Monday, January 22, 2007

FLORENCE - Pitti Uomo

Villa Victoria – Savile Row Showcase – Norton and Sons. Patrick Grant is the youngest director on the Row. He acquired Norton and Sons when he was at Oxford doing his thesis on old English clothing brands when he saw, in the Financial Times, that the company was for sale. Patrick describes the Norton and Sons style “The suit that I am wearing is a two piece single breasted in super 120’s wool and cashmere English worsted fabric from Smith and Co. As with all our suits, it is entirely hand cut and hand sewn on Savile Row. The shirt is also one of ours and it is also hand cut and sewn in London. The tie sadly, is not one of ours; it comes from a certain Giorgio Armani.” He defines the Norton cut as “Perfect, simple and elegant, we are proud to make beautiful sturdy suits for English Gentlemen.” Famous customers include; H.I.H. Kaiser Wilhelm of Prussia, the Marquise de Vogue, Baron Manfred von Richthofen, Cary Grant, Frank Sinatra, Bing Crosby, Alfred Hitchcock, David Niven. Master tailor and head cutter John Kent holds the Royal Warrant for H.R.H. the Duke of Edinburgh.

Detail: Norton and Sons. From the black Hebridean sheep on the monitor, the fleece is used un-dyed to make natural black tweed on the Isle of Mull. The cloth is completely organic and is unique to Norton and Sons. In the foreground, the cloths are hand woven by Donald John Mackay, one of the last independent weavers, on Luskentyre Beach on the Isle of Harris.

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