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Custom shirts

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by Cpal, Dec 19, 2003.

  1. banksmiranda

    banksmiranda Well-Known Member

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    I think that the sewing machine foot to which Mr. Kabbaz was referring is also called the rolled hem foot. Â The rolled hem foot is usually available in variations anywhere from 2mm(for shirts) up to 10mm(for denim). Â The felling foot(usually 3-4mm for shirts) is used to sew single-needle flat-felled side seams. http://www.absolutesewing.com/hemmerfoot2mm.html
    I saw a picture of one of Mr. Kabbaz's shirts in a Playboy magazine from 1997. Â This shirt did have a high curve at the side seams, and it was evident that the shirt was made to fit the person's physique(tapered from chest to waist) very well. Â The shirt I saw was the same light/medium-blue shirt which Mr. Kabbaz has a picture of on his web site. Â The full-size picture in the magazine provides better detail, so if you have a chance take a look.
     
  2. Alexander Kabbaz

    Alexander Kabbaz Well-Known Member

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    Thankfully my shirtmaking is better than my drawing. The tails we usually make are just about the steepest anywhere. The upper curve has about a 2" diameter; the lower two curves about a 2.5" diameter. The tail extension (the height cut into the side seams) ranges from 4.5" to 7". I'll try to post a picture of a scroll foot. B.M. I don't know who is terming it a rolled hem foot ... but hemming is only one of its many purposes. The second article (Elapsed Time and Steps Required to Make a Custom Shirt) has now also been put up on my web site. Members may access it at Elapsed Time & Steps Required to Make A Shirt
     
  3. Steve B.

    Steve B. Well-Known Member

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    Mr. Kabbaz, MP et al.

    Have been experiencing extreme difficulties wit the tech support of a certain lap top manufacturer. Name starts with a "D" and ends with an "ell". Worst customer service I've expereinced in my consumer life time. So this is being posted from the friendly neighborhood Kinko's.

    Figured you guys would be OK for a week or so and be civil with one another. Not so sure about that- no more posting of one another's e-mails, K?

    Gentlemen, can we play nice again and stop throwing sand at one another???
     
  4. banksmiranda

    banksmiranda Well-Known Member

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    Mr. Kabbaz, is there any chance that pictures of the 3,126 fabrics will go up as part of the updated web site?
     
  5. Alexander Kabbaz

    Alexander Kabbaz Well-Known Member

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    Yes.

    Carlo:
    I can comment on both the why ... and the why not:
    1] When the person mounting the collar on the shirt does so, they are supposed to center it in the neckhole. Fabric stretches. If the sewer pulls a bit too hard on the first half of the hole, then the collar has become stretched off center. They can then, improperly, pull much less hard on the second half of the hole - in other words slightly shirring in the remaining half of the collar - to make it fit. If, on the other hand, there is a split yoke, the split marks the center for all to see and the operator needs be much more observant.
    Ah, you say. Why can't there just be a mark made at the center of the yoke for the seamstress to follow? Simple answer - there can. So quality argument #1 is out the window.
    2] A proper ready made yoke curves outward slightly on the rear seam line. This curve allows the bit of extra room necessary for average shoulder blades. This is a bit difficult to explain with words rather than drawings, but the curve can be designed in such a way with a split yoke so as to disguise its existance by slightly changing the center joining seam angle off its expected 90 degrees. By doing so, the stripes can appear not to be following a curve that they are in fact following. This improves the shirt's appearance. The stripes could also be made to chevron in the center completely hiding the curve. Is this a quality improvement? Yes. Have I ever seen a ready-made shirt with a properly curved (or at all curved) rear yoke line? No. So whether or not this would truly be a quality consideration must be considered on its overriding, deeper question: are the RTW manufacturers willing to make it more difficult (read: more costly) to sew the shirt by curving the yoke? Given that the answer is a resounding NO ...

    In summation, I would have to opine as follows:
    No, Virginia, there is neither a Santa Claus nor does a split yoke offer improvement in a ready-made shirt. But it could.

    As regards your other comments: Thank you.
     
  6. Alexander Kabbaz

    Alexander Kabbaz Well-Known Member

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    Some of my shirts have the "typical" folded pleating on the sleeve. What you refer to as "small pleats" in the T&A style is actually shirring. This is an easier style to sew. We do it, and many other treatments, upon request. Custom is what the client says it should be.
     
  7. The_Foxx

    The_Foxx Well-Known Member

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    On the subject of fine shirts, how many times should one wear a shirt before laundering? Goes without saying an undershirt is worn with it; I normally wear a shirt only once before washing if for work (on at about 7:50 AM, take it off around 7-7:30PM), but if the shirt is worn for church I get a second wear before laundering. Am I getting the maximum life out of my shirts this way?
     
