Best bespoke suitmakers

The top ten tailors for having a custom garment made from scratch.

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  • Against Nature Atelier

  • Against Nature Atelier

  • Against Nature Atelier

  • Against Nature Atelier

  • C. Oliver Custom

  • Duncan Quinn

  • Michael Andrews Bespoke

  • Michael Andrews Bespoke

  • Michael Andrews Bespoke

Against Nature Atelier

Against Nature Atelier
Designers Amber Doyle and Jake Mueser have an unmatched ability to understand the needs of their young, trendsetting clientele, specializing in slim-fitting suits (from $2,700) that are handmade entirely in New York. Even the atelier itself channels a polished, of-the-moment vibe, with its tin ceilings, taxidermy peacocks and glass-dome--encapsulated Beauchene skulls. But Against Nature’s bespoke offerings isn’t all formal wear: Wooden tables are draped with bespoke denim (from $425), the handiwork of Simon P. Jacobs, who uses single-needle stitching on Japanese, Italian or dead stock American denim. Those with a weakness for accessories will drool over jeweler and leathersmith Ryan Matthew’s monogrammed silver cufflinks ($275), made-to-measure leather belts (from $250) and rings depicting skulls and gothic crests (starts at $175). 159 Chrystie St between Delancey and Rivington Sts (212-228-4552, againstnaturenyc.com)

Alan David Custom
Owner Alan David Horowitz’s long-standing industry contacts (he worked with his family’s menswear megastore, Moe Ginsburg, until it shuttered in 2002) allow him to purchase fabric at a lower cost and pass the savings down to his clients—a suit valued at $1,900 would cost you $1,250 here. Procrastinators, take note: Since no part of the suitmaking process is outsourced overseas, the turnaround is a lightning-speed two to three weeks. Pair your two-piece ($895--$1,795) with a custom shirt ($100--$250) and monogrammed tie ($125), each available in a panoply of nearly 500 fabrics. The shop also offers suits for boys ($450--$695), women’s custom shirts ($100--$250) and customizable accessories, including wallets ($325), leather messenger bags and briefcases ($795 each). 16 E 40th St between Madison and Fifth Aves, suite 702 (212-227-4040, alandavidnyc.com)

Beckenstein Bespoke
In 1919, Polish immigrant Samuel Beckenstein started selling rags by the pound out of a pushcart on Orchard Street. Not only would he become a forefather of the Lower East Side fabric trade, but his business would grow to become a menswear empire. Today, Beckenstein’s grandson, Neal Boyarsky, runs the company along with his own son, Jonathan. The tri-level location houses more than 10,000 fabrics on the first floor (Beckenstein’s Men’s Fabrics is the exclusive U.S. agent for ultraluxe Scabal fabric), and the balcony level serves as Beckenstein Bespoke’s atelier. It’s where director of custom tailoring Steven Tabak, formerly the head fitter for Paul Stuart, measures clients for traditional English-style suits ($1,500--$5,000). “We nail it the first fitting,” boasts Jonathan Boyarsky. For the ladies, bespoke button-down shirts ($150--$175) are a popular request among the boardroom set. 257 W 39th St between Seventh and Eighth Aves (212-475-6666, fabricczar.com)

Brooklyn Tailors
Soon-to-be-married couple Daniel Lewis and Brenna Boyce have operated their business—which specializes in unfussy, clean-cut men’s basics—out of their Clinton Hill apartment since 2007. The duo currently offers a limited supply of their ready-to-wear suits ($695) and plaid, gingham and solid oxford dress shirts ($145) online. But it’s their competitively priced bespoke shirts ($195) and suits ($975) befit for the set of Mad Men that you’ll want to seek out. Fittings take place at their Brooklyn abode and garments are completed within eight weeks. (brooklyn-tailors.com)

C. Oliver Custom
Operating by appointment only, owner Doug Rosenblum regularly travels the country to fit athletes, politicians and celebrities in his refined, modernized hand-stitched bespoke suits ($1,500-$4,000). C. Oliver Custom has quickly gained popularity since it opened in 2002—especially with the Hamptons set. We’re willing to bet that has something to do with the atelier’s signature use of colorful fabrics on the underside of collars, a touch that makes them practically begging to be popped. Clients can choose fabrics from high-end mills such as Dormeuil, Loro Piana, Zegna and Gladson, and since Rosenblum relies on a team of local tailors to ensure garments are produced entirely in New York, they’ll receive the finished product in about five weeks. By appointment only. (colivercustom.com)

