8/8/11

As a former Brooks Brothers employee, I have a fairly in depth knowledge of appropriate business attire, current trends in suiting, and also the quality of Brooks Brothers clothing (and how they compare to other brands).

Fire away.

Comments (52)

8/8/11

Do stores carry slim-fit dress shirts without the front pen-pocket? I was told by the store representative that only French-collar shirts are on stock without the front pocket and that I'd have to custom order. True?

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8/8/11
smalleights:

Do stores carry slim-fit dress shirts without the front pen-pocket? I was told by the store representative that only French-collar shirts are on stock without the front pocket and that I'd have to custom order. True?

Smalleights,

Unfortunately all the non-iron cotton slim fit shirts have the front pocket, except the ones with French cuff, as you noted. The only way you can get around this, is by buying like you said, custom shirts OR buying their 'luxury' shirts. The luxury shirts typically range in full retail price of 135-168 per shirt, but buying 2 will give you a better price. You can also wait till clearance (which happens twice a year and is happening right now), and get them for 50% off. So potentially 67-84 dollars a shirt, which is the price an employee, would pay for them.

I would advise going online AND in the store to look for luxury shirts, because online only shows what is available through catalog, and if you see a shirt in the store/catalog you like, the sales associate most likely can get it at another store in the country and have it shipped to you

no way kimosabe, this is my house now --Brennan Huff

8/8/11

can you compare it to canali, brioni, kiton, etc...in terms of quality?

"Life all comes down to a few moments. This is one of them." - Bud Fox

8/8/11
noke2012:

can you compare it to canali, brioni, kiton, etc...in terms of quality?

To be honest, most of Brooks Brothers clothing does not compare in quality to canali, brioni, and ktion. That being said, you still can buy items in Brooks Brothers that have the same quality and workmanship as many high brands.
The typical dress shirt at Brooks Brothers is $88, and is %100 cotton with a non-iron finish. This chemical finish that they put on the shirts makes them less breathable, and also causes them to wear faster if you have them dry cleaned or ironed. The majority of those other brands shirts does not have any finish on them, and should be laundered after wearing. The chemical finish makes it a great work shirt, and allows the owner to put it in the dryer and have a ironed look if hung immediately, but does have an adverse effect on the quality.

Although, as noted in my previous response, you can buy their upper level "luxury shirts", which are made of Egyptian or Sea Island cotton, and those would be of comparable quality. Also similar comparisons can be made with Brooks Brothers Golden Fleece suits, which are of higher quality than their 1818 collection suits.

no way kimosabe, this is my house now --Brennan Huff

8/8/11

I am interested in wearing only euro-cut suits and shirts...nothing worse than a baggy dressy shirt and pants...

where should i be shopping and what should i be looking for if I want relatively slim shirts and suit pants?

or do i need to get suits tailored to achieve the slimmer pant leg?

8/8/11
StoudeMelo:

I am interested in wearing only euro-cut suits and shirts...nothing worse than a baggy dressy shirt and pants...

where should i be shopping and what should i be looking for if I want relatively slim shirts and suit pants?

or do i need to get suits tailored to achieve the slimmer pant leg?

From Brooks, look for Milano cut. Look at Saks if you want higher end.

no way kimosabe, this is my house now --Brennan Huff

  • Anonymous Monkey
  • 6/9/16

I'm tall and slim (6'3" 185) and I absolutely love the "Milano" fit from Brooks brothers. I overheard in a store today that the Regent fit is also a slim one, but I don't know for certain. The Red Fleece line is also a slimmer, more modern look.

8/8/11

thanks!

"Life all comes down to a few moments. This is one of them." - Bud Fox

8/8/11

This is hilarious.

"After you work on Wall Street it's a choice, would you rather work at McDonalds or on the sell-side? I would choose McDonalds over the sell-side." - David Tepper

Best Response
8/8/11

what are the exit opps from BB? Do you now work at Saks?

"Jesus, he's like a gremlin; comes with instructions and shit"

8/8/11
JimmyDormandy:

what are the exit opps from BB? Do you now work at Saks?

Yea I work at Saks now, figured it was a better opportunity.

But no, I worked there while attending college.

no way kimosabe, this is my house now --Brennan Huff

8/8/11

I have a 3.8 from a non-target, good EC, intern at a boutique, do I have a shot at breaking in to BB?

7/23/14

Only with old wealth, maybe just then.

8/8/11

Could someone please rank the best departments within BB? Also, could you please rank the department stores in order of prestige?

8/8/11

What percentage of male shoppers nowadays do you think can be described as foppish or dandies?

8/9/11
shera:

What percentage of male shoppers nowadays do you think can be described as foppish or dandies?

too many to count.

no way kimosabe, this is my house now --Brennan Huff

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8/8/11

is this really happening. I over-looked this thread thinking is was "Brown Brothers Harriman" and thought I'd read through it.

