Indochino: Bridging the Gap between Custom Apparel, Style and Affordability - Chitown Fashionista

16 August 2012 / By Gabriel Charles Tyler

Indochino: Bridging the Gap between Custom Apparel, Style and Affordability


Indochino, the Vancouver-based online custom menswear company,  got its start in 2006, when Co-founder Heikal Gani found himself annoyed with having no option but to purchase an off-the-rack suit that required extensive and expensive tailoring. Heikal, believing men were being treated like “second-class fashion retail citizens,” partnered with his best friend and classmate, Kyle Vucko, to create a solution to providing men with custom tailored garments at affordable prices and with stylish options. To bridge that gap, the duo created Indochino.

Since its launch in 2007, Indochino has grown tremendously, including 55 employees based in Vancouver, Canada and Shanghai, China, and outfitting over 40,000 men in 60 countries across the world in custom apparel.

Strictly an online-based experience, the custom menswear company has developed offline touchpoints to compliment its online presence and budding demand: the Traveling Tailor pop-up store. This past Tuesday, Indochino’s pop-up tailor store hit the United States, setting up shop in Chicago’s Great Hall in Union Station.

Indochino Co-Founder Kyle Vucko had nothing but good things to say about the Windy City, including his interest in Chicago’s famous deep dish pizza.

“We’re big fans of Chicago. It was one of our biggest cities early on in the company — some of our first customers were here, and as we grow, Chicago is kind of growing with us,” Vucko said.

Choosing Chicago and the Great Hall was a no brainer for the custom apparel company.

“Chicago also has great history and a beautiful space here at the Great Hall,” Vucko said.

The Indochino Traveling Tailor setup in Chicago’s Union Station.

The main issue with many custom online brands is that many customers desire to touch and hold what they’re buying. That’s why Indochino’s Traveling Tailor is such a hit — for the first time, men who found self-measuring and choosing fabrics and details online difficult or a turn-off, are able to experience Indochino in person.

When asked about what sparked interest in creating physical touchpoints for men to experience Indochino, Vucko said, “There’s a lot of opportunity to create stylish clothing and put it in a fresh setting, and that’s what I think this is about: how do you make stylish clothing palatable and fun for the average guy?”

The Traveling Tailor experience is definitely far from the traditional suit shopping drag. The layout of the site features samples of all their wares as well as on-the-spot fittings. In about 15 minutes the fit-specialists measure you, prep the fabrics you’d want and help you put through an order.

A few Indochino suits and styled looks on display.

In order to make the best garments possible, Indochino uses your body measurements to create a completely custom suit that’s meant to fit you perfectly. Each stylist takes about 10 unique measurements, making sure each measurement is accurate. Then, you’re asked to try on a sample suit, numbered based on your proportions. The entire process is rather fool-proof, and if an order requires adjustments, Indochino will provide a credit of up to $75 for local tailoring.

Melvin, the other half of Mrs. ChiTown Fashionista, getting measured by Tyler Mazzucco, a Master Stylist at Indochino.

To add a cherry on top, each suit purchase will be accompanied by the Suit Utility Kit — a $148 value. The kit includes a neck tie, pocket square, tie clip, cuff links and tape measure, that’s perfect to get every guy started on maintaining his “dapper.”

The free suit utility kit that comes with every Indochino suit purchase.

Perks, like the Suit Utility Kit, make Indochino stand out — they’re all about helping guys look great without breaking the bank.

“I’m a real classics guy. I think as a company, we just really like to help guys do the basics right,” Vucko said.

The down-to-earth appeal and knowledgeable fashion and style of Indochino are what sets them apart in the budding industry of affordable custom apparel for men. Vucko said it’s about more than selling trends with Indochino.

“Summer was really about how to do ginghams right and figuring out how to get that first cotton suit in. You can say that the trends are cotton and linen suits, color blocking, bright colors and stuff, but really those are basics that a lot of guys just need to buy,” Vucko said.

Indochino has a few more surprises coming up in the next few months, including new apparel options.

“For the fall, something I’m really excited about is overcoats. We have a great new line of overcoats coming out in a couple of weeks, and getting a guy to get that right, especially in a city like Chicago where it’s cold, is the next move,” Vucko said.

A look at the formal customwear Indochino offers.

There are plenty of custom tailors on the Internet these days and even more customer tailor stores and boutiques popping up nationwide. However, Indochino stands out among the rest due to its low price points — with suits starting at $379 and shirts starting at $79, the brand custom apparel is a steal.

“Not many people can afford custom apparel, but with Indochino, anybody can afford it,” Vucko said.

Gentlemen, it’s time for you to suit up! Head over to the Great Hall, which will be home to Indochino’s fit-specialists for the remainder of the week — the pop-up tailor shop will close its doors on Monday, Aug. 20. Book an appointment today: Let them know ChiTown Fashionista sent you.

To really make your day, Indochino is offering every customer a few deals that I consider VIP treatment, including a free dress shirt (a value of $79) with every suit purchase when you RSVP for a measurement appointment. From Aug. 14 – 17, between 8 a.m. and  5 p.m., Indochino is also hooking customers up with a discounted UBER ride to and from Union Station. Use code “INDOCHINO12” to receive a 50% off discount on your ride.

Come back and tell us what you purchased.

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About The Author

Gabriel Charles Tyler

Gabriel Charles Tyler is a journalist, fashion blogger, consultant and Chicago native. A recent graduate of DePaul University, where he majored in journalism, Gabriel has developed a methodological approach to finding stories in the most obscure places. This budding journalist is looking to make his mark on the world through news writing, with a focus on cultural and social issues, race and religion. He has been published in a number of print and digital publications, including The DePaulia, CS Modern Luxury, NS Modern Luxury, CS Brides, Time Out Chicago, The Red Line Project, CY Magazine and R. Legacy. Among his many positions, this young journalist currently serves as the Editor-at-Large of R. Legacy. He is a member of the National Association of Black Journalists, as well as a Fohr Card verified blogger.

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