July 22, 2008  ·  style

Strategies for Affordable Suits

We're sick of mens' "lifestyle" magazines in general, which is of course why we started this site, but we're particularly tired of the way they constantly push $2,500 suits on us. Maybe if you only own one suit. Otherwise, here are three strategies for getting yourself kitted out more economically.

Approach #1: Ted Baker
If you can find one in your size, you have a good shot at getting a Ted Baker suit online for $500 or less. (Give Bluefly a shot.) Ted's suits (pictured) have a British mod edge to them and are pretty damn sharp; they stack up well against other designer labels' offerings at twice the price.

Approach #2: Discount Stores
A good suit isn't going to go out of style in a single season, but that won't stop last year's crop from making their way onto the racks of discounters like Syms. Look for names you can count on—Calvin Klein, Jones New York, Ralph Lauren—and you may hit the jackpot.

Approach #3: Buy Cheap and Customize
A good tailor can turn a solid but bland suit into something stylish relatively cheaply. Start with a well-made suit with flat-front trousers, like Land's End's $325 2-button tailored separates, and then have your local tailor taper the fit into something more modern. It may be as easy as resetting the buttons, or it might involve a bit of a re-build, but either way you'll have a dependable suit tailored to fit for well under $400.

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