LMFAO

8/8/11

Why are Jos A Bank employees so goddamn stupid? Quality of their stuff is horrendous too. I will never go in one of those stores ever again.

8/9/11

LOL +1 on comment about Jos A Bank employees. One time I asked the guy working there what's the difference between a "signature suit" and a "signature gold suit" and his answer was "the signature gold suits are more expensive."

8/31/11

Any comments on which (if any) Brooks Brothers outlets are worth going to? I shop at BB for some of my work clothes, but usually during sales, as they seem to happen pretty frequently. I was wondering if you knew of any of the BB outlets that actually carry mainline BB stuff instead of that '346' made-for-outlet garbage that I've seen in the past.

Also - who makes the BB MTM shirts? And I'd be interested to hear who makes the various lines of BB shoes. I think Alden and Crockett & Jones do some of them, but I'd love to hear the breakdown if you know it at all.

Hi, Eric Stratton, rush chairman, damn glad to meet you.

8/31/11

For the most part, the clothes at Brooks Brothers Outlet, like you noted, are made specifically for the outlet, as designated by the '346'. There is a very noticeable difference in quality, and it is reflected in the price point of most the items. One of the biggest differences is in the shirts, with the sleeve lengths of the outlet shirts only going to 34/35, or 32/33, instead of the more precise measurement to the nearest inch.

Although, whatever the Retail stores do not sell, will eventually go to outlet. At the outlet it will usually be 60% off the tag price. It really does depend when go to the outlet if you will find any real Brooks Brothers clothes. Again for the most part, its all '346' clothing. No outlets carry all mainline Brooks Brothers clothing, but one might have more just based on shipments from the retailers.

The MTM shirts are processed I believe in the CT factory, so not far away. The MTM measure shirt quality depends on the fabric you choose, and will adjust the price accordingly.

For shoes, many are made by Peal & co, Alden, and a few various other makers depending on partnership year to year. The store I worked in did not carry shoes, but I remember all this just from calling other stores. I have a pair of the calf skin shoes by Peal & co, and they are a quality shoe, worth their money. Also, I believe the Cordovans are made by Alden. Those are the higher end shoes brooks carries.

If you want a good tip, Brooks has their two biggest sales in January and July, call them then, set aside some items, and wait during the 'clearance' sale to buy. Can save you upwards of 60%. Although make sure when calling that the items will be going on sale. Almost everything does, but double check.

no way kimosabe, this is my house now --Brennan Huff

8/31/11

Thank you DNOSaur for taking the time out to do this:

I have just one quick question:

Has Brooks Brothers ever thought of changing its acronym from BB to BKB or BBros because it is confusing with BB for Bulge Brackets?

Thanks

8/31/11
fling:

Thank you DNOSaur for taking the time out to do this:

I have just one quick question:

Has Brooks Brothers ever thought of changing its acronym from BB to BKB or BBros because it is confusing with BB for Bulge Brackets?

Thanks

yes that have thought about it.

no way kimosabe, this is my house now --Brennan Huff

9/11/12

BB ties seem too long!!! Only gripe I have.

9/16/12

solid store.

10/25/12

How does the BB 346 suit compare to the JAB signature suit? The 346 suits I saw the other day were 100% wool.

10/28/12

when will BB produce the same wide array of colors and styles for extra slim fit as they have for all other sizes :(

11/4/12

"For shoes, many are made by Peal & co, Alden, and a few various other makers depending on partnership year to year." Peal & Co shoes are made by other companies and branded Peal. The makers include Crockett & Jones, Alfred Sargent, and Loake. You are not much of a BB expert if you think Peal makes shoes.

11/11/12

Does anyone know what the employee discount is? From my understanding, it's 50% off -- but is that only for regularly priced merchandise? What about for merchandise that is already on sale?

12/6/12

Is there a rule of thumb for what type of collar one should choose for your body's type (I'm medium build to heavy)?

12/6/12

Spread collar if you have broad shoulders or are wider/heavier build.

12/13/12

cheese86:
Spread collar if you have broad shoulders or are wider/heavier build.

Other way around. Spread collars are for trim people who want to look flatter/wider. Point collars are for heavy set people wanting to look thinner/longer.
  • Anonymous Monkey
  • 12/6/15
cheese86:

Spread collar if you have broad shoulders or are wider/heavier build.

This is very wrong advice. It is actually the opposite. If you are a heavy male with a wide neck the you go with a forward point collar to give balance to your face. Additionally, if you have a slim face then you go with a spread collar. It is all about bring balance to your wardrobe. I work in men's high fashion and at times quite amazed by the amount of bad advise given.

