What is a suit, and what if anything makes it truly, "Bespoke"? That is what we aim to find out through our Bespoke Journey. Let's start with the first question most people have.
What is the difference between a suit and a tux?
First time? You may be looking at that dress code to your first formal event or perhaps a wedding, maybe you just landed an opportunity to bump shoulders with a few executives. It stands to reason that this would be the first question on your mind.
The second you may wonder is, "What on earth does that dress code mean?" This would be a great time to reference our Bespoke Glossary. This will help you determine which piece is appropriate for the occasion, especially if this is not part of your daily wardrobe decisions. Still want guidance?
To quickly define a suit, the defining factor is the fabric. No matter what you a choose, a suit will match fabrics exactly top and bottom. Otherwise, we're breaking into other categories of wear, which we will discuss later in our journey.
Simple enough, so what is a Tuxedo? The simplest answer is that all Tuxedos are suits, but not all suits are tuxedos. Historically, the tuxedo was an act of defiance to the social norms at the time of Frock Coats and Tails. You can learn more about the History of Tuxedos in our "History of Suiting Loosely Based on Historical Events".
Tuxedos have a specific look. Typically shawl lapels, in satin material, matching shiny satin trim on the pants, and satin buttons are the immediate stand-outs. It's these satin accents that lend a party vibe to the ensemble. Typically worn with white dress shirts and a bow tie in either black or white. You can let your personality shine through a little, with cufflinks and maybe a cumberbund or waistcoat (Vest) or pocket squares and other luxurious accessories like a cane or scarf, maybe even a top hat.
While some style differences exist, think of a tuxedo as a high society formal event uniform, not a chance to be fashion-forward and uniquely dressed or added pieces for your personality to shine through. They're not suitable for business and not appropriate for a personal look unless avant-garde is your thing. With that being said, you may want to explore "Non-Traditional Tuxedos for the Avant-Garde Dresser".
Many a custom tailors will often loosely use the term bespoke when referring to a custom garment. There are essentially two ways to craft a garment. Both have their benefits but only one is truly bespoke. Custom doesn't always indicate a bespoke garment.
What exactly is a Custom Suit vs. a Bespoke Suit?The crafting process begins with the design. Both styles of construction include unique measurements from the client in which a pattern is drafted. Each garment is created specifically to these body measurements taken by an expert tailor. The custom suit or custom garment arrives finished and any fit changes needed will be altered by a tailor.
What makes a suit Bespoke?The word bespoke is derived from the verb bespeak, meaning to "speak for something". The particular meaning of the verb form is first cited from 1583 and given in the Oxford English Dictionary: "to speak for, to arrange for, engage beforehand: to 'order' (goods)”.
Notably this term originated on Savile Row in London, And as such the phrase crept into the haberdasher's lexicon. The gentleman would arrange, or speak for, his desired cloth, ensuring that it would not be sold to somebody else.Over the years, bespoke has become synonymous with the top end of men's tailoring and finely crafted goods. Rather than being a reference to the cloth, bespoke now denotes the way in which the suit or accoutrements are created.
A Kalypso Couture suit is constructed completely by hand, from the hand drawn patterns to hand sewn buttons, every inch of your garment is methodically pieced together.
Sourcing our fabrics from the finest mills around the world ensures we continually have the widest selection of premium fabrics. All Kalypso Couture fabric passes a meticulous drape and feel test before being used.
Kalypso Couture offers the finest and best fit in custom clothing in Northeast Florida. Unique designs and fabrics offering the latest styles from around the world. Through an easy and comfortable consultation with our consultants, Kalypso Couture will design the perfect fit and look for any occasion.
Featured in Voyage Magazine, our Founder and Principal Designer, Michael Armanno discusses "The Secret Life of a Clothier" in the latest Daily Inspiration series.
Said to be one of the most comprehensive editorials to date, Armanno explores his journey of ten years in the world of bespoke fashion, missteps along the way, and his vision for an Artisan Creative Space building momentum in Jacksonville, Florida.