I found Dr. Bresch's episodic recounting of his Philadelphia bespoke experience interesting and enjoyable, so I thought I'd do the same for mine here in Atlanta. My bespoke experience actually began conceptually a few weeks ago, but launched this morning. I have taken many suits for alterations to Mario Bosco in Atlanta for several years. I like to say that Mario will take a RTW suit and turn it into MTM. I know this isn't feasible, but he does an outstanding job. I recently have had four Borrelli suits "MTW-ed" by Mario, and each time he returned a suit that looked like it was made specifically for me. He loves the Borrelli suits and always wonders how I can get such great deals on them. (Ian Daniels' site is the answer, as you all know by now). Mario is 65 and has lived in Atlanta 20 years. He grew up in Sicily, apprenticed in Naples, and became a full fledged tailor in Brazil, before moving to New York in the 70s. He ventured South in the early 80s because he said Atlanta didn't have a single true bespoke tailor in the entire city. He's made suits for a lot of marginally famous people--Burt Reynolds, Maynard Jackson (ATlanta's former mayor), Sam Nunn (GA Senator), as well as being the suit maker/costume maker for the Smoky and the Bandit movie. I kid you not. He's a great guy with lots of stories, who really loves to talk about his trade/craft/art to those interested. He has said often that he doesn't do much bespoke work anymore, not because he doesn't want to, but because there simply isn't as much demand for a bespoke suit down here in Atlanta. With that, he says with arms held out and a shrug, "people would rather pay $3000 for an Isaia at Neimann Marcus." Anyway, this morning I ventured into his small shop and announced I wanted a bespoke suit from him and asked him what fabric he would recommend. I want a nice, special occasion suit (weddings, speaking engagements, etc.), not an everyday use suit. So he took out a fabric book (sadly, I didn't get the exact name of the fabric, but I will when I go back) and we began looking through it together. A few he ruled out as "too delicate" or "no, not what you want." We finally settled on a 9 ounce Super 180 fabric. Navy Blue with very thin, close light blue pin stripes. He took my measurements and then asked me what I wanted the suit to look like. I told him I really loved the Neopolitan stye, such as the Borrelli suits he's done for me, and would like something along those lines. I also asked him to tell me what he thought would be inappropriate or not looking good on me. I wanted a ticket pocket, double side vents, tapered arms, high arm holes, 3 button with a slightly higher button stance, rolled lapel, and a nice boat shaped breast pocket (he told me that most competent tailors will do a breast pocket this way anyway, since a straight breast pocket always looks too "manufactured"). For the pants, I went with two buttoned back pockets, and two side pockets. He had a few suits in there and we looked and found a styling I liked. He suggested double pleats, since I am pretty solidly built (5'10, 190) with thick legs (25 years of soccer makes it impossible for me to wear the tapered, thin legged Helmut Lang type pants). As I went through the styling options I wanted (tapered arms, higher arm holes, working buttons, etc.), he said these were things we'd work out after the next fitting. The price will be $2500 and it will take him 5 or 6 weeks. He said he required a 1/2 deposit either then, or when I came back for the fitting. I would imagine for new customers, he'd require the deposit before ordering the fabric, but didn't ask it from me, though I did pay him the 1/2 today. Had I thought about it, I would have taken my camera in with me, so we could get Part I pictures. I will take it in next time and get some Part II pictures. Don't know if you guys are interested, but thought I'd post it anyway. Any other tips you guys have, please let me know.
post #1 of 7
8/4/04 at 12:11pm