Assisi bespoke tailors, Korea: Fitting a tweed DB

Wednesday, May 3rd 2023
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Assisi is a young tailoring house based in the Huam-dong area of Seoul. It was only established three years ago, but the tailor that leads it, Kim Min Soo, has been cutting for 15 years. 

Like most Korean tailors I’ve seen, the team are more style-conscious than most of the bespoke world, and that was the first thing that attracted me. The imagery I’d seen was of elegant, drapey tailoring - tasteful yet modern. 

I’d also heard, however, that the execution was good, and so when they I had the chance to meet them in Florence this past January, I took up the opportunity to have something made. 

Although they don’t currently travel to Europe or the US, they do cover a decent part of the PS readership by travelling to Australia, Singapore and Thailand. And they plan to travel to London, New York and Taipei in the future. 

In Singapore and Bangkok, Assisi are hosted by The Decorum, which has shops in both cities. It was they that helped arrange the fittings, and they were hyper organised. 

I picked out the material in advance - an dark-grey herringbone tweed - and they brought it to Florence. We met on the Tuesday afternoon for measurements and consultation, and they made the jacket up for a first fitting on Thursday. 

They had hoped to complete the jacket after one fitting, and that first fitting (below) was certainly good. As in, the balance was perfect left to right and back to front, both sides even (that sounds easy, but of course no one is symmetrical, as you see as soon as you put on a ready-made suit) and a great shape through the back into the nape of my neck.

In the end they decided they needed a second fitting, however, and when they heard I was going to be in Japan, flew there to meet me. (Otherwise we would have met again in Florence this June.)

In Tokyo, again we needed one more fitting than initially thought. We met at my hotel - The Imperial - on the Tuesday, but ended up doing a final tweak at Sarto Ginza on Thursday (Sarto being an alterations house that they used for the intervening work). 

I have to say, it was by turns funny and intimidating having so many people watching. At least in Florence everyone was spread out around their generous apartment, but in Tokyo we were squeezed together, all eager to see how the jacket looked. 

At any one time there were two people from Decorum, three from Assisi, plus me and the photographer Alex. And Moto when we were at Sarto. 

People always ask whether I get special treatment, and I’m normally fairly confident that I don't. Not that some might not try especially hard, given the outcome will be so public, but rather that I talk to enough other customers that I know if the product is inconsistent elsewhere. 

Plus, if you’re not a good tailor it’s hard to pretend. The results are there for all to see, and tailoring is not that forgiving. You can look good in an ill-fitting shoe, but not a suit. 

Still, when there are five different people looking at the way your jacket hangs it can be hard to hold to that belief. 

I confess the attention did make it hard for me to concentrate on the fit and style. 

In Florence, I initially tried on a jacket belonging to one of the tailors, to get a sense of the cut. They like a bigger fit, with wide shoulders and generous lapels. I felt the lapels were a little much, so we sketched on some new ones with chalk, lowering the gorge and narrowing the width. 

In Tokyo I reduced the shoulder width. Again they like a slightly dropped shoulder, but it was erring on the side of too much. You can see the original width on the left shoulder in the image below. 

It took me a few minutes of walking around and looking at the jacket before I felt confident of the change. It’s always good practice to give the customer a little time and space to do this, as no one (even me) feels confident of all their opinions right away. But sometimes tailors need reminding of this.

Other changes were minor, but also ran to reducing or shaping. The back needed more suppression for example, and was still very comfortable when it had it. 

Assisi describe their style as their own but influenced by southern Italian, with finishing and details that are more Milanese. 

On my experience so far that seems fair, but I would add that their style is strong and makes the world of difference. It’s so refreshing to be surrounded by a team of tailors where you would happily dress like each one of them.

The Milanese influence comes from master tailor Kim Min Soo, who is largely self-trained but went to Milan at one point to learn under Paulo Rentini. He trained the rest of the team, which comprises six tailors and one director. 

I’ll review the completed jacket in a couple of weeks. I might also look to something broader on Korean tailoring, as this experience certainly justifies it - improving considerably on my previous experience with B&Tailor’s then agent in Europe.

Assisi bespoke suits start at $2,950 and jackets $2,300. Trunk shows are conducted through The Decorum in Singapore and Bangkok, and through The Finery Company in Sydney. 

The cloth is Harris Tweed C001L, which I selected based on seeing this picture of a made-up jacket. Whenever I can these days, I commission tailoring when I’ve seen something made up. It reduces the chances of mistakes so much. 

Review of the finished jacket coming in a couple of weeks.

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Looking at the dropping shoulders I would say 100% Neapolitan rather than Milanese.


Ah, I thought most Neapolitans had more close fitting shoulders (at least the younger tailors) and that the extended/dropped shoulder was more Florentine?

Also, the jacket you used for fabric inspiration seems to be MTO. Do you know the price for that?



Which Neapolitans would you say do a wider shoulder?

Also, any info on the pricing of the MTO-option?


Mark Humphry

Was it your choice to go for two buttonholes or theirs?

