spoon tailor -hong kong bespoke operation in San Francisco

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by Gong Tao, Feb 13, 2011.

  1. imatlas

    imatlas Senior member

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    No, but they were very interested in taking measurements off of my best-fitting shirt.

    You didn't go that route? They asked me to come back with a shirt, instead of taking my measurements. I was a little put off by that, actually. Are you satisfied with the fit?
     


  2. otheme

    otheme Well-Known Member

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    Placed an order for their 799 suit and just went in for the first fitting. I have to say, the service has far exceeded my expectation. First of all, the jacket is truly basted, i.e., not sewed up at all. Everything can be moved. Only one sleeve was attached so I can see the size/shape of the armhole on the other shoulder. Both lapels were open to reveal the canvas.

    The master tailor was there and we changed a lot of things: the lapel shape (width, curve shape, button stance, notch position, etc), armhole size and position, shoulder shape and padding. He told me to go in for a second fitting, and confirmed that the second fitting would still be done on the basted shell, not a suit that's already been sewn up.

    So far, I think for 799 you really can't beat this service -- two real fittings (not the kind of MTM alteration "fittings") before the entire thing is put together. Hopefully these guys will stay in business and keep their price levels.
     


  3. Gong Tao

    Gong Tao Senior member

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    You didn't go that route? They asked me to come back with a shirt, instead of taking my measurements. I was a little put off by that, actually. Are you satisfied with the fit?

    He took a full set of measurements and also wanted to measure my shirt. It seemed a little flaky to me- surely they should be able to come up with a shirt that fits well without relying on taking measurements on a pre-existing shirt- but I am very happy with the end result.
     


  4. otheme

    otheme Well-Known Member

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    The reason for that, I suppose, is to figure what kind of fit you like. Taking measurements only gives them the idea of the ballpark numbers, but someone might like it fit closers than others. Measuring your existing perfectly-fitting shirt allows them to get it right the first time.

    He took a full set of measurements and also wanted to measure my shirt. It seemed a little flaky to me- surely they should be able to come up with a shirt that fits well without relying on taking measurements on a pre-existing shirt- but I am very happy with the end result.
     


  5. justsayno

    justsayno Senior member

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  6. otheme

    otheme Well-Known Member

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    Second fitting today -- lifted the lapel notch, and elevated armhole as high as possible. Last time I explained to the tailor that this suit is for "ballroom dancers" and pointed to a picture of Fred Astaire -- he immediately understood the idea [​IMG]

    Here are the pics from the second fitting. Note that the lapel shapes were different in the first pic -- it was done deliberately so I could compare and choose the shape I liked. Construction I believe is full canvas but half stitched -- a common practice among Asian tailors.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     


  7. imatlas

    imatlas Senior member

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    Second fitting today -- lifted the lapel notch, and elevated armhole as high as possible. Last time I explained to the tailor that this suit is for "ballroom dancers" and pointed to a picture of Fred Astaire -- he immediately understood the idea [​IMG]

    Here are the pics from the second fitting. Note that the lapel shapes were different in the first pic -- it was done deliberately so I could compare and choose the shape I liked. Construction I believe is full canvas but half stitched -- a common practice among Asian tailors.


    Can you expand on this?
     


  8. otheme

    otheme Well-Known Member

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    The canvas covers the entire front, but only the part that's behind the lapel (perhaps also in front of the chest, I'm not entirely sure) is stitched.

    I believe this is the so-called "full canvas" construction.
     


  9. Maccimus

    Maccimus Senior member

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    The canvas covers the entire front, but only the part that's behind the lapel (perhaps also in front of the chest, I'm not entirely sure) is stitched.

    I believe this is the so-called "full canvas" construction.

    You should check if there is anything under the canvass. If there is nothing under, it is fully canvassed.
     


  10. Gong Tao

    Gong Tao Senior member

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    I am not sure exactly what the correct name for the construction would be, but when I was there the tailor opened up a basted coat to show me how it was made (I was told I was the first customer to ever ask about this): there is a free-floating canvas that extends the entire length of the front, but also a thin layer of fusing. I do not know if they are able or willing to do construction without the fusing.
     


  11. imatlas

    imatlas Senior member

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    I am not sure exactly what the correct name for the construction would be, but when I was there the tailor opened up a basted coat to show me how it was made (I was told I was the first customer to ever ask about this): there is a free-floating canvas that extends the entire length of the front, but also a thin layer of fusing. I do not know if they are able or willing to do construction without the fusing.

    I was there yesterday, and asked about this issue. Their concern is that they don't feel like their tailors have the skills to build a proper full-canvas jacket. The senior tailor (Andrew's father) is, but he is based in SF to do the cutting, fitting and final adjustments. Maybe over time they'll develop or hire these skills, Andrew seems to be very anxious to find somebody either in the US or Hong Kong who will be able to provide this. He commented that the current generation of HK tailors grew up making fused jackets, while the older generation has mostly retired, or is well ensconced somewhere like WW Chan or Gordon Yao, and there hasn't really been a knowledge transfer down to the younger generation.

    Andrew has also just gotten in a set of swatches from Alumo and is trying to set up a relationship with them, he's taking suggestions for bolts to purchase and keep in stock.

    They're also opening another location, in the Westin St. Francis.
     


  12. dragon8

    dragon8 Senior member

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    I was there yesterday, and asked about this issue. Their concern is that they don't feel like their tailors have the skills to build a proper full-canvas jacket. The senior tailor (Andrew's father) is, but he is based in SF to do the cutting, fitting and final adjustments. Maybe over time they'll develop or hire these skills, Andrew seems to be very anxious to find somebody either in the US or Hong Kong who will be able to provide this. He commented that the current generation of HK tailors grew up making fused jackets, while the older generation has mostly retired, or is well ensconced somewhere like WW Chan or Gordon Yao, and there hasn't really been a knowledge transfer down to the younger generation.

    Andrew has also just gotten in a set of swatches from Alumo and is trying to set up a relationship with them, he's taking suggestions for bolts to purchase and keep in stock.

    They're also opening another location, in the Westin St. Francis.


    Will they be selling fabrics? Another location? Business must be good.
     


  13. benjamin831

    benjamin831 Senior member

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    Tailor spooning. the only way to get him to add 2 inch buttoned cuffs on your trousers.
     


  14. imatlas

    imatlas Senior member

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    Will they be selling fabrics? Another location? Business must be good.

    How do you mean "selling fabrics"? I don't think he intends to sell lengths direct to the public, if that's what you mean. My impression is that business is very good - every time I've been in there he's had appointments before and after me, and had a steady stream of curious passersby stopping in. There's definitely demand for bespoke at an entry level price point. I expect they'll raise their prices to get close to parity with Chan once they're able to deliver on all of the Chan extras - full canvassing, hand sewn buttonholes, etc - Spoon's prices for comparable fabrics to Chan are not a lot cheaper today: the suit I just ordered from Chan for $1450 would have run me $1300 at Spoon (H&S Cape Kid High Twist / 2 piece).

    Tailor spooning. the only way to get him to add 2 inch buttoned cuffs on your trousers.

    But will he hold on to your pants for 2 years?
     


  15. Fishball

    Fishball Senior member

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    I expect they'll raise their prices to get close to parity with Chan once they're able to deliver on all of the Chan extras - full canvassing, hand sewn buttonholes, etc - Spoon's prices for comparable fabrics to Chan are not a lot cheaper today: the suit I just ordered from Chan for $1450 would have run me $1300 at Spoon (H&S Cape Kid High Twist / 2 piece).


    Are you serious?
     


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