3 Replies to “What’s the Difference Between a “Custom” Suit and a “Made to Measure” Suit?”

  1. “Custom” is sort of a vague term that people use to describe several different levels of customization. “Tailored” is the same, since that could refer from anything from a totally customized suit to a few minor alterations. Here are the three basic levels of customization/tailoring for men’s suits:

    Off-the-rack/Ready-to-wear: No customization at all. Some stores may have in-house tailors who can make small adjustments in fit, or you can take an off-the-rack suit to a different tailor, but the suit is basically manufactured to pre-set measurements rather than your own.

    Made to measure: The suit is made from scratch by a tailor who has taken your measurements, but uses a pre-made pattern. This allows a more customized fit without incurring the cost of a suit designed completely for scratch, and is often the default level of tailoring for guys just starting their custom wardrobes.

    Bespoke: This is the proper term for a suit that is designed and made from scratch to your specifications. It does not use a set pattern (although the tailor will of course be working off of existing patterns when he designs yours), and everything is discussed and chosen personally, from the cloth to the style of lapels and pockets.

    Each of these is substantially more expensive than the one before it — expect a big price jump from off-the-rack to made-to-measure, and another jump again to bespoke.

  2. Here’s a video from our RealMenRealStyle YouTube channel discussing the differences:

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