Updated: May 12
Don’t Settle When It Comes to Quality in Your Clothing
I can’t begin to tell you how often I’m had the conversation with someone about where they’re currently shopping, upon visiting one of our shops. It’s always puzzling to hear that a someone is willing to spend an abundant amount of money on their cars and watches, but is careless about the quality of their clothing. I read a report the other day that stated, “75% of consumers are shopping at retail shops they know by name.” Now, there are some beautiful menswear companies out there that produce well-fitting garments, but only a select few are truly delivering high quality and craftsmanship to their consumers. There’s nothing more frustrating for me, than to hear how much someone spent on an averagely engineered product. In my experience, I’ve come to believe that there are three factors that are contributing to the mentality of settling when it comes to clothing: convenience; lack of education; and misunderstanding of wardrobe management.
“I don’t want to buy something that expensive just to be worried about ruining it”
I’m sure everyone here is familiar with the phrase “you get what you pay for.” The average guy will spend anywhere between $500-$800 on their suits. The problem with this approach is that you’ll end up spending much more money later down the line, replacing these garments year after year, and the reason being, strictly poor fabrication. Some guys are comfortable with that because dressing well isn’t a high priority in their lifestyle. When I have a new client walk into the store, and I give a quick overview of why they should push to spend a little bit more, for a high-quality garment, I seem to always get the following response: “I don’t want to buy something this expensive, to be worried about ruining it.” I always tell guys, “everything has a risk of being ruined, but with proper care and maintenance, your garments will live a long life.” Anyone who’s ever shopped with me, will tell you that I’ve always encouraged them to bring their clothing back to us for cleaning. The reason being, there’s only one company I trust, to care for our garments that’s linear with the service level we provide. By doing this, we want to make the experience that much more convenient for our clients, rather than sending them on a scavenger hunt for a local cleaner that can service a luxury garment.
Lack Of Education:
In the service industry, our main priority is to educate our consumer, and to be honest, I don’t think feel like most retailers are providing that. I’ve been into other menswear stores throughout the country and I’ve found that some of the sales staff don’t fully understand their products, and as a consumer it makes me uncomfortable buying their products. The last thing we want is to leave with buyer’s remorse. I always tell my team, when someone walks into our shop, they should leave knowing more than they came in with, regardless of whether they bought or not. The power behind product education allows our customers to engage with us. Often times, people will come into our shops, whether it be Providence or Newport, and will be shocked at the price tag, and they have every right to question us about it. This opportunity allows us to explain the quality and craftsmanship behind the individual brands that we carry in our shop and what makes them unique. I only work with small artisan brands that are rarely attainable within the US market. I’m always sending my team over to the fashion show in Italy in search of something unique and special for our clients that they can’t get anywhere else.
Misunderstanding of Wardrobe Management
There’s always been this mentality with men, that when they go shopping, they need to buy their entire wardrobe that day. I’m not sure how this came about, but that is the wrong way to building a wardrobe. I tell my guys all the time, you should be checking in every quarter (3 months) or so, and pick out either two or three outfits with us. No one should be buying outfits that they’re going to be wearing all year round. The reason why is because (1): your clothing will wear out faster; (2): there’s no way you’ll ever be comfortable as the weather is changing; and (3): your clothing needs a break from time to time. Think of wardrobe management like a gym routine. You wouldn’t go to the gym and work every muscle in your body, for seven straight days would you? If you did that, your body would shut itself down, strictly due to muscle failure. This happens when you refuse your body the allocated time to rest and repair the torn muscle fibers. Similar with clothing that is manufactured with natural fibers, they need a season to rest. Buying seasonal clothing will allow you to extend the life of your wardrobe, and will help regulate our body temperature, keeping us comfortable as the weather changes around us.