Thursday, May 28, 2009

The Power of the New: To Design or to Copy












Over the last 8 weeks I have met with 20 or so elder statesmen of the schmata trade. These guys are serious old school players in the game of "cut and sew" Every single one was over the age of 65 and every single one was successful in the trade! These guys have more combined wisdom then all the jacket nerds like me combined. I meet with these wise old men to try and discover the secrets of how to make the perfect jacket. The more I meet, the more I am beginning to realize there is no one "right" way to make the perfect jacket. Every single company had their favorite tanneries, favorite seams, favorite threads and favorite designs. Many winged it based on deals on materials, or just hit the nail on the head when a finicky customer came in and demanded a particular design feature. Some just altered their designs to be different then Joe Schmoe down the road. We have the wind proof flap...he doesn't, lol. But when push comes to shove, old jackets were about functionality, fit and beautiful cuts. Look how shiny this dead stock Beck cafe racer is. You wouldn't think it would be that shiny when you found an old vintage one. And yet other finishes on jackets are matte or semi gloss. Wax finishes, aniline, oil...dye...urethane...choices, choices choices...oh and fear the jacket nerds!