Saturday, 22 December 2012

Deadstock


Rummaging through the suppliers' dusty warehouse can sometimes unearth wonderful treasures. Our moment of serendipity came when we chanced upon a whole bundle of Italian lightweight hopsack cloth.

Shades of ochre, olive, bronze, wheat and French-blue with faint, overlaying windowpane. Stocks are extremely limited. Some with only enough yardage for just one very dapper sportsjacket.

Blink, and it'll be gone.

Wednesday, 19 December 2012

Instagram


Follow us on Instagram! 

Friday, 7 December 2012

Buttoned Up

When they say that 'the devil is in the details', they don't mean gaudy floral inlays or fancy-colored buttonholes. That 'devil' should be something very quiet and inconspicuous, something that most people will not even notice at first look; something of exquisite quality that distinguishes you from the next dude with exactly the same suit... but not quite.

We strongly believe that using superior buttons on a suit elevates the whole look and provides a fine finishing touch. We have no qualms on blowing a couple thousand dollars annually on quality horn, corozo and smoked mother-of-pearl buttons. When you pay a 4-figure sum for a suit, it is a crime to be given plastic buttons.



In the meantime, stay classy :)

Thursday, 29 November 2012

Dormeuil

We are excited to add another prestigious label to our arsenal of luxury suiting fabrics - the venerable house of Dormeuil. Headquartered in France, Dormeuil is one of the most highly respected mills in the world, right up there with the likes of Scabal, Zegna and Loro Piana.


Woven in England using the most technologically advanced machines, Dormeuil produces fabric with a wonderfully soft and supple hand, while maintaining an excellent drape. Among it's ranges is the popular Aquaplan bunch. As the name suggests, Aquaplan cloths are water-resistant. Finally, you need not fear that clumsy co-worker who always seem to bump into you when you're holding your cup of coffee in the morning.


No more coffee stains on the jacket sleeves!

Saturday, 17 November 2012

Grandi & Rubinelli


New addition to the collection - Grandi & Rubinelli spring/summer shirtings (made in Italy).

We are proud to present a new range of fine shirtings from the esteemed Italian mill Grandi & Rubinelli. From supple pin-stripe poplins to crisp gingham linens, be prepared to feel like a kid in a candy store all over again.

Wednesday, 14 November 2012

The Cordial Churchman for Dylan & Son. Bowties

A capsule collection of 5 styles in limited quantities. 100% handmade in USA, using the same English and Italian fabrics from which we craft our suits.

The Cordial Churchman is a small, private company in South Carolina, USA. Headed by Ms. Elie Stager, it all began when she made a bowtie out of some spare seersucker fabric for her man Andy. He posted that online, and everybody started asking for one. What started out as a hobby eventually grew into a business, and the rest, they say, is history.

Spotting a bowtie wearer these days is like a unicorn sighting. Being fervent advocates of bowties ourselves, we hope to bring about a redux in this classic menswear accessory that's being overlooked, or even ridiculed at, in recent times.

Brightly colored and playful bowties are great, but for this collaboration, we have the understated and mellow gentlemen in mind. Focusing on darker tones, this collection will also make them a little easier to wear for folks still contemplating their maiden bow. Fabrics used are all quintessential menswear suitings woven by renowned mills in England and Italy. 

And yes of course, all bowties are self-tied.

Monday, 12 November 2012

20%


To show our appreciation for the folks who have been continuously supporting us, enjoy
20% off regular oxford cloth shirts (usual price $139), from now until the end of November 2012.

Just in time to rock a new color for Christmas :)

THIS OFFER IS SPECIALLY FOR EXISTING CUSTOMERS WHO HAVE MADE SHIRTS WITH US PREVIOUSLY.

Saturday, 29 September 2012

A Royal Lineup

Presenting a royal line-up of delightful cottons imported from the United Kingdom. These are available in a range of weights - from the airy 7/8oz bunch to the substantial 15/16oz autumn/winter series.

Select from a collection of brilliant shades like rose, electric blue, cherry and cornflower, to subdued olive, chestnut, mahogany and ash. These cloths are ideal for trouserings and sportcoats.

Yes, indeed.


Scabal.


Hunt & Winterbotham (a branch of J&J Minnis).


Holland & Sherry.


Harrisons of Edinburgh.

Monday, 17 September 2012

Pimp Your Collar


We've covered this forgotten menswear accessory before. Collar bars are so rarely seen these days. Such a pity. An alternative to the classic bar-bell collar bar, the safety-pin version is one of the most elegant accessories a man can wear.



