Patience is a virtue -- but that doesn't seem to apply when comes to fashion, where we want everything quick, fast and in a hurry. While we can't deny the instant gratification that comes from being able to buy anything our hearts desire, sometimes it's nice to just slooooow down.
"Slow fashion" most commonly refers to sustainable production practices and overall consumer awareness when it comes to clothing, but for the purposes of this post, we're taking the term more literally. Bespoke, or custom-made fashion, is the ultimate personal style upgrade. Is there anything more glamorous than having clothes constructed to your exact specifications, both in terms of size and style?
Most clothing and accessories are being churned out at dizzying speeds, but thankfully there are also companies dedicated to slowing down the process and creating made-to-order items that will blow your mind.
Quoddy, a made-to-order shoe company based in Maine, is one of many brands solely dedicated to creating a business around bespoke.
"Right now the world has warehouses full of products designed by brands who push these products at consumers -- many of which [consumers] don't want," John Andreliunas, the president of Quoddy, told HuffPost Style. "We give [consumers] what they want to buy, not what we want to sell."
The waiting game is the hardest part, since most custom-made items take several weeks to produce. And contrary to popular belief, not all custom fashion is expensive. Websites such as Etsy and Custom Made celebrate the quality, accessibility and affordability of made-to-order goods. Made-to-measure brands also provide options for people with tricky sizing specifications (extra large feet, broad shoulders, petite, tall, etc).
With that said, Andreliunas believes that more people have --and should-- consider going the made-to-order route. "There are certain items, and certain brands, in which people are willing to make an investment if the enduring value and compelling experience is available to them."
We agree. So we rounded up a list of companies that prove that some things are worth waiting for.
Have you ever loved a dress but wanted it to have long sleeves or a short hemline? Well you're not alone. The folks over at eShakti
allow you to do just that, while also ensuring that the clothing fits your specific body. The website is filled with plenty of eye-catching dresses and separates that cater to women from sizes 0 to 36. Each item of clothing is cut to order, so you'll want to allow about 14 business days for your threads to arrive.
is a one-stop shop for the dapper dude who wants pretty much everything in his wardrobe made specially for him. From suits and ties (starting at $990) to corduroys and jeans (starting at $175) the company calculates your measurements via a 3D body scanner, which gathers approximately 200,000 data points to ensure the clothes are a near perfect fit. You'll have to visit the New York City headquarters to be scanned. However if a trip to the Big Apple is out of the question, you can simply visit a local tailor to be maliciously measured and Acustom Apparel will reimburse you. And expect your goods in arrive in 5-7 weeks.
Picture a workshop in Maine with wooden benches, a few basic tools and tables of beautiful tanned leathers. That's Quoddy
. The company prides itself on crafting its handmade men's and women's shoes via skills that have been passed down through the generations. Once you've selected a style of their classic moccasins, boat shoes or boots, you can then customize your pick from top to bottom. The shoes start at $275 and take about 4-6 weeks to make.
Gorgeous Couture's "Made To Measure" service
allows you to customize (both style and size) the company's fabulous assortment of gowns, cocktail dresses and jumpsuits. Beyoncé, Emma Watson, Kim Kardashian and Lupita Nyong'o have all been spotted in the figure-flattering garments.
serves up plenty of drool-worthy bags, but those looking for something extra special are in luck. The New York City-based brand lets customers set up private appointments at their studio and design custom bags. If you're not in NYC but still want a taste of exclusivity, RYE's "Lost and Found" collection
is comprised of completely one-of-a-kind bags.
The possibilities are endless when it comes to designing your wardrobe via Sumissura
. The made-to-measure women's clothing site is chock full of classic silhouettes that are just waiting for your personal touch. After living out your fashion designer dreams, it will only take 15 days for your creations to arrive at your door.
One of Black Lapel
's core values is to "amaze and wow customers with the best possible service at every interaction." With that said, the New York City and Shanghai-based company is helping lead the bespoke movement. It may take 4-5 weeks to get to your suit, fellas -- but know that it will fit you perfectly once it arrives. Plus the website offers an awesome tutorial video for taking your measurements correctly. Genius!
The Left Shoe Company
The Left Shoe Company
The Left Shoe Company
might use artisans skilled in old-world shoemaking methods in Portugal, but its approach to sizing is distinctly modern. In order to get a precise measurement of your foot, the company uses a special 3D scanner that takes a perfect 360-degree picture of each foot -- providing 150 detailed pictures of your feet and ankles. With that said, a scan is necessary before you place an order. Currently there's only one United States store in Los Angeles and seven international locations -- London, Dubai, Japan, Germany, Sweden and two in Finland. The shoes take 6 weeks from purchase time to delivery.