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Chinese Tailors Part 1: Tuxedo Jacket

18 Mar

In China, if you either can speak Chinese or if you have a Chinese friend who wants to go with you to help you bargain, you can get an awesome suit tailored for less than $30. Here is a white tuxedo 80s clubbing jacket I had made in Beijing for about $15 out of “bu tou” (left over fabric) and silk trimming detail:

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The secret is to buy your fabric at Muxiyuan in the southern part of Beijing, or for you Shanghai-based peeps to get really friendly with tailors in Shanghai. Fabric should cost you less than $1 -2 per meter for regular stuff, a bit more for high thread count fabrics, high quality silk or nice tweed or leather. For labor costs, a suit costs about 100-150 RMB for the jacket, 30-50 RMB or less for the pants. Dresses are 100-150 for labor costs, depending on how demanding you are. My tailor in Beijing is called Gu Shifu, but I call him Pierre, which he loves. Don’t make button down shirts, they tend to suck royally. Coats and suits are the way to go with tailors.

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