The Sock Hop: Custom Fit Meets Fabulous

My husband Chris is a bit of a fashionista.  He loves clothing, nice fabrics, and is always looking for a reason to dress up. This year’s Google holiday party is black tie and of course he has a Ted Baker tux in his wish list at www.nordstrom.com, a guy can dream I guess!

I’ve heard from Chris’s mother that he has always been this way about clothing but in the last two years it has gotten worse. Chris has worked really hard to gain weight and now he can fit into so many more options (I know ladies, it’s the opposite for us!) so shopping has become more fun which means more Nordstrom bills coming my way.  The only thing that is still really hard to find that fits is a nice button down shirt. He was starting to give up when I suggested he attend one of my friend Joseph’s shirt fitting events at The Rosewood with the guys from The Sock Hop in New York City. The experience was totally worth it, Chris ended up with 2 amazing shirts that fit like a glove and he made sure to schedule a visit to their shop to get measured for 6 more during a recent trip to New York for work.  I tagged along and I’m so glad I did!

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The Sock Hop is a neat little boutique shop nestled between Soho and the East Village.  Chris works with Vincent, a fourth generation shirt maker.  His father Reza and twin brothers Vincent and Luke make up the rest of the business.  They were all wearing Cubs gear when we walked into our appointment so we had to celebrate how exciting the World Series had been.  The final game started right after we left and the rest is history, go Cubs go!

Men's Style: Perfect Fit for the Holidays

They had Chris’s measurements on file so he could’ve requested swatches and selected fabrics through the mail but it nothing compares to seeing the options in person.

Men's Style: Perfect Fit for the Holidays

Men's Style: Perfect Fit for the Holidays

Vincent got his tape out for good measure and it turns out Chris is getting a little bigger in the chest/shoulders.  The chatted about the fit and his preferences.  I asked Vincent what the great benefit of going custom is and his answer was “finding a shirt that fits your chest, neck, and sleeve sizes, most men know their sizes for those categories but they shop for shirts only based on the digit that is easiest to find resulting in poor fit in the body of the shirt or sleeves that are too long or too short.” Having a shirt made for you means made for all of those custom sizes, makes sense right?

Men's Style: Perfect Fit for the Holidays

Men's Style: Perfect Fit for the Holidays

Men's Style: Perfect Fit for the Holidays

Men's Style: Perfect Fit for the Holidays

After the measurements were taken we picked out fabrics.  I have more of a traditional style and Chris has a tendency to go to big and bold so I have to reel him in.  Vincent was great at helping me with that and also choosing fabrics that would wear well for his casual silicon valley lifestyle.

Men's Style: Perfect Fit for the Holidays

This is just a small selection of what was available.  They source high end fabrics from all over and also have shoppers bring in their own fabrics which would be cool.  We get some amazing vintage fabrics at our estate sales so I’ll have to keep that in mind for next time!

Men's Style: Perfect Fit for the Holidays

While they finalized the details I poked around the workroom…

Men's Style: Perfect Fit for the Holidays

Men's Style: Perfect Fit for the Holidays

You can only imagine how happy this organized wall of thread makes me!

Men's Style: Perfect Fit for the Holidays

Men's Style: Perfect Fit for the Holidays

Men's Style: Perfect Fit for the Holidays

There is Chris’ detail sheet! I love how old school this process is.  In the world we live in so much is mass produced and quality and ethics go out the window.

Men's Style: Perfect Fit for the Holidays

If going custom isn’t in your budget here are Vincent’s top tips for finding a shirt that will fit off the rack…

#1 Find the brand that fits and stick with it!

#2 Material makes a big difference, choose how it feels versus what it looks like. You will be wearing this for more than 10 minutes.

#3 Check the label for natural fibers,

#4 Ask yourself if the shirt was made with adult hands or children’s hands.  Adult labor = that’s expensive but that’s the right thing to do.

#5 No such thing as a good deal, you always get what you pay for. A higher quality product that was made well with great fabrics will last longer.

Follow the guys from The Sock Hop on Instagram and Facebook to find out more about their shirt making process and for ways that you can work with them on a custom look for yourself!

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