Off the Rack VS. Custom Clothing

by Tannar Urban

Shopping for clothes is something most people do not even like to think about. People dread things such as: finding the right store, getting the proper fit, finding quality garments that last or even just finding the time to go shopping. Fortunately for the consumer, there is more than one way to shop. The clothing you desire can be purchased multiple ways: conveniently off the rack at a retail store, or with the help of a custom clothier.

Retail stores carry ready-made garments to fit the masses. The clothes are made in standard sizing such as: 40 regular or 38 long. The biggest benefit to buying in this common way is that the turnaround time is quick. You could be in and out of any store in just a few minutes with a new shirt, trouser, or jacket. However, it often leaves the consumer with an added step to the buying experience. That step is having to take your new garments to a tailor to get alterations. Since many don’t even like to shop; the process of going to fight mall traffic on the weekend and going into a crowded store only to find they have a limited selection in your size is unappealing at best. For the select group of people that take special care in finding what they are looking for, off the rack shopping may not be for them.

Another way of shopping for clothing is through a custom clothier. When you purchase custom clothing, you are first and foremost dealing with a trained professional. Your clothier is an expert in all things clothing. They are trained to measure you properly, provide you with a proper fit, help you pick out the best fabrics for your lifestyle, and mix and match patterns and colors. Custom clothing is specially made for an individual based upon a pattern that is created for you based on a series of measurements.

The biggest benefit that clients see from custom clothing is the convenience. Your clothier will come to your home or office at a time that is best for you. In a first time meeting, it typically takes just 40 minutes to get measurements, pick your fabrics, and style your garments to your liking. However, the turnaround time is longer than your traditional off the rack buying process. It takes 6-8 weeks for your clothes to be ordered, crafted, and delivered to your door. When you receive your clothes, your clothier will conduct a proper fitting to make sure you are 100% satisfied with the quality, and fit of the garments. If there are any alterations, they are taken care of, and your pattern is adjusted for future purchases. Once your pattern has been established, ordering custom can be as simple as making a phone call or writing an email.

Custom clothing is not perfect; but it is higher quality, one of a kind garment, made just for you. It gives you the proper fit and personalized customer service along with it. There is a much larger selection when shopping this way. Companies like the Tom James Company, offer different tiers of clothing options that compete with retail store prices. You are able to get any type of fabric, pattern or color fitted just to your liking. Everyone has different preferences in clothing and shopping, and custom allows the process to be individualized to the consumer.

There are benefits to buying off the rack and buying custom clothing. To make the best decision on what is right for you, think about these questions: Do you enjoy shopping? Do you have time to go to the store? Does everything fit you properly off the rack? Do you find everything you are looking for in the store? Does your clothing say what you want it to say about you? If you answered yes to those questions, sticking with buying off the rack may be your best decision. However, if you answered no; it may be time to contact your local clothier, and experience the luxury of custom clothing.

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