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Everything posted by kotmj

  1. Trousers/Pant

    This is from the made to measure range. Can you please find out the difference between Ambrosi mtm vs bespoke.
  2. Trousers/Pant

    The trousers are practically new, yet the label is already coming off. This is not a knock on Ambrosi. It is a general problem with the sort of handstitch used to secure labels.
  3. Trousers/Pant

    What I hope to do is spend 1.5 hours creating a paper pattern from this trousers, to get a better idea of the features of the Ambrosi cut. I also need to look into the ironwork content. I suspect it is nil. Because, none jumped out at me, and because if there was ironwork, the Armoury guys would have the whole world know.
  4. Trousers/Pant

    A feature of Ambrosi's cut is a very high back rise, very apparent in the picture above. This high backrise has been reported by Crompton, too, with Ethan Newton remarking that it is a good thing. I've been mulling over this feature, but cannot say much at this point. I may try it out on select customers in my own practice to see what I learn.
  5. Trousers/Pant

    Ambrosi in action. Before taking these pictures, I tried to adjust the trousers so that they would correspond to the intention of the fitter, i.e. I tried to show them at their best.
  6. The suiting thread

    I wonder though if I should just buy a top-of-the-line machine with all the modern features. RM3500 new. Very good value, actually.
  7. The suiting thread

    Let's kick off this thread with a jacket I found in the workshop. The owner of the jacket had brought it to a cutter to have it copied. The cutter, in turn, gave it to the coatmaker with a "Nah, copy." To be clear upfront, I do not like this coat. Let's look at the coat. What catches the eye first is the barchetta breast pocket, immediately signalling a Neapolitan origin. The second element that announces itself is the miles upon miles of super-obvious pick stitching, which upon closer inspection, reveals a machine origin. Once upon a time when tailoring was still honest, pick stitching is supposed to be as inconspicuous as possible. It says so in every tailoring textbook. It also actually had a structural function of keeping edges crisp, or of holding pieces of cloth together. This particular pick stitching, OTOH, is purely decorative and is so loosely sewn, it has no hope of holding anything together. What really bothers me about this pick stitching is that you find it even on the front dart. What purpose could it possibly play there? Indeed, it is unfortunate we need front darts to achieve shape, which is why tailors press it so flat so as to make it less obvious. Puttting in a row of that super-puckering pick stitching makes the darts draw attention to themselves. But notice also the severe puckering around the front of the sleevehead on both sides. It is clear the coat has been dry cleaned before, and by a second-rate dry cleaner at that. The buttonholes were machined, but I have to say they are very good imitations of hand-sewn buttonholes. The lapels are padded by machine. Everything about this jacket is machined. In the picture immediately above, you notice black and burgundy shapes in the blurry background. I shall have more to say about those. They just could not let go of the pick stitching. You find more of that obnoxious stuff on the inside of the jacket. I have never seen anything more exuberantly pick stitched. Hah, made in Spain, eh? But why the barchetta? Here's why: Which explains everything. The black and burgundy shapes belong to a very expensive jacket in the making. It represents the successful conclusion of a salesman's salesmanship, and it is an embodiment of somebody's dream of elegance. Both the cloth and the lining is Loro Piana. Unfortunately, it is black, and it is fused.
  8. Collateralised debt a.k.a. The Cloth Thread

    None of you are worthy of this! Not one. Unworthy!
  9. Shirts

    A JB customer came to collect some shirts. Non-fused buttondown in our bestselling non-iron cotton.
  10. Shirts

    Just received two lengths of shirtings today. A French blue pure linen and a cream cotton-linen. Can't reveal the source though. I watched "1911" last week and the costuming was very authentic. Every shirt in the movie was made of linen. It turns out that despite what the Chinese wore on the outside -- silk or wool -- they always had linen next to their skin in the form of a shirt. I totally understand why.
  11. The suiting thread

