Hangers from The Hanger Project (www.hangerproject.com) are nice. Very nice. They are works of art in design and craftsmanship in construction. If I could, all my clothes would hang on these hangers.
But that doesn’t mean I’d spend any money on them.
Kirby Allison, the founder of The Hanger Project, offered to send me a couple to try them out and, if I liked them, review them here. I had seen the project mentioned and was interested to know what could actually be added to the normal suit hanger.
Well, the most important thing is size. The suit hangers come in three shoulder sizes: 17, 18.5 and 20 inches. So by picking one that is closest to your own shoulders, you will ensure that your perfectly tailored jacket has the perfect support.
This is particularly important for larger men, as hangers are normally too narrow for them. The 20-inch size offered here is bigger than anything else on the market and makes sure the padding of a jacket doesn’t sag over the end of the hanger, slowly destroying its construction.
There are other benefits – the sculpting of the line of the hanger to follow the shoulders, the 2.5-inch shoulder flares and the felted trouser bar. But as long as you already hang your trousers from something with a little friction, and never hang a nice jacket on a wire hanger, these benefits are fairly marginal.
For it is true that a wire hanger can lead to collapsed shoulders, which is a real pity. But no man that cares about his clothes would do this. All my jackets currently sit on wide plastic or wooden hangers. They’re not perfectly sized, but they’re not wire either and the shoulders are in no danger of collapsing.
I’ve gathered those hangers by asking for them when I buy a nice suit, or raiding them from new flats I move into. So it’s debateable whether I actually need hangers from The Hanger Project, even if I wanted them.
I am also sceptical that the project’s hangers are have “the widest available” shoulder flares. I have one hanger from Etro that has such wide flares it doesn’t fit any other suit.
And the justification for the premium shirt and trouser hangers is less than that for a jacket. Shirt hangers come in two sizes, again useful for larger men (of which I am not one), and trouser hangers are felted rather than clamping the trouser in place (something I would also avoid anyway).
I reiterate – these are beautiful hangers. They make my closet look better, my clothes hang better and both smell better (solid maple wood). But I’m not sure I will ever pay $25 for one.