Motive part I

Studio practices

Chapter 1

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This research endeavour began with practical work in various design studios. I worked with tailors in the bespoke tailoring company A. W. Bauer & Co. in Stockholm and as a pattern cutter for Vivienne Westwood in London, and I also spent time in the atelier of the French costume designer Geneviève Sevin-Doering in Marseille.

This on-location work framed the area of research, helped to define motives for it, and to outline how this research should contribute to knowledge.

1.1 Cutting at Bauer Tailors.

Setup: Working as a tailor alongside the cutter and tailors at A. W. Bauer & Co.
Location: Bauer Skräddare, Brunnsgatan 4, Stockholm
Duration: 2 months, March–April 2010

A. W. Bauer & Co. is located in Stockholm, Sweden and produces first-class men’s bespoke tailoring in-house. The process of cutting and tailoring has changed little in the past century. Clients are measured by hand, patterns are drafted with tailor’s chalk on brown paper by utilising a strict cutting method, and – to a large extent – the tailoring is done by hand. Every jacket is fitted three times on the client, and approximately one week of labour time goes into every jacket.

Stills from A. W. Bauer studio

The procedure of constructing the body pattern for a jacket at Bauer Tailors is outlined on the following pages. Vertical and horizontal measurements are taken while the customer stands in an upright position. From these measurements, a diagram of guidelines is chalked on pattern paper, and the pattern pieces are drafted within this matrix. The pattern pieces constructed within this tailoring matrix are then further adjusted for certain body types (e.g., particular postures, uneven shoulders, etc.) as needed.

Film showing the making of a suit jacket at Bauer Tailors.
Thick cardboard block patterns of different sizes are used, and the customer’s chest measurement determines which size will serve as the foundation for the pattern. These templates differ slightly from industrial ones in that they have no seam allowance at the centre front and centre back, nor do they have any added hems or vents. Starting at the centre back of the jacket, the first step is to chalk mark the outlines of the back-part template and adjust it after the client's measurements, then follows step by step the drafting of the front piece.
Atacac sharewear no. 1 [tailored jacket]

Download a full scale pattern of a tailored jacket. This pattern was originally used for the Rickard Lindqvist collection in 2007. It differs from a bespoke jacket pattern in the sense that it has defined seam allowances for industrial production. Print it out on a large scale plotter or use the tile function and print it in small pieces on a normal printer and then tape it together.

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