Would you buy a fitted suit online? Ordinarily I would be skeptical — but that was before I ordered a suit from Cottonbrew, a company innovating in a fashion space that has been in mothballs for far too long: tailored suits. And I have to say, I’m pretty excited about this company and it’s products after going hands on. Note: use coupon code “dailytekk” to get a 20% discount on your Cottonbrew order!
I’m not going to speak for all guys, but for me, personally, buying a suit has never been a fun experience. For one thing, it’s not convenient. It takes too long. I barely feel like I have time to do things like get a haircut because my schedule is already to full. Obviously, then, going in to a store to get measured is not a high priority.
Other cons to traditional suit buying? You normally have to choose between expensive or crappy. I’m no fashion aficionado — I like to look good, but I’m not deep enough into fashion to know (or care) about things like stitching and fabrics. Plus, sometimes making small talk with an old lady or dude while they measure you is… not fun.
If I’m going to buy a suit, I want the simplest, easiest possible experience. So far I’ve never found something simpler or easier than Cottonbrew.
But the thing is, even in our society where casual is invading all sectors (thanks in no small part to the tech startup revolution), suits and blazers do have a place. There are certain events where you’re expected to have one. And if you have enough such events in your life, you need several.
Luckily there’s Cottonbrew (and no, this is not a paid ad). Cottonbrew got me a great suit that I can say I really, truly love (both in terms of the style and fit) while letting me skip most of the pain I normally associate with clothes shopping in general and suit shopping in particular.
With Cottonbrew I simply picked out a style of suit online, sent in a few pictures of myself wearing a favorite tailored shirt, answered a few questions from the Cottonbrew team and waited a few weeks for my new suit to arrive. It was a great experience. That’s the Cottonbrew experience in a nutshell, but let me go into a bit more detail.
Cottonbrew has nearly 30 basic suit styles to choose from in their store which is great (plus several additional fabrics to choose from). Any more and we’d be risking an online warehouse situation where there’s simply too many options.
Styles range from classic to adventurous. You can’t go wrong with a classic black suit, for instance, and if you want to branch out a bit you can go with a navy plaid look. There are black and white tux options, grey suits, blue suits and brown suits. Basically anything a guy would ever need.
But what about styles that go beyond need into the realm of pure panache? Well, if you’re needing to take your suit game to the next level, Cottonbrew won’t disappoint. You can select fabrics ranging from Paris Wool to Egyptian Blue to Istanbul Plaid to Verona Purple.
But before I get into the customization and ordering process, I have to talk about the pricing. The mind-blowing pricing, actually. Cottonbrew’s suits start at $399. For a full suit. That is freaking unheard of for a quality suit. Remember when I said earlier that it seems like you normally have to choose between crappy and expensive when it comes to suits? Cottonbrew defies that statement. I have to beat a dead horse a bit here by telling you these suits are high-quality AND affordable — there is no compromise. Of course if you want a specialty fabric (like the Verona Purple I mentioned above) it will cost you more.
Once you select the style of suit that suits you best (cheesy, I know), you then have the opportunity to do some customizing. Things you can customize include the jacket lapel (notch, slim notch, peak, slim peak), the vent (two, one or none), buttons (two, one, three or double breasted), jacket pockets (flaps, no flaps, flaps slanted, no flaps slanted) and pants pleats (one, none). If you’re like me and you barely know what any of that means, it’s great that they include some helpful pictures for each customization to help you understand what you’re ordering.
After I placed my order, I got an email from Cottonbrew asking for a few things. Here’s the email:
Thank you for placing an order for a tailored suit with us. We review each of the orders with our tailor, and want to confirm a few pieces of information before cutting the fabric and commencing construction of your fine tailored garment.
We know this may seem like quite a few questions, but we think you’ll be satisfied with the perfect fit once we get these clarified!
1. Would it be possible to send us 2 pictures (front, side) of yourself wearing what you consider a well fitting branded dress shirt. Please wear a light-colored shirt un-tucked and make sure the entire shirt is visible in the image.
Also, please attach 1 image of the shirt label so we see the brand, size, and fit style. This will help ensure that we generate your body profile correctly and create the best fitting suit.
Note: If possible, please wear a dress shirt from one of the following brands, if possible. Alfani, Armani Exchange, Banana Republic, Bonobos, Brooks Brothers, Calvin Klein, Express, H&M, Hugo Boss, J Crew, J Ferrao, Kenneth Cole, Michael Kors, Ralph Lauren, Tommy Hilfiger, Topman, Uniqlo, Zara
2. What’s your typical pants size, and are there any general adjustments that would make your typical pant size a better fit?
3. Do you know what your suit size is and do you have any comments on how this suit size fits?
After about 4 weeks my new suit arrived. Truly it was a bit of an odd experience seeing a suit shipped in a box. The packaging was a nice presentation. Nothing shabby or cheap. The opposite actually: upon opening the box I found some care instructions and a note from Cottonbrew that said the wrinkles wouldn’t take long to work out once the suit was hung up. True enough.
I’m not going to drag this review out into eternity. Instead I’ll get right to the point and say that this suit fits me really well. It’s the best fitting suit I’ve ever owned. Heck, it’s the nicest suit I’ve ever owned in terms of fit and quality (and it’s nowhere near the most expensive — not even close).
In my hands this suit feels high-quality. It feels like it’s going to last for longer than I’ll end up wearing it. The material seems solid; it’s not too thin or flimsy.
So here’s the deal: I already admitted I’m not some sort of fashion guru. The truth is I’m an average consumer (probably just like you) who happens to be a huge technology fan (okay, addict). From my perspective Cottonbrew’s approach and execution when it comes to helping guys like me buy a new suit (at a SUPER affordable price, with no dip in quality) is dead on. If you’re considering buying a suit from Cottonbrew: don’t hesitate. You won’t be disappointed. And if you’re just looking for the best suit at the best price but hadn’t heard of Cottonbrew before today, go for it.
I really have nothing bad to say about Cottonbrew (and that’s rare for a reviewer like me). Cottonbrew is going to catch on, bro. In fact, I’d say this is one of the best men’s fashion brands out there (if you’re wondering what my taste is like I’m a fan of brands like Frank & Oak, Ministry of Supply and anything I can find at Huckberry).