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kotmj

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Everything posted by kotmj

  1. kotmj

    The suiting thread

    This jacket spent 24 hours lying on the back seat of my car with two other jackets on it. Tomorrow, a part timer will press it.
  2. kotmj

    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.
  3. kotmj

    The watch appreciation thread

    I hear lots of stories like the above. You give a non-WIS a Rolex, and twenty years later, they're still wearing the damn thing. I think, it's partly to do with the high wearability factor, the timelessness (conservativeness) of Rolex's designs such that even older models do not look dated, and the superior ruggedness of built. Where other brands of watches are found with cracked crystals, deteriorated dials, corroded hands, and defective movements, Rolexes keep their youth extremely well. Better than any other brand. In this interview, he has quite a few of these stories:
  4. kotmj

    The suiting thread

    Part Timer B sewing a canvas
  5. kotmj

    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.
  6. kotmj

    Shirts

    I wrote to the supplier of MOP buttons: Hi S., I have a question. When the MOP buttons have been attached to the shirts and the shirts laundered, the buttons lose their gloss, becoming dull. I suppose the buttons were given a wax finish at the factory; this is then washed off by the detergent during laundry. Is there the option to have a polymer finish that is permanent? This way, the buttons remain glossy even after many washes. Cheers, Jeremy
  7. kotmj

    Shirts

    I got my hands on an Oxwhite. The shirt was loaned to me. Review coming soon.
  8. kotmj

    The watch appreciation thread

    Nomos like an instrument, Rolex like jewelry.
  9. kotmj

    The suiting thread

    Huberross Nevada. Bony, bumpy shoulders. Shirt in The Embassy St. Tropez (a zephyr).
  10. kotmj

    The suiting thread

    I have another issue with the video! I've never seen anybody pad stitch a lapel like that. He either knows something the rest of the world doesn't, or he's the ignorant one. The rest of the world pad stitches the lapel in order to program the lapel to fold over, and after the fold, to curl backwards. To achieve this, the coatmaker holds the lapel in either a folded or curled position, then affixes this shape with pad stitching. This is very common knowledge. Even otherwise retarded KL coatmakers know this. The technique is best seen here, from 3:30 minutes onwards. Notice how, even after a single column of pad stitching at the lapel crease line, the lapel displayed a marked tendency to fold over. That Korean coatmaker was pad stitching the lapel with the lapel completely flat! Arhhhhh! Is that for real? I'd have fired that guy within 30 seconds.
  11. kotmj

    The suiting thread

    The other issue I have with the video above is the type of chest canvas. Unless I'm very mistaken ( I don't think I am, I've been doing this quite a while now), it is THE CHEAPEST chest canvas money can buy. There must be one huge factory in China that churns them out in huge quantity. Because everyone in KL uses exactly that chest canvas, from RM600/suit uniform jackets for hotel staff to five-figure fully canvassed jackets by my competitors. They all use that exact type of chest canvas. Why? Because it's the cheapest, and it even sort of works. I have many issues with that type of chest canvas. I will spare you the list. It sort of works, but not quite. It works the way one of these cheap collapsible fly fishing rods advertised on American TV shows would work. People who are serious about fly fishing don't use them.
  12. kotmj

    Shirts

  13. kotmj

    The suiting thread

    I think I follow no more than two or three tailors on IG, and a post by one of them came up on my feed. I almost fell off the stairs. You see what is a densely machine sewn canvas. Wow. I thought this would not be done by them. This is very prevalent especially in Asia. Every HK tailor whose canvas I have seen does it. Practically every Malaysian tailor does it as a matter of course---they're surprised anybody would hand sew the various canvas pieces together. They don't know it's even a possibility. If they want to work for me, I tell them it's not only a possibility, it is compulsory. Or I fire them.
  14. kotmj

    The suiting thread

    Some buttons arrived yesterday
  15. kotmj

    The suiting thread

    First suit in Huberross Nevada, a super high twist cloth. 10 oz. It's for a Malaysian working as a civil servant in Singapore. Interestingly, he went to the same secondary school as I did in Kuantan. Civil engineer. The double breasted vest was made for a different customer. I'm starting to have new observations about these very high twist cloths which I may write about.
  16. kotmj

    The suiting thread

    In case anybody was wondering, I wore that trousers all morning and afternoon before that pic was taken.
  17. kotmj

