How Much Should a Good Custom Suit Cost?

I’m often asked how we can make hand-tailored clothing in an expensive city like New York for half the price of the better Italian brands. 

The economics are quite simple —
If the labor and material cost for making a suit in Italy is, say $600, the current exchange rate on the Euro makes that cost, $840.  The Italian manufacturer needs to make a profit, so the price increases to $1250.  The duty on the suit is about 25% bringing the cost of the suit to $1560.  The shipping costs from Italy will range from $200 for a single suit to $50 for a larger shipment.  So let’s average it out to $100 and the total cost is now $1660.  Most American retailers work on a mark up of 2 1/2 times the cost making the selling price– $4150.

At Saint Laurie the cost for labor and materials is still $600. (The labor rates in NYC and Northern Italy are about the same.) Since we are the manufacturer, there is no middleman markup. We do not pay duty now on any wool fabric that is Super 100s or finer, since nothing comparable is woven in the USA.  Of course, there are no shipping charges when the garment has to travel 50 feet! And since we do not have the overhead structure of a major retailer, we can work on a smaller markup.   So our selling price can be– $1795, less than half the price!!!

There’s no catch.  Just the advantages of buying clothing where it is made from a company that’s been in business for 97 years. In fact, we’ll probably make your suit in half the time of our esteemed Italian colleagues.

That’s the Saint Laurie way.

Andy Kozinn
Saint Laurie Merchant Tailors
22 West 32nd Street, 5th Floor
New York NY 10001
Saint Laurie on YouTube


About Andy Kozinn

Third generation owner of New York's oldest maker of men's clothing still manufaturing in NYC. Andy is Saint Laurie's head fitter and has worked with countless movie stars, celebrities and average Joes with exceptional taste.
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One Response to How Much Should a Good Custom Suit Cost?

  1. James Hazlett says:

    I have been wearing your suits for about 20 years now. You have the best fabrics, the best taiioring, the best service, and the best prices. And you incorporate all the details I ask for. I now have about 13-14 suits from your shop, so I do’;t need any more. But if I did, you would be the guys to get my business.

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