Howdy! I'm fairly new to this website...i think it's awesome!
Anyway, I'm in the market for a good new suit (specifically for my sister's wedding, but hopefully for good use is many more ways, too). And I'm really looking for suggestions on where a good place to start looking would be?
I've heard good and bad things about places like Men's Wearhouse, though some of their deals seem enticing (2 for 1?) or is it better to go with pricier places like Brooks Brothers or Jos. A Bank, both of whom I've heard good things...
To emphasize Topher's point on shoes. Take a look at the shoes. The men in positions of true authority always have shined shoes with relatively thin soles. The worker bees tend to be careless about polish, and because they're on their feet all day, need the thicker composite soles on their footwear.
Don't think of buying a suit as an investment. It's very unlikely to be one and calling it one changes your whole attitude. You're buying a smart set of clothes which you'll need for things that you need it for - so start off with what do you need it for. It's not a piece of art, it's working clothes. Look for a good fit (scope for adjustments is good) and the rest will almost literally fall into place.
A well kept, quality suit will last you many years (you may even outgrow it horizontally) and it's something that I think everyone needs.
Find a local men's store. Ask someone you know that wears nice suits where they shop and about the store. Do your homework. Think of buying a suit as an investment. If you've got the cash then invest in a good navy year round weight suit. That's right, invest. Buy a quality suit. You should be able to pick up something decent for 550 - 750. Above that you will get a better suit but it depends on your budget. The economy is tough and clothing stores are huring. Ask to see what they have on sale in your size. Often times , small store will give you a discount. They need to move merchandise.
You can get a made to measure suit for $450 to $600 easy - if you want to go that route. But you need to have a bit more time built in. (I like the suits from Thick as Thieves in LA, but there are several companies that will accept your measurements and cut a suit to you).
That's the route I go, because JosABank and BB don't have suits in my size (39 long) - sometimes Men's wearhouse does, but the selection is limited.
I wear suits everyday, and they come from three categories:
1. I have a couple of suits from Jos. A. Bank. They are okay quality, they are good to wear on bad weather days, or when I'm out in the field. The good part is that they go on sale a few times a year. The bad part is that they don't usually carry my size, so it takes 3 trips to the store to get a suit from them, 1 to order, 1 to get fitted, and 3 to pick the suit up. Now that I know my sizes, I do buy my dress shirts from Jos. A. Bank. I can order them a couple of times a year and they show up at the office.
2. I've invested in some made-to-measure suits. I've gotten several from Tom James, a national seller of made to meausre clothing. They can be expensive, but the price is negotible. I usually buy out of season and from fabrics about to be discontinued, in order to cut costs. The nice part is that the suits are made to measure, and being rotund as my self, that's a big plus.
3. If you know your size, and are comfortible doing it, buy off of the interenet. Back during the summer I bought several suits from Brooks Brothers for a fraction of their original price. They had my size, and I was able to buy 4 suits for just over the normal price of 1.5 of their suits. Nice quality, took them to the local seamstress to have the pants finished and some minor adjustments made. Overall, I like these suits, but would never pay full price.
I agree, don't get cheap ties or shoes. You can get something economical, but still classy. Also, when you buy a suit, consider getting a couple of different ties and shirts. My own personal preference leans toward the conservative, I have mostly white shirts, and solid or regimentally striped ties.
In the end, consier the suit an investment. Even if you just need one, get something that will last a while, and with consertavie styling. That way, it can last a lot longer than something that is on fashion's cutting edge.
I would say the local thrift store. I bought an Armani suit (still had tags on it) for $15 then had it taylored to fit me for $60. So I've got a custom fitted Armani for $75. Dress shirts can be bought new at Khols for under $10 on sale, shoes I get from DSW warehouse, usualy for under $50 a pair for really nice high quality leather. You don't have to spend a lot of money to look good, just think outside the box and keep in mind that any suit you buy will have to be fitted.