FREE Introductory Audio Lesson: "A Course in Classic Style"

  • Why Your Personal Presence Matters
  • The Science Behind Dressing Well
  • How Lack of Style Costs You Money and Opportunity
  • Learn from renowned New York bespoke tailor Jon Green
 
 

Summer Classic Style Option: The Safari Jacket | Dappered

See on Scoop.itTailored and Styled

It’s been the dog days of summer for much of the US, but here in San Francisco, the weather has been remarkably mild. I’m actually a bit disappointed by it since I’ve been wanting an excuse to wear this linen safari jacket I got from Ascot Chang last year.

Joseph Scherrer‘s insight:

This article from Die Workwear gives a bit of history of the safari jacket, then follows it up with a ton of pictures.

I find myself hankering one because it’s just the ticket to take the edge of the night chill here in Rio and still turn out in tropical style.  The blue linen specimen in the photo looks pretty good.

As stated in the article:

“Safari jackets became part of sporting wear during the late 19th-century, when Westerners went to Africa for safari tours and big game hunting. Since then, they’ve cycled in and out of fashion. The height of their glamour was probably around the mid-20th century, when they became associated with Ernest Hemingway, Clark Gable, and James Bond.”

Raphael Schnieder over at Gentleman’s Gazette wrote a nice piece on safari jackets that include some great apparel arts illustrations.

Here’s another article from the Suits of James Bond on the safari jacket.

If you’re in the market and are not going to Ascot Chang or custom route, you can get a sharp one at J. Peterman or at the Beretta store.

By Joe Scherrer | Tailored and Styled Writer

 

See on dieworkwear.com

Article publié pour la première fois le 18/07/2013

“How to Go Bespoke”–An Interview with Jon Green, Bespoke Orchestrator (Part 1)

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Mr. Jon Green

Jon Green, founder and owner of Jon Green Bespoke on Madison Avenue in New York, has been providing the quintessential bespoke experience for discerning clients since 1990. He has been featured in Forbes, The Financial Times, and the American Express “Departures” magazine. His customers are men who insist on the very best—and they get it from Jon.

You might be surprised to know that Jon has a Masters Degree from the Julliard School. Since childhood, classical music and classic clothing have been a two-part harmony in Jon’s life. Beginning with piano studies from age 5 and a career in menswear starting at 14, both continued, uninterrupted, through college and while at Juilliard, working at Paul Stuart.

Tailored and Styled: “How does your background in music play into your bespoke tailoring practice?”

Jon Green:

My background in classical music plays into my bespoke clothing practice almost seamlessly; the only difference is what I’m making. For this bespoke clothier and conductor the goal is to create beauty, whether in sound or cloth. Built on classical structures and forms that function harmoniously, both require a deep understanding and virtuosity to produce.

Tailored and Styled: “Is there such a thing as ‘art’ as applied to bespoke like there is in music?”

Jon Green:

I think there is. Jon Green Bespoke is a business, but unless ‘art’ is present in every part of our bespoke process it is all for naught. Passion is required for making bespoke clothing, as in making music. But ultimately classical music and bespoke clothing are created for others – without an audience there is only practice, and without a customer there is only craft. There are many wonderful things and experiences in life that are not needs, including bespoke clothing and great music, but I would not like to go through life without them.

Tailored and Styled: “What inspired you to open your own custom clothing business, and on Madison Avenue no less?”

Jon Green:

Throughout my career the most particular customers, those who had a sense of what they wanted but didn’t know how to find it, would seek me out because I took the time to take them through the possibilities. In that process their reactions would give me a sense of what they wanted and I could coach them in selecting specific items and how to pull the whole presentation together. If they showed interest in becoming more active in the process the next time, I would ‘plant seeds,’ my term for showing them something to think about for the next time.

My father loved ‘to dress’ – cashmere sports jackets, double-breasted suits, pin collars, cap toe shoes. It was great fun rooting around in his closet, not quite tall enough to reach the trouser bars of the hangers, marveling at what was there and thinking about when I would be grown up enough to wear clothes like that.

