Bow Ties Sydney, Australia - Le Noeud Papillon - Specialists In Self Tying Bow Ties

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Thursday, October 27, 2016

As The Melbourne Cup Approaches - Consider How Much Easier You Have It Than The Britons Who Descend Upon Royal Ascot

I would never move to England for fear of humiliation. I lived there for six months and I felt awkward on enough occasions to make me never desire to try it again. I love British art, music, literature, clothes. I can appreciate all that comes from the United Kingdom, but I have no intention of ever feeling that uncomfortable in my own skin again.

A few days ago I reached out to Christopher Modoo on Instagram for a blog interview. I have been following him for a while and he has followed us back and often likes things on our Instagram page which is very humbling for us considering he has had quite a career in menswear already. He was a well-dressed bank clerk who made the switch to Selfridges accounts department to get the 40% off clothes discount before moving onto the sales floor in menswear. He was then a sales manager for Thomas Pink, then moving onto the esteemed tailoring house Ede & Ravenscroft to develop their Personal Tailoring business. He is now creative director for tailoring house Chester Barrie and I am sure he isn't quite done yet.

I was researching Christopher for the blog and I stumbled across this wonderful video below, where James Sherwood, Savile Row commentator, takes a protégé into the world of Ede & Ravenscroft to prepare him for the Royal Ascot. He is assisted and styled by Christopher Modoo and it is at this point where I realised that I would still find living in England particularly difficult. For starters, I had thought Christopher's surname would be pronounced Mo Dooo - but Sherwood pronounces it Mo Dough. Even the pronunciation of Royal Ascot - which I had assumed would be pronounced As-cot - sounded more like As-ket .

Those tricky English! Just when you think you have a grip on the language they change the pronunciation to really make life difficult and fill your mind with shame.... And then came the clothes.

For Australians there is nothing quite like Royal Ascot in terms of dressing up. At best the Melbourne Cup requires a suit and tie with no constraints on cuts, colours, shoes, hats or any other mode of dressing. For those that I know who have been to Royal Ascot, there is no circumventing the dress rules unless you are serving military personnel or you are wearing the national costume of your country (do Australians even have such outfits?) .

Modoo instructs his customer to choose a duck egg blue waistcoat for his morning dress whilst upstairs Sherwood ventures into the bespoke tailoring workroom of Ede & Ravenscroft to watch a cutter chalk up a morning suit. This is the same tailoring house that has had a continual Royal Warrant for every British monarch since King Geroge III (1738 -1820) . There is therefore some sort of authority conveyed, real or imagined, when Rishi, the subject, questions whether spots ties can be worn with striped shirts to which Modoo responds 'you thought wrong' .

This is a charming video and I hope to get to England again, I think I am ready for my second shaming both on sartorial matters and that of pronunciation of all things English.

And for Australian men, consider how much easier it is for you to get dressed for the Melbourne Cup!

See that video here.

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