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Interview with Wilfried Redant of Scabal

Ever wondered how to match a shirt and tie? Ever wondered what the difference is between made to measure and bespoke? Or maybe you’d like to know what the common suit fitting mistakes are, or simply how to spot a cheap suit. We speak to the marketing leader at Scabal, a tailoring brand located on London’s exclusive Savile Row which was founded in 1938. 

What styling tips would you give to matching a shirt and tie? 

"You could choose to layer your colours, for instance a light blue shirt with a darker shade of navy to match. This will create a simple but effective combination. Avoid big contrasts in colours until establishing your own unique style." 

What are the major mistakes with fitting that you notice on men? 

"Most clients over compensate for comfort and request to have jacket shoulders too large for them. The trouser hem to be overly long is another request. Therefor having an experienced fitter is important in order for your garment to be made correctly."

What's your personal favourite collar style and why? 

"The semi-cutaway collar, as well as being a ‘Scabal’ house style, this collar works well with casual or smart clothing." 

What's the major differences between off the shelf and bespoke? 

"A garment can be entirely personalised with made-to-measure. You create a totally personalise the garment with your own unique measurement. You decide your own lining, buttons, embroidery, colour and size of stitching etc. The combinations and options are endless. You can combine trousers with or without pleats with a one, two or three button jacket. Scabal has over 5000 fabric designs, ranging from wool, cotton, silk, cashmere, linen, vicuña and bamboo. As one gets fully measured, the suit fits perfectly."

Why buy bespoke? 

"To be able to create your own suit, jacket or trouser, bespoke is the ultimate experience. "Made to Measure" uses certain standards to get to a fine result, "Bespoke" gives you total control over the entire process, the highest degree of personalisation, comparative to "Haute Couture" for women." 

What does it mean to the brand to be located on Savile Row? 

"The term "Bespoke" originated from Savile Row, the London Mayfair street with a tailoring history going back to the late 18th century, so Scabal also considers Savile Row as the legitimate place-to-be, producing quality cloth since 1899 in Huddersfield, England, trading cloth since 1938 and making made to measure clothing since 1927. In 1953 Scabal acquired cloth merchant Wain Shiell and as such had its first home on Savile Row. In 1972 Scabal opened a branded showroom on "the Row" and has remained on n°12 ever since."

How can you spot a cheap suit? 

"A good suit always begins with good quality cloth, other things to look out for are, horn buttons instead of plastic and natural fabrics instead of synthetics. You should make sure buttons match the buttonholes, there is extra fabric inside the seams and the finishing details of the garment is consistent."  

What are the most common suit jacket rules which guys should know about? 

"A good quality fitting, make sure you take advice from your experienced fitter. Choose good quality cloth for your requirement. 

"Never use the outside jacket pockets as this will ruin the shape of the jacket" 

If you need to use pockets, use back trouser pockets or inside jacket pockets. Make sure trouser hems sit with a single break, avoid multiple breaks in the trouser hem. Sleeve length on jackets should show approx. 1.5 cm of the shirt cuff. Choosing your own style of suit that you'll feel comfortable in, take advice from others but remember you will be wearing the garment. So before purchasing a garment think very carefully what your requirements are, both visual and practicality wise." 

Double breasted or Single Breasted, why? 

"Double breasted, nothing quiet compares and looks as refined as a man dressed in a well fitted double breasted suit."  

Notch or peak lapel, why? 

"Notch for the classic everyday suit and peak for the statement double breasted number."

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