Savile Row, a street located in the heart of London’s Mayfair district, has been synonymous with bespoke tailoring for over two centuries. The street is home to some of the most famous tailors and brands in the world. Savile Row is the quintessential representation of Britain’s renowned reputation in men’s fashion and has attracted clients ranging from British royalty to Hollywood celebrities.
Much like the bespoke suits fashioned on this very street, this article has been meticulously crafted to provide you with everything you need to know about the rich and storied history of Savile Row.
Overview of Savile Row
Savile Row is a relatively small street located in the Mayfair district of London. It measures just 0.2 miles (0.32 kilometers) in length, and it runs between Conduit Street and Vigo Street. Despite its modest size, this street exudes an air of exclusivity, owing to the presence of around 20 esteemed tailors who craft the finest bespoke suits known to man.
History of Savile Row
Savile Row’s origins date back to the late 17th century, when it was part of a field known as “Conduit Mead” that belonged to the Burlington Estate. The street’s name comes from Lady Dorothy Savile, the wife of Richard Boyle, the third Earl of Burlington. In the 18th century, the street began to take on its current form as a hub for tailors and the fashion industry.
In the early 19th century, the first tailors began to set up shop on Savile Row, and by the mid-1800s, the street was known for its bespoke tailoring. Some of the earliest tailors on the street included Henry Poole, Anderson & Sheppard, and Norton & Sons.
Over the years, Savile Row has become synonymous with the highest quality tailoring in the world, and has attracted clients ranging from British royalty to Hollywood celebrities.
Bespoke tailoring is the hallmark of Savile Row, and involves creating a suit that is custom-made to a client’s exact specifications. The process of creating a bespoke suit begins with an initial consultation with a tailor, where the client discusses their preferences for the suit’s style, fabric, and other details. After this consultation, the tailor takes a series of measurements and creates a unique pattern for the suit.
Next, the suit is cut from the selected fabric, and the client comes in for a first fitting. During the fitting, the tailor makes any necessary adjustments to the suit to ensure a perfect fit. After this, the suit is finished and the client comes in for a final fitting. This final fitting is a chance for the client to see the finished suit and make any final adjustments before taking the suit home.
Different styles of tailoring are available on Savile Row, ranging from the classic English style to the more modern, slim-fitting Italian style. Each tailor on the street has their own unique style and approach to tailoring, so it’s worth doing research beforehand to find a tailor that fits your personal style.
Famous Tailors and Brands on Savile Row
Savile Row is home to some of the most famous tailors and brands in the world of bespoke tailoring. Some of the most well-known tailors on the street include Henry Poole, Huntsman, and Gieves & Hawkes. Each of these tailors has their own unique style and approach to tailoring, and has attracted famous clients ranging from Winston Churchill to Daniel Craig’s James Bond.
In addition to the tailors, Savile Row is home to a number of famous brands that offer bespoke tailoring services. These brands include Richard James, Thom Sweeney, and Ozwald Boateng. Each of these brands has their own unique style and approach to tailoring, and has attracted clients ranging from David Beckham to Leonardo DiCaprio.
Tips for Visiting Savile Row
If you’re interested in visiting Savile Row, there are a few tips to keep in mind. First, it’s important to do your research beforehand to find a tailor or brand that fits your personal style and budget. Some tailors and brands are more expensive than others, so it’s important to have a clear idea of what you’re willing to spend before making an appointment.
Second, it’s important to make an appointment with a tailor or brand before visiting Savile Row. While some tailors and brands may accept walk-ins, many require appointments in advance. This ensures that the tailor or brand has enough time to devote to your consultation and fitting.
Finally, it’s worth taking some time to explore the area around Savile Row. The street is located in the heart of Mayfair, which is known for its high-end shopping, restaurants, and cafes. Some nearby attractions include the Royal Academy of Arts, the Burlington Arcade, and Claridge’s Hotel.
Savile Row has been the epicenter of bespoke tailoring for over two centuries and continues to attract clients from around the world. The street’s history, unique approach to tailoring, and famous tailors and brands make it a must-visit destination for anyone interested in men’s fashion. If you’re planning a visit to London, be sure to add Savile Row to your itinerary – you won’t be disappointed.
5 Things You Didn’t Know About Savile Row:
Savile Row was almost demolished in the 1960s: In the 1960s, there was a proposal to demolish Savile Row and replace it with office buildings. However, this plan was met with fierce opposition from the tailors on the street and their clients, and the street was ultimately saved.
The Beatles were once rejected by a Savile Row tailor: In the late 1960s, The Beatles were interested in getting custom-made suits from Savile Row tailors. However, they were reportedly rejected by one tailor who felt that the band’s long hair and casual style didn’t fit with the traditional Savile Row image.
The Duke of Windsor was a regular on Savile Row: The Duke of Windsor, also known as King Edward VIII before abdicating the throne, was a regular client of several Savile Row tailors. He was known for his impeccable sense of style and often requested unique designs that were ahead of their time.
Savile Row has a secret tunnel: There is a secret tunnel that runs under Savile Row, connecting several of the tailors’ workshops. The tunnel was reportedly used by tailors to transport fabrics and other materials without having to navigate the busy street above.
Savile Row has its own trade organization: The Savile Row Bespoke Association (SRBA) is a trade organization that represents the interests of Savile Row tailors. The organization is committed to promoting and protecting the tradition of bespoke tailoring on Savile Row.