Duncan Quinn
Images of James Bond grace the navy-and-gold--striped walls of this narrow Nolita atelier, whose exposed brick, mahogany wood cabinetry and full bar evoke a posh Englishman’s den. When it opened in 2003, Duncan Quinn was one of the first bespoke tailors to cater to downtown scenesters; it continues to lure a young, hip clientele with its bespoke shirts single-needle stitched in London (minimum order of four, starts at $380 each) and Savile Row-style suits (starting at $4,000) that incorporate colorful accents, like a bright red trim or vibrant interior lining. In addition to offering top-notch fabrics from Dormeuil, Scabal and Loro Piana, Duncan Quinn has its own house selection of textiles. For those less flush with cash, there’s also a line of ready-to-wear clothing that includes 100 percent pima cotton T-shirts silkscreened with images of the Queen Mother ($95) and slim-fitting cotton croquet shirts with fleur-de-lys emblems ($125). To make it a full ensemble, pick up vintage enamel bulls-eye cufflinks ($125), sleek wooden umbrellas handmade in France ($295) and, for those who rode in on their Ducati motorcycle, Ruby Pavillon striped and polka dot helmets ($945). 8 Spring St between Bowery and Elizabeth Sts (212-226-7030, duncanquinn.com)

Kamaal Kadri
Though the FIT grad cut his teeth toiling for Michael Kors and Kenneth Cole, Kamaal Kadri learned the most about his trade from his father, who was a tailor for the British raj. Fittings take place in the Garment District at Mood Fabrics, where clients can select the fabric directly from a ream of cloth in the traditional manner. Kadri sketches the desired garment and sends it to a small team in India, where an estimated 10,000 stitches and 40 hours of work are poured into the handcrafted suit ($1,500--$2,500). Kadri is big on details, and it shows: Suits are lined with pure silk and horsehair canvas, and trimmed with smoked-horn and mother of pearl buttons and silk-thread buttonholes. Such fastidious care makes it worth the wait of six to eight weeks. 327 W 30th St between Eighth and Ninth Aves, suite 6A (646-688-3171, kamaalkadri.com)

Michael Andrews Bespoke
Owner Michael Mantegna bought his first custom suit while on vacation in Asia; he was so enamored with the process that he replaced his entire work wardrobe and eventually switched his career path as a lawyer to pursue his newfound passion full time. It seems to be paying off: In August 2010, the business is relocating to more spacious digs off Great Jones Street. To appeal to various budgets, Mantegna offers three tiers for creating a bespoke suit: With the Sterling (starts at $895) and Platinum Collections (starts at $1,195), garments are tailored in a workshop outside Shanghai and take about six to eight weeks to produce; items from the Signature Collection (starts at $2,695) are created by hand locally in a similar time frame. This is the place to go to have fun with detailing, like vibrantly-colored or patterned linings and hidden grosgrain ribbons on a jacket’s wrist sleeve. In addition to suiting, the shop also offers bespoke shirts (starts at $155), ties ($145) and pants (starts at $235), plus custom leather oxford and wingtip shoes by Di Bianco ($850). 20 Clinton St between E Houston and Stanton Sts (212-677-1755, michaelandrewsbespoke.com)

Mohan’s Custom Tailors
This family-owned business made a name for itself in the 1970s by catering to super-sized athletes, like 6’4” NBA legend Walt Frazier. Today, its well-made, traditional suits continue to be a godsend for hard-to-fit sizes. The sprawling wood-paneled shop’s walls are lined with books containing more than 14,000 swatches from mills like Zegna, Holland & Sherry and Loro Piana; depending on the fabric, suits start at $500 and can go up to $6,000 for one fashioned from Scabal’s Super 150 wool blend with 24K gold-thread pinstripes. Owner Mohan “Michael” Ramchandani and his nephew KJ Singh encourage clients to take advantage of the many options available—they can add anything from hidden pockets to a built-in iPad carrier to your suit. Even though garments are created by a team of tailors in Hong Kong, expedited designs can be executed as quickly as one week (the average time frame is three to four weeks). While there’s currently no bespoke tailoring for women, ladies can have their favorite pieces of clothing replicated, including jackets ($500), shirts ($100) and pants ($175). The Lincoln Building, 60 E 42nd St between Park and Madison Aves, suite 1432 (212-697-0050, mohantailors.com)

Mr. Ned
Founded in 1965 by Nuran Mateosian, Mr. Ned has gained mainstream attention for creating the suits featured in The Royal Tenenbaums, as well as serving as director Wes Anderson’s go-to tailor. For the past 15 years, it has been run by Mateosian’s knowledgeable and charismatic son, Vahram, who is often in the shop as early as 6am to work with high-profile clients like former NBA All-Star Charles Oakley. Fittings take place in an industrial, exposed-brick Flatiron loft, where fabrics from Vitale Barberis, Scabal and Holland & Sherry are displayed in the front showroom (there’s also a full workshop in back). Mr. Ned prides itself on offering some of the lowest prices in town (suits start at $850, pants start at $250 and jackets start at $650) without sacrificing quality; the average turnaround is five to six weeks. 137 Fifth Ave between 20th and 21st Sts, 4th fl (212-924-5042, mrnednyc.com)

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