Lindsay McKee

Fantastic post Simon! Health to enjoy!
Always great to see a new bespoke tailor, no matter where he is located!
You gave the code no. of the Harris Tweed.
Who is the manufacturer or merchant of this beautiful Herringbone Tweed ?


Yes, Kenneth Mackenzie is the oldest Harris Tweed mill still in operation. It looks to be family owned. For me this is a big plus. I try to buy from small family owned shops when there is a choice.
Their Harris Tweed is 34 Pound Sterling per meter. This is a very good price I think.


Their customer support is good. When I asked what weight their tweed was they sent me a lot of additional info.


Simon, could you please remove my emailaddress from these two comments below? Thank you.


Wow. Love it. Cant wait for them to visit London.


Enjoyed reading that and particularly liked the photos….. they highlight the slickness of the Koreans very well.
The last photo with the jacket and jeans is how I’d wear it .
I always find a herringbone in grey looks ages the wearer . Not sure why that is .
I note the jacket has to button holes on both lapels .

Good to see some classic tailoring being revised after quite afew articles on vintage.

Looking forward to the finished product.


Simon, for a suit like this, how do you decide between tweed and flannel when picking fabric? I feel like they occupy the same role – heavier, and more casual than worsted wool. Also, how do tweed trousers hold up compared to flannel? Thanks.


Hah, that’s what I get for reading this too early in the morning. I could have sworn you said that it was a suit. I agree, in my mind I think of flannel for suiting (but not odd jackets), and tweed for jackets (but not suits), but I have seen tweed suits from time to time.


I think it looks great, though I always find odd DB jackets a little hard to wear, unless they are worn open, this may be a factor of age though.

It would be great to get a perspective on more classic Milanese tailoring, my favourite jacket ever is an old DB 4×2 Gold buttoned blazer I inherited from Brioni (probably made in the 80s).

It features sharp and long lapels as well as strong shoulders but is still incredibly light in the chest and just as comfortable as any Neapolitan tailoring I have tried.

I think this style looks very modern but retains some formality that I think many readers would appreciate, especially in suits.


Hi Simon,

That cotton DB is actually one of the best pieces I have seen on this blog!
I remember it distinctly from your piece on what you bring to travel.

Are you aware of any MTM/cheaper bespoke options that do this kind of style?

Diving straight into Caraceni is a bit out of reach for the current budget in my twenties..


The jacket looks lovely! I didn’t know Assisi, just checked their instagram and it really looks great. I love the style, but those are some wide shoulders (I like them! But they do stand out quite a bit)! Korean tailors have great style, as you said, Simon. I think they are particularly good at combining very distinctive and heavily vintage inspired elements and making them stylish and modern. I think they are great at walking that line without looking they are “period dressing”. For example Chad, from B&Tailor, often uses ascots in a very modern way, and the Assise guys have great style as well.
One thing I noticed is that Korean tailor tend to cut DB lapels straight or with little belly, and with lower, more horizontal gorges. I don’t own anything in that style, but I’ve been enjoying quite a lot lately, and for some reason I think it makes DB a bit more casual. What do you think about this kind of lapel, Simon? It may be an impression, but you seem to be getting some jackets made in this style lately.
Also, do you like the slightly open peak lapels? Like this:
Thank you, and sorry for the long comment.


I wonder if a travel guide to Bangkok is possible some time in the future? There’s Jim Thompson, The Decorum, the list is…well, there’s two interesting shops anyway. Plus, there must be some good independent tailors amongst the huge number available.

Arthur K

The Refinement just opened last year in Central Embassy, a menswear store similar to Decorum with great product. Spotted some of the Decorum staff there. Decorum just opened a second store in Bangkok in Gaysorn. The Somchai on Thonglor has Liverano among other things.
Thai tailors tend to make suits short and tight from my experience, even the good ones, since that seems to be what their clientele wants.

Johnny Foreigner

Any reason why they called it Assisi?


Looks great. I also love the fit and look of the suits the other guys are wearing.

Dan James

Look forward to the final product and the review. Beautiful grey herringbone tweed-another reason to have a jacket made up in something similar.


nice article thank you Simon.
I’m intrigued they travel to Australia and would love to know where they visit. Do you know?
Regardless, I will contact them and report back for other Australian readers that may be interested

Tim J

Hi Tim,
Joe certainly brought the boys to Melbourne in 2022. Not sure he currently has plans for a repeat trunk show. There’s nothing mentioned on TFCs website.
While based in Sydney, Joe travels to Melbourne regularly. Not sure he’s visiting too many other cities at the moment.


curious how versatile you think it will end up! my dark brown chunky corduroy double breasted jacket, I absolutely love, but it’s really hard to wear with jeans or chinos, while single breasted grey herringbone tweed feels at home with pretty much anything!


I’ve never been a fan of black jeans, but thanks for suggestion! one wash dark blue Lewis 501 also doesn’t feel right. I have a white a bit slimmer fit chinos, and it’s the only casual trousers I’ve found where it feels almost home, so I suspect white jeans would be great. I’m just dissapointed that beige chinos just don’t feel right! and I do have a pale beige pair and some more yellow pairs.

interesting thing is, I’ve found it easier to wear jackets casually with more mainstream chinos than classic fit chinos, like lower waist, thinner cloth, smarter (?) make.

