or Connect
Styleforum › Forums › Men's Style › Classic Menswear › W.W. Chan's New Website
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

W.W. Chan's New Website - Page 9

post #121 of 224
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bounder View Post
I do know that they are happy to accomodate somewhat unusual requests -- requests that might get you ejected from a lot of other houses -- and that they do a very acceptable job of implementing them.

I'd like to know exactly what those are. I've made what I consider to be three unusual requests of Chan--a cape, a boating blazer (blazer with white edge binding) and a Norfolk jacket.

The first two they flat out admitted they could not and would not do. The third they felt confident producing only if they could have at least three fittings with me, which would be quite time consuming given that the firm only makes two visits to Houston per year, and given that Hong Kong is not on my travel radar in the foreseeable future.

I may be mistaken in this assumption, but I feel fairy certain that just about any SR firm would readily be able to accomplish any of these garments.

It's because of this that I'm considering enlisting Henry Poole to make a Norfolk jacket. They make regular visits to the states and could complete the jacket when I'm in London next year.
post #122 of 224
Quote:
Originally Posted by Vintage Gent View Post
I'd like to know exactly what those are. I've made what I consider to be three unusual requests of Chan--a cape, a boating blazer (blazer with white edge binding) and a Norfolk jacket.

The first two they flat out admitted they could not and would not do. The third they felt confident producing only if they could have at least three fittings with me, which would be quite time consuming given that the firm only makes two visits to Houston per year, and given that Hong Kong is not on my travel radar in the foreseeable future.

I may be mistaken in this assumption, but I feel fairy certain that just about any SR firm would readily be able to accomplish any of these garments.

It's because of this that I'm considering enlisting Henry Poole to make a Norfolk jacket. They make regular visits to the states and could complete the jacket when I'm in London next year.

A cape? Do you mind me asking what that is used for?
post #123 of 224
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lowndes View Post
A cape? Do you mind me asking what that is used for?

Wearing.

And defending truth, justice and the American way.
post #124 of 224
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lonneker View Post
It sure does, but the sleeves seem a bit too long, no? Chan would not have let you leave the house with a garment like that.
There seems to be some classic notion that only a whisper of shirt cuff, less than a centimeter, should show. I've pressed Rubinacci to shorten my sleeves in the past, which really shouldn't have mattered to them in terms of labor, particularly given how much other extensive work they've done to make things right for me in other ways. Yet, Mariano always says this way is "more elegant," and coaxes me to stick with the slightly greater length. From reading around London Lounge and looking at old pictures, it seems there is some historical precedent behind his opinion.
post #125 of 224
Quote:
Originally Posted by mafoofan View Post
Yet, Mariano always says this way is "more elegant," and coaxes me to stick with the slightly greater length.

I prefer a little longer jacket sleeve, too. Just a sliver of linen peeking out.
post #126 of 224
Quote:
Originally Posted by Vintage Gent View Post
Wearing.

And defending truth, justice and the American way.

And for just looking damn good.



