Step By Step Of Finding The Best Tailors in Hoi An

Nga Do
The glowing lantern city of Vietnam, Hoi An is famous for three things: the lanterns that light the city at night, Anthony Bourdain’s favorite banh mi and the notorious Hoi An tailors with their incredible 24-hour turnaround for custom made clothing designs.

Keep reading to discover a step by step guide to ensure you have the best experience when visiting the Hoi An tailors!

Visiting Golden Bridge Da Nang, too? Click here to see: Experience of conquering Vietnam's Golden Bridge on Ba Na Hills!

Now that you’ve read my long-winded explanation of why Sewing Bee is the best tailor in Hoi An, now it’s time to get some custom-made pieces for yourself. Here’s a step by step guide to getting clothes made in Hoi An!

Step By Step Of Finding The Best Tailors in Hoi An
Photo by collect on the internet

Step one: Browse the internet for design inspiration

I created a private board on Pinterest for all my design inspiration. Dresses I liked the style of, rompers that had great shapes and the denim overall dress of my dreams. Use Pinterest to gather ideas by searching what you’re looking for: “Casual summer dress” “casual jumpsuit” or “maxi skirt. If you love the style of popular stores like Forever21 or Zara, browse their websites and screenshot pieces you love.

Pro tip: try to gather as many photos as possible — front of the piece and back, whatever you can find. The more details you have, the better your piece will come out.

Step two: Head to the tailor

After selecting what you want to be made (or gathering the articles of clothing you already own but want to be copied) — it’s time to hit the road jack! No need to make an appointment, but I usually send them a quick Facebook message as a heads up that I would be stopping in for a visit.

Step three: Have your design consult + be specific!

Time for the good stuff! Take a seat, chill out and talk through what you’re envisioning. Show your tailor pictures of designs you have curated and talk through what you like and don’t like. Be very specific.

If you know that certain necklines look bad on you — tell them. If you hate cap-sleeves — tell them.

If you bring in articles of clothing you want to be copied, point out specific things (if anything) changed. For example, I had one of my favorite jumpsuits copied exactly but wanted the legs to be more tailored and less wide than the original.

Step four: Select your fabrics

After you talk through what you want to be made, it’s time to select the fabrics! This part can be extremely overwhelming as there are SO many to choose from. Try to stick with what you know you’ll wear — don’t pick some “out there” print that you normally wouldn’t go for.

If you have a vision of what color or print you want, but you don’t see it at the tailor — it’s possible they have more fabrics elsewhere or can find something close to what you’re looking for!

Step five: Get measured

You’ve decided on a design, you’ve chosen your fabrics and now it’s time to get measured. They’ll measure you for each individual item you want to be made. Button placement, dress length, neckline — all will be discussed and measured.

Keep in mind that for dresses and skirts, they can always be made shorter after the first fitting. Have them a little longer than you actually desire, as it’s easier to shorten the length than make longer!

Step six: First fitting

Your first fitting will probably be in 24 hours or less. (It’s magic). They’ll evaluate their current workload and what you’ve ordered then provide an estimate of when you should return to try on your pieces.

My advice for the first fitting: do not freak out. It’s very rare the pieces will be perfect. Parts may be too big or too small, the length is off, the sleeves are too tight — it will be okay.

This is where things get altered. Be verbal and honest about what you want changed.

Step seven: Second fitting

Usually, the second fitting is a few hours later in the day (depending on how much you wanted changed). For the most part, your clothes may be ready to go. Sometimes, a few more alterations need to take place. Again, be honest with how you feel about your clothes!

Step eight: (Potential) third fitting

Depending on how your second fitting went, you may have a third fitting. Hopefully that’s all it takes to have the custom clothes of your dreams!

Step nine: Take your new clothes home!

Yay! You’ve got a fancy new wardrobe — custom to your body shape and taste! Go out and take an epic photo-shoot with your new clothes and make all your friends at home jealous with your new threads.

How Much Does it Cost to Get Clothes Made in Hoi An, Vietnam?

This is a hard question to answer! The cost will vary depending on which tailor you choose, how much fabric is required to make the garment, the time to make it and the quality of the fabric.

From memory, we paid around $15AU for shorts and $30AU for basic dresses. We didn’t get one made but I believe the cost of a tailor-made suit should be around $150AU.

If anyone reading this had garments made, it’d be great if you could share what you had made and the cost in the comments. I’ll add it here to help others get a sense of cost.

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