Ultimately that experience led to the launch Jon Green Bespoke in 1990. By then my distinctions were so developed as to be second nature. Though it took a while to reach our present apogee, from the beginning my commitment has remained the same: to make better clothing than anything else offered by tailors, direct sellers, and retailers.

From the 1950s through the 1980s the vast majority of men wore suits every day; some liked it and some did not. During those years “replacement” suits were a big business. But the downward pressure on prices by retailers created a drop in quality that occurred so gradually that most consumers didn’t recognize what was happening. The compromises in fit, selection, comfort, and quality in ready-to-wear, made-to-measure, and some custom clothing necessitated regularly replacing them. How many times have you moved a suit to the back of the closet because “it’s not quite right – maybe a new one will be better,” only to end up with more of the same?

I wanted something better for myself and in the process discovered that men I knew did too.

Explaining to a friend over dinner that my clothing would require the finest workmanship, components, and cloth, resulted in my first client. “Can I place an order for three suits before I leave town?” he asked. We met in his hotel room the following day for taking his measurements and discussing styling. I apologized for having nothing to show him, but he responded, “That’s OK, I know you’ll do it right.” That was in March 1990.

Not long after that meeting it was my good fortune to find a bespoke shirt maker who graciously invited me to share his second floor atelier on Madison and 73rd Street.

I’m still on Madison Avenue after 23 years, now at 509 Madison and 53rd Street.

Tailored and Styled: “How would you characterize a typical Jon Green client?”

Jon Green:

Discerning, Courteous, and Unreasonable.

Most of our clients are entrepreneurs and professionals who “go bespoke” because they are seeking more than the ready-to-wear and made-to-measure garments made by manufacturers. They want something made specifically for them and enjoy the possibilities that unfold in the process. They are unreasonable because they won’t “settle.”

Tailored and Styled: “You often mention that the relationship you develop with your clients is a big part of the Jon Green bespoke experience, how so?”

Jon Green:

“Bespoke” clothing is a collaborative creation, not a mercantile exchange. Initially it is a discovery process requiring time to select appropriate fabrics, for careful fittings, and for developing new ways of seeing.

This can be transforming, as it was with one new client.

At the end of our initial consultation, he said he wanted to think about it because he was unsure if what he was up to in the world was a match for our clothing. He did return and has been a client since 1995.

Years later he confided that his income went up 75% that first year with us.

Tailored and Styled: “What role does teaching play in this relationship?”

Jon Green:

The Latin word meaning (to)‘lead,’ duc (duke, duchess) is the root of both educator (educe – to ‘lead’ forth), and conduct (to thoroughly ‘lead’) in English. Enrolling others to follow requires establishing a context for them wherein they can relate new information to that which they already have and see as beneficial to them.

Going from buying merchandise to creating a bespoke garment requires mutual trust that must be there for the relationship to be successful. Merchandise is complete, you can see it and decide if you want it.

Our bespoke garments gradually come into being with the client and me.

Initially new clients tend to seek a better version of what they understand. But as the coaching expands their awareness their expectations of what is possible evolve into something greater.

Tailored and Styled: “At Tailored and Styled we believe that men’s classic style is based on timeless principles. Along those lines, what are some of the most important lessons you teach your clients?”

Jon Green:

We are fortunate indeed in the 21st century to have examples of the timeless principles of classic men’s clothing styles of the 30s and 40s; they are the apotheosis of men’s style.  But that style did not burst forth fully developed. It was natural extension of an evolutionary process begun over 200 years ago and that continues to evolve. The book Power & Style: A World History of Politics and Dress by D. Gaulme and F. Gaulme, published by Flammarion, is a great look at that process.

The movies and photos of Hollywood stars and English politicians from the period before and somewhat after World War II, serve as references for men who wish to be well dressed today. Nonetheless, I encourage men to consider that “fashion” and “classicism” have existed side-by-side for decades, and each informs the other.

Out of the dying decorum of Savile Row in the early 1960s exploded Tommy Nutter and Edward Sexton. They made clothes for the Beatles and Mick Jagger and in the process revitalized the classicism of the 30s and 40s, and 50s, which by that time had moved from elegant to crusty.

So where do we turn for true North in all of this today?

In my opinion, the most important aspect of anyone’s personal presentation is authenticity, to be yourself.

