How to Salvage Your Clothes

This is advice that was given to me on when you can save clothes that are ripped, stained or holed, and what to do about it. The situation: A sweater with a hole in it Can it be salvaged? The more unravelled the fabric and the finer the knit, the more difficult it is to mend without being too obvious. What to do: Find a seamstress who can reattach the loose knitted ends. Whatever you do, don’t wear a sweater with a hole in it if you plan … [Read more...]

Reader Question: Tips on the Go

Nick, London: Do you have any practical tips for dealing with stains on clothing and other practical tips? Sure. First, some practical tips to deal with problems if you are on the road and not within reach of a good haberdasher. Situation: Unshined shoes. What to do: First, try rubbing them lightly with a cloth or towel. Much of what appears to be a dullness in the leather is often accumulated dust. In fact, this should generally be done … [Read more...]

Anyone Know a Good Cobbler?

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I was having a set of keys cut in a local cobbler yesterday and couldn’t take my eyes off the guy resoling shoes. He banged in the nails on the new shoe with abandon, filed off the edges of the leather while barely looking at it and then threw (yes, threw) the completed shoe onto the shelf above him. It landed on a mound of similarly maltreated shoes, a few ladies’ heels sticking out from between a dozen black brogues. It looked like a … [Read more...]

The Shape of Your Feet

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Different types of shoe will fit you better than others. This has nothing to do with the material or the design. It is the last. You will occasionally hear people, deep in sartorial conversation, say something along the lines of: “Well, you see I’ve never found anything to quite fit my feet ever since Edward Green discontinued the 202 last.” They are referring to the shape of the sole of the shoe, how pointed, chiselled or rounded it … [Read more...]

How to Put Darts in Your Shirts

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I used to have a few shirts that I really liked but which did not fit especially well around the waist. They were bought in the days when I knew a lot less about fit and cloth (hard to imagine, isn’t it?), and while the neck, shoulders and sleeve were fine, the cut was simply too full from the chest downwards. Such were my frustrations, I may have thrown them out. So instead I decided to try and sew my own darts into them, to narrow the … [Read more...]