    The suiting thread

    My latest suit in Carlo Barbera Riserva 1911. As most of you know, for myself I prefer a rather roomy cut with moderate waisting. In general appearance, it's not that different from what, say, Brioni would aim for. When there is less ease than what you see here, a jacket ceases to perform normally. I'm very happy with the neck fit and shoulders.
  18. kotmj

    Collateralised debt a.k.a. The Cloth Thread

    An unusual ultrafine. Instead of soft, this is plain rugged. A massive cloth; has the bullet proof feel. The word assoluto means "complete, total". I suppose this is Carlo Barbera's effort at a universal cloth, an ultrafine that wears like, oh I don't know, cavalry twill. Introduced in the 90's, the Assoluto is now discontinued, and remaining stock (much depleted) is on closeout. The reason given was that the sort of wool used to make it costs too much today.
  19. In reality, human bodies are like rats in that we can live on pretty much any organic matter. This made it possible for humans to live in very different areas of the earth, in a way few animals could (notably the rat). People can survive on anything. A pack of cigarettes a day, half a bottle of whiskey, and fast food. There are people trying to discover the diet we were meant to eat. If fish have planktons and other fish as their native diet, and monkeys eat leaves and fruits, what is the native diet of humans? It turns out there is no definitive answer. The reason: Humans became humans because of our unnatural diet. Humans became humans because somehow, we grew a huge brain relative to our body size. The other primates could not afford such a brain because of a lack of calories. What made it possible for humans to evolve such a large brain is the mastery of fire, which allowed cooking. Cooking allowed humans to eat things which are otherwise inedible, even poisonous. Plants would not exist without a defence against being eaten; this defence manifests itself as a poisonous cocktail. By cooking plants, these chemicals become denatured and the calories become accessible to us. As humans spread out from warm tropical climates to colder places, it became necessary to eat more animals and their produce, like dairy, simply because for a large part of the year, there are no plants. It is a suboptimal diet, but over millions of generations, humans evolved (through natural selection) the ability to survive on such a diet. The evolution did not complete itself. We were sort of halfway through becoming carnivores. Humans don't do well at all without daily intake of vitamin C, which only exists in raw plant matter. Without significant and constant fiber intake (which only exists in plant matter), humans develop autoimmune disesases. So while we can sort of survive on meat, the fact that we started off as plant eaters is very much a reality. So we started off as raw plant eaters. Then, we evolved to eat primarily cooked foods. This created a big brain that fuelled progress, which allowed the industrial revolution and now we can produce as much meat as we want. Poultry farms are public listed companies. Today, we eat as much meat as we can. At our core, we are raw plant eaters who tolerate cooked foods and animal produce so long as raw plant matter are ingested alongside. The real food pyramid starts with animal products at the top. Lower down is cooked plant matter (like grains and tubers). At the base of the pyramid is raw plant matter.
  20. There are basically two things from which people die prematurely of. One are all the diseases linked to eating meat and dairy: metabolic syndrome, coronory heart disease, stroke, kidney failure. The other is cancer. Avoiding the first is very straightforward. Eat less meat. As simple as this sounds, there is an accelerating trend of people dying prematurely from excessive meat consumption, even in Asia with its very old culinary traditions. How much less is little enough? Well, most of the people in my parent's generation derive most of their calories from starches (more specifically, rice). So meat does not take center stage. But there is meat at every meal -- a meal without meat almost never happens and is unthinkable. Many people of my parent's generation have died or will die from eating meat. So we know that meat at every meal is too often. If not at every meal, maybe once a day only? Or maybe every other day? Once a week? "Never" is the wrong answer. Every civilization out there ate meat. In fact, if one stopped eating meat, the body has a way of removing buildups in the veins, which tell me that our bodies have evolved to deal with meat-eating. Just not the in quantity and frequency that we do today. So empirically, I know that even a diet based on starches is not good enough if meat is present at every meal.
  21. kotmj

    The watch appreciation thread

    One watch a lifetime
  22. kotmj

    Collateralised debt a.k.a. The Cloth Thread

    Nah. Higher impact than that.
  23. kotmj

    The watch appreciation thread

    Is that a Day-date? This is one of the few videos where you get to see a solid gold watch in context. I think it looks very wearable. Obviously blingy, but it's tasteful bling.
  24. kotmj

    Collateralised debt a.k.a. The Cloth Thread

    Actually, I can do a lot more with him in Nov than just a video interview. An idea just came to me. Now I'm thinking like a PR professional!
  25. kotmj

    Fineries

    The rim must be tight/ the edges tightly rimmed. Should never be loose.
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