Brisbane’s top tailors dish on the new tailored edge in men’s fashion that’s raising the sartorial stakes and doing Barney Stinson proud
An increasing range of custom tailoring options in the Brisbane menswear market is swiftly transforming the city’s men into pillars of sartorial style.
To not only find a shirt, suit or pair of jeans that fits like a glove but caters each detail to their exacting whim is an intoxicating prospect for the men who have embraced the made to measure options available locally.
“The market has always been there but it’s about making guys aware that this is a possibility,” says Lachlan Sinclair, store manager at Fortitude Valley’s Pistols at Dawn, off-shoot of city menswear boutique The Cloak Room.
“Men have always struggled to buy things that fit really well off the rack but they’re increasingly picky with what they wear,” says Sinclair. “Such small details can be the be-all-and-end-all for guys, so having the capability to tailor details and fit is a great thing.”
For a Pistols at Dawn customer, the process from initial appointment to custom garment is anywhere from two to four weeks. A customer can select every element from fabric to colour, design, cut, length, fit, trim and detail and for around $200 for a shirt, $375 for a pair of jeans and $995 for a jacket.
Blazing an equally stylish trail around town are Wil Valor’s Mark Ferguson and business partner Vish Prasad. Now in its eighth year, men’s custom tailoring outfit Wil Valor takes a fashion focus to traditional suiting and draws on the experience of their Saville Row-trained tailor to craft what they tout as the perfect fitting suit, from a range of 3000 fabrics from Italy and England (including Zegna fabrics), many sourced from Australian wools, as well as Italian linen and German velvet.
“The corporate market is understanding there are good options in Brisbane and they don’t have to travel [to get an affordable, well-tailored suit],” says Ferguson. “For weddings too, men are investing more in themselves and in something they’re able to wear afterwards as well.”
A Wil Valor suit takes around four weeks to arrive following a Brisbane fitting, manufacture by their Saville Row-educated tailor in Hong Kong and refitting and adjustment back in Brisbane.
With tartan and velvets for his 2013 winter collection, Wil Valor’s spring collection will be launched at the Mercedes-Benz Fashion Festival.
“Spring/summer is very different to what we’ve done in the past. It’s very dandy, almost whimsical and really pushing the boundaries of what’s reasonable menswear in relation to colour.
“People come to us for stand-out outfits so if someone wants to stand out from the crowd we can do that easily.”