1. For head-to-toe customisation
The Paragon, 01-34/35/36
Once you’ve worn bespoke, you’ll never go back. And now, the leader in custom menswear, Ermenegildo Zegna, aims to personalise your entire wardrobe with its Made to Measure Collection.
While it has always been the go-to brand for formal or professional Su Misura suits, the Italian style stalwart has expanded its made-to-measure universe to include looks for informal events and work. Whether it be a luxury denim jacket on top of a long-sleeve polo shirt in cashmere, or a seersucker jacket in white and red over a Su Misura burgundy jumper, the line has the perfect mix of practicality and elegance.
Whatever you pick, you go through the same personalised session in the Paragon boutique, where its on-site suit specialists take your measurements and assess the best fit based on your body shape, height, posture and lifestyle. By the end of your detailed consultation, your adviser will know your taste and needs better than you do, and guide you through the label’s myriad options.
For example, as modern men move away from the classic suit, Zegna has responded to the trend with the introduction of the “broken suit” for a unique look. A denim shirt, for instance, can be paired with a jacket in ultra-lightweight cashmere for casual sophistication. Meanwhile, traditionalists can still pick from 400 variations of fabric, available in a wide range of designs, colours and styles, from Zegna Su Misura’s Classic and Platinum collections.
Finally, complement your customised clothes with equally unique shoes. Ermenegildo Zegna’s Made-To-Order shoes are designed to every specification of the client, and can be formal or casual, in skins including fine leathers and exotics to complete the look. Finished by hand, no two pairs look alike, guaranteeing a sense of exclusivity with every step. This Formula One season, clients can also drop by the Zegna Suite at Fullerton Hotel to catch the race while undergoing personal style consultations by the brand’s stylists for a fun made-to-measure experience.
2. For a truly bespoke suit
The Prestigious Bespoke
62B Boat Quay Road
Suit snoots, listen up. There’s a new traditional menswear atelier in town, where every commission is bespoke-made (rather than made to order according to an existing pattern) and crafted by skilled tailors.
Master tailor Thomas Ong says: “While many of our patrons have the means to fly to London or Italy for the finest tailoring, they come to us because of our personal relationships, which allows for subtle often unspoken insights into our clients’ needs and preferences.
“We can also respond to urgent requests far more efficiently than someone 7,000 miles away. We can personally catalogue and build a wardrobe for our clients, provide clothing valet services, and also are in tune with what our clients’ peers are wearing to prevent style duplications.”
The Prestigious Bespoke is the only tailoring house in Singapore to complete every item of clothing within its Boat Quay premises. Six years in the making, the showroom-atelier is helmed by seasoned bespoke apprentices trained by Ong, master tailor and lead lecturer for men’s fashion at the Lasalle College of the Arts. Each and every stage of the process is meticulously taken care of by an appointed personal tailor. The same tailor is tasked to fit the customer, and draft, cut, construct and finish the product.
Moreover, the atelier prides itself on using the finest imported materials such as silks from Europe and Italian horsehair canvas to line jacket interiors. It takes up to 120 hours to construct a jacket by hand, with over 240 steps involved to ensure that details such as rolled lapels and functional buttonholes are perfectly executed.
3. For understated polish
Dylan & Son
147A Telok Ayer Street (2nd floor)
There’s no shame in admitting that next season’s pyjamas suit and retro seventies trends are not quite your thing. When it comes to splurging on a bespoke suit, going the classic route is perhaps the most sensible strategy to take. And Dylan & Son is a great option for evergreen pieces that provide plenty of mileage.
“We place a very strong emphasis on achieving a balanced and well-proportioned look that is classic and evergreen,” says Dylan Chong, who took over his father’s tailoring business in Lau Pa Sat in 2010. “The Dylan & Son customer is classic, understated and appreciates subtlety. He doesn’t need to wear a loud, colourful shirt with neon blue trousers to stand out.”
The philosophy of the brand revolves around clean, minimal and precise aesthetics with quiet details. At the moment, the tiny outfit comprises three full-time cutters, and Chong as the director of the company.
“Instead of just another sales person, I attend to each and every customer personally, every single time,” adds Chong. “I will also selectively cut for some of my customers, based on my workload of the month.”
To determine if a jacket fits, Chong advises that the collars should hug the neck, the lapels should not gape at the chest, the biceps should not be pushing against the sleeve head, there should be minimal to no pulling at the front buttons, and the back of the jacket should cover the entire seat.
For added swag, without looking like a Pitti Uomo peacock (poseurs obsessed with being spotted by a street style photographer at the biannual menswear trade show in Florence, Italy), try a high-waisted pant style with wide pleats this season.
4. For that personal touch
Kevin Seah Bespoke
55B/C Boat Quay
Six years after launching his eponymous business, Kevin Seah is still one of the go-to names for bespoke and made-to-measure suits – largely due to the relationship he maintains with each and every one of his clients.
“We take a lot of pride in taking care of our clients’ requirements and what they look for with our products,” says Seah, who also stocks a wide range of accessories for men in his atelier. “Most of our clients are business owners, bankers, lawyers and doctors who are well travelled and appreciate our style and workmanship.”
While many brands may have gone high-tech when it comes to crafting suits, Seah believes in individually cutting and canvassing suits by hand. He also eschews the fusing of suits – a typical method of construction for off-the-rack suits, which results in jackets that look stiff rather than mould to the body.
“Our made-to-measure suits are not constructed using mass production techniques,” adds Seah. “Most tailors here still do ‘fused’ suits which are low in quality, but we do a traditional hand canvas which takes a lot more time to create and will last you a lifetime if it is well taken care of. Details like our hand-stitched, two-tone Milanese buttonhole are also our signatures – and it takes about an hour just to sew a buttonhole in this style.”
Seah also specialises in Neopolitan tailoring with very soft shoulders, often without shoulder pads, and left unlined, which is suitable for the warm climate here in Singapore.
(RELATED: Men are accessorising in 2016 – Kevin Seah Bespoke stocks pocket squares and other accessories at his atelier.)
5. For non-‘uncle’ suits
116A Telok Ayer Street
If it’s always been a dream to commission a safari suit personalised to your shape and style, an embellished tuxedo or just a two-piece that is on point for myriad occasions, look no further than Q Menswear. The Telok Ayer Street tailor is one of very few establishments here that offers full-canvassing for its top quality suits (as compared to fused suits), while ensuring that trend-conscious clients are aceing their suit game.
“We provide quality products and services that is still affordable compared with Saville Row’s average price point of £3,000 (S$5,300) for a bespoke suit,” says Chong Han San, founder and creative director of Q Menswear.
“Honestly our workmanship may not be as meticulous as Saville Row’s and we cannot boast of such a prestigious address, but our bespoke suits serve their purpose of allowing our long list of clients to look smart on any occasion.”
With a team of designers that ensures that the styles, fabrics and cuts are always updated, clients need not worry about looking dated. Chong counts US Ambassador to Singapore Kirk Wagar a regular client. The ambassador asked Chong to design a tuxedo, which he wore to the recent US State Dinner for Singapore hosted by US President Barack Obama.
For that designer touch, check out unconventional suits such as winter coats with shearling, safari suits, fully unlined summer suits and many more. Moreover, in 2015, the brand launched a ready-to-wear line influenced by its tailoring roots, with an emphasis on slim-cut shapes, tailored craftsmanship and subtle design detailing.
Adapted from The Business Times.