Butterflies are to flowers as women are to malls. But men and shopping? Like alcohol and bodybuilding…never a good mix. Perhaps it’s a holdover from the hunting-gathering days. The typical guy just wants to get in, go for his “kill,” and get out; while women still love to stop and admire the flowers.
Spending a day at the shops? No thanks, but I still want that tailored, refined look. What to do? The Interwebs have the Answers.
For you, the fellow who drags his feet on his way to shop for a new suit, a godsend alternative to the tedious task of clothes shopping lies online. Online clothes shopping for men in particular has been a growing phenomenon likely to be on an upward trend for the next several years. Generous shipping and return policies, customization, expert advice, and competitive pricing have trounced resistance by answering the ubiquitous question. But the age old question remains: “What about fit?”
A number of men’s online clothing stores offer clothes made-to-fit. You’ll be surprised how much sharper you can get to look with a shirt perfectly tailored to your size and body shape rather than one just bought off the rack. You think Daniel Craig, or even Pierce Brosnan, just picks up a size Large shirt before transforming into James Bond? No way, every inch of fabric on their persons has been planned, tailored and executed to perfectly compliment their body shapes. You can have that too, from home.
Shopping online allows you to “window browse” at your own time and space. Instead of insincere, annoying sales talks, you get expert advice from real professional stylists. Buying your clothes online affords you the luxury of trying purchases at home, seeing how that great navy jacket goes with your existing clothes, and even getting trusted opinions from your valued partner. Plus the prices can’t be beat. You can get a custom made suit for as much as or even less than a non-custom one from an upmarket gentleman’s store.
Try firing up your browser on a couple of these exclusive men’s made-to-fit clothes sites:
The Trunk Club
The Trunk Club promises premium clothing service with the same prices you get from upscale shops. The difference here is that you get your own online personalized stylist who takes the guess work out of mixing and matching. This fashion expert selects your wardrobe according to your preferred style and body type and delivers a trunk of suggestions for free. You get to try on the suggested apparel at home, keep those you like, and return the rejected ones through free shipping. It’s a two-way free shipping deal with this site. Fantastic, right?
Clothes are selected from over fifty high-end brands such as Billy Reid, Salvatore Ferragamo, and Barbour, to name a few. Prices are competitively similar as those in brick-and-mortar stores. The site states, “denim prices are $170–$250, casual shirts $100–$200, and sweaters $100–$300.” No premium added for the stylist; so your personal styling service comes for free.
Suits, shirts, and pants are all tailored to fit you with Indochino’s customization system. A tailor’s kit containing their fabrics and a measuring tape are all you need to jumpstart your way to a dapper self. An on-site video instruction provides assistance in getting detailed measurements for your apparel. You will need to ask someone, however, to take your measurements. With your measurements in their database including your choice of design and fabric from the numerous styles on offer, you get to wear your custom suit, wrinkle-free, straight out of the box within four weeks.
Indochino is especially big on details. They offer forty-character monogramming on the inside of your blazer (you can actually have your motto sewn in there!) and choices of linings, lapels, pockets, and buttons. These customization options are all for free. The site also carries a wide selection of manly fashion essentials such as cuff links, ties, tie clips, and pocket squares.
Shipping is free for orders over U$150.00. The company ships globally except for some listed countries. In case a suit needs some minor alterations, a U$75.00 credit goes to you for local tailoring adjustments. Under certain conditions, you can get a free remake of your suit should it prove unalterable or even a full refund for one not done to your satisfaction.
Hilburn, on the other hand, keeps the whole clothing experience more up-close and personal. Before you can order or shop from their wide selections of custom shirts, jackets, pants, and suits, a personal stylist, “free of charge and under no obligation,” is assigned to you to get your measurements. This stylist is a trained professional who can advice you on the latest silhouettes, fabrics, and colors for building up a wardrobe of clothes that fit you to a T. Oh yeah, and a great majority of the stylist consultants just happen to be smart, attractive women. We’re actually thinking of asking some of our GFP girls if they’d be interested in becoming stylists. How awesome of a date would that be? Get measured, fitted out and then… Give us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org if this is something you’d be interested in.
The whole idea of a personal stylist is in keeping with the store’s promise of giving you “the best fitting shirt you have ever worn.” Once you get your first custom shirt down pat, you can order the rest online without the intervention of your stylist, should you wish to do so. Your next purchases will always come made out specifically to your measurements on their database.
If you don’t want a personal stylist paying you a visit, the J. Hilburn site has its range of ready-to-wear clothing you can order from. There’s even an online look-book from which you can get ideas or purchase the clothes right off their model dude’s back.
Shipping of returned items is free of charge. An ample 90-day period is given for returns for which the store gives a full refund.
After seeing yourself in clothes kitted out specifically for you, you will probably never want to go running back to a store for a shirt off the rack. Clothes make the man and ladies do love a sharp dresser. Notice that appreciative gleam in their eye with your custom duds on.
Hey, did we mention that men and shopping don’t mix? Nix that. It’s a new age; online shopping could just become a man’s new diversion.