January 13, 2008

The Measure of A Man: Custom Tailored Shirts

In India due to the low cost of labour, it is usually more affordable to have custom tailored clothing made by the in house tailor at a brand name store as compared to buying the pre-made goods available there. I planned on revamping my wardrobe with only custom tailored clothing fitting my drool worthy physique, but time constrains allowed me to only commission two dress shirts. Having identified the most prominent tailoring franchises in the country, Raymonds and Reid & Taylor, I had ordered one shirt from each as a test of their capabilities. Based on the quality of the finished product, adherence to instructions, price, service, and variety of fabrics available, Reid & Taylor was declared my favourite.

Within days, a shirt designed to meet my individual needs was stitched together. If the material available at the store was not to my liking I could bring in my own fabric. Then the tailor would be summoned to take my measurements. It is wise to know the amount of material required and all the aspects of the body that need to be measured for a complete form fitting dress shirt to be made. Raymonds custom tailoring resulted in the delivery of a short sleeved shirt when I had assumed a long sleeved one would be created. The total cost of manufacturing the shirt would equal the sum of the fabric cost and the tailor's fee. A receipt would be issued along with a note stating the expected completion date of the shirt.

What to Measure:
  1. Neck - the circumference around the entire neck from the base where neck and shoulders meet and around the Adam's apple
  2. Shoulders - turn around and measure from one shoulder edge to the other shoulder edge tracing the slope of the shoulders
  3. Chest - the circumference around the largest part of the chest
  4. Waist - the circumference around the largest part of the waist
  5. Hip - the circumference around largest part of the hip including the bum at its peak
  6. Shirt - the top of the shirt at the collar seam to the desired level at the bottom, recommended: trouser crotch level
  7. Sleeve - from the shoulder edge to the hand at the desired level, recommended: where thumb and fourth finger join to make a 'V'
  8. Wrist - the circumference around largest part of the wrist around the bony bump
Recommended Tools:
  • Measuring tape
  • Assistant