Monday, October 5, 2009

WIW: From the Grave

The suit below was shown several posts ago in What Suits You. It's a great, high quality suit from the late 1930s but had been retired to a vintage shop where it collected dust for who knows how long, maybe a decade, perhaps longer. I first saw it 2 years ago but, like everyone else, passed it by because of a long series of holes on its right arm. Unrepairable, no doubt. Or was it?

It would be a good fit for me with a few alterations. And with a reweave, those holes would pretty much disappear. So, this last summer I took a chance and woke it from its slumber.

My alterations lady let down the arms and also told me she could do a reweaving job on the sleeve holes, so I gave her a chance. It's far from perfect but I can't complain now that the holes are darn hard to spot and she threw in the reweave for free.

I sacrificed the cuffs on the trousers and added faux cuffs, 2" deep like the originals. I squeezed all the length I could out of those trousers and they're still about 1"-2" short for proper wear with the vest (no shirt showing between vest and trousers).

Don't know if I'll wear the vest underneath the jacket again since it's rarely seen. Though even if I do, I never open the jacket so the shirt poking out will never be seen. Win/win either way.

I'm very happy with this suit, the silhouette is perfection to my eye. The broad shoulders and nipped waist of the jacket along with the full cut of the trousers really balance out well.

click photos to enlarge


Antonio Centeno said...

You know Will, I'd like to believe my post on alterations at Art of Manliness inspired you to take this action. But I know you probably had this in the works months ago!

Will said...

Hey Antonio, yeah I've had this in the works for several months now but your excellent article poked and prodded me to finish it several days ago.

Horatio said...

Fantastic! You certainly found a hidden treasure in that suit. How nice that you got a free reweave, too. Long may you wear your newest great vintage suit.

Nicola Linza said...

Will, I have to tell this suit had to be quality to begin with as you cannot make something into something it never was at first, many try, and often fail. Quality always shows, and that stated, inline with my first position, few can take an item and alter or fix it well; this you have shown IS a job well done. You are to be congratulated. You look great, that suit, that now holds terrific lines on your body.

Will said...

You're right, for something to be quality it has to start off quality. No half efforts will suffice.

This is definitely a quality garment. Not only is the craftsmanship outstanding but the fabric, cut and silhouette (more on the latter two in the next post) are just right.

Had any one of those pieces of the puzzle been missing this would have been an inferior suit.


you look great.I was in Prague and bought material like that for next to nothing. I had it made up in Italy for next to nothing .I had it done in a D.B style with just two buttons showing (ever seen that style?). I got the idea from a Mitchum Film Noir


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