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my visit to Napoli & Mina @ Napoli Su Misura

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by medtech_expat, Oct 31, 2010.

  1. CaymanS

    CaymanS Senior member

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    Plz to bring x-ray analysis to the Ambrosi threak, complete with 360 degree diagrams of the way the 17-button fly and hand-stitched crotch seam gracefully swath the penis/testes of the wearer (nhjic).
     
  2. JubeiSpiegel

    JubeiSpiegel Senior member

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    What was the promotion price?
     
  3. mafoofan

    mafoofan Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    Well, it's certainly not to everyone's taste. When I visited Savile Row, Richard Anderson noted that he would never let me walk out of his shop with the shoulders on my Rubinacci jacket. However, he also acknowledged it is a legitimate tailoring choice that he knows comes out of southern Italy--it just wouldn't ever be a choice he'd make himself.


    The thing to realize is that the "droop" is what LH generally does. The degree of drooping just depends on your particular shoulders. As you get older, your shoulders get smaller and slope down more, so the effect will increase. However, it was always there.

    Nay's jacket is a not a good point of reference. They went out of their way to do something atypical for him--perhaps because the overall angle of his shoulders, from neck to end points, is extremely steep. However, there is quite a bit of shoulder extension in his jackets. There is no drooping because the shoulders have much more structure in them to achieve the mild pagoda shape. In comparison, my jackets have essentially no extension, yet you can still see some droop because my shoulders fall-off after my acromion. If the shoulders were extended, the effect would simply be enhanced.


    According to many orthodox points-of-view, it is not a good shoulder expression. Savile Row tailors would see it as a mistake, and American tailors like Despos have voiced mild disapproval. Hell, even a northern Italian tailor would not cut you something like that. Yet, Mariano Rubinacci will say that built-up, straightened shoulders are "not elegant" or "not nice." I suppose what I'm saying is that there are many schools of tailoring around the world, and they tend to contradict each other. If you like one, you may easily find another wrong or distasteful.
     
    Last edited: Apr 22, 2013
  4. dopey

    dopey Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    foo: do you have an iammatt database? I don't remember his LH suits being droopy (and no data mining please). In fact, I recall his look like a level-er version of whnay's, but without the roping, though that does not mean they are constructed the same way.
     
  5. dopey

    dopey Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    never mind. whnay. did it for me. I think there is a tiny bit of extension, but based on the sleevehead, it looks like they are working with a relatively square shoulder. In any event, the result is not a droopy sleeve, which is why I like this verison of LH's work best
    Here are some of my favorites from Matt: [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] .../quote]
     
    Last edited: Apr 22, 2013
  6. Cantabrigian

    Cantabrigian Senior member

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    I assume this is my explanation that you're mistaking - whether because it's your nature or because you don't care / understand what I wrote.

    It's not the absence of padding that raises the jacket's shoulder near the shoulder seam. It's the presence of padding.

    As I illustrated with the photos of jackets on a hanger, all jackets have this sort of padding.

    It's only noticeable on the NSM jacket because there is no padding elsewhere to smooth the transition from shoulder to sleevehead.



    It seems like gravity would offer a stronger objection to this theory than to any other that has been presented.
     
    1 person likes this.
  7. whnay.

    whnay. Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    I bought my wife a nice camera for Xmas so now I don't have any excuses for not posting pics. I'll take a few pics this weekend of some of my stuff - by and large they have very similar shoulder profiles but there is some variation.
     
  8. Cantabrigian

    Cantabrigian Senior member

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    I'll note, for the record, that I don't like the look of the bump at the end of NSM shoulders.

    But I do like the way the jackets feel / move. There's an undeniable lightness which certainly lends some - marginal - ease of movement. It wouldn't be hard to have a smoother shoulder line, but it wouldn't feel the same.

    I wouldn't get everything from NSM, but especially for summer or more casual jackets, I'd definitely keep them in the rotation.
     
  9. mafoofan

    mafoofan Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    No, it's because your explanation makes zero sense. You keep mentioning the "presence of padding" (or wadding) at the shoulder near the armscye causing the shoulder line to upturn. However, the only reason you insert wadding there in an otherwise unpadded shoulder is to mitigate against collapse. If there is so much that it causes the shoulder line to curve upward, you have used too much wadding. Hence, if wadding is truly to blame, NSM simply uses too much and should correct the mistake.

    Then you say that NSM feels lighter and gives you marginally improved ease of movement. But again, it makes zero sense that the upturn in the shoulders has anything to do with that. If you are right, that wadding is what creates the upturn, it would stand to reason that less wadding would make the jacket feel lighter, not more of it. In other words, your claimed cause of the upturn would in no way make the jacket feel the way you describe--it feels that way in spite of it.

