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Bespoke is an adjective for anything commissioned to a particular specification. It may be altered or tailored to the customs, tastes, or usage of an individual purchaser.
- Synonyms include "custom-made", "made to order", and "made to measure"
- Antonyms include "off-the-shelf" and "ready-to-wear"
- The slang term "modding" is different but somewhat related; it refers to personalization of an item after manufacture
The word bespoke is derived from the verb to bespeak, meaning to "speak for something". The particular meaning of the verb form, given in the Oxford English Dictionary: "to speak for, to arrange for, engage beforehand: to ‘order’ (goods)”, is first cited from 1583. The adjective, "bespoken", meaning “ordered, commissioned, arranged for”, is first quoted from 1607.
The term is generally more prevalent in British English; for example, StyleRocks "bespoke jewellery". American English tends to use the word "custom" instead, as in custom car, custom motorcycle, etc. Nevertheless, "bespoke" has seen increased usage in American English during the 21st century, particularly in the phrase "bespoke suit."
Some common specific uses include:
- Bespoke medicine, a movement to better fit treatment to the individual patient
- Bespoke shoes, shoes that are made to fit the customer's specifications
- Bespoke software, software written to the specific requirement of a customer
- Bespoke tailoring, men's clothing made to the individual measurements of the customer
- "Bespeak". The Oxford English Dictionary (1st ed.) (Oxford University Press). 1909.
- "Bespoken". The Oxford English Dictionary (1st ed.) (Oxford University Press). 1909.
- Joye, Paula (June 22, 2012). "Bespoke is the new black". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 6 January 2015.
- "Google Ngrams search, 'bespoke' in American English".
- "Google Ngrams search, 'bespoke suit' in American English".