With capsule wardrobes, investment pieces, or just for a more sustainable wardrobe buying good-quality clothing is important, but how can you tell if a garment is good quality?
These are some things to look out for:
Check the Fabric
- Is it appropriate for the garment’s function? Eg. if the garment needs to be durable does it feel think/hard wearing?
- Does it seem too thin for the type of fabric/garment?
- Is the weave or knit tight?
- Is there any piling or signs of wear?
Check the Seams and Sewing
- Are there loose threads?
- Are the seams straight or crooked?
- Are the stitches short (longer stitches = quicker to sew)?
- Are the seams tight or when you pull gently do they open?
- Are the side seams straight or do they twist to the front/back?
- Look for high-quality finishing (eg. french seams, blind hems, etc.).
More signs of Good Quality Clothing
- Matching stripes/plaids at seams
- Extra buttons or thread included
- Lining on structured jackets, skirts, coats, and dresses
- Outer fabric on inside facings (areas next to front opening, pockets, at neck)
- Flat, covered zippers (unless the zippers are purposely exposed)
- Hook and eye on top of invisible zippers
- Straight and even buttonholes with tight stitching
- Longer hem allowance (deep fold at hem)
- Straight and even top-stitching
- Extras seams for good fit
When shopping online it’s difficult to tell if something is good quality. Search for and read reviews to see what people say about the construction, fabric, and quality of the garment.