Suits Just for You: Why Go Custom?

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Suits Just for You: Why Go Custom?

Every guy needs at least one quality suit, for all the important events in his life. When it comes to quality, you can grab something off the rack, or you can get a suit custom-made. If you want to look and feel your best, a custom suit is the way to go. At the end of the experience, you will have a sharp-looking suit that is perfectly made specifically for you, for both your body and your personal style.

One-of-a-Kind Suits for One-of-a-Kind Guys.

When you’re looking to invest in a custom suit, there are a few things you need to keep in mind. The first is where you will be wearing this suit. If you’re only looking to keep one suit in your wardrobe, you will want to have something made that is suitable for most events. If you’re looking to add a new suit to an existing collection you already have, be sure to consider what sort of events this suit will be worn to. Different occasions call for different styles and elements: some design elements are better suited to more casual events, while others should only be worn in the most formal of situations. Check out the articles we have in our Gentleman’s Cafe for more information on picking styles and elements for any occasion.

Another thing you want to consider is your frame and face shape. The benefit of investing in a custom suit over grabbing one off the rack is that your suit will be designed with your shape and structure in mind. A well-made suit can work wonders on a man: it can accentuate features you love about yourself, and minimize the features you don’t. The design elements can also speak about who you are as a person and what kind of things you value. Are you a cigar and whisky kind of gentleman or do you prefer craft beer? Do you prefer to be a quiet observer or do you want to be the center of attention? The design elements of a suit – like the lapel style and width or the button layout – can all send subtle, silent signals to the people you meet about what kind of man you are. When you design a custom suit with us, you are in charge of the design and construction process, from start to finish, leaving you with a one-of-a-kind suit, for you, a one-of-a-kind guy.

We’re Different. Here’s How and Why.

Here at HARTTER | MANLY, we create a custom suit experience that leaves you with a suit of impeccable quality, designed with your stylistic choices and measurements to ensure the best fit possible. We use European fabrics and have over 3,000 swatches available to choose from. Most of our suits are 100% wool, but we also offer cashmere and silk blends, to build a suit for you that makes the exact statement you’re looking to put out into the world. Our suits come with a half-canvassed interlining (check out our article in the Gentleman’s Cafe for more information on interlining), but you can upgrade to a full-canvas suit for an even better fit that will only mold to your body more with time and wear.

Your suit from H|M will be a lasting investment: half and full-canvas suits last much longer, and don’t lose their shape the way fused suits do. And the interlining of your suit is not the only choice you get to make. With your custom suit through H|M, you will make all the choices: do you want your side-arm buttons glued or stitched? What color do you want your stitches to be? Do you want them to blend in or stand out as an accent? Need a suit to perfectly match a bridesmaid’s dress? We got you. Every style and fit choice is up to you, ranging from lapel types to button layouts to vents. Make those choices and watch your perfect suit come to life.

Here’s an example:

We Fit Better.

Every man is different, in endless ways. We go beyond chest, waist, and shoulders, because even if two men have the same basic measurements, no two shapes are identical. Bespoke suits are considered the top-of-the-line in menswear, but they have some drawbacks. They’re expensive (we mean expensive) and they’re a hassle. They take multiple fittings and require you to head into the tailor at least three times before your suit is complete. They work from scratch, not from a pattern, for a better fit, but if you get your suit designed with a menswear provider that uses many measurements, you’ll get just as great a fit at a much friendlier price-point and with a lot less hassle. In addition, having a suit tailored to your body and shape will do more than fit great – it will give you a unique wearing experience that you won’t find with any suit you grab off the rack. Not only do our suits look fantastic, they feel fantastic. You will find it easier to move in and it won’t feel claustrophobic or hot.

H|M custom suits are made-to-measure: they build off of existing patterns and use your personal measurements to make the required adjustments. Using 25+ measurements (where most M2M suit providers will use 10 to 15), we bring you a perfect fit, that doesn’t break the bank and doesn’t take multiple fittings. Using this many measurements minimizes the likelihood that you’ll have to take your new suit in to a tailor to have adjustments made, so you can take your suit out on the town as soon as it arrives at your door.

Make a Statement.

