Every year I like to embark on a few different projects to recreate something I am particularly fond of and these are usually references to popular culture or films. Some of you will have seen on this blog the recreation we did of Sam's jacket from Casablanca using a wool which was commissioned by Will Boehlke with Fox Brothers of Somerset. That was a real treasure. Then of course we've had Michael Corleone's Godfather III dressing robe re-created for us in the exact same cut and silk cloth with the brothers Carta in Milan. The other great jacket we have done is a replica of Count Von Trapps mandarin collar from the Sound Of Music and here we used a Holland & Sherry Harris Tweed with pig suede for the lapel facing and collar. It is after all far more enjoyable to recreate something that is dear to you than to simply cut another navy twill suit - there's very little entertainment in that.
We haven't done anything like this in a while so it was quite a surprise when we stumbled upon our next commission. We went in search of apple blossom pink wool after reading on the internet an article about Hamish Bowle's 50th birthday party. The suit he wore was sublime and in the article it was said it was a recreation of Robert Redford's suit from the '74 Gatsby which was originally done by Ralph Lauren. So team Lauren set about piece dying a wool to recreate the Gatsby look in gabardine for Bowles.
|Hamish Bowles' 2013 reproduction of the 1974 apple blossom pink worn by Robert Redford and designed by Ralph Lauren|
I was pretty impressed with this so I started rummaging through the bunches I knew of looking for wool in serge in an apple blossom pink but none could be found. So I rang a few people and asked them about piece dying and they said 'forget it, nobody will do it for less than 100 metres'. I kept on asking around until I got something back from Simon Rice of Holland & Sherry in Sydney. He said (I paraphrase) : 'we do have something like that I believe in the New York office, it was made for last year's Gatsby but it was rejected. It's a Victory wool so it's quite fine. Would you like me to see how many metres are left?' .
For those of you unfamiliar with Victory, it varies between a super 140 and super 160's fine merino worsted wool which is then blended with cashmere and silver mink. For some of you that read this blog you may remember one of the first box checks in navy that I did for a private customer was done using the last remaining metres of navy box check in Victory from Holland & Sherry. It is by all accounts a fabulous fabric, the only issue I have taken with it is that it is too fine.
So, yesterday we finally received the very last remaining 5 metres of apple blossom pink wool that never made it to Gatsby's house and to pay homage to Ralph Lauren's dressed Robert Redford Gatsby I am going to cut myself a wide notched lapel suit but with a few bells and whistles that you folk might not have seen before. I am also going to lose the vest in lieu of our new silk braces which are entirely made of silk but for a piece of exotic leather in the rear strap junction (coming soon to the website). And, finally, with the remaining cloth I am going to make limited edition apple blossom pink wool bow ties which you can pre-order from our website if you are interested by clicking here.
So, fish that John West rejects is not always bad fish or so it seems with the wool that never made it to Gatsby's Manor in 2013. And what is more, it will create something lasting and sweet for those of you who revered the '74 apple blossom pink by Ralph Lauren and would like a memento in the form of one of our bow ties.
|Holland & Sherry's Victory wool in pink, rejected for the film in 2013, to be made into bow ties in 2014 for Le Noeud Papillon of Sydney.|