Bespoke suits vs off the rack suits – what’s the difference?

21 July 2022

Having a suit in one’s wardrobe is a necessity for at least five occasions in life, and there is a myriad of options available to acquire a suit. Two popular options are a bespoke suit and one bought off the rack, both of which are very different in their own way. We’re going to break down the difference between these two so you’re looking suit-able for your next occasion.

Read on to discover more.

The difference between a bespoke suit and an off the rack suit

The main difference between bespoke and off the rack suits is that bespoke suits are made from scratch, whereas off the rack ones are prefabricated. Ready to wear suits will be sized and crafted based on general male sizing, so you’ll never find a suit from a retailer that will be a perfect fit. However, a bespoke suit will be made to measure by an expert tailor, who will stitch a suit that fits your exact body shape.

The second notable difference is price. The majority of the time an off the rack suit will often come in at a lower price point than a bespoke suit given that less time, effort and quality materials are required to create the suit. Whereas attention to detail and to the wearer are all part of the bespoke process, not to mention the careful selection of exceptional, high-quality materials. For this reason, opting for a bespoke suit will have more long-term advantages than off the rack.

Benefits of bespoke suits

Here are but a few of the benefits of a bespoke suit:

Uniquely Yours

As part of the bespoke process, clients have full creative control to design the suit in any direction they choose. You can highlight your own individual style in any way you see fit, from the colour, pattern, buttons, hidden pockets and more.

For example, if you have a set of buttons you want to use, or a pattern or initials that hold a a special place in your heart, you can feature this in your suit. You and your tailor can build your suit around any element you wish.

Exceptional fit

You’ve likely had suits in your past that haven’t quite fit, maybe on the torso, maybe the sleeves were too long, or perhaps the trouser legs were too baggy. This is the inevitable consequence of buying off the rack.

With a bespoke suit, everything is taken into consideration, from the way you stand and your body shape to the way you naturally move. All this can only be determined by a trained eye and is something that can never be replicated when buying off the rack. With your tailor having taken your measurements, a bespoke suit will flatter you in all the right places, showcasing the confident and sophisticated version of yourself.

Last a lifetime

Although a bespoke suit may have a higher upfront cost than off the rack suits,  the quality materials and expert craftsmanship that go into making the garment add value and longevity to the suit. The garment will comfortably outlast any off the rack suit, meaning you will save time and money over time, as many ready to wear garments are not made durable enough for frequent wear.

What’s more, should any issues occur over time with your bespoke suit, or you damage it mistakenly, you can always return to your tailor to have it mended without compromising any element of the suit. Therefore, the longevity of your bespoke suit is all part of the investment.

Bespoke suits at Andrew Brookes

By now, the differences between a bespoke suit and an off the rack suit should be much clearer, and you’ve likely determined that the fit of a bespoke suit is unrivalled. The power of a well-fitted suit should never be dismissed as the quality will speak for itself and, let’s face it, when you look good, you feel good!

As leading tailors in Edinburgh, we craft beautiful bespoke suits for customers worldwide. Each of our garments is elegant, unique and modern, tailored specifically to each client’s personality and style.

If you want to know more about our bespoke services, you can book an appointment here and we’ll be in touch about creating something special for you.


At Andrew Brookes Tailoring, we offer a wide range of luxury tailoring services to our customers. Offering bespoke suits, designs and accessories suitable for every occasion, check out our collections below.

Bespoke Tailoring

The finest materials, personalised designs and classic fitting experience all make up our bespoke tailoring service.


Highland Dress

Traditional Scottish style with a modern twist, you’re sure to stand out from the crowd with a piece from our highland wear collection.


Wedding Suits

Helping people look their best on the most important day of their lives, we craft exquisite, bespoke wedding suits that will live long in the memory of all in attendance.


Tailored Jeans

A pair of timeless denim jeans is crucial for every wardrobe. Our team takes this one step further with a fully tailored jeans service that will introduce you to a pair that you’ll never want to part with.


Bespoke Shirts

Feel cool, confident and comfortable with a custom-tailored shirt made from the finest quality materials and cutting edge techniques.


Polo shirts and T-shirts

Casual or smart? Whatever the occasion our range of versatile polos and T-shirts has something suitable for every event.



Want to add some stylish accessories to your new look? We can help with this, too. We’re home to a vast selection of stunning belts, ties, pocket squares, sporrans and much more.