  8. Alexander Kabbaz

    Alexander Kabbaz Well-Known Member

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    I got a letter today from a client who got the letter from Peninou "Since 1930 French Laundry and Cleaners, Inc." in San Fransisco. I am absolutely disgusted - the laundry industry has now codified its ability to ruin shirts without penalty. I quote:
    "The International Fabricare Institute measures the average life expectancy of a dress shirt as two years, or approximately 35 to 50 washings (ANSI/IFI 1-1998). After this time the fabric of the shirt loses strength and becomes susceptible to tearing in the cleaning process. Worn shirts will tear in this manner despite the best handling and attention to detail on our part."
    The letter concludes with, "At Peninou, we take pride in our World-Class quality".
    Now whatever am I going to say to the client who sent me than 28 year old shirt for a new collar? Heck, should I be apologizing to my own personal 20 year old shirts for forcing them to slave above and beyond the ANSI standards. Next the darn shirts will be charging me with senior abuse.
    Foxx - you'd better keep track of the number of wearings and be sure to date your shirts when you get them. Remember, now ... two years and they're finished (ANSI/IFI 1-1998).

    So before today I would have said, If it has no odor, if you can get the ring out of the collar with a bit of Octagon, and if you haven't perspired the wrinkles into permanent creases, then by all means wear your church shirt yet another day. You might want to rethink that during mid-Summer, though.

    Darn sure I'll be putting that letter on the new web site.
     
  9. montecristo#4

    montecristo#4 Well-Known Member

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    Mr. Kabbaz, interestingly enough I saw that same sign specifying the "average life expectancy of a dress shirt as two years" in one of the "finer" dry cleaners here in McLean, Virginia. I have not returned since. Right now I am doing all my washing and ironing myself, by hand. I expect I'll get more than 30 washings out of shirt, easily.

    Montecristo#4
     
  10. Looking to improve

    Looking to improve Well-Known Member

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    T4phage: According to the Kiton website (www.kiton.it) there should also be a store selling Kiton in Maastricht. If my memory serves me, I believe I saw a Kiton suit or sport coat at the firm of Montulet, in the Maastrichter Smedenstraat, which is right in the heart of the city centre. Perhaps as an additional resource for you. Hope I've been of service. MtB
     
  11. T4phage

    T4phage Well-Known Member

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    sage
    Originally posted by Looking to Improve:
    Thanks. I've heard of the store, but for me it is as far away as Brussels, and I'd rather go to Amsterdam. Most of the time I order the suit in Italy anyway and then get it picked up (or if additional fittings are required) in Amsterdam.
     
  12. Looking to improve

    Looking to improve Well-Known Member

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    Originally posted by T4phage:
    I know Maastricht is rather out of the way for most people in the Netherlands. It is for me as well, approx. 230 km. Still, I try to make time to go there once in a while. I buy my shoes (Edward Green) there. Besides, it's a trip down memory lane for me: I attended Maastricht University.

    As an aside, I'm not in a position to buy my clothes abroad on anything approaching a regular basis. I do get the impression you are. Maybe one day... Until then I do what I can.

    Anyway, I just hoped to be of some assistance.

    MtB
     
  13. T4phage

    T4phage Well-Known Member

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    Originally posted by Looking to Improve:
    You buy the E.Greens at Shoes and Shirts on Havenstraat right? For me and my wife, we prefer to go to Antwerpen and Brussels because of the wonderful suiker wafels and Pierre Marcolini chocolates [​IMG] , plus you get great shopping there to. Actually, we do most of our shopping in Italy, we go there on average twice a year, and we do try to get to the summer sales in August. You really should go there, the sales are wonderful, and you should check out their outlets near Florence if you are into Gucci, Zegna, L.Piana, Prada, D&G, the prices are good, and when you hit the sales, it is even better. About half to one third of the prices here in Nederlands.
     
  14. Looking to improve

    Looking to improve Well-Known Member

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    Originally posted by T4phage:
    I do indeed. I first went there while still at Maastricht University (although not for the E.Greens, too pricey). I like the salesmen, their advice and I think they offer quite good service. I recently found a store in the city where I live (The Hague) that also sells E.Green, but the E.Green-shoes there are more expensive than at S&S (approx. EUR 65,00 more a pair). Since I have an 'OV-Jaarkaart' it is worth it for me to travel to Maastricht. O, as an aside, Montulet is very close to S&S.

    I also like Maastricht as a town, so going there is no punishment.

