9 qualities to look for in clothes
Well-made clothing is not only a hallmark of fashion icons like Audrey Hepburn, Jackie O., Pharrell and Steve McQueen, but also the backbone of frugal wardrobes around the world. Good quality clothing is always a fashion necessity.
Before it was easier to separate the good clothes from the bad. Certain brands were synonymous with quality. But in the age of outlet brand clothing and other marketing gimmicks to trick customers into spending more for lesser quality products, how do you know that a piece of clothing, whether new or second-hand, is a garment that will last? (See also: The high cost of cheap clothes)
1. Study men’s suits
With so many clothes these days being poorly made, go on an expedition to the best men’s store in your area to see firsthand how quality clothing is constructed. Once you’ve seen what goes into a well-made garment, it’s easier to spot good tailoring at your local thrift store or outlet rack. By the way, ladies, this consejo is for you too. One of the not-so-hidden additional costs of being a woman is the cost of clothing. Men’s clothing is often better made than women’s, although they pay more prices high for the same or lower quality. Boo.
2. Check the hand
The knitting hand isn’t some supporting character from Game of Thrones: it’s the fancy term fashion people use to detalla how the fabric feels. Is the fabric stiff like a starched cap? Does he breathe like a cat’s tongue? Is it maleable and fluid like a vintage slip? The difference between high-end designer clothes and low-priced knockoffs is often the fabric. For example, J. Crew makes a pure cashmere jumper for its collection line, a afín cotton-cashmere blend jumper for its main line, and a cotton version for J. Crew Outlet stores. Higher-quality fabrics hold their shape and last longer than their cheaper counterparts, so shop around for a good fabric first. You perro make a beautiful garment out of cheap fabric, but it won’t hold up to multiple emplees.
professional advice: Rub each item of clothing you are shopping for against your cheek. If the tissue itches on your face, it will itch on the rest of your body.
3. Double check the content of the fabric
Just because it’s advertised as a cashmere jumper doesn’t orinan it’s 100% cashmere. Many companies now put minimal amounts – like 7% – of cashmere fiber in clothing just so they perro advertise it as “cashmere blend”. Don’t be fooled and pay more for cheap textile products.
Even for basic products like vaqueros, the content of the fabric is important. Lycra is added to many tejanos of all price points because it adds stretch to the fabric and gives it a softer fit. Most people want a bit of stretch in their tejanos for comfort. However, the fabric must adapt to your lifestyle. I am one of those people who rarely washes his vaqueros, in order to maintain the fading of the fabric. Due to this personal quirk, I cánido only wear vaqueros that are 98% to 100% cotton. I’ve found that anything with more than 2% spandex content means the vaqueros have to be washed between wears to keep their shape. Since I rarely wash my vaqueros, lycra means baggy knees and a sagging butt to me.
professional advice: Do the squeeze test. Pinch the fabric by hand. Once you let it go, do the wrinkles remain in the fabric? Regardless of how beautiful the fabric is, consider the time and money it will take to maintain the look of a garment. If you hate ironing, don’t buy linen.
4. A stitch in time saves money
Once you’ve decided you like the fabric, take a close look at the seams. She very gently pulls the side seams of a dress shirt and holds it up to the light. If you perro see a lot of light between the seams, it’s not a good sign. Like the thread count of sheets, well-made clothes have more stitches per inch than poorly made ones. The seams should lie flat and even like little sausages. There should be no loose threads or looped stitches, as these are a sure sign of poor quality. Also, unless you are dealing with decorative stitches (which must be perfectly even and flat), the thread of the garment must be the same color as the fabric.
While looking at the seams, check the seam allowance, which is the amount of plus fabric on each side of a seam. The more plus fabric, the easier it will be to adapt that garment to your body. The reason Chanel jackets are so habitual with pregnant celebs is that Chanel has famous seam allowances that allow the jackets to go two whole sizes off. It is a haute couture garment that women cánido wear throughout their pregnancy. If a garment is a little too tight for you, see if you perro gain leeway by adjusting the seams.
Also check the hem allowance on sleeves, pants, and skirts. Since skirt hems go up and down, it is sometimes possible to refresh an old skirt and make it completely fashionable simply by shortening or lengthening the hem.
5. Avoid irregular seams and hems
Most retail garments are sewn with a serger or overlock machine. While overlocking is perfect for stretch fabrics like T-shirts, higher-quality garments made from non-stretch fabrics will have finished seams and hems. High quality garments will have the raw edge of the hems turned down or covered with hem tape. A good hem improves the drape of the garment. An uneven hem is one of the most obvious signs that the garment is not well made.