Side note: Brooks Brothers owns Peal & Co name and uses other shoes manufacturers like Alfred Sargent, Crockett & Jones, Allen Edmond, and Alden as well.The "shell cordovan" leather shoes under the Peal & Co name are made by Alden while the regular Peals are by Crockett & Jones. The Allen Edmonds will state Brooks Brothers made by Allen Edmonds if they were manufactured in 2015 while the older on will just say Brooks Brothers but the look and feel like will be mistakenly Allen Edmonds. Brooks Brothers also carry Edward Green shoes as well.

A far as Brooks Brothers suits. If you buy off the rack in the main store then the suit silhouettes are Madison ( full cut) Fitzgerald ( American athletic fit) Regent British inspired fit) Milano ( Italian inspired extra slim fit) this is also the same thing for their shirts. If you want a better fitting suit or shirt then go with their Made to Measure option. The choice of fabrics will dictate your cost however, they have a very large selection of fabric grades to choose from.

A lot has changed since the original author posted this so I though I needed update. As of 12/09/15 a lot has changed with Brooks Brothers while some things remained the same.

  • Anonymous Monkey
  • 3/9/16

Being a recent prior military fellow, I never really had to put much thought into wearing a suit. Years ago though, I started at places like JCPs and Dillard's. Then bumped it up (try to keep laughter down to a minimum) to Macy's. This year I said no more to department stores. I went to Men's Warehouse. Although they have great service at their Highland Park location (upscale Dallas suburb), their signature suit Joseph Abboud just didn't fit perfectly straight in the top shoulders, especially for two suits for $1000. But since I was buying them as I get back into the civilian work force, I was happy with them. That all ended when one day I was strolling through a Plano, TX mall and my curiosity steered me into a BrooksBros. for the first time. As I started trying on suits, I knew....oh baby....this is my new store to buy my presidential looking suits. After picking out a navy Fitz 1818, that only had to shorten the sleaves, I was at a crossroads: Buy something I didn't need, but look great in and setting the high-price and quality standard or piss my wife off even more for spending another $1000 on just one suit? Hmmmm. I BOUGHT THAT BADBOY! Now I use Men's to alter my Brooks suits.

12/13/12

I like that BB is a size smaller than polo so it doesn't make me feel fat.

12/20/12

when's the next semi-annual sale for brooks brothers? January? Or is the post-christmas sale bigger?

12/20/12

Vectors225:
when's the next semi-annual sale for brooks brothers? January? Or is the post-christmas sale bigger?

Word on the street is the Boxing Day sale is the way to go.

http://styleforum.net/t/243159/when-is-the-nex...

I would check this thread periodically as they have good posts about Brooks Brothers sales.

Hi, Eric Stratton, rush chairman, damn glad to meet you.

12/26/12

My sil wears a 39 reg suit. I found a 40 reg 3 piece at a great sale price. Would it be ok or too big?

1/30/14

Is a 346 suit of a good quality, I've only heard bad comments about it, so as a beginner in the suit world this comments are really influencing in my decision, so you can help me here, obviously because you work with them, thank you!!

1/30/14

luishdzm:

Is a 346 suit of a good quality, I've only heard bad comments about it, so as a beginner in the suit world this comments are really influencing in my decision, so you can help me here, obviously because you work with them, thank you!!

You bumped an old thread. The 346 line seems quite mediocre.

7/23/14

As a 70's something, mostly retired I allow me a rare extravagance from time to time. To that end I purchased on line a brooks Bros Country Club Saxxon wool double breasted navy blazer,. eagerly awaiting its arrival. Was I disappointed! The coat lapels are all puckered or rippled. I had expected far better service

12/28/17

It is my understanding that all Brooks Brothers suits and blazers are meant to be brought into a store to be fitted even if you order it online. I just got a new blazer from Brooks Brothers and it was a boxy fit. I took it in for alterations and now it fits perfectly.

7/29/14

How would you compare the quality of the 1818 suits with the suiting essentials custom suits (half the price)?

7/31/14

I have a question for former Brooks Brothers employee.
Please rank the following brands in terms of prestige, quality, convenience, price, etc:
Brooks Brothers, Paul Smith and Burberry.
Which one is the best for investment banker ?
Thanks,

12/7/15

I am 6'4'' 225 and relatively low body fat (usually 10-15% range plus broad shoulders small waist)

Where can I find some clothes that actually fit!?!!?!

12/9/15

I was a former Brooks Brothers' made-to-measure specialist in LA.

You are not going to find anything that fits you off-the-rack if your ACTUAL chest measurement is eight inches larger than your waist at a reasonable price.

There are plenty of cheap on-line places to get made-to-measure from. I would give them a try and have a tailor perform the measurements. It's not perfect, but that is what will take to fit most of the junior guys on this forum.

12/9/15

thanks!

12/28/17

Brooks Brothers. It is my understanding that all of their suits are meant to be brought in for alterations and fitting after purchase. Even if you purchase it online.

  • Anonymous Monkey
  • 6/6/16

How would a brooks brothers employee use their employee discount online

11/17/16

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