They say women love nothing more than a man in a suit. If that’s the case, then why aren’t more men wearing them? And most importantly, wearing them well.
I feel a bit lucky in a way, my job and my career requires me to be well dress and I see no better way of showing off my style and dress sense, than with a suit. My job also offers me the option of a casual/dress down Friday – which I politely decline, as for me, suits represent a man’s only chance to ‘paint the town’ if you will, and show his unique style. I didn’t always wear suits; in fact, I grew into them. I regularly get complimented on my suit style, the accessories I wear with them and my overall look, but I must confess there was a time when my suits were drab, my shirts were too big and without even knowing – I was not looking my best.
I want to break this post up into two pieces – The Suit Jacket & The Suit Trousers.
A few years ago when I purchased my first suit I didn’t know what size jacket I should wear I just knew it should ‘fit’ on me, I didn’t know what materials my jacket should be made up of, I just knew if it looked like a suit jacket – it was suit jacket. My first complete suit was from Primark; it was your standard black suit for £40 with the jacket costing £28. Bargain! In my mind at the time, and I think a lot of young males would agree, if it looks half decent and it has a decent fit to it I’m happy and I would wear it for as long as it will hold.
The trousers. About a year after wearing my Primark trousers I started to pay more attention to it’s material and overall feel; I then began to question, is there a better material around for suit trousers? My trousers were made up of 100% polyester and at the time that was the only material I knew. Little did I know it was the worst type of material you could wear for suit trousers and anyone caught wearing it should not feel good about themselves. The material was thin, it shined more and more every time you ironed it and it became more and more rigid each time you dry cleaned it.
A year later I discovered Burton and a great discovery it was. Burton suits offered more substance, better texture and a bigger range of styles – all without breaking the bank. As soon as I felt the texture of the material I knew immediately I was getting a better quality product, but I was now more interested in the cloth behind the product and here’s where my suiting education really took off. Most Burton suits are have a composition of 75% Polyester and between 18%-25% Viscose and it’s the viscose that gives the suit it’s extra thickness in both the jacket and trousers. Burton gave me a wider spectrum from colours to choose from and made me feel like I actually had a range of suits which were; Black, Grey and Blue. Combined with seasonal discounts they offer on suits and from a starting price of around £79 – Burton suits are a great place to start your suit game and you can certainly feel comfortable in most rooms you walk in with one of these, providing you wear it well.
A few months to a year later I went searching again for an upgrade. I’m sure like a lot of people before me and many more after me, I thought why not stroll into T.M Lewin (without the intention to buy anything!) to see what all the fuss was about without trying anything on. Yes the material felt nice, yes it probably was an upgrade from what I had in my closet but there was no way I was paying the £300 they were asking for so I ventured to the next best thing which was Moss Bros.
Speaking to a tailor there I told him what I was currently wearing which was a blue Burton suit. He immediately looked at me with confusion and slight disgust as if I’d just called him something offensive. I explained my suit was made up of 75% Polyester and 25% viscose and he said - I know I can feel it. Hence his look of disgust. The tailor explained that a poly-blend (A mix of polyester and something else) is the worst type of blend you could have in a suit, oops! He explained that viscose is a thick material and the more of it you have in a suit the more it makes you sweat, he then went on to say viscose suits are synthetic and Synthetic suits are a bit like synthetic…breasts. Lol ok. Basically they aren’t the real thing.
He explained that wool, 100% wool suits are the best suits to wear as they represent the highest quality of material of a suit and that wool keeps you cool in the summer due to its light weight but still keeps you warm in the winter by insulating your body. It was from this day forward that I said to myself by hook or by crook I’ve got to try on a TM Lewin suit and low and behold when I finally got round to it I was not disappointed.
It’s very hard to explain if you haven’t tried one on but wool suits just fit. They just do. Providing you’ve chosen the right cut a wool suit will fit to your body like nothing else you’ve ever tried. You get the feeling of a custom fit that’s tailored to you and the option of shortening or lengthening the jacket sleeve or trousers that other stores don’t give you. TM Lewin’s high quality Merino wool (The best wool you can buy other than Italian) combined with great customer service and tailors who know their Mohair’s from their Cashmere’s makes for a fantastic customer experience for a man who wants to upgrade his wardrobe.
I’ve been going to TM Lewin for my suits for the last two years and I can safely say I will never look back. I cannot account for the customer service of every TM Lewin store as each tailor is an individual and how you’re treated in one store is not necessarily the same way you’ll be treated in another. I’m lucky and grateful that I meet a tailor that has looked after me so well over the last two years that we have become good friends to the point where I can use his employee discount every time I visit. I’ve visited many times since!