caruso made to measure trunk clothiers6

Last week Caruso held its first made-to-measure suit event in the UK – at Trunk Clothiers. It was an interesting experiment for both sides. Caruso has never done MTM in the UK before, just in Italy and one or two other European countries; and Trunk has never done trunk shows – despite that being the behind its name.


caruso made to measure trunk clothiers5caruso made to measure trunk clothiers2


High-end made to measure has increased markedly in the past year, particularly among Italian brands that don’t do bespoke (Brioni, Pal Zileri, Canali, Cucinelli etc). Harrod’s just had its second quarterly MTM event, including several of these brands (the first featured video profiles, such as the one I presented on suit types). Even Boglioli is introducing MTM later this year.

At Trunk there was a party on the Thursday night, with Caruso providing culatello, parmesan and red sparkling wine – all specialities of the Parma region where they’re based. CEO Umberto Angeloni (pictured top, and interviewed on Permanent Style) presented the offering, describing it as a natural extension of personalisation, rather than a substitute for bespoke.


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There were then two days – the Friday and Saturday – of taking orders. The styles are all pretty soft, light and short, although never with the Neapolitan spalla camicia. For Umberto, that just looks messy. Perhaps too contemporary for me, but there will be plenty of men out there that want something with this level of quality but more fashion-forward styling.

One interesting aspect of MTM is the cloth, buttons and other trimmings available. In some ways, the offering is wider than that of bespoke. The cloths are more original than most of the bunches mills supply to bespoke – because the MTM brand is closer to RTW, where cloths are usually more experimental. The button selection at Caruso was vast – a big ring binder with scores of corozo, horn and metal options. And the lining book at Kiton, for example, puts the paltry little bespoke ranges to shame. A cornucopia of colours.


caruso made to measure trunk clothiers

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Anonymous

Funny, the C inset on the brown jacket (bottom pic) reminded me of a cornucopia when you used that word!

jon di blasi

What do their prices start from? I’ve debated going made to measure for a while. I really like the Caruso suits on the Trunk website but have always held back. Is the jump from RTW
that great or could a great tailor turn a RTW
suit into a (sort of) made to measure suit?

Anonymous

is the upgrade in price due to customisation, or do you get a better fit than if you were to take a rtw to a tailor?

Lawrence Osborne

This is thread is a little old but if readers are still interested in the question of Trunk’s made to measure service I will add that my own experience of it was pretty awful. 1300 sterling for the Chiltern in Loro Piana 130 – almost nothing adhered to my basic measurements, regardless of MTM being 2 rather than 3D. The trousers were Chaplinesque. Shoulders a misfire by two inches and therefore irrecoverable. The neck a gaping wound. Working cuffs dutifully unworking. They agreed the pictures were “shocking” but since I reside in Hong Kong I am essentially stuck with 1300 pound lemon. My alterations guy here simply made a sad face and advised me to let it go. The shoulders are too poorly executed to remedy. Trunk did offer to make those alterations themselves, but it is not really practicable on all levels. The tailor also commented that the suit was almost certainly RTW, regardless of pretentions to the contrary. All in all rather baffling more than anything. They seem to be nice guys and it’s a fine store. I wonder if anyone else has had such an experience?

JW

‘One interesting aspect of MTM is the cloth, buttons and other trimmings available. In some ways, the offering is wider than that of bespoke.’

I found this interesting, Simon. So with bespoke, you gain a far superior fit than possible with MTM, but you are losing out on other things it seems as well. It appears that bespoke is not the true dream like I used to think it was!

Jason wise

Hi Simon,

Great blog! Just a quick question, have you heard of Harris and Zei tailors in London?

Jason

Luke

Hi Simom
I am looking to get my first Suit made up after years of buying off the peg; unfortunately I cannot afford a fully bespoke suit so a Made to Measure service is my next best option.

I am looking for a suit that’s going to last. I would like it to be simple, but elegant in design like the suits that Bill Nighy fashions.

My budget is of £1700 preferable including a spare extra pair of trousers to increase the suits lifespan. Can you please suggest any recommended tailors that you think meet my specifications?
Many thanks and great work with the blog.
Luke

Paul

Hi Simon,

I have nearly got my first bespoke suit made from Dave Wax Tailors in Hammersmith. It was £1700 for a bespoke two piece. Material was beautiful. Now I would like to get a waistcoat with it, but that costs an additional £500 (had to order now as the material needs to be from the same cut I guess?). Anyway, am I getting ripped off? How can I tell that I’ve gotten value for money. Suit should be ready in a few more weeks after second fitting.

John

Hi Simon, I don’t think you’ve reviewed a Caruso MTM. I was wondering if you knew how it compared to P.Johnson in terms of the construction and hand work?

Mike

Hi Simon,

Here in Holland Caruso is sold in quite a few high-end shops (Pauw for example).

Can you do a review on Caruso MTM? I really would like to know your thoughts.

Mike

Hi Somin,

Thanks for your answer. Your answer definitely makes sense. However, I do know that people from Caruso also visit stores and take measurements themselves.

What would you consider high level Italian (especially Neapolitan) MTM? Maybe Eduardo Sartoria Napoli? I like Orazio Luciano, but unfortunately it is too expensive for me…

Lucas Nicholson

True, that would be a service to cover if they visit quite a few places.

For high-level MTM, look at ones I’ve covered like Jean-Manuel Moreau, Saman Amel, Anglo-Italian. And yes Eduardo de Simone, if that’s who you mean.

Zi

Hi Simon, on that note I was wondering if you thought it was too forward to ask someone like Jean-Manuel Moreau or Anglo-Italian who produces their MTM for them before purchasing? I understand a lot comes down to communication between them and the maker, but knowing the maker could surely give one some sense of the expected quality in terms of outcome? Thanks.