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What is the difference between bespoke and made-to-measure? A title such as made-to-measure or bespoke helps to communicate to you two basic values: craftsmanship (manufactured vs. hand-made) and cut (pre-cut and adjusted for you vs. cut only for you). These elements are important not only from a technical point of view but also from a consumption and selling point of view because they affect the cost and the delivery time of your
suit. Words such as "hand-made", "bespoke" and "made-to-measure" are so overused by our industry, by media and by customers that the result is chaos. The customers are not only confused and misled – but so are the companies and tailors. As a result, it has become difficult to even set rules or boundaries around this topic.

According to the Men's Flair articles, tailors in England went to court for the misleading use of the word bespoke in advertisingS material by a tailor. Furthermore, there are tons of blogs and online forums debating the issue every day. The reason behind all this "noise" of course is money. Before we elaborate on the issue it's good to clarify some basic terminology:
•Ready-Made: a standard cut and size where a customer can buy of the rack.
•Made-to-Measure (M2M): a standard cut is adjusted as far as possible to the customer's measurements and personality.
•Bespoke: A garment cut for an individual by an individual. An individual cut is devised for each customer, depending on his measurements and his requirements, and it will be precisely adjusted to his figure and character.
•Machine Made suit: There is no use of hand stitching in the process of crafting a suit.
•Hand Made suit: The suit is stitched by hand except certain seams that are sewn by machine (usually the main seams connecting the parts of the suit).
•Fused suit: the suits are basically glued (manufacturers or even tailors will not use canvas interlining in their jackets but a fusible interlining which, with the help of steaming and ironing, is glued to the wool shell of the suit).
•Canvased suit: Suits with canvased interlining. The canvas interlining can be hand or machine basted. These suits are categorized as full-canvased or half-canvased suits. Full-canvased is when the canvas is attached from top to bottom of the facing of the jacket, Half-canvased, is when canvas ends at the bottom of the chest. Ready-made suits are cut to a certain size and with a specific pattern. It can be altered but with limitations and there is no room for style differentiation (change lapels, buttoning etc.). The main benefit in ready-made clothing is time and impulsive satisfaction.

Let's say you try on a "ready-made" suit; you like it, but wish you could change a few things. Perhaps you'd like to lengthen it, tighten the waist, remove the vents and even change the cloth; you've now entered the world of Made-to-Measure (M2M). M2M allows you to do just that. An appropriate size and specific line (pattern) is chosen, which will be adjusted to your measurements +/-1cm. Although M2M has its limitations (i.e. style, lapel line, vent height, collar height) there is plenty of room for customization. These suits are machine or hand made, but more commonly canvased and a hybrid of machine and hand. What are the benefits of a M2M suit? Compared to a ready-made it's the customization, fit and the bespoke "feeling." M2M also has the benefit of time and cost when compared to a bespoke suit. Finally, we enter the world of bespoke. If you order a suit from a store or tailor, and your measurements are taken while wearing a "try-on" suit, and you are presented with fitting and style options -- it's likely a bespoke suit. The suit will be cut according to your own, personal pattern. It can be ordered to any type construction, but as a rule of thumb must be totally canvased and hand-made. Bespoke suits are available to order from famous bespoke houses, or individual tailors.

The benefits of a bespoke suit, besides a better fit, create the pleasure of knowing the garment was custom made and lies in the beauty of the beholder.
A Ready-made suit can cost anywhere from $50 - $10,000 or even more. Are the retailers crazy? Of course not! There are several quality issues that will affect the cost of the suit and eventually the price. There is definitely the issue of branding and marketing that drives the cost and price higher, but this is not our topic in this article. What really affects and drives the ready-made suit prices higher is the type of manufacturing and the quality and cost
of cloth. In general, there are three categories of ready-made suits:
1.Completely machine made suits, fused and not 100% natural cloth, but mix of wool and polyester or cotton and polyester etc. These suits range from $50 to $400 depending on the brand and place of manufacturing.

2.Completely machine made suits, fused and natural cloth. These suits start at $400 to $1.500 or even $2.000 if they are designer garments. What is important here is the brand name which supports the line and design, quality of manufacturing and the selection of cloth. In the higher price ranges the materials used are top quality.

3.Finally the third category entails "Hand-made" suits, half or fully canvased with natural cloth. The price range of these suits starts at $2,000 and higher. Although these suits are called "hand made" it is quite rare to actually come across a truly, 100% hand-made garment. Most are constructed by the use of half machine and half hand or just perhaps by machine with just a hand finish.

The majority of the Made to Measure suits belong to the third category "hand made" and they are usually a combination of machine and hand. The price is the same of the ready made and starts at $2.000 plus a surcharge starting at 20%.

Finally to name a suit as bespoke the construction should be entirely by hand (except certain seams) and of course fully canvased. Those suits start at $3,000 and higher. Anything less than this price range is an exception (such as a special price from an individual tailor) or more likely, it is not a genuine bespoke suit.