What is it about Italian tailors that makes owning an Italian-made abito (“suit”) feel like you own something so unique?
First, if you haven’t already, we recommend you check out the history of the Italian Tailor in our previous blog post here.
Italian tailors strongly value an accurate misura (“measurement”) of the client. The importance of this is self-explanatory: the more precise the misura, the more comfortable and custom-fit the suit.
Italian suits take into consideration the comfort of the wearer, often utilizing lightweight, softer fabric, rather than thick fabric with less movement.
Now that you’ve had a little refresher on Italian-style suits, let’s take a look at “The Rest”…
The English (or British) Suit
Photo Credit: Pinterest
A lot of the differences between English, American, and Italian suits lie in the physical appearance of the suit a.k.a the style or cut. As you continue to read, you’ll see how economic and societal situations shaped fashion in each country.
English tailored suits look traditional and use heavier material compared to the trendier, slimmer, and lighter Italian suit.
The origins of the English suit started in the 1800s, making waves in the upper class and military elite, and the jacket was originally called a dinner jacket. British-style jackets are structured and made of a stiffer, heavier material (cloth and canvas) with the goal of ensuring a “proper” fit. The pants are high-waisted and feature a piega (in English: a “pleat” — fabric doubled on itself and secured), again, because of the more traditional fit. The jacket has thick, structured shoulder pads to emphasize the shoulders and the risvolto (“lapels”) are made in proportion to the wearer.
The American Suit
Photo Credit: Vox Sartoria
The American suit is also sometimes called the “Sack” suit. Like the British version, the American suit was targeted towards the wealthy. Americans, however, took a much different route to production than did the Italians and the British.
Rather than embracing the bespoke tailor, Americans aimed at creating mass production. The suit was designed much simpler, with no pleats in the pants, and with less structure, vents, pads, and a looser, less custom fit. As you can see in the photo above, the arms, waist, and pants all fit very loosely on the body.
The jacket is actually made of only two panels of fabric, no padding, and no pre-determined silhouette other than straight. This design allowed Americans to produce a large number of suits at an efficient speed that met demand. Customers would need to find their own tailor in order to give the suit a custom appearance, or they could keep the loose fit by wearing it straight off the clothing rack.
And Now for the Difference: The Italian Suit
Photo Credit: Fashion Snap Freaks
In comparison to American- and British-made suits, the Italian suit was created mainly for fashion and style purposes, rather than for the wealthy to be distinguished from the middle class. It was, however, most likely purchased by the wealthier due to its quality and customized fit making it pricier.
Suit: Tiger of Sweden / Tie: Tiger of Sweden / Shirt: Ordean / Belt: Anderson’s
Italian-tailored suits fit relaxed and make the wearer look effortlessly stylish; as if he woke up, threw his suit in the air, and it landed on his body perfectly, hugging him in all the most flattering places.
Suit: Tiger of Sweden / Tie: Tiger of Sweden / Shirt: Ordean / Belt: Anderson’s / Jacket: Tiger of Sweden
Mr. Derk is your go-to source for that perfect Italian abito (“suit”), so if you’re curious about what looks best on you, come in and see us or take advantage of our FREE ONLINE SHIPPING and shop from the comfort of your home!
It’s Mr. Derk’s speciality to make you look sharp.