Originally Posted by RJman
Ahem. Lanvin's bespoke operation is almost certainly a loss leader operated partly for prestige reasons. Certainly I've never seen any other clients on their bespoke floor, which includes Gelot the hatmaker as well as their phenomenally expensive tailors; in fact, I've never seen any Gelot staff -- just bored tailors hanging out. A friend suggested that Lanvin also has or had some foreign clients who are able regularly to place very large orders -- storybook nabobs who reputedly wear shirts once, that sort of thing. (Similarly, I am certain that Hilditch & Key Paris' bespoke operations -- which are separate from those of its UK parent -- are completely dependent on their hundreds of orders annually from Mr. Lagerfeld.) At the same time, my friend suggests that the owners of Lanvin aren't particularly interested in supporting the bespoke operations, so things may sort of be drifting.
Isn't Gelot another of those English imports as I've seen Gelot hatboxes with By Appointment to King Edward written on them.