The making of your Huntsman bespoke

Our reputation as one of the finest bespoke tailors on Savile Row, has been built by generations of talented craftsmen over the past 165 years, giving the highest satisfaction to those Huntsman and women who entrusted us with their sartorial appearance.

The secret behind those countless happy customers start with the time we take. Time to understand you, the wants and needs of your mind, body and life. Time to create what best fits those, by hand. Time to train in-house those precious hands. Time to find the best cloths, sometimes the best sheep for the best wool, the best mill for the best tweed. Always seeking only the best needs time. Time for as many fittings as needed, make and correct the unavoidable mistakes to get to the perfect result. Time to visit you were you not able to come to us, a service we gladly offer to our busy international clients.

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1. After style details and cloth have been decided, your cutter will take 30-35 measurements and detailed notes on your form and figuration. The latter provide vital details when drafting your pattern, flagging up any quirks in stance and body shape. Your cutter will take those into account in the making of a garment that will emphasise one’s assets and erase one’s less attractive features.

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2. The measurements and figurations are drafted onto pattern paper using a centuries’ old system. These pattern pieces are laid on to the cloth, chalked around and then cut out.

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3. Once cut, your garment is trimmed out with all of its essential components; silk lining, natural wool, linen canvas, padding etc. This is rolled into a bundle and given to the coatmaker.

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4. A dedicated coatmaker will interpret your cutter’s measurements, working with him to prepare a first or “baste” fitting. He will prepare the chest canvas, using over 1000 stitches in the process. The same coatmaker is used throughout your entire order and for any orders going forward. He will be the living memory of your body, adapting the garment accordingly.

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5. At this first fitting, the cutter examines the fitted baste, marking alterations based on fit, balance and posture. Your garment is then taken back to pieces, pressed and re-cut, taking into account any adjustments. Alterations are also made to the original master pattern, ensuring it evolves with each fitting to give a true 2D representation of the finished 3D suit. The coatmaker will advance the garment for its second fitting.

As a Huntsman client, you’ll benefit from the knowledge of a team dedicated to you. Your client manager will advise on the choice of cutter best suited for you, as should be for a long term relationship. Each cutter has their own idiosyncrasies, and marrying those with your wants is where the experience of our client managers and their knowledge, transmitted from one generation to the other since 1849 makes a huge difference. Measures of your body will now be taken, up to 50 depending on garment types, with which your cutter will produce your individual patterns. Those are truly unique, a representation in 2D of your 3D body, adjusted when needed by a significant change in your appearance. The cutters are a special and talented breed. They are alchemists, able to transform you in series of coordinates, then manipulate those to soften your weaker features and highlight your best assets. It is not surprising that when asked what other work they would do if not Cutters, that Chefs, Architects or Carpenters are frequent answers.

Your client manager and your cutter will present you with a somewhat daunting task of choosing fabrics and details, but rest assured, they will know what is the cloth that will be best for the use you’ll make of the garment, that needs to be effortlessly comfortable and elegant, as well as fitting for the desired climate and lifestyle. You’ll benefit from their experience, as they have had countless individual requirements met.
The choice of details can be overwhelming at first, but you’ll rapidly enjoy the ability for instance of having a special pocket inside your coat for your iPad, a discreet pocket for your phone or cigar cutter in your coat or trousers, or a secret stash for medicine or necessary cash, all possible because the garment is made just for you.

Those preferences will be known to the tailors while your garment takes life. Indeed, your client manager and cutter will allocate your work to dedicated tailors, one for your coat, one for your trousers, one for your waistcoat, and those fine craftsman should stay with you for the making of all your garments.

One of the secrets of the satisfaction of our customers is that the garments fits you like a glove, because it’s made by people who know you inside out, form beginning to end. Anyone who has been working one of the 80 hours needed to make your suit has been doing it with you in mind, and is able to interpret the cutters patterns accordingly, remembering your likes and dislikes. This is the best quality control for a perfect fit.

The task of the tailors is essential, as they translate the 2D cloth cuts back into a 3D model. At your first fitting, you will be asked to try on a basted construction, that will enable the cutter to verify his designs when fitted on you, and judge how the drape and behaviour of the cloths develops on your body. At this stage, don’t be surprised, this fitting is less for you than for the cutter to either make some corrections, or hopefully give the go ahead to the tailors to finish the job and plan a second fitting.

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6. Second fitting – the suit will now include pockets, lining and facings and you will have a very clear idea of what the finished product will look like. This is now a fitting for you, the customer, where you and your cutter appraise the result, and discuss any tweaking and fine tuning that may need to be done.

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7. The suit passes back to the coatmaker for any final adjustments before going to the finisher. The finisher will sew all the edges and lining (felling) and finally cut and sew each buttonhole by hand.

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8. The presser is the last person to touch the suit, taking up to three hours to carefully press each garment. The suit is pressed with utmost care and attention, not only to the response of the cloth, but to the body shape and form of the wearer.

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9. The final fitting – the suit is inspected by the cutter before meeting the client’s approval, when it finally can be ready to leave the store.

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10. Packaged and dispatched to the customer

That second fitting is for you, to judge the result, and for the cutter to observe your satisfaction. At this stage we usually get it right and the garment will then go to finishing stage. If there is any hint of unease, we’ll instead plan one or more further fittings, as we do not want to let you leave our premises with anything less than a garment that is totally to your liking. After 8 to 10 weeks from the choice of cloth and garment, you will be rewarded with your beautiful bespoke Huntsman commission.

We would like to keep track of your garment’s health and your satisfaction and will place a call to inquire of such matters a few weeks after you begin wearing your Huntsman bespoke. We would like then and anytime later, to provide care to the garment, further pressing, dry cleaning or offer advice on stain removal and alterations. We have recently had the wonderful experience of reproducing missing buttons on a 1925 Huntsman jacket made for Lord Cawdor and still worn today by one of his grandchildren, A Huntsman bespoke creation lives forever !