Name: Robert Bailey
Age: The other side of 40!
Occupation: Senior cutter at Huntsman (Savile Row, London)
Likes: Traveling, good wine, West Ham United Football Club
Dislikes: Rudeness, people eating on public transport
1. What brings you to Tokyo in September? Our inaugural trunk show, which we are very excited about. It also coincides with the launch of the movie “Kingsman: The Secret Service,” for which Huntsman served as inspiration and the Secret Service Headquarters.
2. What do you hope to accomplish during your visit? To increase our Japanese audience and re-engage with our exisiing customers. It is great to see them on their own territory.
3. When I think of Japan, I think … Courtesy, organization, efficiency, bright lights and tranquillity. And fantastic food!
4. Is there anything in particular you would like to experience during your visit? Most of the time I’ll be working at our trunk show, so opportunities will be few and far between. However, I look forward to the same charming and welcoming reception I’ve always previously received in Japan. Plus, I am hoping for the trip to be a success.
5. What’s the most exciting/outrageous thing you have ever done? One of the most exciting things I’ve done recently is learn to snowboard and what fun it is! At 46 years old, I guess that could be seen as outrageous! The fact that I have a tattoo also surprises people.
6. What’s the strangest request you’ve ever been asked in your line of work? To make a kilt and doublet for a 1-year-old for the Scottish Hogmanay (new year).
7. Please describe the perfect suit for you. A one-button, single-breasted navy suit. Simple, but elegant and the optimum suit for every occasion. It always looks distinguished.
8. What are the typical characteristics of a Huntsman suit? We have a distinctive silhouette. The coat is waisted, with a flared skirt and firm shoulder. Our one-button fastening is a signature of our brand.
9. How many hours do you work on a single garment? Upward of 60 hours work go into each bespoke suit.
10. How many measurements and configurations go into a single suit pattern? Upward of 35. When we measure a customer, we only call out the measurements but mark any interesting configurations discreetly.
11. What is the most difficult part of developing a suit pattern? Ensuring that checks or stripes match up perfectly, particularly on the sleeves and lapels. Perfectly aligned patterns are a sign of expert workmanship and one of the first things that you notice. This has to be carefully considered at the moment of cutting out each piece of the cloth.
12. Are there any Japanese tailors or designers you admire? If so, why do you admire them? I enjoy the precision of Japanese tailoring. Visits to Pitti always see the Japanese menswear crowd at their best. Their ability to combine color, patterns and textures is admirable, and always gets me thinking about new combinations.
13. Do you feel confident Huntsman can cater to the slight Japanese physique? Absolutely. The expertise that goes into our bespoke clothing and its unique, individual nature means that we can cut for all physiques.
14. How do you spend your time when you are not working on suit patterns on Savile Row? Hanging out with my two sons, watching West Ham and seeing friends.
15. In your opinion, who is the best-dressed actor in movie history? Is there any particular suit that stands out? Huntsman dressed Gregory Peck for over five decades. Having made more than 150 outfits for him, we can’t help but be biased! His archive of clothing is outstanding.
16. If you could share a bottle of wine with anyone from history, who would it be? Prince — just the coolest guy ever!
17. What song best describes your work ethic? “Whistle While You Work” from “Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.” I always whistle whilst I work.
18. Who would win a fight between a lion and tiger? A tiger. They look totally amazing with their fur markings and have the meanest look when angry. They are absolutely adorable, too.
19. What do you want to be when you grow up? A Savile Row tailor/cutter. Haha!
20. Do you have any words of advice for young people? Enjoy what you choose to do as a career because you will do it ALL DAY EVERY DAY.
Robert Bailey will be based at the Four Seasons Marunouchi for fittings of Huntsman suits by appointment on Sept. 11 and 12. For more details, visit www.h-huntsman.com/asia-trunk-shows.
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