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Monday, February 16, 2009

Vintage Suit Shopping

Posted by Brett Glass on Mon, Feb 16, 2009 at 11:06 AM

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I've recently warmed to the idea of wearing a suit. The kind of two button, slim cut suit Paul Newman would have worn in the 60s.
Finding this style, however, has been a bit...challenging. Last week, I asked the people at three of my favorite vintage shops for guidance. If you're in the market for a suit with style (and don't have the cash for a custom-made Adam Arnold or Duchess suit) check out the tips below.

Avalon Antiques & Vintage Clothes
Unlike most Portland vintage stores, Avalon has a pretty tight focus on formal wear. Owner Simon Cheesman advises trying on suits all over your size range (two sizes above and below your normal jacket size). Look for fit in the shoulders and length—everything else can be tailored. To make it easy, they have a tailor on site every Thursday and Friday. Don't be afraid to ask which suits can be tailored to fit you!

Keep 'Em Flying
What this tiny store on West 21st lacks in volume, it makes up for in quality. Every suit is stylish and in great shape. Employee Alicia Justus suggests coming in regularly, as stock is updated every day. Apparently I just missed out on a YSL jacket and vest, which was sold hours after it hit the floor. Bummer.

Hollywood Vintage
With possibly the largest suit collection in the city, Hollywood Vintage can be a little daunting. According to employee Rodney Bender, suits are arranged by era, so If you're looking for a particular cut, research the period before you shop. Otherwise, you're going to have to do a lot of digging.

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