Suits look pretty much the same to most people. Obviously there’s the occasional clean white suit or a bright red suit jacket that stands out – but most of the time, suits are often black or navy, single breasted with notch lapels. However, if you take a closer look, all tailor made suits are different.
So if you’re in the market for a tailor made suit or just curious about your options in general, it’s important to know that every suit is customizable. Before we get to that though, it’s vital to note that the most important aspect in a suit is the fit. It really doesn’t matter if it’s an inexpensive off-the-rack suit or a elegant bespoke suit, single breasted two button or double breasted six button, if it doesn’t fit then what’s the point?
After getting that right, it’s time to consider the details that define your suit, the details that make the suit truly yours. There are countless options to customizing your suit, here are the ones that we believe make for an unforgettable bespoke suit.
The functioning buttons on a suit jacket sleeve are known as surgeon’s cuffs. Most people don’t know this, but there’s an interesting origin to the name. Back in the 19th century, medical personnel in the military were required to wear suits. When they were performing surgeries in the midst of war, they would end up staining their jackets with blood. Eventually, tailors were asked to make suits with functional buttons on the cuffs of the sleeve – hence the name surgeon’s cuff. This allowed doctors at war to stay suited up while attending to the injured.
Nowadays, the surgeons cuff signifies a quality, handcrafted suit. The best way to show off the surgeon cuff is to leave the first button unbuttoned so it shows that there is in fact a working buttonhole. Not many people notice this customization in a suit, however people who do, you know are suit enthusiasts. It’s not only functional but makes a firm fashion statement.
If you want your suit to not only look elegant but well made, you have to go with pick stitching. Pick stitching refers to the small and unobtrusive stitching that can be seen along the lapel, around the pocket flaps and sometimes in the breast pocket detail. It showcases the craft and artistry of the tailors. This style of stitching compliments the suit and eludes the quality and time put in to your suit.
Buttonholes on lapels
The buttonhole (or boutonniere) is the little line of stitching on the left jacket lapel. Most men are confused about this little hole. They don’t know what to put it in and how to make it look classy. To make use of the buttonhole, the modern 21st century gentlemen should wear tiny flowers or pins to add character to their suit. The only rule to wearing a flower in the buttonhole is to never pin the flower to the lapel to avoid a tacky, amateur look. Use the buttonhole when you feel it’s appropriate whether it’s to a business meeting or a black tie event. It’s ultimately up to you. Also, it’s recommended to pair the buttonhole with a pocket square to complete the look.
The James Bond pocket
In a number of his suits, James Bond (from Pierce Brosnan to Daniel Craig) sports the iconic ticket pocket. The ticket pocket is the small flapped pocket placed above the right main hip pocket on a men’s jacket. It usually follows the style of the pocket below it. This pocket also makes functional sense – It’s the ideal place to keep business cards, receipts and change!
The horn buttons
Horn buttons typically come from ox or buffalo horns, adding a striking element of nature to any outfit. These buttons are synonymous with high quality bespoke suits. When you buy a ready-made suit the buttons are standardized and polish. The suit then feels basic and normal – there’s nothing special. However, as no two-horn buttons are ever the same, they truly are one of a kind and stand the test of time.
One of the most underestimated parts of a suit is the lining, the inside of a jacket. It’s important to note that you can always play with the linings a bit. Choose something colorful with patterns or just a classic solid color. You can also play with the piping, which is the small trimming in a color to complement or contrast the suit fabric and lining. The options are limitless!
The options are endless. Some gentlemen love this; the idea of picking and choosing stitching options and buttons is an exciting change. However, for others, it can become quite overwhelming. Just remember, at the end of the day it’s all about you. Have your name or initials stitched inside the jacket for that extra personal touch. You’re in control over what your suit will look like and can make it as unique as you want it.