post #127 of 224
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bounder View Post
Sorry for my limited English skills, but this discussion seems to have turned on its head. There was no "nuance" in your original definition. For you, "flexibility" means, well, meant, "the ability to do exactly as well what others are doing." Through the thick haze that separates me from a couple of hours ago, I seem to recall that I was arguing in favor of nuance. My suggestion, more or less, was that Chan is flexible because they do a decent job at many things though not as good a job as a house that specializes in whatever it is.
Your reasoning lacks nuance in the sense that you seem to be calling any tailor "flexible" who is merely willing or very basically capable of doing things other tailors do, without accounting for how well he is able to do them, and how well certain things need to be done to be worthwhile. For example, you don't want shirt-set sleeves that are "okay"-looking--as a flourish of sorts, there is little point in having them unless they are done very, very well. Open quarters can be clearly open, yet swept apart at an awkward angle. While nobody would disagree that they are open, they are ugly unless done absolutely correctly. Chan's open quarters are a good example. I'd rather not have them! At the end, the very fact that we are spending thousands of dollars on bespoke clothes that are ostensibly more sophisticated and refined than what one can get off-the-rack implies to me that, in many cases, only excellent execution should ever be good enough.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bounder View Post
Maybe you agree with me now. I don't know. Just for the heck of it, consider this hypothetical. Suppose you ran a company and had to hire a law firm or law firms to advise you on various aspects of your business, e.g. tax law, corporate law, securities law, human resources law, etc. You could hire a top expert in each of these fields or you could a single firm to do all the work. The single firm while not recognized experts in any of these fields, still did competent, even good, work in all of them and they only charged 1/4 as much as the top experts would. Wouldn't you give serious consideration to hiring the single firm to do your legal work even though they did not have "the ability to do exactly as well as" the top experts? Or would you reject the single firm out-of-hand and hire the experts because only the best will do?
Of course I would consider using a "flexible" expert. I do understand that flexibility has value. My point is that it is a very vague descriptor because it does not indicate how well one is likely to execute the desired tasks. The finer and more acute the details in question, the harder it will be for an expert to be usefully flexible. In tailoring, the details are very fine and acute. We are talking about inherently small differences, not earth-moving ones. Also, as I've pointed out before, developing baseline flexibility requires an expenditure of resources that could have been used to increase proficiency at specific tasks. That's why there tends to be an inverse relationship between one's "flexibility" and one's ability to do particular things well. Whenever people argue that Chan is willing to do whatever a client asks for, yet do not concede that there are probably serious setbacks attached to that flexibility, I am admitted immediately dubious. It's not that I think Chan is garbage, but that I don't think Chan tailors are working with pixie dust.
post #128 of 224
Quote:
Originally Posted by gdl203 View Post
I would say that Chan does a better soft shoulder than other tailors who don't do a soft shoulder.

+1
post #129 of 224
Quote:
Originally Posted by mafoofan View Post
Uggh, no. That's not what I said at all. I said there is a difference between a willingness to do something and the ability to (a) do it well, or (b) do it just like someone else does it. Rubinacci has nothing to do with anything. In my opinion, the examples of Chan soft tailoring posted on the forum are, at the best, mixed. Given the nature of the bespoke process, being able to do something right or well only some of the time does not mean anything to me. After all, as a client, it only matters whether you can reasonably expect results of a certain quality and execution, not whether they are remotely possible.

As I understand it, spalla camicia is a sub set of the soft shoulder. A soft shoulder is identical to, or at
least akin to, what my generation referred to as natural shoulders. Soft tailoring refers to the entire
garment. I have a suit and a blazer in my "clothing museum", as well as a tweed jacket that has been
seen by some SFers, which have ultra natural shoulders but do not have particularly "soft tailoring".
They are from Chipp ( Winston Tailors) and are over 20 years old. My more recent purchases of Italian
manufacture have soft tailoring with soft shoulders. As for Chan, I've seen several of his jackets
"in the flesh" and they have soft shoulders, not spalla camicia. I have no idea whether they fit
the definition of "soft tailoring", but they certainly do not look stiff.
post #130 of 224
^^^ Whether a shoulder is "soft" is a separate issue from how the sleeves are attached to it. You can have a non-soft, non-natural shoulder with spalla camicia. Raphael in NYC used to do that combination.
post #131 of 224
You can have a non-soft, non-natural shoulder with spalla camicia. Raphael in NYC used to do that combination.[/quote]

That seems incongruous. I'd love to see it.
post #132 of 224
Quote:
Originally Posted by mafoofan View Post
However, one can only enjoy so many of a particular thing, and often it's the better version that would have truly tided him over. I would not be at all surprised to find that the typical Chan client on the forum has actually spent as much, if not more, than I have on clothes from Rubinacci.
how many rubis do you own? i dont know for sure but i suspect from what you’ve posted maybe 2 or 3 suits and as many sports jackets? whilst im happy to decry the wasteful disposable consumerist society we live in, i would much rather have at least a half decent range of clothes to wear for all seasons. i love your jackets but what do you wear in summer? maybe if you weren’t a perfectionist for fit you could have bought one less rubi and some chans for summer. fit is only one piece of the equation here - dressing appropriately is a huge factor. sometimes that means wearing linen, or fresco, or something other than tweed and flannel. id rather have phat guidos selection than that of your own, even tho i am admittedly hugely envious of your jackets.
post #133 of 224
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr Herbert View Post
how many rubis do you own? i dont know for sure but i suspect from what you've posted maybe 2 or 3 suits and as many sports jackets?

