The mailman has been really nice to me this week. Yesterday I got my long awaited dressing gown and today I got four MTM shirts delivered from Belisario. Belisario is one of many online MTM ventures that have sprung up over the last years. Based in the region of Abruzzo in south-eastern Italy, Belisario is a small family-run tailor shop specialising in shirt making.
What drew my attention to them early on was the really nice selection of shirting available on their website and the fact that you can order shirt based on either body measurements or based on an already well-fitting shirt. The second option is really worth using, since taking you own body measurements is rather unreliable, even if you have someone else measuring you. I initially ordered a shirt based on measurements taken from one of my best-fitting shirts. I tweaked a few measurements, like the length of the shirt, to get an even better fitting shirt. I was pleasantly surprised how well the first shirt turned out.
When designing you shirt there are, like with many other Italian shirt-makers, a great number of options to choose from when designing your shirt - I counted to around twenty collar-styles alone that could be ordered. In addition you can select to have a great deal of hand-finishing of things like the collar, cuffs and sleeves. You can also choose how much fusing, if any, you want in your collars and cuffs. I have now dialled-in on a fit I am comfortable with, which includes a soft and extra high-collar (to supplant my tall and scrawny neck). I have so far ordered seven shirts (including the four that got delivered today) and they are by far my favourite shirts. The fit is great, the shirting is really good, construction seems to hold up over time and I haven’t noticed any particular shrinking even after repeated laundering of the shirts. Delivery is also relatively quick, they promise to deliver within 20 days of receiving your order. In my experience, they have kept that promise.
The shirts are by no means cheap - even with rather basic shirting and limited hand work they come out to about €100 per shirt and can be substantially more expensive with more fancy shirting and more hand work. Nevertheless, I find them to be extremely good value compared to buying a shirt from any high-street store.