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Bespoke for Women


Handcraft tailoring by Savile Row trained, award wining, Master Tailor, Rory Duffy. Designed specificially for women.

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Bespoke for Women


Handcraft tailoring by Savile Row trained, award wining, Master Tailor, Rory Duffy. Designed specificially for women.

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A Neglected Market

You would think that made-to-measure, or bespoke, would be more of a woman's market than a man's.  Why?  Because, the figure of a man is more straightforward.  A man has less trouble walking into a store and pulling an outfit off the rack, knowing with little fuss or muss that it will fit him and he'll look good in it.  However, because of their simpler forms, that is the exact reason why the bespoke market is catered to men.  If a woman were to walk into the atelier of a Savile Row trained tailor today to request a special garment from the best of the best, she may not get very far.  A woman's body is more complex with its ever fluctuating curves and structure.  

 

Because the female anatomy is so complicated most handcraft tailors, for all of their illustrious training, are not too keen to clothe it.  When most of them go through their training the suits that they make are custom for their male clients.  They don't even train in clothing the female form.  Now, this is not to say that, as a woman, you cannot walk into a Savile Row bespoke shop and order a suit.  There are a few tailors that can service you, and perhaps it helps that they are also female.  However, in New York City, this service is a rare gem indeed.  Once again, you may be able to find a custom dress maker, but they won't have the prestigious, heritage driven training of Savile Row.  What is a woman of discerning tastes to do?  

Go to Rory Duffy in Williamsburg, Brooklyn.  Mr. Duffy is an award winning, 5th generation Savile Row trained, true master tailor.  Not only does he have the best credentials behind his name that one could ask for, but he has gone out of his way to do what few bespoke tailors have before.  He took two years to study women's wear design, tailoring, and the female form.  He even had conversations with women of varying body shapes and sizes to find out what their concerns and needs were when it came to finding the perfect fit.  Then, he developed his own measuring and drafting system to meet those needs.  Now, a woman can walk into his atelier, and ask for a garment that will flatter her figure in the way she has always wanted while also bringing her comfort and style.  Mr. Duffy believes that one should be able to get dressed and then forget about what they are wearing the rest of the day while renaming in full confidence that the fabric draped across their body is helping them present the best and most confident image for the world to see.

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About Rory


2009 Winner of the Golden Shears...

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About Rory


2009 Winner of the Golden Shears...

Our personal journey is full of symbolism, but often—despite the flashing lights telling us to go “here”—life needs to have patience with us until we find our way. 

Such is the case for fifth generation, Savile Row trained and award winning Master tailor, Rory Duffy.  As one of five siblings, Duffy distinctly remembers as a child, being disciplined in primary school for opting to sew with the girls rather than play with the boys.

Even being around his grandfather, Pat McCabe, who was a Merchant tailor, and knowing the rich history of his ancestors, Duffy expressed little interest in the tailoring or the fashion industry as a potential career. Duffy's first choice, after graduating his second levels was furniture design school, and then industrial design.  Despite stellar grades, Duffy felt as though something was amiss.  It wasn't until he tried impressing his roommate and date to a winter formal that he found his true calling.  Thanks to his mother's domestic sewing machine and an old forgotten skirt, Duffy make a short jacket over the course of the weekend.  His only aide during those few days was his previous hand sewing knowledge and his grandfather's tailoring books. His date was so impressed by how perfectly the jacket fit her that she encouraged him to follow the family trade and become a tailor.

From that moment on Duffy set out to train under the best.  While enrolled in the Irish Reserve Defense Forces he simultaneously apprenticed under the best his country had to offer including: third generation bespoke tailor Joseph Martin; master tailor, Eugene Foley; Savile Row trained tailor David Young; and Master Cutter, Peter Fletcher at Louis Copeland & Sons. During this time of workshop training, Duffy also earned hands on client experience as head tailor for Anthony McCann's workshop on Chapel St.

Duffy's next move was onto Savile Row in London, where many of his masters had trained.  Over the course of four years, he attended the London School of Fashion's Handcraft Tailoring course, receiving top marks. He then went on to intern with Henry Poole under Master Coat Maker Paul Frearson and trained under Chris Flourenzou, trouser maker to Savile Row and the West End. By 2009, he had accomplished what no one else before him. He won the coveted Golden Shears award on the same night that he finished his third apprenticeship.

After the triumph of winning the Golden Shears Duffy took on his own apprentice, Emily Squires. As Duffy fast tracked Squires’ coat making apprenticeship, that would have set her to finish in two years, New York presented fresh opportunities for his career.  In 2010 he moved to Brooklyn and occupied a private work shop at Martin Greenfield's factory. By 2012 Duffy left Greenfields to open his private atelier in Williamsburg, under Rory Duffy Bespoke. There he serves both male and female clients alike. He also currently works with tailor’s tailor, Henry Bailey in the UK, as the representative of their American brand. When he isn’t serving clients, he additionally lectures part-time at The Parsons School of Design, giving back to the next generation of bespoke tailors. 

 

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About Bespoke Tailoring


Bespoke is not fashion, it is timeless.

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About Bespoke Tailoring


Bespoke is not fashion, it is timeless.

The term "bespoke" comes from the word "bespoken" and is essentially another way of saying "custom." The idea being, that when a man walked into a tailor and dictated what he was looking for, the tailor would then customize the suit to his exact measurements.  If you hear the term "made-to-measure" in regards to fashion, it holds the same concept, but honestly "bespoke" is shorter, and let's be honest...way cooler.

But, why is "bespoke" such a thrilling buzz word these days?  Probably because of the prestige associated with it thanks to Savile Row in London, where many of the best ateliers are housed.  However, herein lies another term that can be met with confusion and that is, "master tailor."  You may hear this term tossed about, and you wouldn't be wrong to assume that a "master tailor" is one who is proficient in all areas of suit making.  After all, that is how most would define a "master."  However, in this industry, the term--as it stands today--does not mean that the tailor in question is skilled in all areas (for there are many, and the apprenticeships for one area can last several years) it means that he is the overseer or governor of the tailors below him.  He's often more business focused and at times can have very little tailoring experience, but he is the manager of the shop. Even if you find someone on Savile Row who has mastered everything, no one there will call him a "master tailor." Instead, he will be known as a "jack of all trades."

Rory Duffy, however, is a true master tailor in the fact that he has become proficient in all areas of suit making, so that one can be sure that they are getting a product like non other.