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The Hong Kong BaoTou Tailors and Fabric Shops for CMT Thread

Royal_Airforce

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Is Shanghai workmanship considered to be the best?

Also when getting shirts made, will I also need to provide the fabric, just like the suit?
Shanghai workmanship (that of the dubbed ‘the Red Gang’) is considered the traditional (and better) way suits are always made. It involves, among others, a full-length floating horsehair canvas, warm-washed separately from the fabric, cooled, then hand-padded to the lapel and the chest.

PekingRoadHK’s blog has more details about this ‘sunsetting craft’ if you’re able to read Cantonese.

And yes you need to bring your fabric when having shirts made, if you visit a baotou. Baotou usually don’t carry fabrics. A scarce few of the baotou sifu will offer fabrics tho.
 

dukenukem4ever

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Thanks for the navigation! I may supplement that the phone number of Mao sifu in you blog is located in room E2 of 6/F Mirador. (Edited to remove Mao’s private phone number)

Paid Mao sifu a visit today to understand more on his workmanship. I saw hand-padding of lapels at a density of ~1 inch or a bit less, hand-padding of chest at ~ 1.5 inch, included in his HKD 3,800 full canvas CMT offering, delivered in his Shenzhen factory.

I was able to sample a soft horsehair canvas (which may be a Chinese canvas) that they use for soft constructions, which was of decent ‘bounciness’. And his colleague (who said he used to work for Ascot Chang’s workshop in Sha Tau Kok in Shenzhen) explained to me that, they wouldn’t mind clients bringing in imported canvasses, but with the development in quality of ‘made in China’, the difference wouldn’t be that big as it once was (when the boss of Ascot back then, presumably Tony or one generation older, would give them Italian canvas they imported to make suits). Copying @dukenukem4ever FYR.

They said they would still pre-wash the fabric, and they would warm-wash the canvas, let it cool down, and use machine to roll-press it before making. Which i believe are (declining?) traditional techniques employed by Shanghai workmanship makers as covered in the blog of PekingRoadHK’s blog.

Also, i asked if a fusable tape will be used at the edge where the lapel meets the chest, and they said yes it would always be used. Interesting - has anyone seen this on your jacket / that of others?

Just to add re: production schedule, they can still mail out the cut fabrics to their factory in mainland / the home of their makers despite the virus / incumbent lockdown of borders.
Thanks for the on-ground research. I live in Tokyo and would visit HK very frequently for business. I will probably be back around late March, early April. Would be great to see some samples of Mao's work or the Red Gang's works that @PekingRoadHK had mentioned before. Though I know this is in no way your responsibility to go out and do on-site research for the SF forum members, heh... hats off to you mate for keeping the non-local Mirador enthusiasts in the loop, as well as @PekingRoadHK for introducing it to all of us interested mates.

@Royal_Airforce - did you by any chance capture some photos of Mao's works? I'm keen on taking a gander at his 3.8k full canvas option, but @PekingRoadHK mentioned it's more Italian style --- do you mean more Neapolitan style? Can we ask for a more British cut with the 3.8k option?
 

Royal_Airforce

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Thanks for the on-ground research. I live in Tokyo and would visit HK very frequently for business. I will probably be back around late March, early April. Would be great to see some samples of Mao's work or the Red Gang's works that @PekingRoadHK had mentioned before. Though I know this is in no way your responsibility to go out and do on-site research for the SF forum members, heh... hats off to you mate for keeping the non-local Mirador enthusiasts in the loop, as well as @PekingRoadHK for introducing it to all of us interested mates.

@Royal_Airforce - did you by any chance capture some photos of Mao's works? I'm keen on taking a gander at his 3.8k full canvas option, but @PekingRoadHK mentioned it's more Italian style --- do you mean more Neapolitan style? Can we ask for a more British cut with the 3.8k option?
Glad that it helps!

I haven’t taken any photos of Mao’s works as all the garments in the workshop were half-canvas ones (hence not much to my primary interest) when i visited.

Those garments hanging in his workshop were largely leaning towards English cuts. Mao’s colleague (also Ningboese, who is shorted than Mao, equally slim, and looks a bit older than Mao) said that they’re happy to deliver the desire cut as prescribed by clients. Soft / lightweight canvasses are used if you want soft constructions, and heavier ones if you prefer a structure that stands ‘prouder’ (trying to find the best English word for ‘挺’ haha)
 

dukenukem4ever

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Glad that it helps!

I haven’t taken any photos of Mao’s works as all the garments in the workshop were half-canvas ones (hence not much to my primary interest) when i visited.

Those garments hanging in his workshop were largely leaning towards English cuts. Mao’s colleague (also Ningboese, who is shorted than Mao, equally slim, and looks a bit older than Mao) said that they’re happy to deliver the desire cut as prescribed by clients. Soft / lightweight canvasses are used if you want soft constructions, and heavier ones if you prefer a structure that stands ‘prouder’ (trying to find the best English word for ‘挺’ haha)
Nice, awesome. I'll definitely pay him a visit next time I'm in HKG. Looking to make another 3-5 suits heh... especially since I'll be moving back to USA, this is probably the last time I'll be able to get nice suits made at this price (I am originally from NYC, and true bespoke suits in NYC are just ridiculously priced... Leonard Logsdail, anyone? Not dropping 20k USD on a suit no matter how nice it is constructed or cut. Though I must say DiCaprio's suits in Wolf of Wall Street were impeccable.)
 

