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Old companies

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 
Have any of you used Pucci, a tailor at 333 N. Michigan Avenue(where it has been since 1928) in Chicago?  Pucci is said to be the oldest custom tailor in the USA.  Pucci is by appointment only and run by Lawrence Pucci.  It's said to be an old-style tailor shop with no computer or fax, with a massive cutting room.  I called Pucci once; they said that don't take many new clients and that they outsource shirts - don't know about suits.  According to Flusser's Style and the Man Pucci's silhouette makes Hickey-Freeman seem "downright avant-garde."  Flusser also said that Pucci suits have as much handwork as Oxxford's.  I don't have the book(Style and the Man) with me, since it's at home, so I can't give you the phone number right now. I wonder how many(and especially which) tailors the Duke of Windsor and other notable dandies patronized, just out of curiosity. It's too bad that so many old companies are living on simply through someone owning the rights to and using their trademark, examples of which are Hawes and Curtis(?) and Caraceni(Gianni Campagna and a few others), and probably many other companies.  There are many exceptions - Charvet(LVMH), though it is no longer in the hands of the Charvet family, has remained largely the same, as have Berluti(LVMH), Lobb(LVMH), T&A(Mohammed Al Fayed), and Oxxford(Individualized Apparel/Tom James).
post #2 of 8
Chuck Frankle (sartorialsolutions) at Andy's forum once told me that he had some bespoke Pucci suits in his inventory. He also have an ebay id, btw.
post #3 of 8
I don't think it is entirely relevvant, but I think Louis Vuitton started out as a trunk maker company. Now I see the LV logo everywhere, and it is getting crazy. The original LV the trunk maker no longer exists, and I don't think any woman or man actually knows LV making beautiful trunks once.
post #4 of 8
Cristobal Balenciaga (1895 - 1972) run a couture house in Paris from 1937 - 1968. He probably never had given a professional thought to men's wear all his life and being a couturier of his generation must have had a healthy contempt for fellow couturiers branching out into prêt a porter (Pierre Cardin and Yves Saint Laurent). http://www.infomat.com/whoswho/cristobalbalenciaga.html Balenciaga' clothes are famous for their sculptural architectural qualities, constructed in heavy materials and produced with an elaborate under structure. Nevertheless today some 35 years after the master has given up designing and 30 years after him joining that great atelier in the sky, we get "Balenciaga" men's wear prêt a porter. The stuff is pleasant enough (although rather over priced) but has nothing whatsoever to do with Balenciaga. Does not even share Balenciaga's concern with "grandezza". Why not give a new name to a new collection and let the dead rest in peace.
post #5 of 8
Thread Starter 
Bengal-stripe, I definitely agree. Your Balenciaga example is good. Everything seems to be trademarked these days. The rights to a name seem to be what is important. The rights to "Hawes and Curtis" are probably owned by a complete stranger, "Sulka"(though now defunct) is owned by Richemont, though a few of the variations of "Sulka" have been bought by offshore traders more recently, and Joseph Abboud and Calvin Klein sold their companies and rights to their names - Abboud is having a major dispute with the company that bought his. I think that fairly recently some young entrepreneurs bought the rights to the Dutch East India Company, hoping to use the name to bring attention to their business, though I do not remember what their business was.
post #6 of 8
If I remember correctly from my Warren Buffett readings haha, the East India Company was the first crown-approved joint-stock company, the first to offer "shares".  Back in the days, somewhere in the 1600's if my memory serves me right...many merchants would get together and finance large "businesses". They weren't businesses per se, but actually a clan of pirates that would gather money from their "investors" and raid ships, robbing gold and the sorts.  These East/West Indies Co. were one of the first to gain significantly more power than Kings and eventually laws were created to limit their power.  The companies couldn't do much without approval of the King.   Those companies eventually died. I'm not really sure what the names are linked with today, though.
post #7 of 8
Warren Buffett probably referred to British East India Company, which was a regulated publicly traded company that used to 'rule' over India. The Dutch East India Company was build under similar concept, except of course most of the investors were Dutchmen and it was the Netherlands Crown who were involved. They were called the VOC in its Dutch acronym and their territorial interest was known as the Dutch East Indies, otherwise called Indonesia nowadays. Both were private enterprises created to serve the interests of the British/Dutch merchants, who decided to form a semi-monopoly in the Far East rather than to cut-throat each other in competition. Both had mercenaries under their commands and played a large part in the development of imperialism in Asia. Despite what some people think about the abuse of corporate power nowadays, these multinationals commanded much greater influence in the geopolitical scenes, unrivalled by any companies throughout human histrory. However, as the political situation evolved both companies were slowly but sure became more regulated by their governments, or the Crowns rather, as European monarchies at that time arguably were more powerful compared to their parliaments. Here is the interesting part, both companies fell into financial distress in the mid-18th century, about two centuries in their existence. Corruptions were rampants in their corporate culture and most probably they just became fat and lazy monopolies. Ultimately they were nationalised by the British and Dutch Crowns. The name of British East India Company still exists today, I saw their website a few years ago, but can't really remember the url. Not sure about the Dutch counterpart, but last year there was a commemoration of 400 years of the VOC in Netherlands. I wouldn't be that enthusiastic considering that they also committed some severe crime against humanity.
post #8 of 8
Quote:
I don't think it is entirely relevvant, but I think Louis Vuitton started out as a trunk maker company. Now I see the LV logo everywhere, and it is getting crazy. The original LV the trunk maker no longer exists, and I don't think any woman or man actually knows LV making beautiful trunks once.
I know that LV used to make beautiful trunks. My friend and his family often use a very large LV trunk to travel when they go on extended trips. At the same time, how many people actually need a trunk to travel, living now in 2004, with modern jet travel? My last long vacation was for a month. I took two large pieces of luggage with me and that was more than sufficient. Jon.
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