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Unfunded Liabilities: a/k/a The Cloth Thread - Page 1095
So the main point is to establish a working relationship with a tailor until he gets things right. It's a man made product things may be f*cked up in translation.
So I'm going to make two commissions in february, one for a partially-lined summer jacket in lightweight wool and the other as a travel jacket in a heavier fabric. For the lighter summer jacket, I'm thinking this Dormeuil fabric. For the travel jacket, a W Bill Shetland.
You're a better man than me for visualizing full jackets from those slivers of cloth.
Just saw this thread back on track. Have been writing this for 2 days and did not want to discard. Sorry.
Have been following this discussion with interest. Would like to add, with humility, my thoughts to the discussion. Had to touch upon a few things about Luxire to make it not sound too generic.
As a "team of tailors", trying to make quality products, I do have a few points to share. This post is not to ask you guys to come to us for getting your suits, I believe we are not there yet, but, it is about a journey into making great suits and what has driven us thus far.
When someone says that "Savile Row is not what it used to be", one can not help but wonder what has changed. Almost everyone, to a varying degree, has access to the same set of fabrics, same interlinings, canvas, threads, waddings etc etc.
If a Rubinacci can still make good suits, why not the many others who are in the same region, have access to the same materials etc.
From what I understand, the reason is labor/skills, its cost and its rewards, its supply. The globalization of tailoring, the failure to increase prices with increasing costs has reduced the allure of artisans to get into this business. Labor laws have prevented the young kids from entering the trade and by the time they from old enough, they are not interested/the job does not "pay enough". There are just a lot more options to explore.
It is wrong to say that good work can come from Europe only. It is true that the best artisans were at one time in those regions as the demand was there. But, the skills are now spreading. We have many customers in cities like Milan, Naples, Paris and London, some of whose posts on Tumblr and Instagram get hundreds of likes, is that is a worthy measure.
And no, we do not give free stuff or any discounts to these bloggers. Apart from the Affiliate thread, we do not spend a penny on reaching customers or on advertising.
In Asia (I would speak from India's point of view and generalize), the supply of labor is not an issue. The skill certainly is. Today, if we need to hire a few good suit makers, who have worked on canvassed jackets, we can only keep searching. Have met a few tailors, whose shops are older than me, who have moved to fused jackets from the erstwhile era of canvas. It just does not pay.
One more thing people associate with Asia is exploitation of labor. Things have improved a lot over the last few years. A customer visited us and write this.
There are no shortcuts to quality. Bangalore is a mass-manufacture hub for garments. We see shirt factories averaging 20 shirts per tailor per day(in a batch process). Our tailors make one shirt per day but the tailor makes the whole garment. Taking pattern making into account, a shirt takes 2 man-days to make.
That is good from a quality point of view but increases cost to an extent that it would unaffordable for most clothing business models. Hence, poor quality becomes the norm.
The goal thus, for everyone wanting to make $3000 suits, is to create the skill bank anew. In the absence of those nimble fingers and time trained eyes, the requisites of a successful shop have changed. First, learn the "tricks of the trade" and then multiply that by training more people. Investing in training, giving them time before drafting them and then having a strict QA process by being more than eager to dump anything that does not pass the muster is the best bet.
It does not really matter whether the maker has heard of the internet or not.
One day, when this thread will critically evaluate fabrics, I would like to jump in again. There are a lot of misconceptions we here are happy to live with. Time will come to take them on.
Will conclude with images of jacket we made recently. The current state of our art.
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
Which brings me back to my point: has anyone used Harrison's Icarus book? I really like some of the blue tones for a summer jacket. Remember: the below dishrag/tablecoth jacket fabrics are not the Harrisons Icarus that I am asking about.
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