    I understand one of your key suppositions is that non-NSM jackets use padding elsewhere in the shoulder to "smooth the transition from shoulder to sleevehead." Again, this is patently false. Mine have no such padding. The shoulder is completely unpadded except for a little bit of wadding at the scye. The same is true of Mariano's own jackets and the Solito jackets I've examined in person. I have no idea how your photos of jackets on hangers are supposed to show otherwise.

    Surely, you will write-off everything I've just said as tedious or dismissive or argumentative, but whatever. I think you are mired in wishful thinking.
     
    Last edited: Apr 22, 2013
  10. mafoofan

    mafoofan Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    Put another away: if wadding near the scye is what causes the NSM shoulders to turn upward, and the only purpose of wadding in a natural shoulder is to prevent collapse, why the heck would the tailor use so much as to cause the upturn? It's a mistake, no matter how you cut it.
     
  11. mafoofan

    mafoofan Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    No. The armscye is reinforced by canvas, stitching, and its arched shape. It will not collapse under gravity. So, if you cut it high enough, it will rise above your shoulder. I've seen this happen on others and have firsthand experience. Oxxford messed up my order for unpadded shoulders and "fixed" the error by simply removing the padding from the jackets already made. Hence, the scye is too big and high on those jackets, forcing the shoulders to upturn a little bit toward the scye. Very much like what you see in NSM jackets.
     
    Last edited: Apr 22, 2013
  12. patrickBOOTH

    patrickBOOTH Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    ^I've experienced that with RTW in the past. You see it a lot on men in RTW in the wild.
     
  13. Cantabrigian

    Cantabrigian Senior member

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    What I'm talking about - and this is the reason I was careful not to use the generic term of 'padding' for what's operating here - is meant to help the sleeve hang well.

    The purpose of this stuff is not to affect the shoulder line. It does however interfere with the shoulder line since, of necesity, it has to be stitched into the shoulder seam. So there is a small area of this stuff that ends up on top of the shoulder (for the same reason that you have seam allowances - you need something to hold a stitch).

    If you removed that stuff, the sleeves - and this would be most obvious from a profile view of the wearer - would display the sort of collapsing sleeve that you see in the worse Mariano examples that Dopey posted.


    At this point, it might be best for you to see one of these jackets in person rather than theorizing about the readily observable properties of a simple physical object.

    Or, alternately, you can continue issue rants based on the premise that I'm a brainwashed moron.

    I'm pretty sure I know which one you'll choose and that will have the side benefit of keeping you the center of attention.
     
  14. Galen

    Galen Active Member

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    Looks really nice MrChris!

    Would be interesting to see better pictures of it, possibly with a better camera and natural light?
     
  15. mafoofan

    mafoofan Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    So, you're working on the premise that Mariano's own Rubinacci jackets are an error? That, in and of itself, strikes me as preposterous. Dopey doesn't like the "collapsing sleeve," but it is an identifying characteristic of Rubinacci jackets and other Neapolitan tailors. Solito, for example. The degree of collapse is different on different people, but it is always there. Iammatt's jackets (that Dopey posted) also exhibit drop-off, though less pronounced. It's on all my jackets, and it was on yours when I saw it years ago. If you don't like that style of tailoring, that's fine, but it is not a mistake.

    This raises the question: why would anyone want to use a traveling tailor catering specifically to foreigners called "Napoli Su Misura" if he doesn't like one of the most identifying features of classic Neapolitan jackets? Baffling. Even more baffling is attempting to defend the deviation of the newcomer versus the practice of existing standards. It's like saying Coke tastes bad because it doesn't taste like the supermarket brand cola you bought at a discount.

    Anyway, I don't believe the wadding is to blame. The upturn in many examples is far too pronounced and begins far too short of the scye for that.


    Ha. Give me a fucking break. I'm not arguing against myself here.

    First of all, I've seen two NSM jackets in person: Manton's and Edmorel's. Neither exhibit the upturn that is obvious on many other examples.

    Second, if you don't like people on the internet talking about stuff they aren't seeing in person, maybe the internet isn't right for you.
     
    Last edited: Apr 22, 2013
  16. unbelragazzo

    unbelragazzo Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    I'm not going to enter back into the shoulder line debate because it's exhausting, and because for now I have nothing to add to what I said before. But I take issue with this paragraph, for three reasons:

    1) By your own admission, "Neapolitan style" is an amorphous designation - the Rubi shoulder line you identify is sometimes present, but then the Solito shoulder line seems to look more like NsM. I'd argue that the most defining characteristic of Neapolitan tailoring is soft/light construction, which NsM most definitely has.

    2) It is possible that people are working with NsM because they like the style independent of whether or not it is characteristic of Naples.

