[This entry originally appeared on Clare Lynch’s blog, goodcopybadcopy]
It’s not enough that you’ve bored me rigid with that overused tailoring metaphor, “bespoke”. By pairing it with “customised”, a word meaning exactly the same, you’re telling me you think I’m too dim to understand what you’re getting at.
Or perhaps you’re just covering your back geographically? Perhaps you think that, redolent of Saville Row, “bespoke” gives English class, while “customised” – or, better, “customized” – provides an invigorating shot of American dynamism.
But either way, it’s overkill to use both. And such overkill leads me to question your credibility. Are you, I wonder, really just assembling a series of ready-made parts for me and a thousand others?
So if you must use this cliché, use “bespoke” or “customised”, but not both.
And whatever you do, please don’t tell me you’ll create a bespoke, customised product that’s “personalised”, “unique”, “made to measure” and “tailored to my needs”.
That would be several tautologies too far.