    Originally posted by T4phage:
    I did go to Italy last (late) summer. To Tuscany to be more precise. Yet I went in september, mostly to avoid the tourist crowd, so I missed the sales. I did visit Florence, but did not do that much shopping. I was however able to find two items (tie and belt) I had been looking for for some time. Still it will probably be some time before I return. And going twice a year is something that may happen in the (hopefully not too distant) future.

    MtB
     
  15. T4phage

    T4phage Well-Known Member

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    Originally posted by Looking to improve:
    You mean Edward Pelger's in Den Haag Hoogstraat? My problem with them is that they have a very limited selection, only about 5 styles and mostly in black. Shoes and Shirts have a much nicer selection, plus the colors that they have (the antiqued browns) are quite nice. At S&S they also carry some nice StefanoBis.

    Next time you go to Florence, it doesn't matter if you miss the sales, just head off to "The Mall" the outlet centre.
     
  16. Looking to improve

    Looking to improve Well-Known Member

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    Originally posted by T4phage:
    Yes, I mean Eduard Pelger. I haven't inquired about the number of styles and colours they stock, but did notice the rather small selection on display, as opposed to the other shoes they carry. I do prefer S&S. I find Eduard Pelger a good resource for ties when on sale.

    Originally posted by T4phage:
    Thank you for this advice. I will keep it in mind the next time I go. And I probably will go, because I still want to peek inside Neuber's and revisit Eredi Chiarini Royal. It shan't be soon, though... Where would I find this outlet centre? On the outskirts of Florence, or more towards the city center?

    And another thing. Bringing the 'conversation' more towards the original topic of the thread. Where in the The Hague area (where you seem to be familiar), or Amsterdam (also) would you advise me to try for (better quality) made-to-measure shirts. I posted a question on Andy's forum about Maffeis shirts. Thracozaag kindly responded, and mentioned Battistoni. I have no idea where I could find these except in Rome... Besides, a three or six shirt minimum order is a bit of a financial challenge... Any ideas and/or suggestions, or should just try the Maffeis shirts which, I'm told, can be made one at a time. Thanks in advance.

    MtB
     
  17. friendlyone

    friendlyone Well-Known Member

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    Back to Brioni. In 2002, I went to their shop in Rome and ordered a suit. Perhaps the problem was that I was leaving the country soon, and so didn't have time to make a bespoke suit, but I found their fitting procedures highly unusual (for a suit costing so much money). Instead of being measured properly by a tailor, the salesman merely asked me to try on a jacket that was slightly too big, which he then marked up, as if he were merely going to alter it, rather than make an entirely new suit.

    I must say that the suit, when it arrived in the US, fit me quite well. It also had bespoke characteristics, such as real button holes. Still, I must say that the process left me a bit uneasy.

    Any other experiences?

    Josh
     
  18. T4phage

    T4phage Well-Known Member

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    Originally posted by Looking To Improve:
    They don't stock that many models, but you can order EGs from them, also MTO. They have the EG swatch book so you can see the various colours and finishes.

    Outside the city, Via Europa 8, località Leccio, Reggello FI, tel. 055-8657775.

    As I've mentioned previously, I buy most of my dress clothing in Italy, but you can go to Oger (Amsterdam has better service) for MTM Borrelli, Zegna (Amsterdam) for MTM Zegna shirts, Pauw (Amsterdam) for Kiton MTM.

    Hope this helps.
     
  19. T4phage

    T4phage Well-Known Member

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    Originally posted by friendlyone:
    I'm really saddened to hear of your "unusual" measuring experience at Brioni. Being a long time customer, I've always had top notch service from them. May I enquire which Brioni store to went to? Barbarini or Condotti?

    I assume you were buying a Made To Measure, not a RTW suit that they did not have available at the time? Usually, with MTM, they just alter a pre-existing pattern to fit your measurements, not creating an entirely new pattern for you. Did they show you what various style/types of jacket/pants combinations were available?

    I am glad that the suit turned out well though.
     
  20. Looking to improve

    Looking to improve Well-Known Member

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    Originally posted by T4phage:
    Still, for the difference in price, I'd rather go to S&S in Maastricht, where I also have more faith in the salesmen. Originally posted by T4phage:
    Thank you for the directions to the Florentine outlet centre. I'll be sure to remember. Originally posted by T4phage:
    You did mention buying your dress clothes in Italy. I had (and have) the impression you know a shop or two in the The Hague or Amsterdam area. So I asked, just to perhaps learn of a new address. I do go to Oger in The Hague. I have no problems with their service, but cannot say anything about the service in Amsterdam, simply because I've never bought anything there (yet). I buy my Ermenegildo Zegna Su Misura suits there. They also are the Maffeis enthusiasts. Thanks for the 'thinking along'. MtB
     

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