‘International’ or ‘Dandy,’ if it is authentic for you it will work. Regardless of how one defines classicism in menswear, that definition has shifted over the decades in a cycle perpetuated by each generation’s desire to dress differently than their fathers dressed.

In spite of being drawn to my father’s clothes as a boy, at 18 I wanted to dress like my generation in the so-called “Ivy” look, with its natural shouldered short jackets and snug flat front trousers worn without a break. Actually the Ivy look was a return to a classism of the 1920s. The style for my father’s generation in the 50s and 60s had changed into something more modern.

Today some of our clients in their 50’s and 60’s are asking to incorporate into their classic wardrobes youthful touches such as shorter jackets with a higher gorge and trimmer trousers. Stasis in clothing style can be aging. Older men can adapt aspects of a younger style to their benefit.

Do what makes you happy and, if you wish, incorporate what you like of the ‘new’ as long as it authentically reflects your personal style and taste while bearing in mind that some of us ‘pull off’ looks others cannot.

Clothing is a marker that communicates who we are and what others can expect of us.

Part 2 of this interview will be published on Thursday, August 22, where Jon goes into his bespoke process in greater detail.

Jon Green Bespoke Logo

Jon works by appointment to expose those interested to the possibilities of ‘Bespoke.’ Call 212-861-9611 or email jon@jongreenbespoke.com to arrange an appointment, or, visit his website: jongreenbespoke.com and on Facebook. His atelier is located at 509 Madison Avenue (53rd Street) in Suite #1112, New York, NY 10022.

By Joe Scherrer | Tailored and Styled Writer

(Tailored and Styled does not receive affiliate or advertising benefit from Jon Green Bespoke)

Article publié pour la première fois le 21/08/2013

The Enduring Principles of Men’s Classic Style–Revised and Updated

In our walk through men’s sartorial history we’ve distilled several principles of style.  As we move forward in our analysis to the “Golden Age” of men’s classic dress, I think it’s fitting that to present the latest updated list of principles.

The ultimate goal of this process is to pull together an enduring set of principles that a man can use as a rock-solid and defensible guidepost for dressing well without any apologies.

Given the fact that there really are no guideposts out there anymore, I think this will be a valuable contribution to men so inclined to up their style quotient in a meaningful way and in a way that will withstand the capricious winds of fashion.

The previous list had 8 principles.  Given additional examination of men’s dress during the Victorian age, I’m adding two more: grounded individuality and selective simplicity.

1.  Modesty.  Modesty refers to clothing the body in a way that presents the self in a dignified manner.

2.  Decoration.  Dressing to accentuate a man’s inherent dignity and handsomeness.

3.  Symbolism.  Wearing clothes that communicate to others something of who we are and what we do.

Another very important principle arises from the above three and that is the ancient notion of the “Golden Mean.”  First articulated by the great Greek philosopher Aristotle, the Golden Mean is the desirable middle between two extremes, one of excess and the other of deficiency.  As applied to dressing well, the Golden Mean becomes our fourth principle:

4.  The Golden Mean.  Neither too much nor too little when it comes to dressing well.  For example, too much decoration or too little modesty introduces unnecessary and undesirable distortion into dress.

Along the way, we also uncovered several time-tested principles that arose out of the period of men’s style history known as “The Great Renunciation.”  These were:

5.  Harmony.  Integration of interior and exterior self so that the way one dresses communicates congruency in terms of your interior virtue and your most important social and professional activities.

6.  Classical Proportions.  First achieved in a profound way by Beau Brummell at the height the Enlightenment, classical proportion in dress is a crucial sub-principle of decoration.  It refers to Greek and Renaissance ideals of the human form as applied to men’s clothing.  In this sense, dressing with classical proportion strives to turns a man into a living Greek sculpture.

7.  Aesthetic Precision.  Again Brummell gets the credit for combining classical proportions with excellent fabrics, conservative colors, and high quality tailoring to arrive at an enduring standard of refined elegance.

8.  Refined Elegance.  The pinnacle of men’s classic style wherein a synergistic combination of all principles results in a harmony of balance, decoration, proportion, and precision that communicates the virtuous and individualistic best of what it means to be a man.