    A German sewing machine came up for sale. It's a model from the 1980's. It has no automation, i.e. no auto reverse stitching, no thread cutter. All it produces is a beautiful lockstitch, bottomfeed. Most of these machines were used in garment factories where they sew hundreds of garments a day in three work shifts. They are typically in pretty worn condition. This one, however, seems to have been very lightly used by a seamstress working from home. It's pristine. Asking price is RM800, a steal. I might send a lorry to go get it, sight unseen by me. Because I don't have the time to drive to Sri Kembangan to view it.
  12. Trousers/Pant

    The rear welted pockets and their pocket bags are executed in an identical fashion to any pants sewn in KL.
  13. Trousers/Pant

    Here, you see everything that makes an Ambrosi special and which constitutes 70% of the value added. You have a striped waistband made of shirting. Below it, you have the box pleated waistband curtain whose fold line has been pick stitched by hand in black thread. The waistband has been hand felled to the waistband curtain. The waistband curtain, the "Bauchhalter" (tummy restrainer) and the pocket bags are all made of a cheap herringbone polycotton. A special feature is that the front pocket bags have been slip stitched to the side seam allowance. The two buttonholes on the tummy restrainer were sewn by hand.
  14. Trousers/Pant

    Ask Salvatore.
  15. The suiting thread

    Had a Korean customer come in just now. I told him I know of a few Korean tailors myself. Like Vanni, I said. Oh, he said, I know Vanni too---they are opposite my office in Seoul!
  16. Trousers/Pant

    Talk of the button fly brings us to the front rise. It is a mind boggling 10.5" of front rise on a seat measure of maybe 39". Which means the crotch of the trousers are very low. Eventually, when I get to the fit pics, which may cause the collapse of the global Ambrosi franchise which triggers the global economic meltdown every pundit has been waiting for, you will see what this actually means. This is before I get into the back rise, which is interstellar.
  17. Trousers/Pant

    The buttonholes on the button fly are more functional than they are aesthetic. Not very edifying.
  18. Trousers/Pant

    The buttonholes are all handsewn, with variable quality. The nicest buttonholes, one of which is pictured above, are on the waistband extension. The worst are on the rear pockets, pictured below.
  19. Trousers/Pant

    One of the nice features is this ultra extended waistband, here seen from the underside. Due to the hand felling, it takes a while to make this. I can think of at least one way to make this that consumes half as much labour, but the result is not as nice.
  20. Trousers/Pant

    The front of an Ambrosi. Double coin pockets, extended waistband, and a single hand-attached waistband loop. Read that again: Only one loop. Not for a belt. For the extended waistband. At the rear, two welted pockets. It is a big mystery to me how one would tighten the waistband to account for fluctuations in weight. You can't use a belt. There are no side adjusters. The waistband has one fixed circumference without any means for user adjustment.
  21. Trousers/Pant

    The underside is extremely typical. Practically the entire world sews the underside of the cuffs like this, except in Malaysia people would serge the cut edge of the cloth before the cross stitching is performed. Notice also how the cloth has been machine serged along the long seams. The long seams were also machine sewn---just like the rest of the universe. There are no buttons to secure the cuff---just some simple hand tacks, pretty much like the rest of the world including the tailors above the Pasar Besar Bentong. Also notice the inlay convention. No inlay on the front. 3/4" inlay on the rear. Practically identical to the inlay convention in Malaysia.
  22. Trousers/Pant

