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kotmj

kotmj's Tailoring Notes

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I was measuring a new customer today when I realised he's pretty much my size. I had him wear my basted jacket. It was a very close fit!

kerbausuit6_zpsrnbphvrl.jpg

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A quick one

kerbausuit5_zpsgmqkiewc.jpg

Let me explain what I see. Incredible collar fit. See how the collar comes up the neck at the sides; how it curves down the neck to meet with an authoritative shoulder. I'm not even sure what I did to get a collar fit like this. I wish I could produce this on every jacket we deliver.

 

The shoulder is very nice. Chiselled. Straight. Again, not always achievable.

 

More achievable is the plump chest. Look at the chest drape! It's a very full chest. None of that fullness comes from my body, it's entirely from the jacket's structure/cut. I almost never get to make chests like this for customers because they do not like the roomy feeling. They feel the jacket is too big/"loose".

 

Then, the very noticeable but still moderate waist suppression. This is actually a very big jacket... it wears very roomy. Which is how I like them to be.

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Whenever I think of a beautiful collar-shoulder, I think of Edward Sexton. A beautiful collar-shoulder is very rare; I can't think of anyone else remarkable in this aspect.

 

In this interview by the truly forgettable and semi retarded Tom Stubbs (there is something very wrong and defective with him), you get to see Sexton's magnificent collar-shoulder; no doubt the product of decades of refinement to his pattern and technique.

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A quick one

kerbausuit5_zpsgmqkiewc.jpg

 

 

Maybe it is the angle of the camera, but there is something about the skirt in this picture that makes you look like you have a rather rotund hip.

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It's not the angle of the camera. Camera position doesn't influence the look of a suit much, especially not with moderate focal lengths. Guess how I'd know? (Answer: I take pictures of jackets several times a week.) As an example, if a person's bum looks disproportionate in a picture, it's because his bum is disproportionate, not because of camera angle. No tailor can make a big bum look small, for instance. Only dieting can.

 

On SF it is very popular to say this and that is due to camera angle. Totally wrong. The human body is a lot stranger than tailors can cut clothes. Camera angle doesn't play a role in fit pics.

 

In the case of the above pic, I like the skirt flare. It's a very traditional silhouette of hips nearly as wide as chest.

 

When wearing it, I notice the quarters have a noticeable tendency to come close to the body, instead of being floppy. I've not owned a jacket whose quarters are this well-behaved, and I attribute this effect to something different I did to the canvas this time, and which may find its way to all our jackets.

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I'm also thinking if we should make shoulders like these for all Bendaharas. They're made differently from the methods commonly employed by KL coatmakers, and was something of an experiment that turned out better than expected. I've been wanting to overhaul the way we make padded shoulders for a long time, but never gotten around to it. Too big a battle.

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Huge tailoring challenge. 6.5 oz, Super 160's. Almost lining material. The side seam could not withstand the amount of suppression -- it was a total crinkled mess -- so we had to distribute the suppression more evenly between all the seams. Model: Sultan.

ho_dragonfly_zpsfczr8zry.jpg

 

It doesn't look that bad when worn ... here it is on the customer during the fitting ... I took this pic to show the customer the bubble of extraneous fullness at CB. But generally, I think I should stop letting customers pick from this bunch.

ho_dragonfly2_zpsneheyivo.jpg

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Who says there are no young people joining the trade? Here's an almost underaged coatmaker-in-training making a fused baste for me.

IMG_7241_zpsiatew3fq.jpg

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When talking to her I have to be particularly self-aware otherwise my eyes would be staring downwards instead of in the general direction of her face.

 

Back shoulder ease

DSCF6676_edited_zpsrt7nzvgy.jpg

 

There is a pretty well-known Taiwanese tailor I met in Seremban who thinks 1" of back shoulder ease is compulsory, and decried all of the jackets being worn in the room for not having enough. The typical amount used in KL is 3/8" which is also what is used on most RTW. I personally understand his insistence on 1" and the enormous ergonomic benefits of so much back shoulder ease, but on some jackets it is a bit too much and results in vertical creases in the back shoulder. Anyway, we recently upped our ease to 3/4" (which is what you see above) -- working our way to 1". The corrugation in the back shoulder will eventually be pressed flat -- in the finished jacket, there should be no obvious corrugation since the cloth would have been shrunk in that area.

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The tailors in KL stopped making canvassed jackets sometime in the mid-80's. In this picture, the coatmaker was showing me a bolt of body canvas from the 80's. A coatmaker, now retired, told him he has no use anymore for this bolt, and if he would be interested in buying it off him? It was made in a time before China became the major exporter that it has become, and this canvas very probably is European in origin. The owner insists it is English. My coatmaker asked me if I would buy it, then use it in our jackets. He says he thinks it's the best quality canvas he has come across in years (but I have seen better; in fact it is in my Carlo Barbera jacket). I'm not sure if I want to buy it. There's about 30 meters on the bolt, enough for about 40 jackets. Maybe I should cut it up and offer it for sale on this forum?

IMG_20150327_192527_zpsh7alqg16.jpg

 

Just joking! The vintage bolt of canvas is mine, all mine, muahahaha!

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Lessona wool-linen. First fitting.

andreas_zps8x1t4udz.jpg

 

If you look at the skirt on the left of the picture, it is flaring away from the body. The skirt on the right of picture is well-behaved. This is an extremely common phenomenon. What could be the cause? Remember, the jacket was cut symmetrically.

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Ooo guessing game again. Yay.

 

Dropped left shoulder?

 

 

Edit: The colour of the kerbau cloth is really amazing.

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Yup, the dropped shoulder caused the skirt flaring on the opposite side.

 

The kerbau cloth is definitely amazing; in the picture it was made even more amazing due to my moonlight amplification apparatus.

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Recently, the fourth case of a missing button on a new shirt happened. Obviously, a solution is needed to reduce the likelihood of this happening.

 

This is pretty much an industrial engineering problem. Having worked in that field, I know that one can always come up with a solution to any problem. But, most of the solutions are fucktard solutions. You want an elegant solution, not a fucktard solution. The way I see it, if you do not have an elegant solution, you have no solution.

 

A fucktard solution in a case like this is to have a checklist for each shirt.

 

An elegant solution for this is for me to button every button on the shirt before folding and packing. By having to button every button, I will naturally see which is missing.

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Quarter lined

IMG_4881_edited_edited_zpszkeqbln8.jpg

 

Looking at it, some of you may find the armhole to be low-ish. Nothing could be further from the truth. The first jacket we made him, the customer found the armholes to be touching his armpits; we had to lower it. Now it's just right (this is jacket no. 3).

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A while back, a retired coatmaker asked if we would be interested in buying 34 meters of vintage body canvas from the 1980's off him. I jumped at the opportunity. This is the first jacket we made which uses this vintage canvas. My coatmaker thinks it is an excellent canvas.

1-IMG_5900_edited_zpsz8ujjpgp.jpg

 

Cloth is a Holland & Sherry 11 oz. "Capehorn Classics". This is the customer's 6th jacket from me.

1-IMG_5932_edited_zpsnm8w4uuw.jpg

 

So, now, there are 33 meters left of the canvas.

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