Wow. It’s been 12 years since I started this blog. The focus has shifted over time, and I seem to have been writing less and less, mostly since life happened and I got busy (and married) and moved all over the place. I feel the time is right to devote more time to blogging again, especially since I now have help.
The first major thing to talk about is the migration from Blogspot/Blogger and Flickr, etc. to my own site. Sites like Blogspot are great because they are free and easy, but you don’t really own your content (you get what you pay for). Sadly, a lot of my photos in older posts are now lost because some photo hosting sites decided to change the terms and conditions. I considered moving over to Instagram but that’s just another place where you are at the mercy of someone in San Francisco. The other thing is I have a lot of new projects on the go and I think it’s time I consolidated everything into one spot. So my new website, which is still being developed, can be found at robertjeffery.us. “Robert Jeffery” is also the name of the company I formed last year.
The Tuttofattoamano/Made by Hand blog will be hosted under this umbrella, as well as a few related sites like my ladies wear (The Louise Collection), and an activewear collection to be launched later this year. So I apologize for any inconvenience if you have come looking for old articles on Blogspot which you can’t find anymore but hopefully the new blog site at robertjeffery.us will be far more searchable so you can find old stuff more easily.
So what have I been up to lately? I’m still happily busy at Hickey Freeman in Rochester, New York, but have been traveling back and forth to Montreal every week, spending time at our Samuelsohn facility, where we have made suits for almost 100 years, and recently also began sewing shirts, as well as a Canadian brand of outerwear called Moose Knuckles.
For almost a year now I have also been working on some new technology to draft patterns from body measurements with the intent to modernize made-to-measure (MTM). I know there are tons of websites out there that claim to already make custom patterns from photos and body scans but I have yet to see technology that I would actually want to use and hang my reputation as a tailor on. So I teamed up with some clever people in Europe who had already begun working on something and we will begin live beta testing in the very near future. More on that soon.
Last summer I accidentally started a line of ladies tailored clothing. By “accidentally”, I mean I wanted to put together a little group of ladies’ suits as a tribute to our late congresswoman, to be shown at a charity fundraiser in Rochester. It didn’t occur to me at the time people might actually be interested in buying the stuff, so we had to quickly cobble together a company and a website to make the line available publicly. The Louise Collection belongs to Robert Jeffery, LLC, and is being produced at the factory that makes Hickey Freeman in Rochester. Right now it is only made to measure, by appointment, but we are considering bringing it to a wider market through carefully selected retailers in the United States and maybe eventually Europe.
I couldn’t have done any of that without the help of my husband, who is the director of operations for Robert Jeffery. He is handling the website(s), the book keeping, billing, scheduling, daily operations, and is also my in-house Salesforce system admin. A former competitive bodybuilder, he’s always had trouble finding clothes, and I have always had trouble getting him into suits, which is a bit of a shame considering… Like the aforementioned technology, there are products on the market which purport to be made to fit athletic guys, but again, I found most of them lacking. And the good ones in Europe and Australia are either super expensive to have shipped to the US, if they will even ship at all, and don’t extend into the larger sizes needed by big American boys. So he decided we should launch a line of activewear and athleisure for that specific market. To the extent that the market will permit it, we want to have most or all of it made in the United States. Again, more on that in due course.
So with all that said, welcome to our new home on the web.