It gives us great pleasure to congratulate two of our talented coat makers on successfully completing The Savile Row Bespoke Association (SRBA) Diploma. Maya Jauslin and Emily Self, who have been with Richard Anderson Ltd for 5 and 3 years respectively, received their awards during the Bespoke Tailors’ Benevolent Association summer party at the historic Merchant Taylors’ Hall on Friday 8th July.
The standards set in Savile Row are exceptionally high and this diploma guarantees the recipient an unbeatable start to a future career in bespoke tailoring.
We are incredibly proud of both of them and would like to wish them many more successful years with us at Richard Anderson Ltd.
As regular customers will know, we have introduced some very special cloths during our double celebration year, all of which contain patterns, some obvious, but mostly subtle or even hidden.
As this is the 60th year that Brian Lishak has worked on Savile Row, we thought it would be interesting to look at the fabrics that were being sold in the 1950s when Brian started travelling to the United States of America. What we found was very pleasing; the weaves of the time were complex and often looked their best in the heavyweights so beloved of our customers today.
Heavyweights were popular for their warmth, comfort and durability in a post-war Britain and America. The thicker threads allowed for vivid designs and distinctive patterns; at the time, diamond patterns and tile weaves were very much in favour, but it was complexity that drove the weavers then, almost as if there were a challenge to conceal a code in the cloth, they revelled in creating ever more complex interplays between design and colour.
As the complexity of weaving these designs is greater than that of a simple or plain fabric, they are rarely seen these days, so we have revived them and commissioned our own versions, made to our own design and specifications. We have had them woven in Worsteds for suits and wonderful tweeds for suits and sports coats.
Our worsted suitings were spun and woven by the finest mills in Yorkshire; created in medium and heavy weight they followed our own plain and regular design suitings already favoured by many of our customers, who were delighted by their superb durability and shape-keeping properties.
Our first new range of tweeds for sports coats, made from a superlative wool tweed in Scotland, have been woven to highlight an extraordinarily distinctive design in three shades of brown and make an extremely handsome sports coat which can be worn over fawn or grey trousers, chinos or jeans. Later in these pages you will also find our second new range of tweeds in our stunning anniversary pattern.
We are sure that customers will enjoy these new cloths in old and new patterns, as much now, as when they were first produced sixty years ago; we are delighted to be able to show that the quality and craftsmanship of that era is alive and thriving today.
We introduced customers recently to our range of exclusive worsteds with subtle hidden patterns. You could say that these are entirely new, which in a way they are, as we commissioned them exclusively for Richard Anderson and they are not available anywhere else They were commissioned based on cloths that were available in the 1950s, when Brian was at the very start of his career on Savile Row. They strongly resemble suitings Brian was taking to America aboard the Queen Mary and they are as striking today as they were then. The worsteds come in two weights, heavy (18oz) and medium (13oz) and in two colours, a plain mid-grey and our special blue-grey. The cloths have been made entirely to our specifications to provide maximum performance and durability and are ideal for business suits.
These beautiful medium weight (15oz) lambswool tweeds are woven by one of our favourite mills in Scotland. As with our Anniversary suitings, they have a fabulously complex weave, allowing them to stand apart from all other tweeds. The construction of the cloths allows them to hold their shape exceptionally well, meaning that our distinctive Richard Anderson line is clearly visible in the cut of the coat. These are smart tweeds that will hold their heads high in any environment. Available in three subtle brown shades, the tiled patterns in the weave are both interesting and pleasing to the eye.
We are delighted to introduce our final new range for our anniversary year.
Made by our good friends in Islay, our four special Anniversary designs bear a bold diamond weave overcheck in glorious colours that reflect the countryside of the Islands and Highlands; earthy browns, deep green lovats, heather blues and stony greys. On our theme of hidden patterns, they bear a complex diamond pattern within the overcheck weave.
Customers who remember our original exclusive house tweeds will find these a familiar friend; subtle, interesting and very pleasing to the eye, we feel that they will become our new house tweeds and customer favourites. We are truly proud to offer them to you, and in Brian’s words, “they are the best cloths I have been associated with commissioning in 60 years”, we hope you will agree.
To mark Brian’s 60th year on Savile Row, and the 15th anniversary of Richard Anderson Ltd, we have commissioned artist Luke Haseler to paint portraits of Brian and Richard for the showroom. It is something of a tradition in Savile Row to celebrate important milestones with an artistic gesture, and we are delighted that Luke agreed to the commission.
Some customers will remember our Art of Tailoring installation and how we championed young emerging artists alongside well established artists. It is something that we are proud to be able to do and we shall continue to support and encourage those with true artistic talent.
We are delighted to present our hand screen printed silk handkerchiefs. These beautiful hanks, made from the finest 18oz silk, with hand rolled edges, are handmade in England by a specialist silk printer whose archives boast many designs going back 100 years.
The morning began at Scabal where Tony Stephens and Andrew Goldberg welcomed us. The front shop began to fill as we had brief moment to meet our fellow travellers. We boarded the coach and were off by eight-thirty. Tony and Andrew of Scabal did an excellent job of ensuring our comfort throughout the entire journey; with they’re being no shortage of tea, coffee, croissants and brownies.
At just after noon the coach arrived into Yorkshire. I think I speak on behalf of the majority of the travellers when I say it is very easy to forget the beauty of The Great British countryside whilst living and working in London.
