A Visit With a Savile Row Tailor
When I was in London recently, I visited tailor Richard Anderson. Richard began his career at Huntsman, one of the most prestigious tailors on Savile Row. When the original owners sold the company, the new owners changed the standards and began cutting corners, Richard said, so he and two other employees left Huntsman in 2001 to establish Richard Anderson Ltd.
Richard is a cutter: He measures the customer and drafts the pattern. He uses the rock-of-eye method (not a couture term), meaning that he looks at the customer's figure and posture, then takes that into consideration when he makes the pattern. Once the pattern is made, it's given to the striker who chalks it out on the cloth. Then it goes to one of the tailors.
ONE TAILOR'S METHOD FOR MATCHING PLAIDS
During my visit, we discussed his method for matching plaids. He begins at a garment's center back, because the plaids must match the collar. Then he moves to the front. The plaids don't match on the shoulders because the back shoulder seam is about 1/2 inch longer than the front. The vertical plaid placement on the sleeve is determined by its relationship to the plaid pattern on the front; it may not be in the center of the plaid pattern at the top of the sleeve.