Sunday, October 16, 2011
Jodek International of Beverly Hills is to the best of my knowledge one of two distributors of bespoke quality cloth to tailors in North America (the other is Isles Textiles on Long Island). For years, Jodek's best-known brand was H. Lesser, perhaps the best cloth merchant of all in a qualitative sense. Lesser is gone as of earlier this year, absorbed by Harrisons of Edinburgh, and though Harrison's is an excellent house it remains an open question as to whether it will continue to produce cloth with the qualities that made Lesser greater.
As if that were not enough change, as of mid-October, Jodek's representation of Lesser is ending and Isles, Harrison's North American distributor, will have taken over the brand. Nonetheless, I stopped in to say hello and go through the remains of Lesser's 8/9 and 9/10 ounce books to see whether there remained anything that I might want to order before that justly renowned cloth is gone forever. And though there is still twenty meters of a glen check that I have had my eye on for a few months, the other stuff has been fairly well picked over. Offsetting that disappointment, Jodek's David Douek did introduce me to Draper's, a Biella mill offering some interesting patterns, including the wide stripes in the second photo. Agnelli had a suit in cloth of a similar design that he willed to Lapo Elkann.
I imagine that afternoons spent at fittings and browsing the cloth books with friends have not changed all that much for a century or more, except that in Beverly Hills these days they have cocktail lounges that actually attempt to air condition the outdoors. Remarkable.