Best Tailors/Suit Makers in Cape Town

kaim2000

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Jun 8, 2018
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#1
Hi

Please could someone advise as to the best tailors/suit makers in Cape Town? I am looking for a luxury, high quality suit, whereby budget is not an issue. It need not be a tailor with a fantastic website etc, just one who makes truly incredible suits.

Thanks
 
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#4
Take care!! I know nothing of the CapeTown tailoring scene, but had some very unsatisfactory experiences in Pretoria, where it became clear that the 'tailor' was attempting to alter a ready made item rather than start from scratch. In the end he failed completely, and admitted he could not do the job. I did not get my money back, as it was difficult to pressure him as I was leaving the country the next day. He had come well recommended. I believe he has died which rather concludes the matter.

I come from a tailoring family, who lost that livelihood with the advent of the likes of Burtons the Tailor in the 1920s. When I started work in Liverpool in the '60s I visited many bespoke tailors for Purchase Tax purposes. Some of these had nobility as their clients, others were very much more down market. However the actual CMT work (cut, make, trim) was done by a handful of firms in the area, who would typically specialise in trousers, jackets or waistcoats. What this amounted to was that the actual manufacturer for both 'exclusive' and cheap end tailors was very often the same. I spoke to one of the high end guys who claimed that the difference was in the skill of the measurer/fitter, who at the high end would send it back to the CMT people to get it right. The quality of the cloth too affects the price.
There is a Pakistani or Indian company who send their guys out to hotels in cities around the world to measure you up and determine styles etc. They get custom by advertising in news papers etc. They then send the details back to their factory, where the suits are made up and posted to you. (But you then get a bill from the Post Office, with their service charge if all goes as it should.) I only know of one person who went that route and he was satisfied. The element of fitting, trying it on at the interim stage, is missing, so I have my doubts. Generally the trade used to reckon that a tolerance of a quarter of an inch per seam was acceptable, so with a simple jacket it could be around an inch different around the chest or waist from the intended measurement. The process of trying on or fitting dealt with that, and other more subtle details like shoulder slope. That is why with ready made it is often useful to try on different items of the same nominal size.

I once fell for an advert in a flight magazine that offered a truly incredible deal in Bangkok. They relied on you being forced to go off on your flight, so the 24 hour service offered would be delayed with excuses, so you could not have an unsatisfactory fit rectified. And the fits were bad!! Avoid unless you have plenty of time to sort it out. Tell the firm that you are leaving the day after tomorrow to give yourself more time. A son living there had a good experience, but I and my wife did not.

I think the Savile Row solution could be the best, but avoid famous chain names that may have branches there. I once tried to hire a morning suit for a wedding from Moss Bros, and they tried to convince me that what they had in stock fitted me like a glove, when it definitely did not. If you want to do it in one trip, make sure that their actual tailor is on the premises or close by, so they can rush it for you. You will also need to be sure they have the chosen cloth in stock. If you can see a roll of the cloth you fancy it is a good start. You will be paying a lot for the service, so you need to make sure you are getting the service!

Good luck!
 
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#5
I have just noticed that 'Devill' posted a similar query in 2012, in the'off topic' forum which went on for a couple of years. It gives some names/adresses. If you go down the route of buying the cloth separately, avoid cloths without their makers name woven into the selvage. I would think a medium to light weight worsted would be OK for Cape Town, but you have to decide that for yourself.
 
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kaim2000

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#7
Thanks Everyone, as much as the Saville row and Hong Kong options are great, I am looking for something in the interim as I don't have time to do such an exercise at the moment. Please let me know if you have any recommendations/experiences here in Cape Town
 
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#8
Thanks Everyone, as much as the Saville row and Hong Kong options are great, I am looking for something in the interim as I don't have time to do such an exercise at the moment. Please let me know if you have any recommendations/experiences here in Cape Town
You could ask the office of Malusi Gigaba the name of his tailor? He often seems dapper, but I have not seen him close up to judge.
 

NoviceDIYer

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Jul 6, 2013
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#9
Zed menswear in Canal Walk - we had a fantastic experience with them. You walk in, pick your suit, and they bespoke tailor it for you - the whole experience is very good and their staff are fantastic.
 

Messugga

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#10
Zed menswear in Canal Walk - we had a fantastic experience with them. You walk in, pick your suit, and they bespoke tailor it for you - the whole experience is very good and their staff are fantastic.
That's just tailoring. Nothing wrong with it, but bespoke is when you make the suit from scratch using fabrics and styles of your choice.
 

NoviceDIYer

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#11
That's just tailoring. Nothing wrong with it, but bespoke is when you make the suit from scratch using fabrics and styles of your choice.
Okay - just thought I would add it there. Their suits are excellent quality and the tailoring makes it work perfectly per individual.

I feel that there is a risk that something visualized in your head doesn’t quite work after it’s created due to colour or style or fabric chosen, and so starting with a suit already made can help ensure it’s just right.

OP can check their FB page for photos and to see reviews. It’s not cheap but we were happy to pay for the result we got
 
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#14
I"m not sure if yo have found one yet but if budget isn't an issue then i suggest Frank Bespoke. You are looking at starting prices of a two piece of about R8 500 and R12 500 for a three piece suit. They get more expensive as you choose better fabrics but as you said budget isn't a think so just go big! If That's not expensive a enough fly to JHB and go to Row-G where starting prices for a suit are R15 000.
 

Messugga

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#15
I"m not sure if yo have found one yet but if budget isn't an issue then i suggest Frank Bespoke. You are looking at starting prices of a two piece of about R8 500 and R12 500 for a three piece suit. They get more expensive as you choose better fabrics but as you said budget isn't a think so just go big! If That's not expensive a enough fly to JHB and go to Row-G where starting prices for a suit are R15 000.
What do you look at at Row-G for a shirt? Ballpark seems to be around R2500 at other tailors, depending on what you select.
 

_kabal_

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#16
Bumping an old thread in case there are some more people with additional experience/recommendations

I have some suitsupply jackets coming that will likely need some minor alterations. Italian wool, half canvassed, well made items.

I want a tailor/seamstress that will be able to do work to a standard that is equal to or better than the factory finish.

I will travel anywhere in the peninsula
 

zizo911

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#17
Bump... I have a pants that has become a bit tight. I wonder if it can be made larger to fit me now around the waist. Can it be done and a recommendation?
 
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