Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by Dempsy444, Aug 20, 2011.
What would you like to know?
Well after that claim which is rather impressive, I'd just be interested to know how you got into the business and where you trained.
If I weren't my own tailor, Chris would be.
For whatever that's worth.
That's pretty cool and a very nice compliment Jeffery, Thank you!
I am actually working today, basting try-ons. Meeting two out of town clients at the store tonight. When I finish, I will respond to David.
+1. I have a mix of things in my wardrobe including OTR, MTM and bespoke. Everything has been made or altered to some degree to fit well. If you're of average proportion, I think any of the above options will work just fine.
The reason to go bespoke is about getting a particular silhouette, choosing a specific cloth and selecting details. If you're happy with Kiton's style and cloth choices, then there's really no reason to try anything else. If you're interested in a different style that you can't find off the rack and willing to wait, then bespoke can be a fun and rewarding option. I don't think either one will necessary be better than the other for achieving a "proportionate figure".
First introduction to custom tailoring was my father. He was a fantastic tailor, trained in Greece. He was a master tailor/coatrmaker at age 18. Began working with him at age 17, Learned the ABC’s. He was doing mostly MTM and it wasn’t satisfying to me. Thru a contact I was introduced to Louis Scalise in NYC. Had a 3 day interview with him. He was a tailor/designer and was dean at FIT. Rather than accept me into a program at FIT, he hired me. He had 2 tailor shops in NYC ad he had me working one on one with another tailor/designer Frederich Blum. Scalise was pretty respected in tailoring and a very successful designer. He was the first American designer to have his name placed on the label with the brand name. He had a very exclusive clientele. Celebrities, politicians, sports figures. Blum had started two tailoring schools in Europe and before moving to NY was the designer/pattern maker for Angelo Litrico in Rome. Spent 2 years there, learned pattern making and how to put a jacket together. It was one of those “I don’t like the way you knotted the thread, rip it out and do it again” kind of apprenticeships. Learned to be meticulous there.
Met a tailor who had been a coatmaker for Caraceni in Milan. He was basically a one man shop and he hired me. Spent three years making suits with him. Many tailors start to take short cuts or compromise. He wouldn’t, and that’s why I wanted to work with him. Spent the most time at a sewing machine making the canvass. Almost anything that could be done by hand, we did by hand. This was my PHD work. Refined my skill set. From the beginning to this point in time was 9 years. It is 1981 and I started working on my own but started very slowly. When you are being trained you are shown what to do and have a lot of supervision. I wanted to “own’ my training experience and spent the next 5 years working from home. Made every jacket with my own hands for five years before hiring anyone else to work with. Hired a pantmaker after the first year. Now I have 4 coatmakers and a pantmaker. At present I do a little sewing on the clothes but nothing significant. Do all the patternmaking, fitting and prep every jacket for finishing. Everyone that works with me has a more impressive resume,they have all owned their own business at one time. The newest guy has been with me 15 years and 26 years for one of my coat makers. I am very fortunate with this staff.
To be clear, I didn’t work with Litrico but with a designer/patternmaker that worked 10 or 12 years for him. Here is an interesting link to who Angelo Litrico was.
In the 1960s, at the height of his fame, Angelo Litrico used to advertise:
By the late 60s or early 70s he had sold-out, licensing his name to C&A (a very lowbrow European fashion retailer).
C&A is still turning out cheap rubbish under the AL label.
What would be considered proportionate for my height?
Thank you. I will look into Steed though I believe he is a descendant of A&S and I'm am not drawn to that silhouette like many with discriminating taste are. I'm sure it is damn comfortable though.
As for Tom Ford, I find his style fun with the exaggerated expressions, and yes, the fit is very good for an OTR. He loses me on fabric choice though. I find that his fabric just doesn't have a good enough hand at his price point. I believe NM is selling his OTR suits for roughly $4,500.
Thank you, David. I appreciate you taking the time to write so extensively. As for the bespoke process, yes, I do agree, there is value in going through it. I had two suits made in Buenos Aires at a shop named Tomassos, where the taillor was an old Italian man who made everything by hand. That is what first got me excited about bespoke. Just going through that process. Now I am having a suit made for considerably more at Huntsman. There, I was drawn to not only the cut and silhouette but also the history of the firm and SR. I am attracted to the idea of having a suit not many people have or ever heard of, at least certainly here in San Francisco. We'll see how it turns out. However, now that I have gotten to enjoy that aspect of the process I wonder if for a frame like mine I can get things faster and pretty darn good through M2M italian. For example, Kiton fits maybe better than my iItalian tailor's bespoke suits from BA. I know Huntsman is top notch but they are far away and realistically, I can't afford to make them my go to tailor for everything given the exchange rate. (until a world class tailor decides to set up shop in San Francisco, I guess I am stuck in this dilemma.)
I second the recommendation for Despos. He's done great work for me and others.
Well, he can still be your tailor. You two should make a suit for each other and document the process on your blog. Take this mutual admiration thing to the next level...
Thank you for the good word.
Wes, If you supply the cloth, I'll supply the labor.
Hey I supplied the idea, you guys figure out the details. jefferyd might still have some H&S, or some other cloth you could make up for him.
Now, what cloth will he use for yours?
Could use a new grey flannel, not too dark, not too light.
I have the light grey from that stack of cloth of the H&S goods. It's cut but not made up yet.
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