary and David Hockney, they are worthy of that place on Savile Row, so expect to spend a little more than average, nonetheless you won’t be let down on quality. Since they are rich in heritage, they continue to use British fabrics such as Prince of Wales, Gingham and shades of navy. However, their suits still have a modern and sleek flair with a low waist for the younger disconcerting gentleman.
If you like simple and classic everyday tailoring, Larding offers a traditional collection of suiting with the smart use of unique fabrics. Lardini use high quality Italian construction, despite the use of lightweight and somewhat delicate materials, catering for business professionals - you can still achieve a sophisticated aesthetic. Suits average at around £600 which doesn't run too high considering the quality of their manufacturing, leaving them fitting true to size to ease the risk of alterations. Larding throughout their umbrella offer Italian tailoring of elegant shades of creams, blues and navy which all evoke the bespoke look.
Brooks Brothers, for those not so familiar, are a tailoring house who withstand the title as the longest running retail brand in the US. The American founded company produce suits with an international preppy style which are now owned by the Italians. Starting prices are around £600 leading up to £1000 for their RTW suits - so they have a relatively reasonable price tag. Brooks Brothers have the ability to keep their styles fresh and manage to cater to a very big market with stores all around the world.
As far as tailoring houses go Reiss is more of a fashion forward British brand which focuses on creating smart tailoring pieces that combine into movements in fashion. Modern detailing and slim contemporary cuts are the norm. Their price points aren’t bad either, and you can pick up an off-the-peg Reiss suit from around £300. Although their suiting is rather up to date they’re still worth an investment for their longevity and versatile style.
If you like the true British style Hackett London have a lot of choices when it comes to their RTW suit collection. They're now owned by a Spanish brand so with a few exaggerated twists along the way they have preserved their British ethic. Hackett London are one of the few tailoring houses to collaborate with sporting names in F1 and football in order to display the versatility of their suits. From contemporary velvet dinner suits, navy single breasted three pieces and office wear, they're both affordable and reliable.
Another of the Savile Row candidates, their collection varies in price so expect to spend anything between £600 and £1300. Richard James RTW suits are a safe option if you want something that is versatile for multiple occasions, so be sure to keep it in good condition for when you might need it at the last minute. Their house style is popular - the modern two button single breasted with deep side vents for added detailing. Richard James quickly established himself as one of the first for a contemporary style suit on Savile Row with a unique store, however he maintains a British aesthetic.
Pal Zileri haven’t had enough recognition in the past for their ability to make great suits. A lot of their marketing is miss-leading, stating that they are not a tailoring house. However, take a Pal Zileri jacket and by looking at the details on the shoulder and the examining the light-weight fabric you can see they create the garments of a sartoria. From the styling and the fabrics used we can see their tailoring technique is innovative. They’re also experimental with their construction, to which they describe as ‘avant-craft’. The designs are fluid and functional, with the use of light fabrics and un-canvassed waist-lined trousers which makes them easier to move in.
Arguably named as one of the best mass-produced suit companies in the world. Caruso offer elegance and a great fit, which if you know anything about suiting the fit is crucial and can be hit and miss when it comes to pert-a-porter suit buying. Caruso use some of the best fabrics and pay close attention when it comes to their finishing touches - so although it may not be luxury prices it comes close to feeling like you are wearing luxury. With prices around £1000 to £3000 you’ll be investing in a suit which will be stand out against the rest on the RTW market.