Both styles are now available in limited quantites at Dylan & Son.

Friday, 17 August 2012

In / Out

So. You've decided to make a shirt. You want to wear it tucked-in for work. You also want to wear it untucked for the weekend. You get two shirts.

A shirt meant to be tucked-in is cut quite differently from a shirt meant to be left untucked.

SHIRT (A): untucked            SHIRT (B): tucked-in

Below are the two major differences.

1. SHIRT TAIL LENGTH
For a shirt to be tucked in properly and remain in, the body has to be cut substantially longer. If not, there is a high possibility of it becoming untucked when you raise your arms. After you've helped that lovely lady reach for something on the top shelf, she does not need to see your shirt getting untucked in the process and exposing your Calvin Kleins.

Shirt (B) will just look ridiculously sloppy when left out due to its longer tail-length. In our view, the front of an untucked shirt should never fall past the halfway-point of your trouser fly.

2. BODY SHAPE
Shirt (B) is cut with an hourglass body shape to fit the torso more closely. However, when left untucked, the ends of the tail will appear to flare outwards, much like a ladies' shirt.

An untucked shirt should be cut rather straight in the body, refer to Shirt (A), so that the fabric will fall and drape properly. A gentle suppression in the waist is fine, but if the suppression is too obvious, it will end up like Shirt (B). And speaking of drape, heavier cloths will almost always drape better than superfine ones, remember this. Think oxfords rather than smooth poplins.

Since we have to maintain a rather straight cut, almost the entire body must be brought in to cater for a slim-fit. However, this will result in a tighter chest, which might in turn result in pulling across the buttons and catching/creasing near the armholes - sorta like what Dr. Bruce Banner experiences right before turning green.

What happens when you tuck in Shirt (A)? All the excess fabric will balloon out from the waist. And don't raise your arms.

*

All the complications are somewhat inter-related. Therefore, unless you are willing to compromise on all of the aforementioned problems, make a decision - either you're in, or you're out.

Wednesday, 8 August 2012

Two

We'll be celebrating our nation's 47th birthday on August 9th. This also happen to be Dylan & Son's second year anniversary :)

We are still a very young establishment, but we felt that we have grown quite a fair bit within these two years. Those of you who have been with us from the first formative months in 2010 can probably attest to that.










A ridiculously small space of around 90sf was how it all began. It's virtually impossible to accommodate more than 2 customers in the original setup. Cramped and claustrophobic, we somehow managed to survive through that period of uncertainty.












Managed to get a tad bit bigger in 2011. Still pretty small, but we're nonetheless glad to have this upgrade.






We would like to thank all our customers, industry partners and the media for the encouraging support and affording us the opportunity to do what we do. 

We would like to say a special, heartfelt 'thank you' to all our regular customers (you know who you are!). You guys gave us a chance when we were completely unknown and unproven, and constantly provided us the strength to keep on going. We might not be able to please everyone single one of you out there... but hey, we're still gonna try.

Here's to many more years of style! Cheers :)

Thursday, 26 July 2012

The Test of Time

All craftsmen have a special relationship with his tools of the trade. Just like how a sushi master-chef treasures his knives, a tailor's shears is his indispensable tool. 


My father's pair of black shears is over 20 years old, and the golden one around 5 years old. It had served him well over the years, but after cutting through hundreds of yards of fabric, it had become blunt at the edges. Being a handyman, he always sharpens the shears against a sharpening stone himself.


Above, you can see that the golden shears' blade runs straight out from the hinge. Below, the black shears' blade dips and curves downwards, due to repeated sharpening over the years. It is amazing how much of the blade had been filed off!

Monday, 2 July 2012

CLOSED

Dear all,

We will be away in Hong Kong from 11 - 22 July. As such, the shop will be closed during that period. Normal operating hours will resume on 23 July.

Thank you for the continuous support :)

Monday, 25 June 2012

The Lion King Test

It's that period of the year again, when the heat is on and the mercury rises to almost uncomfortable levels. Admittedly, even for me, sometimes it gets so warm that just the thought of dressing up becomes a chore. However, there are little things you can do to try and make sure you survive summer in style. So no, don't bust out your T-shirt, shorts and Crocs yet. 

One important tip is to understand fabric choice. Although cottons and linens are the ultimate cloths for summers, they tend to be a bit too casual for a corporate environment. You'd probably be wise not to rock a royal-blue linen suit with beige horn buttons at work, especially when that promotion is within sight. You still need the drape of wool to look sharp and appropriate.

