Siz­ing Up Men

Hindustan Times ST (Mumbai) - Brunch - - FASHION FILES - By Satarupa Paul

The dis­cern­ing Indian guy must have the right out­fit as well as the best fit. Here are five cus­tomised so­lu­tions to try out to­day

MEN AR E BECO MIN G more con­scious of what they wear, how a gar­ment fits them, and how the right cloth­ing can add to their per­son­al­ity. T hey’re mak­ing their way to de­signer bou­tiques and big brands to shop.

But do they al­ways come out sat­is­fied? T he answer is largely: no. Es­pe­cially when it comes to the fit. Most ready-to-wear cloth­ing avail­able lo­cally, even from well-re­garded, ex­pen­sive brands, is not made for the Indian body type. You are more likely to find

U S or U K sizes than items that fit In­di­ans. Most stores pro­vide ba­sic al­ter­ations to their of­fer­ings, which doesn’t help much if you’re on the wrong side of ‘Medium’. And if you’re look­ing for jeans that doesn’t droop down the back or a shirt that doesn’t stretch across the front, shop­ping even in a swanky lux­ury mall can be hard.

T his is pos­si­bly the big­gest loop­hole in the menswear seg­ment in In­dia to­day, one that lux­ury brands, such as Zegna, Ar­mani, Canali and Cor­neliani are ex­ploit­ing to of­fer made-tomea­sure ser­vices. But their prices are un­rea­son­ably high.

In the last few years, lo­cal brands and de­sign­ers have be­gun of­fer­ing be­spoke cloth­ing, in which a gar­ment is made from scratch, based on your mea­sure­ments and to the fit you de­sire. Some of these brands are go­ing a step fur­ther and sys­tem­a­tis­ing the tra­di­tional but dis­or­gan­ised sec­tor of tailor­ing. T heir ma­chin­ery is im­ported, their kari­gars spe­cially trained and their clien­tele not nec­es­sar­ily the rich­est, but def­i­nitely the dis­cern­ing.

So if you’re a man with re­fined sar­to­rial tastes, sift through our pick of some of the finest brands. And happy shop­ping!

BEST FOR JACK­ETS EUDAEMON

A per­son­alised menswear brand that’s only six months old, Eudaemon has tie-ups with the three top fac­to­ries in Italy that man­u­fac­ture gar­ments for Louis V uit­ton and Dior. And their jack­ets are avail­able at a much lower price. How? Be­cause they don’t spend on rents for a lux­ury store or in­ven­tory.

W hen con­tacted, they’ll come to your homes or of­fices with look­books de­signed for you. Se­lect one, get your mea­sure­ments taken, and your or­der will be sent to

Italy. “O urs is a made-to-mea­sure ser­vice, which is a fast track ver­sion of be­spoke,” says Manik Handa, the CEO .

“In be­spoke, you take body mea­sure­ments and then cut a whole pat­tern to make the gar­ment. It’s a longer process and takes two-to-three fit­tings. W e, on the other hand, have a mas­ter gar­ment. W e take a cus­tomer’s mea­sure­ments on that gar­ment. It’s more ac­cu­rate. W hen you take body mea­sure­ments, you don’t know if the cus­tomer would like to wear his jacket tight or loose. W hen we do it on a mas­ter gar­ment, the cus­tomer can tell us ex­actly where he wants the changes made. T hen it needs just one fit­ting. It’s much faster.”

It All Costs: “A pretty rea­son­able price than what a suit at Ar­mani or Zegna or T om Ford will cost,” says Handa.

Avail­able in: Delhi N CR , Mum­bai, K olkata, Su­rat, Ahmedabad and pretty much ev­ery­where that High N et W orth In­di­vid­u­als live.

BEST FOR SHIRTS CAMESSI

W ear your watch on your right arm? T hat means the cuff on your right sleeve needs to be an inch looser than the one on your left. T hat’s the level of pre­ci­sion that U daipur-based brand Camessi brings to your shirts. A fam­ily-run la­bel that was launched in 2010, it now has a cus­tomer base of more than 1,200 men.

Choose from 1,500 va­ri­eties of the finest qual­ity fab­ric from Switzerland and Italy, moth­erof-pearl but­tons and seams that

are sin­gle-nee­dle stitched. Their stripes and checks per­fectly align at the edges, even when the shirt is turned in­side out! That’s a Camessi shirt for you.

“We aim for zero de­fects,” says Rahul Shroff, the di­rec­tor. “The in­dus­try stan­dard for qual­ity con­trol is that three in 100 shirts are checked. We check ev­ery sin­gle one. And that too in more than 87 places on each gar­ment.”

