Give them credit. Men’s Wearhouse is trying, hard, to shed their previous image of a place that slings crummy suits for old guys, sold by cringe inducing, pressure applying sales-weasels. And the biggest feather in that transition-to-a-new-life cap, so far, has to be their Made in the USA, half-canvassed, slimmer fitting line from Joseph Abboud. All for about the same amount as Suitsupply?
Right. They are trying. Hard.
But there are still some kinks to
iron steam out. Even in the ordering process. For example, these Abboud suits come in three different fits:
- Modern Fit which “features a modern, slim fit”.
- Slim Fit which offers “a more streamlined look.”
- Extreme Slim Fit which has an “extra streamlined silhouette”
That’s two more fits than many of us were expecting. Anyway, the Slim & Extreme Slim suits don’t come in solids (at least not online, yet…) so a “Modern Fit” in solid navy was ordered. Went with a 39R Jacket, which comes with a 33 waist. Here’s what showed up:
Not exactly Suitsupply-like presentation.
Why do I envision an enraged George Zimmer secretly breaking into the MW shipping facility at night, and stomping all the outgoing boxes to smithereens?
When the box pretty much fell open, the prepaid return label (nice of them to include one) was stuck to the underside of the packing tape. Removing the return label from the tape… removed a chunk of the bar code from the return label. We’re off to a tremendous stop.
But the suit? The suit was… pleasant?
A 39R in the new Men’s Wearhouse Abboud Modern fit noticeably bigger through the mid-section than a Suitsupply Napoli in 38 (see below). And not just because it was one size (39 vs 38) up. There just wasn’t the same sort of off the rack/out of the box sculpting. Shoulders felt decent though. Pants were also a little on the frumpy side through the seat & thigh.
The tail has some good traditional length to it. It might be labeled as “modern” but they didn’t go with a shorter tail. It’s a butt cover-er. Sleeve length is longer than expected, but that won’t be a problem (more on that in a bit). Arm holes are neither movement restricting low, or armpit strangling high. There’s not a ton of taper through the sides, but there’s no doubt that post-tailoring this suit could fit well, if not extremely well.
“Made in the USA of imported fabric”, and that fabric is super 120s wool from the Marzatto mill in Italy. The higher the “super” # usually indicates that finer fibers were used to make it. The finer the fibers usually leads to a smoother, softer feel in your hands. But it’s also good to know that the higher the number, the more fragile the fabric. 120s should be both smooth & reasonably durable. The wool used for this Abboud suit feels like a good, solid wool. But calling it luxurious would be a stretch. It’s slightly rougher than the super 110 Vitale Barberis Canonico wool used in my Suitsupply navy Napoli. Not a knock, but nothing to write home about either.
Made in the USA From Super 120s Marzatto wool.
The Construction and Details
It’s a half canvas, and it drapes like one. No stiff, fighting-against-you-feeling that many a cheap fused suit will give you. Shoulder pads are there. Not razor thin, but not thick either. Lining is bemberg, so it should breathe a bit. Stitching all around seems even and strong. The notch lapels are a timeless, not too thin nor too thick 3.25″ at their widest point. Jacket has dual side vents in the rear.
But by far, the biggest positive here is their choice to use non-functioning buttons at the sleeve cuffs. That’s a huge deal for those who have abnormally short or long arms, especially in comparison to the functioning buttons on Suitsupply’s suits. They’ve even left off that annoying accent stitching that sometimes surrounds non-functioning buttons. Unlike functioning button holes, tailoring to show 1/4″ of shirt sleeve here should be a breeze.
But about those buttons… they look & feel kinda cheap. They’re just there. Kinda dead. It’s the biggest drawback of the suit by far. They’re not awful, but this suit deserves a bit better.
Non functioning buttons! Makes for easy tailoring.
The Bottom Line:
If you’ve found and love a fit through Suitsupply, then stick with it. The movement of a Suitsupply, as well as the fabric and details (like buttons) seem to be, perhaps, a hair above these new Abbouds.
But if you’ve struck out with Suitsupply, or, other half-canvassed suit makers due to functional button holes on the sleeves, these new options from Abooud & Men’s Wearhouse are certainly worth a shot.
Just make sure you open the box carefully.
I pledge allegiance… to my tailor… who really needs to bring in the sides of this jacket.