Hello everyone, and welcome to another Singaporean review! This Saturday, I’m reviewing the fit and craftsmanship of the tuxedo I had commissioned from Ehkay Corner Tailors.
If you have not yet done so, do read Part 1 of the article here, whereby I chronicled my experience of having a tuxedo commissioned from Ehkay Corner Tailors.
Without further ado, let’s see how the fit turned out! Do note – all below photos are unedited, and taken with natural lighting. What you see is what it looks like in real life.
Update: I’m pleased to offer curated tailoring packages from Ehkay Corner Tailors on The Shiok Shop. If you’re looking for bang-for-buck deals, do check out the webstore.
Ehkay Corner Tailors – the Fit
Despite their very affordable price tag, Ehkay Corner Tailors incorporate a Muslin fitting – which is uncommon amongst affordable tailors!
Let’s start with the front. First and foremost, the tuxedo is of the right snugness – I could button the jacket without feeling constrained. One doesn’t see the “dreaded X” around the jacket button here. In addition, the waist is well-tapered. I have wider hips, but the jacket here is tailored so that it follows and drapes along the contours of my body nicely. One of the clear signs of a shoddily tailored/off the rack suit is that it looks like a “body sack” – that is to say, it makes the wearer looks rectangular. Luckily, that doesn’t happen here! Also, I would say that the jacket is of the right length, with it ending right around the center of my palm. However, I think that the shoulders on the tuxedo could have been cut better. The fit of my left shoulder (right side of the image above) is good – the shoulder lies flat, without wrinkles. However, we do see a bit of rumpling and wrinkles on the fit of my right shoulder (left side of the image above). Both shoulders are cut to length – they end at my shoulder bone, and as such there’s the absence of the dreaded shoulder divots. This indicates to me that the wrinkles are probably caused by excess fabric created due to my disproportionately sloped shoulders. As evident from the photo above, my shoulders are sloped differently, with my right shoulder being significantly lower than my left. When this slope isn’t accommodated for properly, there will be excess fabric, which will result in wrinkles.
I’m pleasantly surprised by the fit of the sleeves! For the most part, it drapes cleanly, with minimal wrinkles. As aforementioned, we don’t see the presence of the dreaded shoulder divots here – one of the cardinal sins of tailoring, in my opinion. The sleeve pitch is almost nailed as well – in fact, I would say that the fit of the sleeves from Ehkay Corner Tailors is probably in the top 3 of all the tailors I’ve reviewed thus far, bested only by bespoke tailors thrice/quadruple its price. The sleeve pitch is one of the hardest aspect of the fit to nail as it depends on the client’s natural stance and posture – and these (unlike other aspects of the fit) cannot be measured with tape and recorded down in numbers. Thomas Mahon, one of Saville Row’s most prominent tailors, once said: “…even after all the diligence of checking again and again, things can go wrong, and pitch is often where disaster strikes.” This was where the benefits of the Muslin fitting exhibited itself! Lastly, the lack of wrinkles also indicates that the sleeves are of the correct width – they are neither too tight, nor too loose throughout the entirety of the arm. The sleeve length is just right as well, ending just right around my wrist-bone, showing a tad of the shirt underneath. Elsewhere, one can see that the jacket collar is properly fitted as well – it rests upon the shirt collar nicely, and there isn’t a significant gap in between.
Moving on to the back, the tapering of the waist is evident, giving the wearer a “slimming” effect. Unfortunately, there are visible wrinkles in the arch area of my back, caused by excess fabric. As I’ve mentioned in previous tailoring reviews, I have a significantly arched back, which often results in the presence of wrinkles near the arched portion of my back. Till date, no tailors have been able to deliver a fully clean back. However, compared to other affordable tailors that I’ve reviewed, I would say that Ehkay Corner did the best job with my back, with lesser wrinkles.
As we were going for a classic look -this is a tuxedo, after all- we decided on a half-break look. I’m glad to say that I think it turned out well! The pants are of my desired length, gently caressing the tip of my dress shoes.
