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Review: The Ultimate Performance Suit from Charles Tyrwhitt

Zachary

One of the Regulars
Messages
167
Location
Vienna, Austria
Dear Fellow Gentlemen!

Now, as the fourth decade of my dire abundance on this impressingly perilous planet is heading straight towards its mid-point, I made the decision to again push the quest for the "Holy Grail of suits" to new boundaries.

Preliminary Checklist

The last suit I bought was from Walker Slater, which satisfied me quite a lot – you can have a look at my review here.
The Edward suit has an excellent quality, however, the trousers and their quality have shaken me to the core.
At a price tag of 130 € I would expect a well-fitting, good-looking, and sturdy-steady trouser. While it was well-fitting and good-looking with no doubt, it had exactly the same problem as all the other pants out there. The crotch turned out to be worn-through within just weeks. As I use to keep diary on the outfits I wear each day, I could easily reproduce: Every day that I wore these trousers, I would have had to put 15 € to the side to buy a new piece of these pants as soon as it would start to develope holes.
Does Walker Slater really live up to the high standards they set for themselves?
I say: YES.
Firstly, because the wear and tear advanced a bit slower than I used to experience from the competition.
Secondly, because the Walker Slater's customer service deserves only one rating: exemplary!
As I contacted Walker Slater with my complaint, I had to pinch myself to know I'm not sleeping.
They sent a DHL courier to me free-of-charge, at a time of my choice, who mailed the defective trouser back to Scotland – again free-of-charge. I had to allow a few weeks of working time, but afterwards the repaired trousers came back directly to my threshold. The trousers were so excellently repaired that no one, not even me, took note that there was a hole in it before. To make it even better, Walker Slater were as kind as to repair also another trouser for me that I had bought way longer than a year ago.
Considering all of these costs – production, repairs, mailing –, a one-time expense of 130 € doesn't seem so exaggerated anymore, doesn't it?
And yes, there is a third point why I believe in the reliability of Walker Slater as a Gentlemen's Apparel Powerhouse. Asking the friendly staff of theirs, what I could do to prevent rapid wear-and-tear in the future, I got the following hints:
1) Don't wear the same suit too often.
Well, yes, of course I don't. Right now I own about six or seven suits (single blazers not counted).
2) Walker Slater promised: They listen to their customers. According to my communication with them, they reinforced the fabric used for patching, and, in future makes of men's trousers, will only be using a more sturdy fabric.
Well – their word in God's ear! I keep my fingers crossed.

New Horizons: My Return to Charles Tyrwhitt

In my Walker Slater Suit Review (you probably know it), I announced I would stay a customer of theirs.
I also communicated in this forum that two suit trousers from Charles Tyrwhitt disappointed me by a huge amount.
Nothing against the seperate Chino trousers! They are really, really sturdy. Which can not be said about their business siblings.
As I got a 25% discount for my birthday (yes – my dire abundance on this impressingly perilous planet has just headed straight towards … oh, you know that? How comes?), I decided to invest in a suit from Jermyn Street again, to give Tyrwhitt a chance.
As they do have suits in different price ranges, the logical conclusion would be: buy less cheap, wear more long. (Yes, that's my interpretation of English grammar.)

Charles Tyrwhitt's Purchasing Advice

Quickly I had an eye on the Ultimate Performance Suit in blue with pin stripes. "Ultimate Performance" sounds like quite a lot of sturdiness, doesn't it? Just to make sure, I called Charles Tyrwhitt's hotline and chose to get connected to a fashion consultant.
Well … I described my situation. I described the fatal demise that quite any pair of trousers undergoes when encountering my body.
And this consultant wasn't helpful at all.
He couldn't tell me where the "Ultimate Performance Suit" has its name from.
He couldn't tell me what to choose when looking for sturdy fabrics.
What he basically said was that there are numerous clues for the quality of apparel and that I should gather some information.
Well … I trusted.
I trusted in the name "Ultimate Performance Suit"; I trusted in the close-up macro photos showing a structured, rather thick fabric; and I trusted in the price. While Americans pay $549, my price in Austria (no, not that – I'm talking about the Northern Hemisphere) was 479,95 €, which summed up to about 360 € after claiming my birthday discount.

First Impressions

First of all, Charles Tyrwhitt again stays true to its tradition. The wording "slim fit" is extremely pessimistically chosen.
As the owner of at least 25 shirts from Jermyn Street, I'm accustomed to "slim fit" shirts that fit perfectly on me.
So I chose "slim fit" for the jacket as well. And, voilá! it sits like a glove. And believe me or not, I'm a person that is sometimes referred to as a "yeast dumpling." To name the fact, my BMI measures 28 points. At other haberdashers, you would be doomed with these measurements.

Everything makes a really good impression. At first I had a look at the cuffs:

IMG_2684.jpeg


Yes! The can be unbuttoned!

That's the way (Uh-hu! Uh-hu!) I like it (Uh-hu! Uh-hu!) …

The outer breast pocket was seamed and had to be unpicked, which, however, was done in merely a minute.

Here we can see the lapel with a boutonniere and a pocket square, both from Fort Belvedere:

IMG_2683.jpeg


And again something you will love:

IMG_2685.jpeg



Yessss! They didn't even forget about the loops for the boutonniere's stem.

The Conclusion & The Bitter Truth

I loved this suit from the very first moment on.

BUT …

I have worn it two times until now, for two workdays, being in movement at about six hours overall.
And what do I have to see at the trouser's crotch?

IMG_2686.jpeg


Well … that's nothing I would be willing to pay this amount of money for.
We are not talking about the 130 € Walker Slater would charge you.
We are talking about 160 € / $160!

From now on, I can only hope this fuzziness makes no harm to the fabric – by name, wearing through, resulting in holes.
That would be a huge disappointment and would shake my trust in Charles Tyrwhitt to its foundations.

Again, all other points about this suit deserve the rating "Excellent". If two days of office work didn't result in such impact to the pants, I would easily give a 9.5 points out of 10. As of now, I can't in good conscience give more than 7 out of 10.
Or even less – if time shows these trousers will be digging down the Jordan like all the others I had in the last decades.

Dappper greetings
Zachary
 

Edward

Bartender
Messages
24,696
Location
London, UK
I used to buy a lot from CT. The significant majority of my shirts are still from their 'non iron' range - wonderful things. Stopped buying the trousers years ago out of frustration in the cut. Their 'classic fit' was lovely in the leg width, very mid-century, but alas for my just 2" shy of my natural waist, and the zipper needed to be an inch or two longer as well (same zipper length in the classic fit as in the much lower-waisted slim and tailored fits. This is where I shifted over to Peter Christian for trousering - I have a pair of their moleskins, sit right on the natural waist. Only shame is they don't do cuffs or unfinished (they suggested I buy their longest available pairs, as the 33" (with about an inch of plain hem) should be long enough for me to have cuffed at 31. Never had a problem with quality, though - if I had a pair of trews that wore that quickly, I'd doubtless go back and have them look them over.
 

docneg

One of the Regulars
Messages
190
Location
Pittsburgh PA
I have worn it two times until now, for two workdays, being in movement at about six hours overall.
And what do I have to see at the trouser's crotch?

View attachment 526742


From now on, I can only hope this fuzziness makes no harm to the fabric – by name, wearing through, resulting in holes.
No embarrassment here. Take heart in the fact that if a lady gets close enough to see your fuzzies, you've already won her over!
 

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