whilst im happy to decry the wasteful disposable consumerist society we live in, i would much rather have at least a half decent range of clothes to wear for all seasons. i love your jackets but what do you wear in summer? maybe if you weren't a perfectionist for fit you could have bought one less rubi and some chans for summer.

fit is only one piece of the equation here - dressing appropriately is a huge factor. sometimes that means wearing linen, or fresco, or something other than tweed and flannel.

id rather have phat guidos selection than that of your own, even tho i am admittedly hugely envious of your jackets.

3 suits, 5 jackets. And, you're right, nothing that works for summer. However, I never expected to be able to build out an entire wardrobe in one fell swoop. The truth is that very few people in the general population have proper summer suits and jackets, as such garments are foregone completely if possible (which is to say, usually). Thus, I can wait until it makes financial sense to buy some linen or fresco.

So, I agree that an ideal wardrobe, even a basic one, should be larger than mine. However, I don't see why the rate of consumption must be so rapid.
post #134 of 224
Quote:
Originally Posted by comrade View Post
As I understand it, spalla camicia is a sub set of the soft shoulder. A soft shoulder is identical to, or at
least akin to, what my generation referred to as natural shoulders.

The collegiate style "natural shoulder" derived from the Brooks sack isn't really "soft," just "softer." They are padded with a bit of structure, but not aggressively so. What makes them "natural" is that the padding is more minimal than in mainstream RTW and the shoulders a bit more narrow. More of the curve of the of the shoulder is taken by the upper sleeve than the body of the jacket, which rounds it out a bit more than the generic American square shoulder. In other words, the shoulders are the opposite of an extended shoulder.

"Soft shoulder" can mean anything. It's somewhat anmade up, au courant term. I think that it implies any combination of the following three attributes: (1) no padding; (2) a soft canvas going into the arm; and (3) literally soft materials. A spalla camicia is a specific technique of attaching the arm to the body and the seam treatment. It's associated with softly tailored jackets, but could be done with a jacket of any degree of structure.

I apologize for this snark-free reply, but I like you.


- B
post #135 of 224
Quote:
Originally Posted by mafoofan View Post
Uhh . . . did you read the whole site?
I think so. I've also read a fair amt of American and British sites. There may be a few grammatical errors or awkward phrases, but I think think the website makes up for this with some very elegant parts.
Quote:
There's a difference between 'house style' and getting a garment to fit properly, which they appear to be describing. Also, anybody can say they are flexible or be willing to do different things: the real question is whether they can do those different things well.
This is a good question. All I know is that they did everything I asked them to do, and they did it very well. I did not ask them to imitate anyone else's style. Of course, some details I took from other people's clothing (like Manton's 3-patch blazersuit, Iammatt's unpadded shoulders, Dopey's Finmeresco fabric). But I don't know enough about A&S, Rubi, etc. to ask for an imitation of them. My relative lack of knowledge certainly makes me relatively easy to please, but I'm sure I'll get Matt's honest, discriminating opinion of the suit before my next order.
Quote:
Originally Posted by voxsartoria View Post
The collegiate style "natural shoulder" derived from the Brooks sack isn't really "soft," just "softer." They are padded with a bit of structure, but not aggressively so. What makes them "natural" is that the padding is more minimal than in mainstream RTW and the shoulders a bit more narrow. More of the curve of the of the shoulder is taken by the upper sleeve than the body of the jacket, which rounds it out a bit more than the generic American square shoulder. In other words, the shoulders are the opposite of an extended shoulder...
How about a lack of roping?
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Classic Menswear
Styleforum › Forums › Men's Style › Classic Menswear › W.W. Chan's New Website