We arrived into New Mill at twelve thirty and moments later drove into Bower Roebuck, the mill that produces ‘England’s finest fabric’. We were given an opportunity to stretch our legs after the four-hour journey before making our way into the presentation room. Ronald Hall, Managing Director of Bower Roebuck, welcomed us and gave us a brief history of the mill and the textile industry associated with Yorkshire.
We began our tour of the mill shortly after lunch. We began in the warehouse where all of the worsted yarns are kept, well all apart from the cashmere and vicuna which we were told are strictly under lock and key. Although the building was very old the conditions were cool and dry, these are the most important requirements when storing worsted wool, as it is a Natural fibre.
Fact: Worsted wool yarn has a shelf life of 10 years. After this time frame the fibres often lose strength and snap during the warping process.
The next process is the warping phase. The colour and the weight of the yarn is selected before it is mechanically stretched and ordered.
When weaving cloth, the warp is the set of lengthwise yarns that are held in tension on a frame or loom. The yarn that is inserted over-and-under the warp thread is called the weft. The weft is inserted only after the warp has been stretched and ordered.
After the weft is inserted, the yarns start to form what we know as the cloth but this is probably only 50% of the finished product. Once the cloth has completed the weft phase it is checked for flaws and then ‘invisibly mended’. It is only after this intensive procedure the cloth is sent to the finisher to be washed and treated. Bower Roebuck strive for perfection and often achieve only 3 minor thread pulls in a 65m piece of cloth.
Our apprentice Thomas Carr trying his hand at cloth inspection
The term "Invisible Mending" dates back more than 200 years and describes the highly skilled and time-consuming method of repairing damage to cloth by taking individual threads from a hem, side seam or other concealed part of the garment of the same type and re weaving them over the damaged area to make as near perfect repairs as is humanly possible.
With thanks to the staff at Scabal and Bower Roebuck for a thoroughly enjoyable and educational day.
In February 1956 an eager faced young man stepped through the hallowed doors of Huntsman, one of the oldest tailoring houses on Savile Row to take up the position of Junior Sales Assistant.
What followed was a remarkable career travelling the world, serving up the finest bespoke suits to lords, ladies and Hollywood royalty including Katherine Hepburn, Paul Newman & Gregory Peck to name just a few.
Now, 60 years later that eager face has morphed into a Savile Row legend and Brian Lishak is one of the most admired and respected denizens of this most British of institutions. Not only is Brian celebrating six decades of service on Savile Row but he and his business partner Richard Anderson are also enjoying a 15 year anniversary of their highly successful business at 13 Savile Row.
Still going strong, here are some stand-out memories from Brian’s six decades on Savile Row:
“I was the youngest Huntsman employee at 16 and one day a venerable, elderly gentleman came into the shop. I asked him if he had come for a fitting and what was his name? His face turned purple then he stormed up the shop and complained to the owner, Robert Packer, of the effrontery of the young man who had dared to ask his name. Having only been at Huntsman for 8 weeks, I didn’t know that the gentleman was in fact Lord Lovat, after whose estate the famous cloth colour comes from.”
“Katherine Hepburn was a very good customer. She would sit on a bench seat just inside the front window and took charge of that as her own domain. Her personality filled the shop and everything stopped when she was there. She was very kind to me. We used to make lots of trousers for her that were quite masculine but they suited her personality.”
“When The Beatles played on the roof of number 3 you could hear lot of noise even in the shop. I raced up to the roof of no. 11 to see what was going on. I think they did about 4 or 5 numbers but then, as I understand it, one of the tailors got upset with all the fuss and the noise and phoned the police. I think I know which tailor it was but I’d rather not say!”
“Steve McQueen wanted to have around a dozen garments made within two weeks. I said I’m extremely sorry sir but there’s no way we can do that as they’re all made by hand with 90 hours of work per suit. McQueen said get your tailors to work all night and I’ll pay them what’s necessary. I apologised again and said I don’t think you’ll find anywhere on Savile Row who’ll make you this amount of garments in two weeks and with that he walked out.”
“Richard Anderson I had known briefly when he came in as an apprentice at Huntsman. When I returned to the company I immediately recognised his ability as a cutter, that he was enormously talented & had a great personality. Together we work really well as a team. When we started 15 years ago we had no shop and now it’s grown into this highly successful business. Our customers are not just customers, they are friends.”
With constant international travel to meet and fit clients here are Brian’s ‘Rules of the Road’:
Stay Healthy – Eat Well, drink well and sleep well
Don’t Get Homesick – Maintain a positive attitude & have an engaging personality.
Work Hard – Don’t put things off and make sure everything is complete and in order.
Richard Anderson Ltd has commissioned several exclusive cloth designs that Brian was selling sixty years ago which will be introduced during the course of the year at 13 Savile Row. www.richardandersonltd.com.
Credit: Martin Copland-Gray http://www.man.london/luxury/60-years-savile-row-brian-lishak/
We are delighted to introduce a range of exclusive worsteds with subtle patterns. You could say that these are entirely new, which in a way they are, as we have commissioned them exclusively for Richard Anderson and they are not available anywhere else However, they have been commissioned based on cloths that were available in the 1950s, when Brian was at the very start of his career on Savile Row. Unlike designs available from suppliers today, they strongly resemble suitings he was taking to America aboard the Queen Mary and they are as striking today as they were then.
The worsteds come in two weights, heavy and medium and in two colours, a plain mid-grey and our special blue-grey. The cloths have been made entirely to our specifications to provide maximum performance and durability and are ideal for business suits.