I think the shirt fits pretty well too! In particular, I like that it’s cut to accentuate the broadness of the shoulders. However, if I were to nitpick, one can still see slight wrinkles on my right shoulder (left side of image above). The left shoulder (right side of the image above) fits perfectly – the shoulder of the shirt lies flat, without wrinkles, and ends at my natural shoulder bone. In comparison, the excess fabric on the right shoulder results in slight wrinkles. Again, this is probably due to the uneven slope of my shoulders. That being said, most layman probably wouldn’t even notice this – you probably didn’t too, until I just pointed it out! Elsewhere, the wrinkles that one see on the forearm is again due to excess fabric, which is there to provide greater mobility. Full cotton shirt (such as this one) has a tendency to wrinkle easily due to the softness of the material.
Lastly, the length of the shirt is good as well, ending near the base of my palm. In addition, Ehkay Corner Tailors ensured that the left cuff is slightly wider than the right, in order to accommodate a dress watch underneath.
Overall, I would say that I’m pretty impressed by the fit of Ehkay Corner Tailors. The fit of the sleeves and back of the tuxedo jacket is probably the best that I have experienced so far amongst affordable tailors, bested only by bespoke tailors thrice/quadruple their price. My main knock would be the fit of the shoulders – however, given the fact that suits at Ehkay Corner Tailors start at just $236 (after promo code below), I would say that they provide good fit for the money!
Ehkay Corner Tailors – the Craftmanship
Despite the low price tag, the craftmanship of the tuxedo I got from Ehkay Corner Tailors is quite good!
Firstly, I like the lapel roll present here. Usually, a lapel roll is indicative of canvassing within the lapels of the suit. In contrast, the lapels of fused suits often look flat, almost ironed on – lacking in dimension and presence.
For this tuxedo, I went for a shawl lapel. Usually, one goes for either a peak or shawl lapel on a tuxedo – it’s a personal preference, but I like a shawl lapel more due to its gentle curvature. In addition, the lapels (as well as pockets and buttons) of a tuxedo jacket should be finished with satin for a lustrous, more formal look. This is one of the main reason why a tuxedo often cost much more than a usual suit!
As mentioned earlier, buttons on a tuxedo should be fashioned out of satin, and the packets should also be trimmed with satin. Also, tuxedo jackets are often single-buttoned, as compared to suits which usually features two buttons. Lastly, tuxedos should use covered buttons, rather than regular buttons.
On a regular suit, one would see either single (down the middle) vents, or double vents. However, tuxedos are often ventless for a cleaner look. Yes – there are a lot of subtle difference between a tuxedo, and a regular suit. These differences should be explained and communicated to you by your tailor, but it is good for one to be aware of the differences as well! However, if these details are intimating, no worries – Ehkay Corner Tailors has been tailoring tuxedos for over three decades now, and will certainly take care of these details for you. To be honest, I wasn’t aware of some of these differences myself before Dinesh explained them to me.
As there are certain stylistic traditions to follow when it comes to a tuxedo, the main opportunity for you to express yourself and have some fun is in the lining. Here, I decided to opt for a subtle black paisley pattern – the pattern keeps it from being boring, without being too flashy which would go against the classic look of a tuxedo. Do note – linings at Ehkay Corner Tailors is a paid add-on.
Customers can also choose to customise the inner pocket of their suits for an additional charge. Here, we went with a “gun” pocket – something interesting, and different from the usual inner pocket. In addition, monograms are available too, as a paid add-on. Interestingly, one can even choose the thread colour for the monogram – we went with red here, as red and black always make for a striking colour combination.
If you don’t know how to fold a pocket square (or simply don’t have one), suits from Ehkay Corner Tailors come with an in-built pocket square, which is fashioned out of the same material/design of the jacket’s inner lining. I personally think this is quite a handy and convenient feature!
On tuxedo pants, one should see satin pipings running along the side. Again, this is one of the key difference between a tuxedo and a regular suit.
Moving on to shirts, a tuxedo shirt is too significantly different from a usual dress shirt. Firstly, the tuxedo shirts often feature wingtip collars, which pairs best with a bow-tie (as seen above). Wingtip collars exposes the band of the bow-tie, making for a more formal, black-tie look.
Another key difference is that tuxedo shirts often come with either a pleated or pique bib front. Here, we went with a more traditional pleated front. Pleats are always made with the same shirt fabric, ensuring that it will match with the tuxedo shirt well. In addition, we also decided to go with a covered placket (which hides the shirt buttons) for a cleaner look.
