“The word suit is like a four letter word, literally,” says Thom Browne
The designer is quick to define his mission as something far beyond the stereotypes of suiting that have been thrust on him since he popularized a Super 120 gray wool twill shorty suit for guys in the mid 2010s.
“I correct everyone when they call the program made to measure suits,” Browne continues. “It’s made to measure tailoring because the idea of a suit has such a bad connotation. The last thing I want people to think is work-wear. Look, it’s great if you wear it to work, but this has nothing to do with the world of wearing it to work.”
Can you wear a suit for pleasure? It’s a loaded notion in today’s somehow impossibly retrograde world. Maybe the suit itself is to blame: Most mainstream iterations make the suit seem like a man’s garment transposed—not translated—onto a woman’s body.
Unsurprisingly there are shockingly few tailoring services for women. “For men’s, made-to-measure is a sizable part of the business,” says Browne. “Women’s is new, so it’s still growing. But I hope it’ll become more of a story in women’s because it is such a novel idea. I would love people to be able to see a lot of it.”