Bangkok Men's Fashion

Aug 29th, 2013, 04:17 AM
  #1  
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Bangkok Men's Fashion

Hi Fodorers'

I will be heading to Bangkok for a little over a week at the end of the year. I'm hoping to get quite a bit of shopping done whilst there and was hoping to discuss personal shopping experiences, specifically regarding men's fashion.

I have never used a tailor in Bangkok and I am considering using one this time round. I'm keen to avoid fusing as much as possible and would be looking at less structured clothes, such as shirts, trousers, waistcoats and unstructured jackets/coats. Any recommendations of tailors that do not employ a tourist model operation? I've heard good things about Tanika Tailor.

Regarding shirts, I've read a lot about Kiet from Milan Suit under Asok BTS who's stitching prices are very competitive but fabric range is lacking. Where would one look If one was to bring higher quality fabric to him? Giovanni and Venezia on Sampeng lane have received mention; has anyone visited these shops?

I'm keen to find Duly shirt quality at Kiet + fabric cost prices.

On the other end of the spectrum, I remember finding imitation branded woolen trousers in Old Siam Plaza for approximately 800 THB. Are there any hidden treasures lurking in Pahurat market, fake/imitation or otherwise?

I've ventured into Ban Krua once in search of hand-woven Thai silk. I only managed to find one seller but I presume there are others. Has any one else looked around Ban Krua and if so, can you supply directions once crossing the Ban Krua Nua Pier foot-bridge? A description of goods and prices would also be welcome.

On the topic of Thai silk - is it worth the trip out to the Jim Thompson Sukhumvit 93 factory outlet?

Last time I had a quick look around O.P place but only had time to window shop. I would like to give it a second try.

Cheers
Wirraway is offline  
Aug 29th, 2013, 07:03 AM
  #2  
 
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you can find a nice range of fabrics at the JT outlet, over 3 floors worth. Much of it is heavy fabrics but there are some lite weight things as well--well worth an hour or two for looking.

I don't know what "unstructured" clothing is so I can't comment.

a good bkk tailor has a range of fabrics readily available to them from the various bkk markets.
rhkkmk is offline  
Aug 29th, 2013, 09:44 AM
  #3  
 
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Where is the JT outlet? I think we tried to find it last trip and were not successful. Thanks!
yestravel is offline  
Aug 29th, 2013, 04:03 PM
  #4  
 
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Greetings 'Wirr', warm welcome to Fodor's, and glad you will be returning to one of my all-time cherished business/holiday locales, beloved Bangkok. And, perusing your profile page, congrats on your engagement (wedded bliss can have its moments), love of aviation (my life these days), and your selection of The Warwick in NYC. Many years back, a joyous Warwick weekend with a then-girlfriend. Finally, noticed your location is Brisbane. Will happily confess, love Australia. I presently fly to Melbourne ~ twice a year for meetings (love her Park Hyatt) and have savoured each and every visit.

Now, can't help you with BKK tailors - my current requirements are more than adequately met with a great tailor and friend in our fine home of Singapore - but perhaps other fine Fodorites who holiday in Bangkok can offer specific suggestions. (My current and extremely brief Bangkok business trips are largely limited to the Four Seasons, one office building, and Suvarnabhumi, and her Singapore Airlines SilverKris Lounge.)

Will give an ongoing promotion to those little Jim Thompson lipstick and cosmetic cases. Over the years (decades), they have never failed to keep me in good graces with the various women in my life, personally and professionally. Best of JT fortune to you.

[And 'yestravel', don't have the exact address of the JT outlet with me ('google'...), but can assure you, some fine J. Thompson silks await your perusal and purchase. My current JT purchases are primarily from a fine JT shop *rather* convenient to the Four Seasons.]

Savour your planning, Wirr; very happy for you. Should you ever desire lodging and flying suggestions concerning our sweet city-state of Singapore and Singapore Airlines, honoured to assist. (And, noticed one of your destination wishes is South Korea. My profile page hotel review of the Park Hyatt Seoul only hints at the warmth of that special business travel locale; enjoy.)

