Yesterday, in wanting to find a good tailor in the Silom/Bangrak area, i spent an hour looking around the Net.
One name came appearing over and over again Savile Row (often alongside Talior Pro - they are brothers). Nearly every single comment and review is exactly the same, ending with their email address at the bottom - obviously all written by the Savile family. There are even opening threads on forums which start like "Which is better Savile or Tailor Pro?" Then out of the blue, there are all these positive comments fro people who post for the very first. Very Highly Recommended is one of their favourite slogans
You can see how much spamming they do if you Google their email "email@example.com
They have also spammed Virtualtourist with fake comments and reviews, search here for a quick look. Youll see what i mean straight away.
Unique Suggestions: Waste their time and have a free coffee.
Fun Alternatives: Go to any professional tailor in the Indian district of Pahurat.
It works like this:
1/ Go for a walk in Bangkok - say, near the Grand Palace.
2/ PERSON A. Strike up a conversation with a local - at the time it may occur to you that it is the local who has struck up the conversation with you.
3/ The local marks on your map places to go, including a shop, Voglee Tailors, manufacturers for Armani and the King of Thailand - it is the last day of their sale, and that on only this day foreigners will be allowed to buy.
4/ Get a tuk tuk - the local may speak with the tuk tuk driver to explain where it is you'd like to go.
5/ Visit the temples etc marked on your map.
6/ PERSON B. At one of the temples you will meet another local, this time a Thai man with a US accent. He told me that he worked in New York as a tax consultant. He may ask where you will be going; Voglee Tailors will arise in the conversation, and he will re-iterate that it is the last day of their sale, and say that you are lucky as they do not normally sell to foreigners, that they are tailors to the King of Thailand, that he buys all his suits there, and that they make suits for Armani - "Armani Style" - but without the labels which are sewn on in Italy; he may even say that you would expect to pay 1800 USD for a suit but it will sell at Voglee for 200-300 USD.
7/ After visiting the temples etc, visit Voglee Tailors. For tailors to the king this place is not as well presented as you may imagine. They will take your measurements and ask you to select the style of clothing - you may well be shepherded into the process of the sale and they will try to up-sell you more than you may wish to buy, e.g. extra trousers, shirts, coats.
This process is more likely to be effective if you are pre-disposed to buy clothing in Thailand, having heard about the possibility of getting tailor made clothing at a cheap price.
Of course you may buy there, but remember, they are just another tailor!
Unique Suggestions: If you have to go to the tourist trap, do this:
1 - on introduction, ask for the name of the tailor you are dealing with.
2 - it IS an option to leave without buying. (If you do wish to buy, this may be your best bargaining tool.)
3 - ask to see actual samples of workmanship, including the suit you are thinking of buying - you may wish to alter details on the suit such as cuffs.
4 - inspect the packaging that will be used to ship the goods, and if you are buying request that the suit be loosely folded.
5 - ask for their website address.
6 - haggle - make a lower offer, and be prepared to walk away. You owe them nothing for having measured you up.
7 - buy less than they aim to sell you - you may always go back or correspond, or go to another tailor, or buy something at home.
Fun Alternatives: An alternative - don't go to the shop suggested on your map.
If you want to get a nice tailor made suit, do research first - contact the Thai tourism office for advice as to which tailors are known and renowned, and research on the internet.
Getting suits made in Bangkok are often one of the 'need-to-do' list of travellers wanting to take advantage of the cheap tailoring. However, it takes time to find the right tailor to suit individuals. As my two-cents worth, I would advise to stay away from "Ambassador & Smart Fashion" located at Sukhumvit. Despite large selection of good quality fabrics, the tailoring skills are nothing to rave about. Bad measurements, leading to bad cutting and of course, disappointing after product. After spending an aggregated time of a full day at the tailors, I have to say, their much recommended reputation of excellence in tailoring skills and expertise did not impress me at all.
Unique Suggestions: I would suggest to not try this tailor at all.... save your money, headaches and disappointments.
Fun Alternatives: Finding the right tailor takes time, I would suggest perhaps engage in various tailors to make one business shirt prior to making more outfits. This would allow for you to assess in their tailoring skills and expertise.
Avoid Patricks Fashionway (located near Ambassador Hotel) at all costs. They are the worst tailor with the poorest attitude EVER! Why do I say it? Read on...
My friend and I tailored a total of 8 shirts and 1 trousers with Patrick's Fashionway.
1. They got the measurements wrong.
The shirts were too short, it came out the moment I raised my hands.
The collar was too big, i could fit 8 fingers after buttoning my collar.
The sleeves were too big, it was like having wings sewn to my shirt!
2. They got the specifications wrong
They did the pockets of the shirts wrongly.
They did not add pleats to the pants which we had indicated during the measurements
3. Their attitude and service was poor
They insisted that they got all the measurements right.
They forced the finished the shirts and trousers on us without even thinking of altering the shirts according to our measurements
They did not finish altering the changes and refused to refund us our money
They shouted at us when we wanted to get a refund when they could not deliver
They promised to send the shirts to us but failed to turn up (we were staying at the Ambassador hotel) when the hotel was just 5mins away from their shop.
I ended up having lost my deposit with not single shirt to bring back with me....
How can shops like this be featured on the map of bankok as one of the recommended tailor to go?!?!?!
After getting a Tuk Tuk to a particular destination, you may be asked to stop in and look at suits or jewelry for the driver. They usually say that they get gas coupons if you just go in and look at suits at certain shops in Bangkok.
Unique Suggestions: My brother and I were involved in this scam a couple of times while in Bangkok. After trying to get out of looking at suits, we ended up trying to spend 10 minutes (that is what the driver said was the minimum time before he would get a gas coupon) I got kicked out of the store after about 3. My brother somehow managed to stay in there for the full time, however I never did see a gas coupon given to the driver.
Even as my brother was still in the siut shop, the driver was wanting me to go see some gems, because he happened to notice my rings.
Fun Alternatives: The best suggestion that I can give would be tell the Tuk Tuk drivers that are offering a "cheaper" than normal ride, that you don't want to see any suits, or gold/gem shops. If you tell them this right away it may help to avoid getting caught up in this particular scam.
I am not sure if most of the tailors are good or not but there are lots of them. Go to the lady in the basement of the Nari hotel...she did a great job..I got 3 custom made shirts for $20 and 2 suits for about $125 everything is very well done..fits great and I can order more by just faxing her.