Tag Archives: 1920s

Suits up

30 Sep

Last week I went to watch Lawless, an American gangster film based on the novel The Wettest Country in the World. I was really impressed by the outfits in the film especially those of one of the main characters Jack Bondurant (Shia LaBeouf). About half way through the film his style changes due to his financial circumstances, all of a sudden the character is dressed in stylish suits and waistcoats, reflecting the 1920s/30s era the film was set in. With every outfit he wore I kept saying to my friend why don’t men dress like that these days?

The waistcoats have to be my favourite, matching the formal trousers with a contrasting smart shirt and tie.

The UK is known for its tailored look and elegant craftsmanship, reflecting the heritage and traditions of the country. Unfortunately over the years the British tailoring industry has gradually shrunk due to financial circumstances and labour costs. It is safe to say the High Street has taken over, offering consumers fashionable on trend garments at lower prices. We live in a time where we sacrifice quality for cheaper garments that will last only one season; high quality garments made from luxurious fabrics are mostly accessible to the wealthy members of society. I guess the consumer is not to blame, as everyone’s financial situation is different, but it’s a shame there is no focus on high end tailoring.

On the other hand there is some hope, with locations like Savile row, a small street in Mayfair (central London) that was built between 1731-1735 and still exists today, offering traditional men’s bespoke tailoring. A man can go in to one of the tailors available to choose a design and fabrics, great craftsmanship will then go in to produce a unique made to fit suit. Apprenticeships and training schemes are available for anyone interested in becoming a Savile Row tailor. Unfortunately even though Savile Row is still going today, it is under threat by massive retailers opening up on the street, I do hope that it continues to exist as a unique location reflecting the british style and heritage.

For anyone interested in finding out more about Savile Row, here are some interesting videos:

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