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This month we featured J. Hilburn, a custom menswear company we recently discovered. As we mentioned in our newsletter, we really love the quality, convenience, and customer service J. Hilburn provides. Marcy Silbert is one of the company’s stylists in the D.C. area and she is absolutely wonderful to work with! We wanted Marcy to share more details about J. Hilburn in her own words so we sat down with her for a Q&A on some commonly asked questions about her and the company. If you have any questions or are interested in J. Hilburn email Marcy at marcy.silbert1@jhilburnpartner.com and visit the J. Hilburn site, www.jhilburn.com…

Q: What do you think sets J.Hilburn apart from other custom menswear companies?

A: There are many differences between J. Hilburn and our competition.  Our certified stylists have extensive training in all aspects of the menswear business.  We buy from five mills in Northern Italy that have been in business anywhere from 110 to 350 years.  Our fabric selection is unsurpassed in the industry, with many of our suiting fabrics having 140 and 150 thread count. One of the most important aspects of J. Hilburn is the customer service our stylists provide.  We meet our clients at their office or other convenient location, which saves them time and money.  And we offer one hundred percent satisfaction.

 

Q: Most custom suits range between $2-3K, how do J. Hilburn’s prices compare?

A: Our prices are substantially lower than those at retail, up to 50% to 60% less. We are able to do that for two reasons:  we are one of the largest purchasers in the world and we sell our product without a retail store.

 

Q: What is the timing like on orders and what happens if it doesn’t fit right?

A: Our turn around time is very efficient.  Our shirts come in about 2 to 3 weeks and our suits and tuxedos come in about 3 to 4 weeks.  If, after the first Fit Appointment something needs to be altered slightly, we do that at a local tailor, at no charge to the customer.  If, however, the shirt or suit does not meet our expectations, J. Hilburn simply remakes them at no charge.

 

Q: Describe the shopping process and in particular, a client’s experience with you?

A: The client’s first experience is a Measuring Appointment.  We take sixteen measurements to start our customer profile.  We discuss the type of fit they prefer and the style that they like.   We then go through our fabric books and help them select the fabrics they like best, that work with their body type, complexion and build.  Then, we customize the various aspects of the shirts, suits or tuxedos they select, including contrasting collar and cuff, contrasting stitching on buttons and button holes, pic stitching, working buttons, custom buttons, and hand sewn linings.  When the shirts and suits are delivered, we present them to the client at their Fit Appointment, to ensure that everything is completed to their satisfaction.’

 

Q: What is your favorite part of your job?

A: I love working with men and fitting them for their first custom shirt, personalized suit, or tuxedo.  It’s a great feeling when my clients look at themselves in the mirror and see how good they look in our clothes.  And they always comment how good they FEEL, too.

 

Q: What advice would you give prospective clients about ordering custom?

A: My advice would be to try it!  Not only do you look AND feel better in custom clothes, it’s an easy process, it’s convenient, and it saves you time AND money.

 

