Thursday, November 29, 2007

Bespoke Ties?

Even some of the most eloquent exponents of bespoke tailored clothing and shoes and shirts sometimes question the utility of bespoke ties. After all, they say, any ready-to-wear tie can be tied in a variety of lengths; so getting the perfect length is possible even for ties that aren't made especially for the wearer. Right?

Well, yes, to an extent. But what if you don't like the small blade of the tie too short or too long? Or if you want a tie that's wider or narrower than is standard on ready-to-wear ties? Or if you like the shell material of a ready-to-wear tie but don't like the size or shape of the knot that it ties? Then bespoke ties are for you. And whom do you go to for bespoke ties? I recommend Sam Hober. Sam Hober is the creation of David and Noina Hober (Sam is their daughter), and they originally specialized in hand-woven Thai silk neckties and pocket squares, which are beautiful and unique. The tie pictured above is made from Thai silk -- it's difficult to see, but Thai silk has a beautiful variegated character to it that you simply do not see elsewhere -- and it exhibits yet another benefit of bespoke neckwear: it's custom-woven based on the customer's specifications. David won't always do this, but if you have a good idea for a design, if it's possible for his Thai weavers to make, and if he thinks that he can sell it to more people than just you, he will do custom weavings. If Thai silk isn't your thing, David also has a wide variety of English and Italian silks, including the best selection of grenadines that I have ever seen. And he has Atkinson's Irish Poplin, a mixture of silk and wool that makes up into beautiful and versatile ties. Regardless of what fabric you select, you get to specify your tie length, width, shape (ie, how bottle-shaped it is, etc.), construction (3-fold, 5-fold, 6-fold, etc.), and lining weight. The ties aren't inexpensive, but they're significantly cheaper than some of the super-luxury ready-to-wear tie brands out there. An outstanding product at a good price.

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