    3) Nobody is making much money making bespoke clothing for Neapolitan customers right now. Certainly not Rubinacci. If by "foreigners" you mean non-Italians, NsM has Italian customers. And Rubinacci has plenty of non-Italian customers. I don't think this should really matter at all, but since it apparently does, I guess it's worth mentioning.
     
  17. mafoofan

    mafoofan Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    1. "Neapolitan tailoring" is certainly somewhat amorphous, as there are different ways of doing things. However, that doesn't mean anything goes, including mistakes. As for "soft/light construction" being a defining characteristic--I think that is fair to say. However, anybody can gut the innards out of jacket and use light canvas. The real question is whether you can do it with finesse. My problem with the NSM jacket shoulders is that they are not done well, not that they aren't soft or light.

    2. Maybe some. But I don't think there is any denying that NSM's business model is based on feeding the pre-existing foreign taste for Neapolitan tailoring. They are not prime movers. The name of the business itself is telling. How would you view a newly-established tailoring business in London that calls itself "Savile Row Bespoke" and caters heavily to outsiders who cannot make it to London? It doesn't mean anything bad about the product, but it does undermine its position as a standardbearer of Savile Row tailoring.

    3. Yes, Rubinacci's clients are global. But the business is more than 80 years old. It has been a fundamental part of the Neapolitan tailoring scene for a very long time. Its house style has endured many decades intact. So, the reason many of its clients are foreign is different from the reason why NSM's are. I don't think that's a controversial point to make. The reason it matters is because tailoring styles are developed over time and by custom. The deviating eccentricities of a less firmly rooted newcomer should not be confused for reflecting legitimate form, whether they are good or bad.
     
    Last edited: Apr 22, 2013
  18. unbelragazzo

    unbelragazzo Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    In the part I quoted, your problem with NSM shoulders was that they weren't Neapolitan, as in, why would anybody want a Neapolitan jacket without a Rubinacci-style shoulder, which is different.

    I mean...Mina has spent her entire life living in Naples and most of it working within the Neapolitan clothing industry. She's proud of that heritage and named her company after the city that that fostered it. It's not as if she is going to create a company based in Naples, using Neapolitan tailors, after working there her whole career and call it "London House." Oh wait...

    OK, fine...but now that we have established that all the well-known tailors in Naples (many of whom Mina worked with before starting her own company) are producing clothing for people who don't live in, and didn't grow up in, Naples, there's a lot less to argue about.
     
    Last edited: Apr 22, 2013
  19. mafoofan

    mafoofan Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    That, if you recall, was in response to Cantabrigian's suggestion that the NSM shoulder is correct, whereas Rubinacci's is a mistake. Yes, I think it is a preposterous position to take. If one should serve as a reference for correctness, it is not NSM. That is only sensible, as one far predates the other and has consistently made the same sort of thing all that time.


    It belies all credulity that a tailoring company calling itself "Napoli Su Misura" isn't trying to leverage the pre-existing reputation of Neapolitan tailoring. I'm only assuming they are competent and named themselves thoughtfully.

    "Neapolitan tailoring" far predates NSM. Anything that defined it was invented a long time ago. Rubinacci has been around ever since Neapolitan tailoring was anything worth mentioning. Foreign tailors, bespoke clients, and other authorities on men's clothing often refer to Rubinacci as a primary example of Neapolitan tailoring. Of the tailors in Naples, they are undoubtedly the most famed. These are all facts. If you are trying to argue that NSM is as valid a reference for "Neapolitan tailoring," when the only meaningful sense of "Neapolitan tailoring" is defined by tradition and past practice, I think you are bound to fail. After all, when it comes to tailoring styles--age, custom, reputation, history, etc. are absolutely defining.


    There is a huge difference between winning foreign clients because you have established yourself as a top Neapolitan tailor and winning foreign clients because you associate yourself with Neapolitan tailoring. Just because two businesses wind-up with the same proportion of foreign clients doesn't mean their products are of equal or comparable character.
     
    Last edited: Apr 22, 2013
  20. Cantabrigian

    Cantabrigian Senior member

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    Foofy, you fall prey to false choices far too easily.

    My premise is not at all that LH is somehow mistaken. (I'm not actually interested in the explanation but I'll ask rhetorically how you arrived at that conclusion.)

    You can admire Naplesteez and be a fan of Rubinacci and think that Mariano's shoulders don't look so good. In fact, I'd go so far as to say that's a somewhat common opinion since his jackets were rather clearly made for a younger man.


    I'm - quite obviously - not immune to speculation and theorizing. But, as I rather explicitly stated, we've reached the point where the only way I can explain my thinking more concretely is for you to see they physical object I'm discussing.

    Next time you're in London, (Nay's second marriage?) I'll buy you a cup of tea and I'll make sure the waiter is nice to you.
     
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