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Bespoke Shirt option in NYC and rest of USA Help needed - Page 3

post #31 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by tutee View Post

frown.gif

You are right on with the "old Hollywood" tradition. All I remember is being measured by Ken Sepetjan (? sp - one with the moustache) about 10 years ago, and he (and the process) was very straightforward. Sometimes an artisan maker can be very decided in his/her ways, and I don't remember Ken giving me that impression. He was very open to ideas. I wanted a band collar (we're all young once), and that was OK. I wanted a shorter width cuff to go along with the collar, and that was OK. They produced exactly what I asked for, in my measurements at the time.

Given the aesthetic of your Ercoles trousers I think you would have very good chemistry with them. Don't mind the Fioravanti effect, it's just marketing. The substance is there IMO.

The shirts themselves are not as "tightly made" as Kabbaz, more artisanally made than my Jon Greens, still top notch such that you'd probably pay more attention to how the details and fit turned out than construction. Interestingly, the shirts as I remember them wore "softer," in contrast to my Bassetti and NYC made shirts, which had a "constructed" feel about them.

Anto also has an amazing shirt cleaning service for all the shirts they make. I'd send all my bespoke shirts there if I could, but they only clean the shirts they make.

I think SF member Andre Yew here (a SoCal guy) uses them regularly and perhaps can help you more. Haven't seen him around these parts lately.

Best wishes.

An example below (I worked with the gentleman on the right) - very nice looking shirt!

anto2010al.jpg

- M
Edited by mmkn - 7/6/12 at 5:01pm
post #32 of 42
tutee, here is a thread Andre made six years ago on Anto:

http://www.styleforum.net/t/26700/decembers-shirt-damage
post #33 of 42
Thread Starter 
First off thank you so much mmkm for your information.
Quote:
Originally Posted by mmkn View Post

Don't mind the Fioravanti effect, it's just marketing.
- M

Actually, I wasn't referring to the "showmanship." I was referring to "Catering to the needs of big timers so small-timers and nit-pickers need not inquire" phenomenon.


Also thank you for the info on thread Vox.
post #34 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by mmkn View Post


An example below (I worked with the gentleman on the right) - very nice looking shirt!
anto2010al.jpg
- M

That is a beautifully cut shirt on the man on the right. He obviously does not have a model physique (unlike mmkn) but the shirt just does wonders for him. Those shoulder line is gorgeous, the sleevehead is soft yet more refined looking than the shirred Napoli stuff. An odd patterned shirt for my tastes, no pattern matching (the bane of the internet sartorialists everywhere rolleyes.gif), colored buttons and thread yet, I don't really notice any of that at first glance, I see a guy that looks good and looks really, really comfortable. The armhole seems bigger than what, again, the internet sartorialists prefer, and has space in the chest and waist to move, eat a burger but it does not look sloppy.
post #35 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by tutee View Post

small-timers

A couple of factors are on your side as far as timing with Anto.

With the recent downturn of the economy there aren't as many big timers (except for award ceremonies) ordering 50 bespoke shirts just for their summer home. The makers aren't inundated with production pressure and have more focus with standard 6 or 8 orders.

The second factor is that Anto is located in California, not New York. As Andre Yew mentioned in his thread and as I found, the Sepetjans brothers were very pleasant to work with. Perhaps their father Anto was more old school "Hollywoody,"Rodeo-ish", "Fioravantish," but I don't remember Ken to be that at all (probably because he works with stylists rather than the stars themselves, and his competitors are the likes of Tom Ford). Perhaps this video (open with Internet Explorer) can give you an idea . . . .

Although both bespoke, I got the sense that A Y's level was more them "make their shirt for him." Nothing wrong with that as I think that is the usual, but I think the level you are looking for is for them to "make you your shirts, but by them." Subtle difference, but of the various shirts I have from various makers only the Jon Greens go to the "my shirts" level, the "there" level. I'm not saying you're going to ask for some thing way off based, just enough to where you'd feel that it's your shirts and still have the maker feel comfortable putting their name on it. So again, the initial chemistry needs to closely match.

The one thing that eventually got my shirts "there" was the realization that beyond the first sample shirt offered by the maker I needed to (and was willing to) pay for further "samples" before the entire order is cut. Nothing new here, as Manton once mentioned that he tweaks his Genevas a little bit with each orders until the pattern is "there," in essence paying for many sample shirts. This, I think, needs to be proposed at the initial meeting so that both the maker and you are free to change as needed. Didn't Ercole tell you to give him three tries? Someone's gotta pay for those samples, and I think it should be the client if he wishes further tweakings.