At the end of the day, investing in a suit is important. A custom suit with fit and design crafted to your exact specifications can make you stand out at any event you wear it to. It will make a statement about your identity and your personal style, and it will fit like a second skin, making you look and feel like the best version of yourself. A suit says a lot about a man. What is your suit saying?
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ABOUT

Cait Lambert

Cait Lambert is a barber and freelance writer. In addition to her work in men’s grooming and lifestyle, she has also written numerous fiction pieces: two screenplays and a YA novel. She lives in San Diego, CA, with her dog, Toni. Visit her at www.barberwithapen.com and follow her on Twitter - @caitwrites

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Lapel Varieties: What They Are and When to Wear Them

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Lapel Varieties: What They Are and When to Wear Them

Source: harttermanly.com

The lapel is one of the most noticeable aspects of a suit. It works to frame your shape and draw the attention of a viewer’s eye to preferred features and attributes. There are multiple different styles of lapels, and they each work for you a bit differently; they are each suited for different occasions and each do different things to work with your shape and features.

Before we get into the different styles, let’s discuss the basics of lapels. Just what exactly is a lapel? A lapel is the matching parts on each side of the jacket, right below the collar, where the fabric folds back towards the shoulders. The average width for a lapel is 3.5 inches, but they can range anywhere from 2 to 5.

Which Width?

Skinny lapels have rapidly risen in popularity in recent years: they are very on trend, but it’s important to know what width is best for your body. Slim lapels work best on slim guys. If you’re frame is more on the broad side, avoid the slim lapel, as the proportions will be off and your body will overwhelm the lapel, making it look like it doesn’t fit properly.

Wider lapels – in the 4 to 5 inch range – typically work best on men with broad frames, but that’s not to say skinny guys should avoid them entirely. If you go slightly wider than average with your lapel as a skinnier guy, you can broaden your frame. Just don’t go too wide and let the lapel swallow your look.

Now that we’ve covered how to find the correct lapel width for your body and situation, let’s talk about the different styles of lapels. The three types of lapels are notched, peak, and shawl. They each best work with different suit styles and on different shapes. Here are the need-to-know basics of the different styles.

Notched Lapels (both jackets)

A Lapel for Every Man

A notched lapel is the most common type of lapel. It is called notched because the two layers of the lapel meeting together form a sideways V-shape, or a ‘notch’. It’s the easiest to produce, and therefore the cheapest, but it’s also the best for most everyday suits. You’ll want to wear a notched lapel on a single-breasted suit. It is the standard lapel found on most suits directly off the rack. It is wonderfully versatile and works for most business attire, weddings, nice dinners, and other semi-formal events. If you only have one suit, make it a notch, as it will work for most events.

When selecting a suit with a notched lapel, you want to look at the size of the notch in comparison to the width of the lapel. They should be in even proportions: if you have a slim lapel, you want a smaller notch. If the lapel is bit wider, look for a larger notch. This helps keep the look balanced, and ensures that the lapel doesn’t overwhelm the jacket.

Peak Lapel

Peak Design

The second style of lapel is the peak lapel. It is called peak because the lower half of the lapel has corners that angle upwards towards the shoulders, forming a “peak” on each side of the jacket. It’s the most expensive style to produce because of all the angles involved, but it’s got an edge to it that will always make you stand out.

The peak lapel is excellent for shorter guys because the upward angle of the peak draws the eye upwards, visually adding more height to your frame. It’s also good for more heavyset gents, for the same reason – drawing the eye up and lengthening the frame. For the width of a peak lapel, you want to avoid going too slim: it can look cluttered and you can lose some of the detail when making a peak too small. Peak lapels are great for more formal events or situations: executive style business meetings or functions, galas, or parties that call for evening-wear.

Shawl Lapel

Shawl: For Men in Black

The shawl lapel foregoes any edges; it rounds out in a continuous curve, no notches or peaks to be found. It is best to opt for a thinner, slimmer lapel if you’re going to be wearing a shawl style jacket – it makes for a sleek look. Shawl lapels aren’t the best choice for heavier guys or those with a round face, as the curve of the lapel can accentuate the curves of the body and face. The shawl lapel is almost always limited to tuxedos and black tie events – it’s used in only the most formal of situations.

As we’ve discussed here, lapels are important. They are one of the most stand-out aspects of a suit and they require quite a bit of consideration when you’re browsing for your look. There are many things to consider, the most major ones being your shape, the lapel width, and the lapel style. Now that we’ve discussed the basics, and some of the more in-depth concepts surrounding lapels, you’re armed with all the info you need to find the perfect lapel, just for you, right here at HARTTER | MANLY.