Early and warm Friday flying and weekend wishes to you and all,

macintosh (robert)


... Singapore Airlines, You're a Great Way to Fly ...
AskOksena is offline  
Aug 29th, 2013, 04:30 PM
  #5  
 
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Can't recommend a tailor (there are tailors on every street in Bangkok). But a suggestion: if you have an article of clothing that fits you well, and you like that particular style/shape, bring it along for copying in different fabric(s). I've done this with a (man's) shirt I bought and really liked, but had it copied in woman-style (back box pleat, buttons on opposite side, etc) and I am very happy with those 4 shirts to this day. I had them done maybe 10 years ago!!
simpsonc510 is offline  
Aug 29th, 2013, 04:45 PM
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@yestravel - the JT outlet is on Sukhumvit Soi 93. I'm pretty sure that there's another one on Suriwongse road near to their main shop as well.
Hanuman is offline  
Aug 29th, 2013, 04:48 PM
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Soi 93 is close to On Nut skytrain station, but I wouldn't walk all the way down to the outlet. I always grab a taxi when I get off the skytrain at On Nut.
simpsonc510 is offline  
Aug 29th, 2013, 05:09 PM
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simpsonc510, we just walked from the JT outlet to the BTS station 2 weeks ago and it didn't seem like it was far enough to need to take a taxi. But, I just searched and it's 1.1 km (.68 miles), so I guess it's in that gray area of walking/taxi. On the whole, I think we walked more than most just because we liked to see things in more detail while we walked.
jlaughs is offline  
Aug 29th, 2013, 05:27 PM
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It's a taxi ride away from On Nut, but walkable, IMO, from the closest BTS station. The BTS used to stop at On Nut, now there are many stations past On Nut, including one pretty close to the outlet store (sorry, I can't remember the name).

There is also an outlet store on Suriwongse, across from the main JT store. It has only yard goods, unlike the other store which has a good variety of things in addition to rolls of fabric. As Bob mentions, they carry lots of upholstery/drapery fabric as well as fabric for clothing.
Kathie is offline  
Aug 29th, 2013, 05:35 PM
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Kathie, I'm surprised that there is a closer station than On Nut. I realize there are more stations past On Nut, which used to be the END of the line. You do pay extra baht to ride past On Nut (or I did when I went to the "new" end in April). I think I paid another 15 baht to ride past On Nut. My BTS card with stored rides did not cover that extra charge. Anyway, I am surprised that the stop just past On Nut would be much closer to soi 93 than On Nut is. It is the walk down soi 93 in the heat that I don't enjoy. I've done it. That's why I now hop in a taxi at On Nut station.

I like the 4th floor (or is the 5th floor) at the outlet. So many great bags and clothing and such, but in "old" fabric patterns (nobody knows that I have "old" JT fabric in downstate Illinois!!).
simpsonc510 is offline  
Aug 29th, 2013, 05:38 PM
  #11  
 
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"Bang Chak" is the closes station to Soi 93.
Hanuman is offline  
Aug 29th, 2013, 05:43 PM
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@AskOksena - Thank you. I have already booked return flights using SA but thanks for the suggestion; you can't go wrong with an airline consistently in the Skytrax top 5. I won't have time to get out of Changi this time but I would like to explore Singapore in the future; I'm under the impression that Singapore is home to quite a few aerospace companies...

I'll either use Thai or Bangkok Air if I choose to do some internal flying.


When I say unstructured, I'm predominantly referring to jackets/blazers/sports coats. This would mean no padding of the shoulders and little to no inner structure (such as canvas or fusing).

The reason for this is twofold: I don't have the time in Bangkok required by a genuine tailor to properly construct a suit; and secondly, dealing with interfacing or canvas requires a great amount of skill. The workmanship of a tailor is most noticeable in the structure of a garment, which is also hardest to alter. Purchasing less structured garment mitigates the risks associated with workmanship.