The walk through the Victorian period in the 19th century yielded two additional principles.

9.  Grounded Individuality.  By dressing with classic style you are saying that your individuality is not dictated by fashion; rather, you know who you are and what you stand for—and that doesn’t change.

10.  Selective Simplicity.  Selective simplicity enacts the principles of classic style with a certain ethic of “just enough” in terms of the clothing worn for particular occasions and in terms of the amounts and types of clothing owned.

We’ll continue to add to and polish these principles going forward, but it’s clear to me that we have a pretty good framework taking shape already.

By Joe Scherrer | Tailored and Styled Writer

Article publié pour la première fois le 22/05/2013

Seven Things to Look for in a Custom Suit | Parisian Gentleman

See on Scoop.itTailored and Styled

Something happens when we first step into the oasis of handmade suiting. If you have commissioned a handmade suit before, then you remember the lake of fabric at the tailor’s house, and being asked to choose just one.

Joseph Scherrer‘s insight:

Another nifty article from Sonia Glyn Nicholson of Parisian Gentleman.  It gives an excellent rundown of things you need to look for when commissioning a custom suit.

I especially like the first photo that shows how men’s fashion magazines get a suit to look right.  You definitely don’t want to have to do that with your suit!

This piece is an excellent adjunct to our recent 2-part series with bespoke clothier Jon Green (part 1, part 2).

The seven elements are supported by very descriptive photos and shots of “good” and “bad” examples.  The elements are:

1.  Correct size.

2.  No collar gap

3.  Clean shoulder line

4.  Proper button tension

5.  Clean back

6.  Proper sleeve and jacket length

7.  Details such as button holes, lapels, and pockets.

The post provides additional detail to add to your understanding.

Very well done!

By Joe Scherrer | Tailored and Styled

 

 

See on parisiangentleman.co.uk

Article publié pour la première fois le 04/09/2013

17 Rules for Wearing a Tuxedo | Black Tie Blog

See on Scoop.itTailored and Styled

Here’s an interesting look back at the “correct details” of evening clothes circa 1940 courtesy of Esquire magazine.    While some of the advice is specific to that particular period  the vast majority still applies today.

Joseph Scherrer‘s insight:

The other day I wrote a post on Tailored and Styled about the demise of the “rules” for dressing.

In the piece, I noted that men had books, pamphlets, and newspaper updates to inform them of what to wear when.

In that spirit, I found this rundown on the “correct details” for evening wear from Peter Marshall over at Black Tie Guide to be very illustrative of the resources men once had at their disposal.

I might say too nearly all of the advice offered in this nearly 75 year-old piece is as applicable today as it was then, although you don’t see very many Homburgs or silk top hats any more (also a subject of another Tailored and Styled post).

Here they are in brief:

1.  The collar of a wing collared shirt should have a forward slope

2. The pleats or “bosom” of a formal shirt should not extend below the waistband of the trousers

3.  Pleated formal shirts are acceptable for formal wear

4.  Pleated formal shirts should always have French cuffs

5.  For white tie, a white butterfly bow tie is worn in front of the wings of a formal shirt.  A black or midnight blue club bow tie is appropriate with a Tuxedo jacket

6.  A backless waistcoat is acceptable for wear with formal wear

7.  Grosgrain lapels are preferable to satin

8.  Only wear a white silk or knitted scarf with your Tuxedo

9.   White gloves are obligatory for formal wear

10.  Black cotton socks with white clocks may be substituted for plain black socks

11.  A black or midnight blue cummerbund may be substituted for a waistcoat

12.  Your tailcoat should be long enough to cover your waistcoat

13.  If you wear a hat with a Tuxedo jacket, it must be a black or midnight blue Homburg

14.  If you wear a hat with a jacket with tails, only a silk top hat or collapsible opera hat are suitable

15.  Pleats on pants should face the center

16.  There should be slight break at the bottom of cuffless pants

17.  If you wear an overcoat with your Tuxedo, make sure it is either dark blue or dark grey

Highly recommended for all with excellent illustrations and accompanying explanations.

By Joe Scherrer | Tailored and Styled Writer

See on blog.blacktieguide.com

Article publié pour la première fois le 05/07/2013