I’d like to wish everyone happy holidays, and a healthy and prosperous new year!
This period is a little anti-climactic for me- after the rush to get everyone’s suits finished for the holidays, coupled with the Christmas shopping and parties and general craziness, we close for the next ten days and I don’t know what to do with myself. I’m not very good at doing nothing and I’ve gone through my last pile of books. So the experiment will continue.
I have made garments entirely by hand before, and one which were partly done by machine because I don’t think that it’s worth doing certain things by hand, like the collar padding and the sleeve hanging. However I’ve never been able to really properly compare the two so my opinions are untested- really, I should make two suits out of the same cloth and same trimmings but made using the different techniques. Ok, I may be a clothing geek but I’m not quite that hardcore; there is a limit to what I will do in the interest of sartorial investigation. Instead I’ll do a half-and-half.
I found and end of flannel, a nice charcoal with a camel-coloured windowpane which unfortunately does not photograph all that well- it’s a lot nicer in person. I’m going to do my back the way Chris Despos does and see how that turns out. I’m going to see if I can match the sleeve to the back like in the Paul Smith garment pictured elsewhere on this blog. I’m going to take some pre-padded collar melton and undo half of the padding and redo it by hand to see if there’s a difference between the two. I’m going to sew one shoulder seam by hand and the other by machine. I’m going to set one sleeve by machine and one sleeve by hand.
I will either end up with a garment which looks distinctly different one side from the other and will thus be unwearable but it’s an end so it doesn’t matter- all I have lost is my time; however, I will have learned something in the process. Or I will have a wearable garment which may be more comfortable on one side but is visually indistinct from the other, in which case I will have a wearable suit and will have learned something in the process. Either way I will have learned something and either proved or disproved some of my theories, at least to me. So it’s win-win.