Apart from qual­ity that can ri­val a Zegna, theirs is an old­school be­spoke sales model. A con­sul­tant is sent to your home or of­fice for mea­sure­ments. “But first, we try to un­der­stand your life­style so we know what ex­actly you want the shirt for – whether to wear at night, or un­der a suit, or to work. This is im­por­tant when we cut the pat­tern,” says Shroff.

Once mea­sure­ments are taken, the pos­si­bil­ity of cus­tomi­sa­tion is im­mense. “You can choose the cuff, the col­lar, the but­ton… down to even the but­ton­holes. We also have the op­tion of han­dem­broi­dered mono­gram­ming.” And when it comes to fit­tings, you’re en­cour­aged to have as many as re­quired un­til you are sat­is­fied. It all costs: ₹13,500 to ₹75,000 for a be­spoke shirt.

Avail­able in: Delhi and Bombay, but they do trunk shows in other cities as well.

BEST FOR JEANS KORRA

A Delhi-based denim brand that fo­cuses on sus­tain­abil­ity of re­sources, in­clu­siv­ity of the peo­ple in­volved in the man­u­fac­tur­ing process and the con­cept of cus­tom-fit­ting the prod­uct to your cus­tomers’ pref­er­ences. Korra’s neu­tral pal­ette of den­ims lends it­self to a mul­ti­tude of oc­ca­sions, mak­ing ev­ery­day cloth­ing spe­cial, and com­pletely your own.

“We have dif­fer­ent fit and fab­ric com­bi­na­tions online, so you know how a cer­tain fab­ric will look in a cer­tain fit,” says Shyam Sukhra­mani, the founder. “Once you’ve made that se­lec­tion, place an or­der online or call us home. We’ll bring our fit and sam­ples to your doorsteps for you to try.”

The best thing about Korra: they do in-be­tween odd sizes that aren’t avail­able in stores. “We also do out­lier sizes for folks who’re tall and large or those who’re small and lean,” he says.

It All Costs: Reg­u­lar tweaks and al­ter­ations are in­cluded in the listed price: ₹2,900 to ₹4,900. But if you want a fit that’s not avail­able or if you’d like more room around the thighs or a nar­rower bot­tom, then shell out an ex­tra ₹2,900. Avail­able in: Delhi NCR for their cus­tom-fit ser­vices. But they also ship to 23 coun­tries the world over.

BEST FOR AC­CES­SORIES BO SQUARE

A Mum­bai-based brand that started off by coun­selling peo­ple on how to ex­per­i­ment with colour and pat­tern, Bo Square ven­tured into be­spoke men’s cloth­ing and ac­ces­sories a year ago. Their ac­ces­sories are funky, but pos­sess a charm that goes be­yond fit and size. They’ll even cus­tomise your bow ties and pocket squares to match your shirt!

“One can be dif­fer­ent and out of the box only when there’s room for change,” says Nitin Singh, the founder. Not ev­ery­thing you want and the way you want it is avail­able off the shelf. But it can be achieved by be­spoke.” And so they pro­vide it all – colour blend­ing, dig­i­tal prints and fab­ric blend­ing on lapel pins, cuff­links, bows, ties and more.

It All Costs: Bows and ties are avail­able for ₹2,000, lapels and cuff­links are for ₹2,500 and pocket squares are ₹1,200.

Avail­able: Online.

BEST FOR SHOES ACHILLES’ HEEL

Work, a red-car­pet event, a busi­ness trip abroad or a ca­sual out­ing, Mum­bai-based Achilles’ Heel of­fers shoes that go be­yond clas­sic black ox­fords and brown der­bys. They have a ready-to-wear range of brogues, loafers, slip-ons and more. Plus, cus­tom-craft pairs that are more ac­cu­rate in size, shape, style and form than most lux­u­ri­ous brands could of­fer.

“Ours is an as­pi­ra­tional lux­ury brand that bridges the gap be­tween price and per­cep­tion,” says Ni­rali Ru­parel, founder and CEO. “Un­til re­cently, tai­lor­made was only syn­ony­mous with ab­so­lute lux­ury and the ul­tra­rich. Now, brands like ours are pro­vid­ing the same lux­ury ser­vices and qual­ity at a bet­ter price. Why do you think lux­ury brands have started terming as­pi­ra­tional lux­ury brands as ‘fux­ury’ (faux lux­ury)?”

It All Costs: Cus­tom craft­ing ser­vice starts from ₹15,000 on­wards.

Avail­able: At their stu­dio in Mum­bai or online.

WARDROBE ES­SEN­TIALS(Clock­wise from top) A be­spoke shirt from Camessi is adorned with mother of pearl but­tons; you can get a pair of jeans made from Korra for in-be­tween odd sizes; Achilles’ Heel of­fers cus­tom-crafted shoes at af­ford­able prices; a Eudaemon jacket is made in the best fac­to­ries in Italy and Bo Square ac­ces­sories are re­ally funky

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