Monday, August 10, 2015

Indochino: Philadelphia Review

You may have seen the ads plastered all over your social media feeds. Affordable, tailored suits customized to your needs. Measurements can either be done at home and entered online to be sorted out through their "proprietary algorithm" or you can stop in at their brick-and-mortar locations to get measured up. And since I was in the market for some new suiting, I decided to stop by Indochino's Philadelphia showroom to see if the company could truly deliver on their promise. (For those of you who don't want the details, scroll straight to the bottom!)

The Philadelphia showroom had some unfortunate luck with a fire at their original showroom, so the majority of my measurements and fittings were done at their temporary location on 17th and Sansom. But as of my most recent 4th fitting (we'll get to that later!), they're back at 1606 Chestnut Street, which is sleek and stylish.

So how does this work? Desiree at the Philly Showroom was wonderfully pleasant, quick, and efficient obtaining my measurements. Afterwards, we went through the process of picking out the suiting, which generally ranges from $400 to $900 depending on the quality of the fabric. You can customize everything from your jacket lapel, stitching, inner patterns, and the like. Heck, you can even monogram the inside of your jacket. It's all included, along with free shipping and any applicable taxes. The entire process in the showroom took less than the allotted hour.

I was so impressed by the customized experience and Desiree's demeanor that I went ahead and ordered two suits, putting my faith in the company. I was told it was best to have it delivered to the store, so went ahead and did that. The typical turnaround is 4 weeks to make your suit and true to their promise, it came within that time frame. Once the suits were made, I received an email from Indochino letting me know my order was complete. However, a few days later, I got a message from Fedex stating they could not deliver the package because no one was at the showroom to accept it.

I called the showroom to check in to see what was up. No answer. So I walked over the showroom because it was only a few blocks from my work. They said that the Fedex email was wrong and put me at ease by letting me know that they're always available to accept packages (coincidentally, the receptionist was on the phone with someone else with my same issue). In any case, I received another email from Fedex later that afternoon saying the package was delivered, so it was likely a Fedex issue. Still, the Philly Showroom promised to call me when it arrived to I could stop in to try on the suits, but 3 hours later, I still hadn't received a call so I went ahead and called myself. I made the appointment and came in after work. I waited thirty minutes and was eventually called up to try on my suits. After a bit of confusion, I was told that even though my suits had arrived, they weren't ready to be tried on because of "their process." I wasn't offered much more than that despite my polite questioning, and was told to reschedule.

Later that week, I stopped by again and it was a complete 180 in terms of customer service. Perhaps it was because the showroom manager, Shontae Parham, was on hand, but the second fitting (third trip?) was great. Both suits came a bit large in the waist, but I was told that was to be expected because it's easier to tuck in than let out. So with some adjustments to be sent to the tailor, I left the suits in Indochino's hands again. FYI - they typically send out their tailoring on Fridays and receive them back the following Friday, so schedule your appointments accordingly as it may be more than a 2 week turnaround.

When I received the tailored suits back, my premium grey suit felt great - better than anything you could get off the rack and have tailored. On the other hand, the blue sharkskin essential suit had issues, primarily with the left shoulder which had a bit of a bubble, as you can see in the picture above. I came back in and was told that it would get fixed by the tailor. On my follow-up fourth visit, the shoulder pad was completely removed (I wasn't told that would happen). And unfortunately, the "bubble" was even worse (imagine the bubble twice as bad). So as of this post, it's still with the tailor and Indochino is one for two on providing the customized suiting experience. I'm holding my breath to see if the jacket can be fixed or if the suit will need to be re-made (to Indochino's credit, if they're unable to fix the suits, they will re-make it, though it will take another 4 weeks). I'll provide an update once the jacket comes back in! (Update: So I was told it would be back within the week, even though I expected it to take 2+ weeks again. Sadly, it was the latter. And to make matters worse, the original bubble is back. The Indochino representative didn't seem to understand what the original issue was and was frankly surprised that the note from the tailor said "put back shoulder pad." So the issue may have been a lack of communication between the showroom and the tailor. In any case, with all the back and forth, I didn't want to risk sending it back to the tailor or even having it remade though I'm sure they would have done so considering the rep clearly agreed there was still an issue. I opted to simply take the jacket and be done with it. I may take it to my own tailor to have it addressed).

All in all, Indochino has potential, but clearly has inconsistencies that detract from the overall experience. I was hoping to get two great suits along with a personalized experience to fit my needs. I would think that the majority of people indulging in such an experience are the type that pay attention to the details and appreciate consistent courtesy. I love my premium grey suit and think it fits quite well. And while there are issues with the other suit, I realize you can't expect everything to be perfect when ordering through an online service. Admittedly though, having to return a fourth time is a bit much, especially when I was measured in the showroom. In the end though, what's turned me a bit off are the inconsistencies I've experienced in the customer service and post-production areas. It's left me wondering if I can stay a loyal customer. In fact, each time I stopped by, a different person was assisting me. I was hoping to purchase two more suits for the fall, but I think it might be time to check out some of the other custom suiting options available.

If my grey suit didn't turn out well, I wouldn't provide any sort of a recommendation. That being said, Indochino does have some great deals that you should look out for. In addition to $50 off your first order using this referral link, for my particular purchase, they offered a free second pair of pants for each suit. I also appreciate that Indochino does appear to stand behind their product. If the suit doesn't fit your needs, they'll try (try again) to fix it and even re-make the suit if needed. For me though, it was not worth my time or effort to wait another 6-9 weeks to have the jacket remade and fitted.


  1. Dude, great writeup- Check out Sarah Manners over at Enzo. Just a kiss pricier, but a great experience all around.

    I wanted to comment to implore you to change your font/background scheme. By the time I was finished with your (well written, easy to read) commentary, I went to look at the photos and felt like I was checking out an optical illusion. I still have weird lines in my vision as I write this.

    I'm gonna suggest you go with a standard black text on white/off white background, because you're clearly a decent writer and have plenty to say, but the formatting is tough to stick with.

    Anyhow, best of luck! Thanks for shedding a little light on the operation over at Indochino!

    1. @Anon - thanks for the kind words and great feedback! With regards to the font and background, you're completely right and something that I've been considering for awhile. Look for an updated background soon!