The Sound Of Richard James – 28th August 2017

Falling Rizlas by Actress.

Check In

Shooting our AW17 ivory, black and pink Prince of Wales double-breasted Hyde suit for the online store with Olivier Geraghty of Nevs.

You might (just, from this picture…) recognise Olivier as being one of the models we used at the London Fashion Week Men’s presentation of our SS18 Atlantic collection in June and for the lookbook for the same collection, which, incidentally, will go on sale in January of next year.

We particularly like Olivier because, as well as wearing a suit well, he is also an art director and photographer and, as such, knows something about angles and what is wanted when you’re on the other side of a camera.

The suit is available in-store on Savile Row and at Richard James Online now.

Richard James suit Prince of Wales check

Question Time

Somi Arian interviews our Head Cutter Ben Clarke in the Bespoke store for a film she is making for the Savile Row Bespoke Association about the craft of bespoke tailoring.

Somi’s considered, polished probing and calm demeanour are somewhat in contrast to her not-so-long-ago performances as the vocalist in the lively heavy metal band Mortad (bottom, right).

Richard James Bespoke Savile Row tailoring


Somi Arian at Richard James Bespoke Savile Row tailor

In The Picture

Our wall of covers and cuttings has moved to a new position on the first floor of the all-new, multifaceted and multi-storey Richard James Bespoke store, which will be opening on Monday 4th September.

That’s Nick Cave and Elton John in GQ, Liam Gallagher in Vogue, Jarvis Cocker in Elle, Pete Doherty in Esquire and Hugh Grant on the cover of Vanity Fair. And all of them in Richard James.

Richard James Bespoke Savile Row tailor

The Responsive Eye

As a young filmmaker, long before the delights of Dressed to Kill, Scarface and, more recently, Mission Impossible, Brian De Palma made documentaries.

One, notably, was The Responsive Eye (right, dubbed into Spanish…), which looked at the groundbreaking exhibition of the same name that was held at The Museum of Modern Art in 1965.

De Palma’s film was something we looked at quite closely when we were putting together our new AW17 Camofleur collection, which takes inspiration from the work of the celebrated razzle dazzle camofleur Norman Wilkinson and the Op Art movement of the sixties and early seventies that his engagingly geometric work went on to influence.

According to the author and curator Marina Weinhart, The Responsive Eye exhibition – which featured 123 works by such artists as Victor Vasarely, Bridget Riley and Josef Albers – represented “the height of the Op Art wave”.

And by way of defining Op Art, the exhibition’s curator William C Seitz said of it at the time: “These works exist less as objects to be examined than as generators of perceptual responses, of colors and relationships existing solely in vision. They exert a control over perception capable of arousing delight, anxiety and even vertigo.”

Designed to induce delight more than anxiety and vertigo, you can see a strong Op Art influence and something of Norman Wilkinson’s razzle dazzle camouflage in certain of our new-season shirts, ties, pocket squares and scarves.

Richard James AW17 Camofleur collection

Richard James AW17 Camofleur collection

Richard James AW17 Camofleur collection

The Archive Rail

Our lighting, display and all-round interiors whizz Philip Oakley – yes, he of Philip Oakley Illuminations – is steering a smooth course towards an on-schedule early September opening for the new, very smartly refurbished multi-storey Richard James Bespoke store.

Here, in the first floor fitting room, is a glimpse of what we have taken to calling the archive rail, which is where we will be displaying some truly individual pieces of bespoke Savile Row tailoring.

On the left you can see two patchwork cashmere jackets that we made in 2013. To ensure that the jackets hang and drape perfectly, the cloths used were of the same 13oz weight and the patches were all the same size. Some thirty-five man hours goes into making a bespoke Richard James jacket, but each of these took about four times as long.

Two particularly exacting pieces of bespoke Savile Row tailoring.

Richard James Bespoke Savile Row tailor

Reel Inspiration – All The President’s Men

Willing Washington Post reporters Bob Woodward (Robert Redford) and Carl Bernstein (Dustin Hoffman) get wind of a break-in at the Democratic National Committee headquarters in the Watergate building and doggedly set out to discover how a $25,000 cheque earmarked for the campaign to re-elect President Nixon got into the bank account of one of the burglars,  so becoming bywords for the best sort of investigative journalism in the process.

Alan Pakula’s shadily atmospheric and somewhat prescient All The President’s Men (1976, trailer bottom right) is a perfect pre-post-truth era paean to the pros of a free press.

Spot on stylistically, the newsroom set was a direct recreation of that at the Post and Woodward and Bernstein’s artfully and authentically rumpled old-school journalists’ wardrobe was put together by first-timer Jason Pollack, who went on to become Redford’s regular costume designer. Unconvincingly knotted ties and classic Bengal stripe, flannel and Oxford cotton shirts abound.

New AW17 shirts, right, top to bottom: blue classic Bengal stripe, grey fine flannel twill and lavender brushed Oxford cotton.

All The President's Men

Richard James shirt

All The President's Men

Richard James shirt

All The President's Men

Richard James shirt

On Location

One day’s shooting in and around Waddington Studios in a murky north London for sixty seconds of film.

The videos for our collections usually centre on our London Fashion Week Men’s shows and presentations, but for our AW17 Camofleur collection we took a different approach.

This time around we shot the video (right, bottom) at the same time that we shot the lookbook, whisking our three models out into the surrounding locale between takes.

The collection is arriving in-store on Savile Row and at Richard James Online now.

Richard James AW17 Camofleur video

Richard James AW17 Camofleur video

Richard James AW17 Camofleur video

The Sound Of Richard James – 31st July 2017

In A Dream by Cornelius.

Change Ahead

A fine and altogether suitable slate grey 16oz English-woven herringbone wool covers the walls of the first floor changing room in the new, soon-to-be-unveiled multi-storey Richard James Bespoke store on Clifford Street.

Another super job by our lighting, interiors and all-round display whizz Philip Oakley of, yes, that’s right, Philip Oakley Illuminations.

Richard James Bespoke Savile Row tailor

Richard James Bespoke Savile Row tailor

Richard James Bespoke Savile Row tailor