Hank Poole

I rarely if ever comment on anything, but seeing this jacket kinda forces my hand, in a good way. I’m no expert, but it seems to me that the fit is absolutely phenomenal, even by bespoke standards. It reminds me of good ole Hardy: “Good design and making of clothes must always ‘honour’ cloth; must disturb cloth as little as possible. Undisturbed cloth makes the wearer appear at ease and is pleasing to the eye of the viewer. Above all, a suit should have its cloth as smooth as possible. Its greatest enemy is the crease. When standing up and walking, the cloth of a gentleman’s suit must be unmolested. But it certainly must not be shapeless; hence the skilled shaping on the side seams preparing the way for the waist button.”.
I must admit that I’d get matching trousers, but hey, that’s just me!
As an aside, that single sleeve button on the brown jacket is such a fitting detail.


A great read, Simon. How does this Harris Tweed fabric compare to your Holland & Sherry Tweed from the Anthology? I know this one is just a jacket whereas the latter was a suit, but do you find them close in color? And will you wear the two jackets with similar odd trousers pairings? Can you wear charcoal flannels with either or no? Charbrown flannels, beige trousers, and denim all seem to work. I’ve also had my eye on Fox TD8 (17/18oz) for awhile but haven’t pulled the trigger yet.


As you say Simon, the guys look fantastically dressed. I think the final result will be terrific.

A woman who loves to read about men's style

I had no idea there were bespoke tailors at this level in Korea!. Thanks for bringing it to our attention.
I *love* the Harris Tweed on you. The color, texture, and weight flatter your tall, slim frame. All your double-breasted jackets look good on you for the same reason. I’d say most men do not look their best in this style.
Those Assisi guys and gal look dashing, too. I look forward to more on this house and their work.


I agree, this was a great feature and it’s nice to see tailors approaching things differently. Appreciate Simon pointing out that they have their own style.

Ian F

I assume that in the fourth picture your shoulder slope is being measured using an inclinometer app on the gentleman’s phone. Obviously any tool is only as good as the person using it but did you find the shoulder fit any better at the first fitting than other, more traditional methods of arriving at it?


The blue DB suits they themselves are shown wearing certainly display a pleasing swagger. It will be great to see your final result — the photos here of you are mirror images?

Rune Teigland

Something between an overcoat and a jacket. Or perhaps it is a coarse fabric that makes it appear like that for me.?


Some photos the DB closes left over right and yours is right over left? Do they do both directions? What is traditional?


Looks great! The scene in the shop has a bit of the feel of Raphael‘s The School of Athens. But it does give the clear impression that this group has a lot of passion for what they do.

Brook Llewellyn Shepard

I think you probably do get special treatment, but honestly…. not by much. And I think maybe the special treatment you do get is a tad overbearing. I am a nobody who has had some things made on Savile Row, and I cannot imagine having been treated better. Said another way, they would not be able to charge what they charge, if they were in any way negative at all for two seconds.

Aaron lavack

It looks a little stiff in some photos. I guess this will change as it wears in? Looking forward to seeing it a little more mounded in the review 🙂


It looks like it will end up being a beautiful jacket. One thing I really appreciate from what I have seen of Korean and Japanese tailors is that they seem to have style, precision and quality in equal measure.

I particularly like the straighter cut of the lapels and the almost horizontal angle of the gorge. It makes the lapels look sharp and elegant but also relaxed. It’s very reminiscent of some of the double breasted jackets from the 1930s but executed in a modern looking way.


Good afternoon…it will look when you wear it the fall….peace

Jim B.

Can you tell me the fabric on the tan, large-format herringbone single-breasted you are wearing in one of the photos? Thanks.


Hello Simon

Would you say Assisi`s shoulder width is larger or smaller than Benson & Clegg shoulder? I like the large upper shoulder aesthetic that was on the Green Flannel suit you had made by Benson & Clegg.



Hi simon, does it matter what shirt you wear to fitting of a mtm/bespoke suit?
I notice my mtm anthology jacket has a line below the collar at the back of the jacket when I’m wearing a t shirt but this issue appears to be mitigated when wearing a collared shirt. Has this ever happened to you?


Hello Simon, the style of the blazer is great, and recently I have been watching South Korean dramas and generally I find the style of suits worn by the lead characters to be to my taste. If one wanted to replicate a similar style in London, which tailor(s) would you recommend? Many thanks.


Thank you, much appreciated.


Hi Simon. I’ve always been intrigued by this classic white black herringbone tweed jacket, which along with the navy blazer is an icon of Ivy style. However, there are a number of things that hold me back from making my own jacket. The first is that there seems to be little to go with it other than the charcoal grey colour trouser when it comes to matching. I love mono grey look, but I think the options are too narrow when compared to navy. The second is that the weight of the Harris tweed, 16oz, is something of an ambiguity. It’s too cold for a winter jacket, too heavy to wear an extra coat on top, also still hot for autumn. You made a similar garment with Sherry Tweed I remember. Should I go for Shetland Tweed too? What do you think about other points I mentioned? Thank you very much.