The Indochino Nouveau Gentleman Collection - Review and Guide

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Indochino Nouveau Gentleman Collection

I have to admit that I was pretty excited when Indochino announced the December Collection - especially when they told us it would consist of no less than 13 new suits, 10 new shirts, 7 new linings and a couple of new bow ties. Indochino had started a quite aggressive Groupon campaign during the last weeks (there were 125$ for 50$ deals almost every day) to clear out the old inventory except for the basics and make room for the big, new collection. 

Now, the Nouveau Collection is here! In a nutshell, their collection is focusing on 4 main aspects:
  • Heavy fabrics
    mostly heavy (300mg2) wool/cashmere blend fabrics for the winter. I looked a bit into the wool/cashmere blend topic - it seems it can give the fabric a nice shine to it. Certainly a step-up from the poly blend tweed suits. Only one of the suits contains an artificial fabric, namely The Ambient Brown 3 Piece Suit (wool/lycra blend). As usual, I'd just advice against wearing something artificial, but I'm aware there are other opinions about this too.
  • Pinstripe Suits
    12 out of 13 suits are pinstriped suits, some very subtle ones and really convincing, some really bold ones. In addition, there is one solid charcoal suit. I don't know why there are almost only pinstripe suits available, but perhaps those are the biggest sellers. Personally, I would have wished for some more plaid fabrics and yes, a Harris Tweed suit or jacket.
  • Customization Options
    Contrary to the past collections, the customization is now not about the size and style of the lapels, but just like with the Blueprint Collection, it's all about colored collar felts, different linings and pocket squares. When I tried to customize a suit just now I could not actually choose the color of the collar felt or the style of the lining, so it might be that those choices are set for each suit.
  • High prices - average 498$
    it seems the times of the 349$ suits are gone mostly. The new collection is priced on average at 497$. I have to do some more comparison, but at a first glance this looks like it's Indochino's most expensive collection so far. Of course you can reduce these costs a bit with coupon codes, but it's still not as cheap as we were used to. On the other hand, good fabrics have their price, so I am not complaining. 
An alternative title for the Nouveau Gentlemen Collection could indeed be the "Pinstripe Collection". I'm not the biggest fan of pinstripes, but Indochino focuses on giving you some pretty good overall looks, recommending a fitting shirt and tie right away. Most of the outfits actually do look pretty good.  

As usual, I do have a couple of favorites, I'll show you just three of them.

I do really dig the Ethereal Embers Pinstripe Suit - faint pinstripes, medium grey, that fabric looks very nice on the photos. Only drawback for me is the rose striped lining (that can hopefully be changed to something less "rosy"). The recommended a new red-striped shirt, a brown tie and a funky pocket square with it - looks pretty cool already. If you put that all in your shopping card you end up with 686$, luckily a coupon like couponcabin can reduce that to 510$ (still a lot of money).  The Solar Debris Pinstripe Suit is actually very similar and features a blue theme, instead of the red/rose theme of the Ember Pinstripe.

Etheral Embers Pinstripe Grey Suit
The Ethereal Pinstripe Grey Suit
Indochino Solar Debris Pinstripe Suit
The Solar Debris Pinstripe Suit
The Alchemist Brown Suit is another favourite of the current collection. Again made from a rather heavy (300mg2) wool/cashmere blend fabric, this particular suit features a golden collar felt and golden striped lining. Ok, all that gold might perhaps be a bit too much, but it looks rather brownish on the photos for the lining and the collar felt seems to be yellow. The slight sheen is quite visible on the pictures, I'm curious how that looks in real life. The suit is priced at 509$.

Indochino Alchemist Brown Suit
The Alchemist Brown Suit
Overall, I think we got a very interesting collection. I was hoping for something different - harris tweed, wool ties and things like that. I do like the fabric choices this time, but they also drive up prices quite a bit and I'm not sure how much further Indochino can go up without losing customers to cheaper competitors. I guess it's also a test for them. Furthermore, you might have gotten the invitation to their survey (interestingly with very similar questions as my survey), so you know that they plan on introducing Cardigans and perhaps even shoes (and probably more stuff we don't know about) next year, so they are definitely trying to move forward.

Just a recommendation, as they introduced quite some new shirts again - if you want to get the suggested outfit, use one of the active coupons, that helps to bring the price down quite a bit. You can find some below and some more on the Coupon Page. Check the whole new Nouveau Gentleman Collection here.

mycouponswinter (10% off, 2 free shirts, expires 28/02/11)
couponcabin (13% off, 1 free shirt, expires 30/11/10)
MYCOUPONS (20% off, expiry date unknown)

One word about the Groupon deals: if you spend a lot of money, like above 500, the 20% coupon will give you the same discount as the Groupon coupon. The more you spend, the better the 20% coupon is vs. the Groupon coupon. Similar if you want free shirts, as one is worth 89$.

If you find some time to comment, let me know what you think of the new collection, the prices and whatever comes to your mind!