While ready-to-wear tailoring will make you look the part, never underestimate the power of a made-to-measure suit. Being able to don a suit that you know you’ve had a hand in creating, that’s made to fit you perfectly, is sure to put a spring in your step.
This week, the Last Word explores the proud traditions of made-to-measure tailoring, and how you can pick up a truly one of a kind Ben Sherman suit.
To chart the history of this luxury garment, we have to go all the way back to the middle ages.
Tailoring, derived from the French word ‘tailler’ (to cut), originally referred to the tailors who crafted made-to-measure, padded linen undergarments to be worn under chainmail to prevent the inevitable chaffing. So important was the tailor’s role in British society, that by 1100 AD, King Henry I gave royal rights and privileges to his preferred tailors.
Throughout the coming centuries, tailors continued to use their skills to refine the aristocratic wares of the times, they were held in high regard by royalty and percieved as national treasures performing a skilled and noble act for the good of the nation.
By the 18th century, the famed Saville Row in London had been established, housing specialist hatmakers, whipmakers and tailors who carried on this proud tradition of clothing the upper echelons of society in the finest fabrics, made just for them.
With the French Revolution killed cam a noticable change in noble attire, the demand shifted toward the needs of the higher ranking military officers.
Throughout this period master tailors remained some of the most respected men in British society, now running large shops full of apprentice tailors and cutters who would cut garments to the master tailor’s signature style and fit.
During the 20th century, a huge shift saw the tailors of Saville Row and Bond Street begin to cater for financiers from the United States, celebrities and public figures alike, bringing made-to-measure tailoring firmly into the public consciousness.
While modern manufacturing techniques would bring tailoring as a whole into the grasp of the masses, made-to-measure remained as a clear mark of quality and craftsmanship.
The Mods of the 60s carried on this proud tradition, developing intimate relationships with their tailors who would craft Mod-fit suits in the finest Italian fabrics to be worn at clubs and house parties across the country.
Today, more and more men are looking to made-to-measure to help them stand out from the crowd and find something truly unique.
Most men will look the ticket in a ready-to-wear suit, however made-to-measure brings with it the grandeur befitting of a truly special occasion.
The cuffs and legs will fit and hang just so, the fabric, buttons and stitching will be personal to you and you’ll walk into any occasion with the confidence only a suit that fits you, and only you, can bring.
Ben Sherman now offers its own made-to-measure service, giving you the opportunity to take the iconic Ben Sherman tailoring and make it all your own.
You start your journey to a truly personal suit by visiting one of our stores, enjoying an hour-long consultation measuring session with our in-house team.
You’ll be able to select from a wide-range of fine Italian fabrics including tweeds, pinstripes, checks puppytooth and much more, which are all then sewn and cut in England.
The lining is one of the best parts of a suit, and we have over 200 different styles to choose from, while custom buttons are also available upon request.
You’ll then choose your base Ben Sherman fit - the ‘Camden’ slim fit, ‘Kings’ regular fit or the ‘Brent’ boxy fit - and we’ll go ahead with making a Ben Sherman suit just for you.
This is a unique opportunity to own a world famous Ben Sherman suit that’s been made-to-measure just for you, and it’s a truly unique way to enjoy our fashion forward, iconic Mod styling.