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For our August Vendor of the Month we chose The Tailored Man in McLean, Virginia. As we described earlier this month, this boutique creates bespoke menswear for their clients and also provides amazing alterations services as well. We wanted to ask Sanjay Daswani of The Tailored Man a few more questions about the boutique and the custom process.
Q: Could you tell our readers a little bit about The Tailored Man?
A: The Tailored Man is a family owned & operated business that believes our clients are our most valuable asset.  Our objective is to diligently scope, create & craft to perfection custom suits & shirts to fit our clients unique needs. We provide each client with uncompromising attention.  Our Customer satisfaction is paramount to our operation.
Q: What are the most common questions prospective clients ask?
A: Price is one of the biggest misconceptions people have about custom suits / shirts. People often think that custom suiting is only for men that can afford to spend a significant amount of money. At The Tailored Man we can offer you a better value for your money than some of the high end stores and brands.
Secondly, people think off the rack fit can suffice. But seasonal trends need not be the best fit for all body types. Rather than be compromised with mass produced proportions, a client can avail the perfection of a custom fit for a stand out look they can carry with style and comfort.
Thirdly, illusion of time saved. Styles are always changing; clients get consumed from store to store trying to find what’s new & what fits. They finally end up with pieces which never work out all the time. Working with custom clothiers will help reduce the time wasted running around & update your look and make you look more trendy.
Q: Typically, what is the lead time for a custom suit?
A: Usually, it takes about six weeks for a custom suit or tuxedo, but it can vary depending on the item and fabrics selected.
Q: Are alterations included in the custom process?
A: Yes, alterations are included in the process, even though the suits are measured for the man, pieces will always need a few tweaks once the client actually has it on his body. We also offer complimentary alterations for up to 15 months, if a client needs their piece to be taken in or let out a bit. In addition to that, we offer alterations on outside pieces for a separate cost.
Q: What makes The Tailored Man different?
A: Our selection of fabric brands at various price points gives us a better advantage than many custom clothiers. Our service & attention to detail to our clients’ needs sets us apart. Our location in a prime area is also key. Being next to all the Luxury brands gives us a competitive edge where clients can compare prices & walk right out to us for any custom work. The overall growth of the surrounding area keeps giving us easier access to numerous clients.
Q: What advice would you give someone who is considering buying a custom suit?
A: Consider what your need is for the suit, the flexibility of wearing it for multiple occasions or dictated by a specific occasion to narrow in on the styles and color palette. The most important part about a suit is the fit. Look out & ask yourself how the jacket feels & fits at your shoulders and chest, and the length is appropriate. What type of customization would you like starting from lapel style & widths, vents at the back of the jacket and slack style. Think of options you would like on your suits such as and not limited to working button holes on sleeves and fancy lining.
Will you be game to have something made that is different from what you normally go for and step out of your comfort zone. Try different patterns of suits and shirts while considering what will suit your body type and personality.
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In our April newsletter we featured Trunk Club, D.C.’s hidden gem for stylish men. In case you missed it, here is a recap!

Originally based out of Chicago, the men’s clothier has now spread around the country with offices in several major cities including Washington D.C. Located near Chinatown, Trunk Club offers private label clothing, custom suits, and other high-end menswear lines. Clients can schedule appointments with their personal stylists in the studio or arrange for a trunk of hand selected items to be mailed to them. If a customer orders a trunk, he has 10 days to try on the items and return them, customers only pay for what they buy, no shipping, and no membership fees. The Trunk Club even hosts special events in-store for their clients! We sat down with Courtney Bishop, a Trunk Club stylist, to answer some commonly asked questions and get her top spring tips for local men and grooms…

Q: What is the best part of shopping with Trunk Club?

A: At our DC clubhouse, Trunk Club members can sit back, relax and enjoy a drink in one of our comfortable, private fitting rooms. Each item is handpicked for our members by one of our professional stylists. We offer everything from accessories to custom clothing all under one roof, making Trunk Club the one stop shop for a man’s wardrobe.

Q: What is the most common question clients ask you?

A: Our members are always asking about the exclusive pieces we carry. Trunk Club has a strategic team of merchandising experts that works with some of the best brands in the world who have created exclusive patterns and designs that are only sold at Trunk Club.

Q: How do you go about figuring out a client’s personal style?

A: At Trunk Club we take the time to get to know our members. It is important for us to build relationships where our members can trust us as their stylists, in picking out the perfect outfits, whether it be for the big day or for a weekend getaway with their family.

Q: How should a groom go about picking his wedding look?

A: We love working with our grooms and brides! It is important for us to meet with each couple to hear their vision for the day. We want to know how their fairytale wedding looks to them and how we can create pieces that fit perfectly into that. I think it’s important to factor in location, time of year and the theme of the wedding. Once understanding these pieces we help our grooms handpick the perfect wedding look.

Q: How do you feel about grooms playing with suit and tuxedo trends?

A: At Trunk Club, we encourage a little playfulness in all looks. Understanding the location and theme of the wedding is important, but adding in a bit of flare whether it be a unique patterned silk lining of a custom dinner jacket or a tailored navy suit with a playful bowtie. As a stylist, whether or not my client knows what they want, I will use my expertise to guide them and create the perfect look for their big day.

Q: What are your favorite trends/ pieces from the latest Trunk Club collection for casual and formalwear?

A: Spring time is one of our favorite times of the year at Trunk Club. It’s tough to choose just one look but I’ve been loving our khaki suits paired with a tight gingham check shirt in a bright spring color and a luxury loafer.

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Congratulations to the beautiful couple! Carli looked beautiful in the Monique Lhuillier Meringue skirt and Giuliana top.

We wish you a life full of love, happiness and great health.

XX CBA

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