This was written just before my wedding
So I am getting married in a couple of weeks, just a small family get together with a few friends. I have been married before so this is a UK civil wedding. I am not a great suit wearer, so am not experienced in these things, but I decided to get a grey suit ( partly because in the tradition of weddings a grey morning suit is worn, so i was paying homage to this and partly because I am not a great believer in the groom attempting to outshine the bride with some garish outfit that gets everyone talking) and thought about getting an off the peg suit from Jermyn Street. Then I saw the advert for Raja fashions, the Hong Kong tailor who is selling bespoke suits at supposedly cut prices. To do this they measure you up in a hotel suite and your measurements are then sent to the tailor for the cutting and tailoring and the suit is sent to you by post.
I did wonder about this but there are many articles and press cuttings on their site at www.raja-fashions.com that promote the wonders of their suits. Many of the articles appear to be written by journalists that have gone along for a suit of their own, and boy did they get a good price, check out the one from the Spectator. This created an idea in my head that I was going to get a bargain. I was charged £500 for a lightweight cloth suit , and that is not in my mind a bargain, unless the suit fits like a kid glove and makes you feel like a million dollars….especially as the guy in the Spectator was charged 300 for a superior cloth.Anyhow I let them measure me up, and now realise that al is in the measuring, you are in the hands of this guy, if he doesn’t get it right you are stuffed.
I explained to them that the suit was for my wedding. why is it when you do this whether its for clothes, food, drink or services, it inevitably makes you feel as if you are being charged more. e.g Why does a bouquet of flowers normally costing £25 suddenly cost £45? I digress. I explained I needed it quickly and they carefully measured me up, in fact 3 guys measured me over and over again. A month or so later the suit arrived….the cloth did not look like the cloth I picked, it looked hard and had a shine, the cloth I picked looked soft and did not appear to have a shine. The jacket fitted reasonably well, ibut was a little short in the arms, the trousers were unfortunately a joke. All the time Raja Fashions spent measuring me, I think they forgot about the inside leg. Too tight in the waist, and believe me I am not a fatty, i go to the gym regularly and in the run up to the wedding have been very careful about looking good and feeling fit; then I noticed the trousers were also flapping round my ankles. Perhaps these were trousers for someone else? But no they were marked with my order number. Disaster! Now they do offer tailoring alterations once your suit arrives but as any hairdresser will tell you, you can always make it shorter but you can’t easily make it longer (ok ok you could have hair extensions sown in…but you know what I mean) and I am tight for time. So what to do. Now when I first made my enquiry they answered within 15 hours, lets see what happens now and where we go from here, but I don’t recommend it and will probabaly have to buy an off the peg suit just in case. Too expensive, bad measuring, and lack of customer after sales support. Off the peg doesn’t seem so bad now I have had the Raja Fashions service.
So after 5 emails they came back to me offering to see me on the Monday (the 3rd) before my wedding, I must admit that they were very co operative, and arranged with Hong Kong to get a new pair of trousers made up pronto, and they measured me again, and all this before my wedding on Saturday. UPS parcels knocked on the door Thursday and hey presto a new pair of trousers. I must admit i looked good at my wedding, but I still feel ripped off. Why? because they claim to be offering measured suits at reasonable prices, nd this is plainly not the case. All the journalists that seemed to have written articles on them and had a suit made got theirs at a much better price. I even haggled over the price, which in my opinion is a bad thing, if there was room for manoeuvre, this means they were trying to over charge me in te first place, not a great place to build a relationship of trust. If I use this kind of service again, it would be more than likely one where I measured myself,as they are springing up all over, definitely not Raja Fashions. Perhaps its our desire to want everything cheaper and to get a ‘deal’ that they tai advantage of but… As a psychotherapist I believe that this kind of thing should be therapeutic and the process of buying a garment of this quality and importance should be enhanced by the salespeople. Think of shops you go in where this happens, or even the little things that are done when you buy something abroad in the kind of shop where they make the purchase a chance to make friends over coffee and so on. This is not Raja.