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Unfunded Liabilities: a/k/a The Cloth Thread

RogerC

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By the way, does anyone know a good source for cotton-linen suiting or trousering cloth?
 

stuffedsuperdud

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Dear Gentlemen,

Things are not black or white, no one said - or implied - that these merchants all they do is re-brand! These are not region or country representatives / authorized dealers of the mills, where all they would have to do is marketing & sales for the respective mill that they represent; these companies have a distinct corporate identity and they are trying to promote their own brand following their own business model.

Take Caccioppoli as an example: not long time ago, almost all suiting and some jacketing fabrics were either VBC or Loro Piana, the price difference spoke for itself and many of these fabrics had the mill's selvedge as well! Most staple worsted suiting fabrics in navy and grey fell into this category and some "generic" wool, wool-mix jacketing fabrics too.

It goes without saying, that the said Co. could not confine itself to that; other suiting fabrics offered were explicitly and exclusively manufactured for them because they had to differentiate themselves (Re: Solaro-type offerings, etc). This was even more pronounced in the jacketing fabrics' area, because there is the big game and the opportunity to make a presence in the market, and so they did (especially with the SS w-s-l offerings).

If these companies don't use such commercial tactics, what really is their "raison d'être"?

Best,

Dimitris
I don't know much about the rags trade but always just treated cloth merchants like any other retailer: they meet up with a lot of makers who might not be good at anything client-facing (sales/advertising/CS), order wholesale volumes, and present the goods in a manner that is appealing to the customer. I imagine they're better at this sort of thing than some Northerner who was born in a mill and only knows how to keep the place running. Look at Harrisons (Burley). Their worsted flannel is great, but I remember the boss complaining sometime back about being unable to set up a relationship with a merchant, so now we get this awkward marketing effort that his son or something is running on their wordpress site and ebay page. Theirs is a great product but you don't really see it anywhere as a result.

All that said, I do wonder if their days are limited, if these niche high-end textile manufacturers get into a direct to consumer thing. Douglas Cordeaux has for example pretty much singlehandedly shown that it's totally possible to bring all your sales and marketing in-house, even when you are a small failing operation like Fox was when he got it, as long as you bring in a few clever people with the right business experience.
 

Bespoke DJP

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Dear @stuffedsuperdud,

I do not want to de-rail this thread, but a clarification is in order: we always need to compare similar things.

Although Mr. Cordeaux with his business partner was absolutely admirable in saving & regenerating Fox, this is still a small operation by any standard, and yes, everything is done in-house; do they have any other choice?

Loro Piana (for some years now, part of the colossal, listed luxury products group, LVMH), and Ermenegildo Zegna (still a family-owned, private business) are fully vertically-integrated groups with a sales turnover in the area of EURO 1bn. More to that, through their boutiques, they have a world-wide reach and they do have an on-going first-hand business-to-consumer experience in the RTW retail business; their respective fabrics' business unit just follows a different marketing & sales channel. In brief, corporate and marketing strategy is planned at their H/Q and executed locally as in every other MNC of this world.

(Note: I purposely do not mention the other highly-integrated textiles group, VBC, because they do not have a RTW retail arm, and therefore they are not directly comparable).

Apologies that the above ought perhaps to be addressed in another more relevant-to-the-industry thread.

Best,

Dimitris
 

dan'l

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Dugdale Natural elements is pretty nice, 280g but pretty tightly woven compared to Brisbane Moss (350g) and Baird McNutt (~340g?), the trousers I have in those are lined and as a result wears warmer and looks cleaner than both.

edit: forgot that they were in fact lined.
Simon’s linen suit I posted is Dugdale Lisburn - any experience with it?

I have a feeling it might be rebranded Ulster. :confused:
 

Mr. Six

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@Despos I think you posted a photo recently of a brown barleycorn--maybe by Dormeuil--here or in another thread. I can't track it down. Maybe I imagined it?
 

FlyingHorker

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Receive the Drapers coat back today. As you can see, the herringbone isn't visible unless you're within two or three feet. Otherwise the fabric looks like a mottled grey/black tweed.


This turned out amazing man, I love it.

Where/how exactly did you get that Drapers fabric again? I don't remember, I just recall you posting the swatches.
 

dan'l

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Ulster Weavers (jill) +44 28 4062 0110.
Looks like the search function is my friend.

Anyone call Ulster recently? I cannot seem to find a website for them and thought I'd just call them up.
 

FlyingHorker

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I also have 1m of melton wool that I now don't need, the M&E is plenty heavy enough for winter and needs no thicker lining, and I already run hot.

Err any ideas on what to do with this? It's a bit scratchy.

I'm washing it with Eucalan to soften it a bit and then chuck it in the dryer, maybe use it as a winter blanket for my bed?
 

Despos

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@Despos I think you posted a photo recently of a brown barleycorn--maybe by Dormeuil--here or in another thread. I can't track it down. Maybe I imagined it?
That was on IG, not here. Cloth was from Scabal but from an older book that is not in use now. Don’t think the same cloth is in a current book but check the Scabal Autumn Leaves collection.
 

Mr. Six

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That was on IG, not here. Cloth was from Scabal but from an older book that is not in use now. Don’t think the same cloth is in a current book but check the Scabal Autumn Leaves collection.
Thank you! I genuinely was starting to wonder it I had just imagined or, as bdrvro23 mentioned, conflated it with the W. Bill.

Do you know of anyone currently offering a larger scale non-tweed brown barleycorn?
 

Despos

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Thank you! I genuinely was starting to wonder it I had just imagined or, as bdrvro23 mentioned, conflated it with the W. Bill.

Do you know of anyone currently offering a larger scale non-tweed brown barleycorn?
W Bill Phoenix book does have two versions of barleycorn. A larger pattern and a smaller refined version. Have used and like both.
If I find them from another mill, will post here.
 

lordsuperb

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Thank you! I genuinely was starting to wonder it I had just imagined or, as bdrvro23 mentioned, conflated it with the W. Bill.

Do you know of anyone currently offering a larger scale non-tweed brown barleycorn?
Why don’t you get something started with a mill? You’ll of course be public enemy No. 1 on the London lounge.

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Mr. Pink

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This turned out amazing man, I love it.

Where/how exactly did you get that Drapers fabric again? I don't remember, I just recall you posting the swatches.
Hemrajani made the coat for me. (It's my first order non-shirt order from them.) Drapers Overcoat was one of several books they showed me after I explained what I was looking for.
 

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