Rising temperatures call for lightweight wools of around 8 ~ 9 ounces (250gms). These wools are specially woven to be worn in warmer climates and are extremely breathable. Personally, I feel these wools are more comfortable than cottons because they feel so light and feathery.


Here, I go all Lion King on my half-lined jacket. You can see how light and porous the cloth is. This allows for good breathability and ventilation. 

One of the key points of successful summer dressing is to not cut the clothes too close to the body. Overly slim clothes cling to your body like a film of plastic wrap and it's not gonna feel very comfortable in the heat. As explained before, there is a huge difference between skinny and slim - trendy boys go for the former, and real men go for the latter.

Friday, 8 June 2012

The Price of Hands - Part II

Continued...

The construction of a suit jacket is the most difficult aspect in tailoring. My si-fu often recounts to me, with the air of an old war veteran reminiscing his battles,  the struggles and frustration he faced as an apprentice. He told me it was so hard to master the art of suit making that he used to cry in exasperation (very much like how I would when I couldn't solve that f*cking math problem in school).


All of us has got some unique asymmetry in our body structure that needs to be taken into account when making a jacket. No machine in the world can replace the experienced hands of a craftsman in this area.

How to properly cut the fabric to accommodate the body-type, predicting the shrinkage and expansion of the fabric when ironing, applying the canvas, handstitching the buttonholes, adjusting the level of the shoulders, compensating for the shoulder-twist, rotating the pitch of the sleeves, suppressing the waist, determining the drop of the front, deciding the position of the gorge. 

These are some of the things that no ready-to-wear suits can ever offer. Not Prada, not Dior Homme, not Armani, not Hugo Boss. I'm not saying we're better than any of the big designer brands, it would be foolish to say that, but it is what it is and our process is undeniably more tedious and time-consuming.

Some folks like to compare the price of a commissioned suit to one bought from a designer label. They will be absolutely shocked to learn that the price can either be similar or more expensive. This is like comparing apples and oranges - they are both fruits, but no one's gonna mistake one for the other.

As with all developed countries and cosmopolitan cities , it is becoming extremely hard to find craftsmen who are well-versed in doing things the traditional way. Finding quality manpower is, and has always been, the biggest challenge in our industry. Making a suit jacket is not difficult; I learnt to do that in fashion college. Making a proper suit jacket is a different thing altogether. The cutters/makers working with me have been doing that for almost half a century, and they tell me they are still learning and improving up to this day. They are a talented, but dying breed, and being so, they certainly deserve good wages for their effort.

The price of hands is expensive. Respect that.

Is is too much to say that inside this cover lies the blood, sweat and tears of the si-fu?

Thursday, 7 June 2012

The Price of Hands - Part I

Tailoring is expensive. And it will only get more expensive in the future. Not intending to sound arrogant - if you're looking to get cheap tailoring, it is often times better to buy off-the-rack and spend some money on alterations. With the range of ready-to-wear we have in the market today, you should be able to find something if you look hard enough (and if you've accumulated enough good karma).

The fact is that tailoring is a dying trade. It has been in decline since the early 90's. I should know, after seeing my father's business shrink year by year since then. Tailors can be found in abundance in 80's Singapore. It was the golden era of tailoring. Almost every working man gets their suits tailored.  However, most of these tailors work with mediocre fabrics, mostly polyester-blends, and don't necessarily place much emphasis on quality. Their target market were men who need to wear suits, not men who want to wear suits.


My father's shop in the mid-70's. You can find tailor shops like this at every corner you turn.


It was the time before T.M Lewin, Goldlion, G2000, Gap, Zara, Topman, Uniqlo and H&M infiltrated the landscape. When these brands came along, offering cheap, serviceable suits in a myriad of styles, the tailoring industry took the proverbial arrow to the knee. That was the start of the 'fast-fashion' movement which we are continuing to experience today. One by one, the small-scaled tailors started folding. Many of the veterans ended up making a career-switch in their fifties. My father was one of them, for a short while.

David vs Goliath - the juggernaut known as Uniqlo recently offered linen jackets at S$149. The cost of the suiting fabrics alone that we use can cost more than S$150/meter (before GST, excluding linings).

The ones who survived are mainly those who offer premium tailoring - excellent fabrics, fit and handmade workmanship. After all, these areas are our main advantages over the ready-to-wear products, our only weapons in the fight against Goliath. Actually, we should not even attempt to fight the mass-retailers; we'll just get our a$$ handed to us on a silver plate if we do. It's like getting into a knife-fight with plastic forks from yesterday's dinner at Lau Pa Sat.

To be continued...