In my short time writing about men’s clothing, I’ve been asked no less than a dozen times by readers to recommend a suit priced around $500. I’ve never been able to give a good answer. Recently, however, SuitSupply sent me this navy, chalk-striped suit to review after reading my post on their made-to-measure program. Of all the suits I’ve seen in this price tier, at least in terms of MSRP pricing, this is easily the best I’ve seen.
To start, the suit is fairly well cut. The jacket buttons at my natural waist and it’s long enough to cover my rear. The collar always stays on my neck and the shoulders neither dimple nor rumple. Additionally, the pants sit on, not just at, my hips and the back fork falls fairly cleanly. These may seem like really basic points, but you’d be surprised how difficult it is to find a suit in this price range that meet them.
The construction is also fairly decent. It’s a half-canvas made with a softer canvas material, and the shoulders are soft and sloping. Both of these features make the suit look more natural when worn. Additionally, the buttons are made of horn and the chalk stripes match up neatly as they move across the pockets.
There are two downsides, however. First, the armholes aren’t as high as they could be, which causes the jacket to lift when the arms are raised. The sleeves also have functioning buttonholes, which means they can be altered only up to ¾ths of an inch (either let out or taken up). If your arms are shorter than that allowance, you’ll have to take the sleeve up from the armhole, which can cost you about $100. You could also try the longer and shorter versions of your suit size, but that may throw other proportions off.
At the same time, both of these issues are fairly common for off-the-rack suits, especially in this price tier. They’re hardly unique to SuitSupply (I’ve also been told that the Washington and Sevilla models have higher armholes). In the end, this suit is classically proportioned, well fitting, and decently constructed. I would enthusiastically recommend it to anyone. SuitSupply is working in a price tier with competitors that are selling either fused suits or ones made with really bad cuts (e.g. skinny lapels or short jackets). They’ve upped the quality, brought cuts into better balance, and selling it all for around $500. In terms of quality and fit, these are comparable to many brands selling at more than $1,000. While their custom clothing program is only available to those who can make it into one of their stores, their ready-to-wear line (which is a full menswear collection, by the way) can be ordered by anyone online.
So, in the future, if anyone asks for a recommendation for a suit priced around $500, I finally have an answer – SuitSupply.