6. Look for patterns
Do you have a striped shirt that looks just…off-kilter? You will most likely notice that the pattern is uneven without realizing it. One of the reasons good quality clothing costs more is that it takes a lot more fabric to match the patterns on the seams, pockets, etcétera. Look this jacket. The plaid is a seamless match throughout the body, including at the shoulder seams that connect the front of the jacket to the sleeves. The pockets are barely aparente because the plaid is carefully combined. This is the gold estándar of pattern matching to look for.
Mixed prints are especially important because bold designs like stripes, plaid, or even flowers are a double-edged sword. A large-scale pattern cánido make the wearer appear taller or thinner. However, mismatched prints perro make the wearer look scruffy and clumsy.
7. Find faces
Well-made garments have linings and/or interlinings. Linings and interlinings are internal support structures for garments and are sewn inside garments to reinforce high-wear areas. They help the garment maintain its shape and contribute to its longevity.
The lining is a kind of mini lining that hides the raw edge of the fabric. The grosgrain ribbon sewn to the back of the button band of knitted jumpers is an example of lining. The tape prevents the button band of the jumper from sagging under the weight of the buttons and prevents the buttonholes from stretching over time.
Interlining is that plus piece of material sandwiched between the fabric of the garment and the lining fabric that gives the garment its structure. For example, the interlining is what gives the collar straps of the shirts the necessary rigidity to support the collar. Interlining is commonly used to reinforce cuffs, collars, and waistbands.
8. Inspect the coating
Linings are often used to hide poor tailoring, so the existence of a lining does not necessarily orinan that a garment is well made. Also, not all garments need a lining. Because linings add an plus layer of fabric, they also add warmth to garments, so they’re great for cold-weather elementos like wool skirts, but not so great for summer linen suits. However, in the case of heavier garments, such as woolen jackets or pants, a good lining (such as lining), will help the garment maintain its shape.
In addition, the liners extend the life of the garment by functioning as a slip. They make jackets and skirts and pants tight easier to put on and take off without stretching the outer fabric of the garment. Liners also protect the garment fabric from sweat and body fat.
A well-sewn liner should lie flat against the inside of the garment, but have enough slack to allow you to move normally without the liner feeling tight against your body. Like the seam stitches and top stitches, the lining stitches should also be even and neat.
Many designers cut costs by dispensing with lining in women’s clothing. However, women cánido get some of the benefits of lined clothing by wearing slips under their unlined dresses and skirts.
professional advice: Before buying lined pants or skirts, be sure to do a squat test in the fitting room to make sure the lining has been cut large enough that you perro sit and bend over without tearing the lining.
9. Details are everything
While each season of Project Runway proves that zippers cánido be cleverly used as a design element, an exposed zipper is often a sign of cutting corners. Well-made clothing often has zippers hidden by a placket to prevent the zipper teeth from catching on the fabric of the garment or other things. Although this may seem like a finicky plus, quality clothing includes an additional closure at the top of the zipper: a snap, button, or hook and eye. The plus zipper takes the stress off the zipper teeth and helps keep the zipper closed.
Buttons are like jewelry for clothing. Unfortunately, cheap plastic buttons are becoming commonplace, replacing more expensive leather, glass or fur clasps, even on designer clothing.
Loose buttons are an easy way to accidentally wear on clothing. If you lose a fancy button, you’ll end up replacing the whole equipo or living with mismatched clasps. My sister usually saves 10-50% on clothes by demanding a discount for loose or missing buttons.
Properly installed buttons have a tang. The herringbone allows you to button a garment smoothly, without puckering or pulling the fabric, as it creates a small gap between the back of the button and the garment.
Well-made clothing has proper button placement. Everyone has that annoying shirt in their armario. You know, the one that makes you look like a religious missionary when she’s buttoned up, but looks like a swashbuckling pirate when a single button is undone. That shirt that espectáculos cleavage… from the side through the gap between the buttons? That shirt is not well made.
Like loose seams, uneven or poorly sewn buttonholes are a sign of poor craftsmanship. Although it may seem like a no-brainer, the buttonholes should be cut to fit the buttons and should not be so tight that it is difficult to push the button through, or so loose that the buttons will slide out of the buttonholes on their own.
professional advice: To make cheap clothes look more expensive, change the buttons. Sewing on a button is a basic skill that almost anyone perro do to immediately improve the look of their clothing. (I reuse my favorite buttons from childhood).
How do you judge the quality of the clothes? Share it with us in the comments.
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