Lastly, one should always either wear a cummerbund (seen above) or a vest with a tuxedo. Usually, a cummerbund goes best with a shawl lapel, and a vest best with a peak lapel. Traditionally, a tuxedo looks incomplete without either a cummerbund or vest, though contemporary high fashion has often done away with this particular accessory. Key things to note – the cummerbund should be worn with the pleats facing up, with half the cummerbund covering the shirt, and the latter half the waistband of the pants.
All in all, I’m pretty very satisfied with the craftsmanship of the tuxedo from Ehkay Corner Tailors, and how it turned out. I like that the tuxedo is half-canvassed (as opposed to fused on most affordable tailors), and the mixed wool fabric feels light and breathable on the skin as well. There’s certain traditions to follow when commissioning a tuxedo, as explained above – if you’re unfamiliar, it’s the tailor’s job to explain the details of a tuxedo to you. This is the first tuxedo that I have had made, and I must say Dinesh of Ehkay Corner Tailors was instrumental in my education on tuxedos and black tie events in general. In sum, I think the tuxedo turned out looking pretty good!
Comparison: Ehkay Corner Tailors vs Este Bartin
As Este Bartin is the only other affordable tailor that I’ve reviewed to incorporate a fitting process, I decided to compare both tailors together.
In terms of build quality, I would say that Ehkay Corner Tailors is better. As aforementioned, suits from Ehkay Corner are all half-canvassed, whilst suits from Este Bartin are fused. Thus, Ehkay Corner suits will likely be more durable, and drape better, than suits from Este Bartin. However, I would say that Este Bartin has the upper hand in terms of customisation choices. One gets a wider variety of choices (buttons, thread colours, shirt trimmings, linings, etc) over at Este Bartin. In addition, Este Bartin features a true baste fitting process, as compared to a muslin fitting used by Ehkay Corner Tailors. The key difference between a baste fitting and a muslin fitting is that a baste fitting uses the actual fabric that you chose, thus giving you a better idea of how your eventual suit will look.
In terms of fit, I think both tailors did a good job despite their affordable price tag. Again, I attribute this to the incorporation of a fitting process by both tailors, which most affordable tailors do away with to save cost. Este Bartin nailed the shoulders better, but Ehkay Corner did better on the sleeves.
Where Ehkay Corner Tailors has the edge on is the price. After the 10% discount below, a mixed wool suit from Ehkay Corner starts at just S$315. In comparison, a mixed wool suit from Este Bartin would set you back S$474 (after a 5% promo code)! That being said, certain customisation options -inner linings, for example- are included in the price of Este Bartin, whereas they are paid add-ons over at Ehkay Corner Tailors. Overall though, I would have to say that I find the offerings over at Ehkay Corner Tailors of better value, especially considering that their suits are half-canvassed!
Conclusion – so Ehkay Corner Tailors “shiok” or not?
Definitely so. In fact, I would say that Ehkay Corner Tailors is probably the best bang-for-buck tailor that I’ve reviewed thus far. One can get a half-canvassed, mixed wool suit starting at just S$315 with the below discount – I say that’s quite a steal (it’s even cheaper than Benjamin Barker)! In addition, fit is -for the most part- pretty good as well, due to Ehkay Corner’s incorporation of a muslin fitting process.
For those interested in commissioning a garment from Ehkay Corner Tailors, simply flash this post for a 10% discount! After the discount, a 2-piece half-canvassed suit from Ehkay Corner starts at just $234. That’s almost the same pricing as G2000 suits ($229)! In addition, a two-piece tuxedo suit would start at just $405 after the discount. However, I would personally recommend paying a little bit more and upgrade from mainly polyester fabrics to mixed wool fabrics. I recommend going for the mixed-wool $315 2-piece suit – the price difference is well worth the upgrade in fabric quality. I also recommend the $688 tuxedo set (what I got), which is inclusive of a 2-piece tuxedo suit, a tuxedo shirt, cummerbund, and accessories such as a bow-tie and pocket square. At these prices, I believe Ehkay Corner Tailors provide a terrific value proposition!
Read Part 1 of the review here, whereby I reviewed the experience of having a tuxedo tailored at Ehkay Corner Tailors!
P.S Do check out the new “Discounts!” page for exclusive discounts for Wahsoshiok readers! More brands will be added very soon – stay tuned!
Ehkay Corner Tailors’ Location:
#01-57 & #01-01 Orchard Plaza, 150 Orchard Road Singapore 238841
Photo Credits: Rachel Choo, @rachcsc