Quote:
Originally Posted by edmorel View Post

beautifully

Alex Kabbaz once wrote/said something to the effect that the purpose of the cuffs is to "frame the hands." Ken's shirt is a most beautiful example of that I have seen anywhere.

- M
post #36 of 42
Strange the way things turn out. I have recommended Geneva to a lot people, most of whom have been happy. But one friend tried them and hated the shirts. Then he went to Anto and was deleriously happy. Frankly, I thought both sets of shirts looked fine.

Re: Geneva, remember they are basically a small factory. The bulk of their business is not individual customers but private label work for department stores, haberdashers and the like. Most of their orders are many shirts at a time. So, to make things truly out of their usual line is a PitA for them. I basically get the same style every time now so I am an easy customer. I did once ask them to order some cloth from S&G and they wouldn't, didn't want to open a new account when they already have access to so much cloth. One friend tried to get them to buy a special interlining just for his shirts and they wouldn't do that either.

On buttons, I don't know why hand-attached buttons would be important. I thought it was only necessary if you use those really thick buttons which, to my knowledge, they don't carry. Kabbaz hand attaches buttons as a matter of course because he uses really thick buttons that machines can't attach. Paris will do it for a substantial upcharge. Geneva I have never asked. FWIW, IMO Geneva's standard button is just fine. It's pure MOP and nicer (and thicker) than Paris' standard button (which is thin and breaks easily) though not so nice as Kabbaz's. Kabbaz told me years ago that the wholesale price for his buttons was like $2/per, so you can see how that adds up.
post #37 of 42
I find hand shanked buttons a little nicer to use.
post #38 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by poorsod View Post

I find hand shanked buttons a little nicer to use.
Me too, but Paris used to charge (IIRC) an extra $50 for the privilege. That's a lotta dough for a marginal improvement. Kabbaz does it as a matter of course but his shirts are now priced in the four figures.
post #39 of 42
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Manton View Post

Re: Geneva, remember they are basically a small factory. The bulk of their business is not individual customers but private label work for department stores, haberdashers and the like. Most of their orders are many shirts at a time. So, to make things truly out of their usual line is a PitA for them. I basically get the same style every time now so I am an easy customer. I did once ask them to order some cloth from S&G and they wouldn't, didn't want to open a new account when they already have access to so much cloth. One friend tried to get them to buy a special interlining just for his shirts and they wouldn't do that either.

Same here. I am VERY aware of their constrains and almost never deviate from my developed dress and casual shirt formats. However, As I mentioned earlier I have always felt that going back to them with an order of 2-3 shirts is never enough. Honestly, I am never comfortable with ordering 5 shirts or more on subsequent orders. How many do you get at a time from them?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Manton View Post

On buttons, I don't know why hand-attached buttons would be important.
Yup same here. Never really cared for them and likely never will. As long as stitching is neat and no loose trimmings I am fine with it. especially at Geneva prices.
post #40 of 42
Tutee, for what it's worth, I've never had that experience with Ascot Chang. I visited their Beijing store once, actually, and one of the younger assistants kept fetching me tea as I selected fabrics. I think I even took five minutes trying to decide between two different shades of blue, and they never made me feel rushed. In fact, I think they brought out a mirror for me so that I could see how the color looked next to my face.

I'll admit, however, that every once in a while, I'll find a loose thread on the underside of a French placket. For some reason, I find this to be somewhat common on all custom shirts, but I haven't gone to makers such as Kabbaz. Still, it doesn't bother me and hasn't affected the wearing or durability of my shirts.

My orders are typically between six and nine shirts at a time.
post #41 of 42
T, my typical order is four at a time though I have done less once or twice, and more a few times as well.
post #42 of 42
I just spotted this thread, and sorry for missing it so many months ago if you're still considering your options.

As mentioned above, I'm very happy with Anto, and they are a friendly, down-to-earth bunch to deal with. They will work with you off the beaten path, and I get the feeling that they're one of those custom makers who enjoy doing things that aren't in the norm, not that your tastes would let you get too crazy. Tony Gaziano is another example of that.

They produce for many Hollywood movies, and if you want to see their shirt fits, just look at any number of TV shows or movies listed on their website: http://www.antoshirt.com.

A good representation of their style is what Scott Caan wears on Hawaii Five-0 on CBS. Their collar is recognizable from a mile away. Well not really, but it is very distinctive when you're up-close.
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