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Collateralised debt a.k.a. The Cloth Thread

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Suraj dropped by for a visit today. We talked about a bunch of things. I was told that end of August, the sales director of H&S will likely be in the region, and would potentially be available for a video interview with me.

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https://uk.linkedin.com/in/mark-graham-65601b19

From Suraj: "Hi Jeremy Mark Graham plans to come to kl on 27th August ( Monday ) for 2 days . You had mentioned about doing a talk like you did with Carlo barbera ? Shall we do it on 27th August in the afternoon? What is needed from our end ?"

Any of you have any particular questions for me to ask Mark?

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You know how the Italians all go to the beach around this time. Many companies close for nearly a month. Carlo Barbera's export agent is closing tomorrow for a month, and today, I submitted an order for two lengths. I hear them scrambling.

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IMG_20180803_170046.jpg?raw=1

Another delivery of superlative Carlo Barbera suitings and The Embassy shirtings (which are really Testas). I hope they get my order from yesterday out before they go to the beach.

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On 8/2/2018 at 11:51 AM, kotmj said:

You know how the Italians all go to the beach around this time. Many companies close for nearly a month. Carlo Barbera's export agent is closing tomorrow for a month, and today, I submitted an order for two lengths. I hear them scrambling.

Its only proper since its European summer. 

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I was interviewing Mark Graham of H&S, and he told me of a brand new bunch called "Gostwyck", a Super 170's with exceptional properties. It is a H&S exclusive, meaning the entire output of this farm that is graded Super 170's is sold only to H&S. Only maybe 5% or less of this farm's output is this quality. The rest are used for less demanding applications like high street fashion.

The farm is called Gostwyck, not too far from Sydney.

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Part Timer B worked till 1 am last night on this. The part timers and dispatch boys all have keys to the shop, so they can come in and work when it is convenient for them.

Two weeks ago, Mark Graham (Director, Far East) of Holland & Sherry came for a visit. He made himself available to any question I may have. I offered to show him the questions I have, but he preferred to do this impromptu. I asked him about the history of Holland & Sherry (182-years old, beginning in Golden Square, then moving to Warwick Street, then to its current base on Savile Row) and about regional differences in the cloths customers favour (dark colours in the Western metropoles, more flamboyant colours in the emerging markets).

The thing I learnt most from this interview came about when he talked about the crimp in wool. Mark was describing the properties of Goswyck wool, a farm 6 hours from Sydney which supplies H&S with a Super 170's wool. Through animal husbandry and special care of the sheep, a very fine wool can be produced with pronounced crimp. Crimp is the undulations in the wool staple; the more undulations per unit length, the greater the crease recovery of the cloth woven from such wool.

This is important because the bane of ultrafine cloths (which I will take as anything from Super 140's on up) has always been its delicateness. They tend to wrinkle in day-to-day use. Lately, I've started noticing that not all ultrafines are quite the same. Some are surprisingly crease resistant, like the suit I was wearing in the interview, a Super 150's from Carlo Barbera. Mark told me that the crimp is responsible for this.

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Lots of bits were cut out. The above is only half of the conversation we had. For instance, Mark kept going on about the special care of the sheep. I then told him, over in this part of the world, special care for livestock---say chicken---meant things like castration to improve the quality of the flesh. What is done to the sheep?

We also talked about Chinese tailors, how Scottish merino compares to Escorial, etc.

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Haven't seen the whole video, but from what I've seen, I like how the editor transitions between close-up shots and wide shots. If I have a comment, and this may be nitpicking, you seem to be too aware that this interview is being filmed. Maybe more eye contact?

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Thanks for the video! I enjoyed the interview. Jeremy, close down the aperture. The focusing often is on the background rather than the faces. 

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It's not that straightforward. I had to check that all three SD cards have enough space for one hour of recording, that each camera is set to the right recording format, that the exposure is right, that the WB is right, that the batteries for the light and all three cameras are charged, etc.

In this case, I forgot to check that AF mode was set to AF-C. Two cameras were not in this mode. Even if I did, I still have to set the AF area to wide, and set Face Recognition to ON.

Dozens of settings, as you can see. Neglecting even one impairs the video. I had nobody to monitor anything during the filming.

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Haha, I posted the interview on IG and guess who commented? The managing director of Luxury Fabrics (which owns the brand Standeven, John Foster and William Halstead)! Some of you will remember I met him in KL last year. Luxury Fabrics has either 7 or 8 (I can't remember) production facilities in the UK and is a major player. He said he looks forward to meeting me again in Nov where I guess he will come under my cameras for a video.

I almost cannot forgive myself that I did not come up with the idea of video interviews earlier. Because last year, after Luxury Fabrics, the SGporean distributor told me he's bringing the Albini guys (which owns the brand Thomas Mason) to KL, and asked me if I'd like to meet them? Fresh off the plane from Italy. I declined, because a) I didn't know what to do with them b ) I was too busy and c) I was very abundantly supplied by Soktas. The next time they're here, I'll get them to do a video interview.

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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!

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IMG_20180912_193316.jpg?raw=1

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.

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Hi guys,

 

I hope this is the avenue to check if there is any interest in this Scabal Luxxor (Wool, Cashmere, Vicuna) Navy blue cloth? 

I currently have 2.5m on hand, please see the below for the pictures :D869942974_WhatsAppImage2018-10-03at16_45.43(7).thumb.jpeg.1e8db482a6833ca520013421dfecae15.jpeg571704624_WhatsAppImage2018-10-03at16_45.43(6).thumb.jpeg.8487cab5bec36e94476d83c1fe728b0a.jpeg2037626380_WhatsAppImage2018-10-03at16_45.43(5).thumb.jpeg.b1a5beda258f40e924a4fc0ed89a1c9c.jpeg960015230_WhatsAppImage2018-10-03at16_45.43(4).thumb.jpeg.22ebb411c95eafb36fcdc8576e031e1d.jpeg

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