Something great just happened

I learned a new technique just now. Well, not exactly. It’s just a different way of doing something I do already but I never thought of doing it that way. Chris Despos, a Chicago tailor, posted some photos of his work on Styleforum, showing how he balances patterns down the center back seam.

But I’m not excited about learning a new way to balance checks. I am excited because it was another reminder to me of how we get boxed in by our own dogma. The line at center back is the very first line you draw when drafting a suit pattern. You square down and out from a point which is the neck. I then shape my center back seam, 1/2″ to 3/4″ in from that line at the waist, down, depending on the shape of the back. I have always done it this way. It is almost sacred to me, being the first few lines in a draft. It has never occurred to me to do it any other way because to do so would require some shaping which I already know how to do anyway for a different style of back- his is a brilliant combination of the two methods. So why did I never think of doing it Chris’ way?

Because I always did it my way. That’s all.

How many other techniques or interesting ideas am I not open to just because I am still tied up by my understanding of the “rules” of tailoring? Chris just reminded me to open my eyes and my mind a little. He reminded me that when we think we know something or understand something we close our minds to learning new things.

Thanks, Chris.

4 Replies to “Something great just happened

  1. It’s buried on page 50 of a gazillion-page thread about bespoke trajedies.

    Look carefully- it’s not immediately obvious what he’s doing, which is drafting his back according to the pattern of the cloth, sometimes offsetting half the stripe amount, sometimes drafting straight so that the pattern is always symmetrical at the collar AND hem. The CB seam should not be a straight line so in certain cases a LOT of stretching and shrinking with the iron is required, all depending on the size of the stripe. You could never attempt this in a factory……

  2. And if bespoke tragedies merit a gazillion-page thread, it begs the question why this same group of people insist that bespoke is ALWAYS better than MTM or RTW. Similar threads can be found elsewhere on other fora so I find the absolute declaration that bespoke is, per forza, better, a little odd, especially since they will also generally admit that it often requires three attempts to get it right…….

  3. Ha. Ok thanks for the link. I guess if I had to do that in a fabric that can’t be worked easily, I might put some more shape into the side seam.

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