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Cait Lambert

Cait Lambert is a barber and freelance writer. In addition to her work in men’s grooming and lifestyle, she has also written numerous fiction pieces: two screenplays and a YA novel. She lives in San Diego, CA, with her dog, Toni. Visit her at www.barberwithapen.com and follow her on Twitter - @caitwrites

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The Suit Interlining: Fused, Half-Canvas, and Full-Canvas

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The Suit Interlining: Fused, Half-Canvas, and Full-Canvas

Suits are complex things. There are many aspects that go into constructing a quality suit, from the lapel roll to the cuff break to the interlining. Today we’re going to talk about interlining: the lining that holds your suit together.

What exactly IS interlining?

At its core, interlining is the layer of fabric that goes between the inner and outer layers. It’s what allows the suit to hold shape, kind of like a skeleton, but as with many things in life, there are different levels of quality, and what kind of fit you get all depends on the suit’s construction and the price point you’re willing to work with.

Suits can vary greatly in price. You can find some suits as low as $50, and some go up to far beyond a several thousand. There are many different factors that go into deciding a suit’s price, and one of them is the interlining. There are two main variations on suit interlining: fused, and canvas.

Source: Joebutton.com

Fused: Cheap in price AND quality

A fused interlining is one that is a thin sheet of fabric (usually wool) heated and pressed between the inner and outer layer. It’s cheap and easy to produce, which often leaves suits constructed this way at a lower price point. In fact, roughly 95% of off the rack suits are fused.  But there are several downsides to getting a suit with a fused interlining.

It is directly attached to the inner and outer layer, so it can feel more stiff. It is also less breathable, resulting in more sweat, which results in more dry-cleaning, which can diminish the quality of the suit and the fit, as the interlining eventually breaks down. When it does, the outer layer will bubble up, and the fit will be even less flattering. It will not form to your movements – rather, it will sit on top of your body, and will sag.

Canvassed: High-class, high price

If you’re looking for a better fit, and don’t mind shelling out a bit more cash, consider getting a canvassed suit. Canvassing is a form of interlining where a layer of fabric, usually linen or horse hair, is sewn into the suit. With the interlining only making contact at the points where it is sewn, a canvassed suit is much more breathable. It will move and shift with your body, and the more you wear it, the better it will fit as it begins to mold to your shape.

A canvassed suit is both more expensive to produce, and more time-consuming to construct, so you will most definitely see that reflected in the price. If you are going to a tailor to have a bespoke suit made, be sure to check that they will be creating a canvassed suit for you. There is no point in paying to have a bespoke suit made if it’s going to be constructed with a fused interlining – it entirely defeats the purpose of having a custom fit.

Source: Oliverwicks.com

Half-canvassed: A healthy middle

If you’re interested in a canvassed suit, but can’t quite afford the price, consider a half-canvassed suit. This suit is constructed with a combination of both fused and canvassed interlining. It will use canvas on the chest, lapel, and down to the pocket, with the lower half of the jacket being fused. If you need to, that’s an okay area to skimp on, because the drape isn’t quite as important at the lower half – it’s okay to let it taper down so that it has freer motion. You want the heavier structure to be on the upper half of your jacket, where it must form to your shape to accentuate it. That, after all, is the point of a well-fitted suit.

How can you tell what you’re working with?

If you’ve found a suit you’re interested in and want to know what kind of interlining it has, you can use the ‘pinch test’. Use two fingers of each hand to pinch and separate the inner and outer layer on the chest. If you can feel a third layer in between, then the suit is canvassed. If you can’t feel a third layer, it is because the interlining is completely pressed into the inner and outer layers.

In virtually all situations, a canvassed suit is the way to go if you’re looking for the best fit and drape, and the longest lasting suit. As mentioned above, the more you wear a canvassed suit, the more it will adjust to your body and the fit will actually improve over time. While fused is a more economical option, your best bet is to go at least half-canvassed, if you’re looking for a proper fit. Even though half-canvassed and full-canvassed suits are more expensive, they will last longer and only look better as time goes on. If you can, splurge, but at the very least, go half-canvassed. Your closet, and your body will thank you.

 

About the Brand: HARTTER | MANLY’s entry level suits are half canvas.  Since the brand prefers to only produce the highest quality garments, HARTTER | MANLY only charges customers it’s cost to upgrade to full canvas.  The value results in 90% of HARTTER | MANLY’s customers choosing to pick full canvas jackets.

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Cait Lambert

Cait Lambert is a barber and freelance writer. In addition to her work in men’s grooming and lifestyle, she has also written numerous fiction pieces: two screenplays and a YA novel. She lives in San Diego, CA, with her dog, Toni. Visit her at www.barberwithapen.com and follow her on Twitter - @caitwrites

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