PekingRoadHK

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@Royal_Airforce

1) what is the address for Wong sifu the trouser maker? 16/F and which room?

2) Mao said he prefers to be more low profile.

Baotou have a bottom line, they don't want to disclose which bespoke they worked for and are now working for. They can tell their customers in person, but they don't expect to disclose this kind of info to the public. There are a few Baotou mentioned in my blog, they worked for or are now working for most well known and most expensive bespoke in HK. I can say a shop in IFC, Peninsula Hotel, Mandarin Hotel, etc. Or say, I don't disclose their full name. I say like Chxn, Gordxn, Chxng, Willixm, etc. They are Baotou with good experiences, but their products aren't coming from the expensive HK workshops, there are some differences. They take control of their Shenzhen workshops, but their labor aren't the same.

The Baotou of a tailor shop in Guangzhou Garden hotel is charging $2.3k for full canvas. He is Guangdong workmanship.

3) Mao's Mirador workshop is more like a logistics center, between his HK team and his Shenzhen workshop team. His HK team takes orders, measurement and fitting, they don't do much cutting. His team offers 3 grades for full canvas: $2k is junk, $3k is decent enough for most tailor shops and consumers, $3.8k is for those demanding higher grade. They also outsource to other Shenzhen workshops and sifu, they know the secrets which Shenzhen workshops and sifu working for which bespoke in HK, this is their outsource secrets and they will never tell you about this secrets: They also outsource cutting to Shenzhen sifu, this is their $3.8k product secret. Is he for British cutting or Italian cutting? He outsources his $3.8k cutting and works, and his Shenzhen in house team is Italian cutting. His staff was selling you his $3.8k produces, that's why he confused you for the $3k products. I have seen his $3.8k products, it is outstanding and looks very expensive. They don't need to confuse people for their $3k products.

For me, the English word for ‘挺’ is the canvas stands well .

@thesupremegrape
In the old days in HK, there are sifu for Guangdong workmanship and Shanghai workmanship, different prices for different workmanship and time required. Nowadays in Shenzhen, there are sifu for fused and full canvas, different prices for different workmanship and time required. This is about workmanship. Cutting is a different thing. It means a sifu for fused or Guangdong workmanship might have better cutting. Therefore, there is no guarantee which is better. Cutting is also very important besides workmanship.

@dukenukem4ever
For the red gang, they are old folks and experienced tailors for most expensive bespoke. Nowadays, they work slow. They are young enough for cutting and fitting, not sure if they are young enough for everything comparing to Shenzhen workshops. Slow work, it means it takes longer delivery time.
 
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Nara_Deer

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Nowadays in Shenzhen, there are sifu for fused and full canvas, different prices for different workmanship and time required. This is about workmanship. Cutting is a different thing. It means a sifu for fused or Guangdong workmanship might have better cutting. Therefore, there is no guarantee which is better. Cutting is also very important besides workmanship.
@PekingRoadHK As you mentioned in your blog, traditional Shanghai workmanship, where the major distinction is the way that the canvas is prepared and installed on a full canvas suit, is a sunset craft. Nowadays the "Shanghai workmanship" executed by BaoTous are more or less semi Shanghai. So can I say that if anyone is commissioning a half canvassed suit, the the strength of a Shanghai workmanship sifu is no longer that significant?
 

PekingRoadHK

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@Nara_Deer
semi-Shanghai workmanship means not a complete job of traditional Shanghai workmanship.
half canvas is about the canvas.
semi-Shanghai workmanship and half canvas are 2 different things.
 

PekingRoadHK

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my blog: I suggest local consumers to pick those with (old HK) rather than those without (old HK).

I also suggest to pick those BaoTou who run their own workshops instead of outsourcing to others. This provides better guarantee on quality and delivery time.
 

dukenukem4ever

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my blog: I suggest local consumers to pick those with (old HK) rather than those without (old HK).

I also suggest to pick those BaoTou who run their own workshops instead of outsourcing to others. This provides better guarantee on quality and delivery time.
I am salivating at the thought of commissioning a 3.8k HKD piece from Mao Sifu, heh. I think for my next (and possibly final, at least for a long time) rodeo I'll be getting a suit from Ng (have tried), Mao and another sifu haven't tried yet recommended by @PekingRoadHK (Jim sifu? Chan sifu? cut and sewn in HK? too many choices).
 

PekingRoadHK

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shirtingfantasy

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Interesting post on Instagram. Click translate to see the English translation.

 

dukenukem4ever

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haha oh come on what a generalization. of course a tailor shop will say this... but anyway, it's a two lane road... there are good tailor shops and baotou, there are sh**ty tailors and baotou. I've had experience with both. Just comes down to picking the right spots.
 

dukenukem4ever

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btw i remember someone posting in the HK tailors thread about an Allan Tom and Co Tailors? just another example of a crap tailor shop not taking responsibility.
 

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