    Cuffs on Ambrosi. Notice the constriction on the trouser leg as a result of the top of the cuff not having a bigger diameter. This, too happens on some of my trousers, but that's because I got tired of teaching and reteaching the trousermakers. I would tell them not to cause the constriction, and they sometimes would. The moment I stop mentioning it, it comes back again. So I gave up on this battle. But I have a good excuse! My trousers cost a small fraction of Ambrosi. I actually know how to permanently solve this problem but it requires a lot of organisational changes. The fact that Ambrosi also suffers from this suggests to me that perhaps Ambrosis are also sewn by independent trousermakers working from home, and who are thus not constantly subject to the vigilant attention of the brand owners. If these were sewn by salaried employees working on premises, it will not happen because you can give them a kick or a whack on the head each time they sew the cuff like this. Nobody likes to be whacked so often, so eventually they do it right. Unless they work from home, where they are not whacked. Sorry if I sound a little coarse, but we are dealing with "cari makan" people here---trousermakers are not these special beings with very high expectations of themselves. They are mostly feckless. Their only ambition is to make a living. But, to put things in perspective, this is what the founder of Nomos watches would call a "ultrafeines Problem", literally an ultra fine problem, or more idiomatically, a subtle problem. It's just a bit of constriction near the cuffs. Big deal. The only reason I mention it here is because there is nothing subtle about the price of an Ambrosi. At their price, it is reasonable to expect no constriction.
  23. Trousers/Pant

    I also have fit pics of the trousers on the customer it was cut for. But they might bring about the downfall of the house of Ambrosi.
  24. Trousers/Pant

    Breaking news: I have an Ambrosi in fresco in my car.
  25. There is a yellow-black female feral cat that likes giving birth in my attic. I work directly below the attic, so I can hear the sounds of the newly-born kittens. A few months back she had a litter. On a rainy Sunday morning, when I went back up to the workroom after a coffee break below, there was a dripping wet kitten right below the cutting board. It was deposited there by the mother. After some reading up on the topic, I found that mother cats regularly abandon their kittens. Some kittens get rejected right after birth. The mother would give it no attention. Some kittens get killed by the mother. Some are deposited near humans in the hope that the humans would take care of it. The wet white kitten was barely a week old because its eyes have not yet opened. It was very feeble, having been meowing a long time without food. It just kept meowing. I see no way to keep it alive. So I decided to give it a swift end. I put on some disposable gloves, and going out to my balcony, threw it up high into the air. It then dropped some 20 meters onto some roof tiles below and was never heard from again. Today, there was incessant meowing behind the door that opened to the attic. I opened it and saw a tan kitten. It looked me in the face for a moment, then scampered away. I chased, but it went into a dark through that I couldn't reach. It was still meowing a few hours later. It was obvious the mother had abandoned it. The mother's litter was elsewhere in the roof -- this kitten had been segregated and left to its own fate. One of its eyes was severely infected -- it was only half open and covered in green pus. Otherwise it looked quite healthy, and is at least 3 weeks old. I had to do something about it because otherwise it would die in the attic and smell really bad. It would also be death by dehydration or starvation -- not a good way to die. But this was an energetic kitten that could see. It hid from me. It saw me as a threat. I had to bait it so I could capture it. I fetched my laptop, went on youtube, and played some videos of cats meowing. Did it respond! It meowed right back! I had to play a few videos of cats meowing but saw that the kitten responded strongly to a vid of another 3-week old kitten meowing. I played it on loop. The tan kitten meowed the whole time in synch with the vid, and started coming closer. Eventually it came so close that I could reach out and catch it. It was immediately obvious to me that I cannot kill this kitten. It was healthy, it was conscious. So I went on the internet to find out how to care for abandoned 3-week old kittens. The last 4 hours I have been preoccupied with the kitten. I hand-fed it with some milk injected via a contact lens solution bottle. I bathed it in a warm tea tree oil soapy water -- the water was brown with dirt! I also saw that it suffered from lice infestation -- its skin was covered in lice. I dripped contact lens solution onto its eyes (the solution is antiseptic) -- the infected eye cleared up rapidly, within hours, and looks normal now. The kitten is now sleeping in a Muji silicone laundry basket with some wrapping paper over it (kittens, I found out just now, like to be under something, they dislike being in the open all exposed). ^3-week old feral kitten sleeping in a silicone laundry basket