If I'm happy with the results of a particular tailor, I will comission a more demanding garment on my next visit.

Regarding the 'replication' of garments, is it reasonable to expect that a mainstay tailor can generate a near-exact match of a provided pair of trouser? For example, I have a charcoal sharkskin 130's VBC pair I wish to copy exactly. I'd be keen for them to generate a waistcoat also to match.

I've read that Pinky's has a wide range of fabric and charges less for stitching than a tailor such as Tanika - perfect for 'copy' jobs. I previously mentioned Tanika as a tailor who's able to create garments rather than copy.

Are there any other recommendations regarding raw material - Egyptian cotton, linen and cotton-silk blends? Can Giza cotton weaves be found anywhere in China town/Pahurat?

I'm trying to avoid the tailor mark-ups on materials easily found in the markets.
Wirraway is offline  
Aug 29th, 2013, 06:26 PM
  #13  
 
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Thanks all for the direction. Will definitely seek it out on our trip this winter.
yestravel is offline  
Aug 29th, 2013, 06:37 PM
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Carol, it was Kuranosuke that told me about the closer station.

I agree the 4th floor at the outlet is fun. I've found so many great things there!
Kathie is offline  
Aug 29th, 2013, 06:47 PM
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I'd just like to add that their customer service is absolutely wonderful. Surprisingly so. My bf and I each bought enough to get the VAT refund. They told us that we would get the most benefit by combining our receipts, so my bf took my receipt and took care of getting the refund. Upon arriving back home (we took different flights), I asked him for my receipt as I keep all my receipts and he said that they kept it when he got the VAT refund. I was actually a bit upset about this as I would have made a copy for myself or even taken info off of it beforehand had I known I wouldn't get it back. I got sick almost immediately after returning home, so it was a week before I emailed the Jim Thompson Outlet via their website explaining what happened and asking if there was any way I could get a copy of my receipt. I thought it was a long shot, but couldn't hurt to try. Within 2-3 days, they emailed me a copy of my receipt. Wow! And, I think it only took that long because they had to ask me what name the VAT refund was under. Amazing!
jlaughs is offline  
Aug 30th, 2013, 06:51 AM
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the main outlet is on the left side of soi 93 when arriving from sukhumvit. it's down about two blocks... it's a free standing cement building with a huge brown JT sign out front. you can't miss it. I always use a taxi. I no longer take the skytrain there. I just like to arrive not dripping wet from walking...

the other outlet, the last time we visited, was located on the same side of suriwongse as the main store but several blocks nearer to the river and new road. it has far less, mostly fabric, although my wife has bought a few yards of light weight cottons and silks there.
rhkkmk is offline  
Sep 1st, 2013, 10:20 PM
  #17  
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Hi guys,

On the topic of shopping in the markets, does anyone know if it is possible/what kind of RTW men's clothing might be available? For instance, can one find OCBD shirts or cotton trousers in the markets. Surely the big departments stores are not the only place to pick up dress shirts and trousers.
Wirraway is offline  
Sep 3rd, 2013, 04:22 PM
  #18  
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Speaking of On Nut, has anyone visited the night bazaar; apparently there is quite a bit of clothing on sale there? Is it worth hanging around after visiting the JT outlet?
Wirraway is offline  
Sep 3rd, 2013, 04:30 PM
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don't know your size but much of the readi to wear stuff in bkk is too small for westerners
rhkkmk is offline  
Sep 3rd, 2013, 04:57 PM
  #20  
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I thought this would be an issue - I was working towards it:

Shirts 16"/34" (42" chest)
Trousers 35"/30"

I managed to find trousers going all the way up to 38" in Old Siam Plaza. It gave me hope that some venders carry "extra-large" Thai sizes. I was hoping others had found some.
Wirraway is offline  
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