womens-fashion The Sixth Annual Collection of Sartorial Excellence - February 2010

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Alexander Kabbaz

Tech and Business Advice Guru

A Collection of Sartorial Excellence is a small, private exposition of some of the finest men's and women's clothing, furnishings, and accessories available. Over the years, Sartorial Excellence has become the focal point and annual gathering of top-quality clothing afficionados, industry insiders, a number of the artisans whose creations are on display ... as well as many friends who first met online or at one of the previous annual Collections.

Sartorial Excellence began as - and remains - an educational event. Here's something I wrote back in 2004:

Alexander Kabbaz said:
I have noticed over time that the forum venue lacks a key ingredient when applied to the field of clothing. Though expressed in a myriad of ways, that failing can be summed up quite simply: Show Me.

Recent attempts on my part to verbally explain . . .
- - - the differences between single- and double-needle stitching
- - - why proper shirt tail stitching is stronger and superior to the use of gussets on a 'cheater' hem
- - - why certain twill weaves make proper dress shirts whereas others do not
- - - how to differentiate between M.O.P. and plastic buttons
- - - and thousands upon thousands of words on other subjects, all of which could be physically demonstrated in mere seconds, convinced me that the forum needed a supplement.

Toward that end, a group of we artisans of the various sartorial trades discussed the situation and decided that such a supplement was possible. And so was born the concept behind "A Collection of Sartorial Excellence". A two-day exposition with experts available in-person to not only answer your questions, but to actually show you the answers!

In all probability you've spent many hours here at AskAndyAboutClothes trying to learn about various aspects of sartorial competence. Words and pictures are good, but when it comes to learning about the many aspects of clothing, nothing is as good as seeing, touching and asking in-person. Sartorial Excellence fills that void. Not only will you be able to see and disect that which you have long read about, but the seminars and demonstrations will focus on the forum's most important topics. Here's a sampling:


[SIZE=-2]Partial Listing; Days and Times T/B/A[/SIZE]

Seminar Host
Andrew R. Gilchrist

Founder, AskAndyAboutClothes.com

The Basics and Beyond: Properly Fitting Your Shirt
Alexander Kabbaz, Bespoke Shirtmaker

The Basics and Beyond: Proper Suit Fitting
Jon Green, Fine Custom Clothier

The Basics and Beyond: Proper Dress Shirt Ironing
Bruce Negrycz, Kabbaz-Kelly Custom
[SIZE=-1]Multiple Demonstrations Each Day[/SIZE]

Bruce Boyer's "Trends" Seminar at the 2008 C.S.E.

A Master's Technique: Drafting a Bespoke Shirt Pattern
Cutting and Sewing Matched-Pattern Bespoke Shirts
A Hands-on Real-time Demonstration
Alexander Kabbaz, Bespoke Shirtmaker,

Caveat Emptor: More Than You Ever Wanted to Know about: Socks

Beyond the Basics: Coordination of Suit Styling with Body Type

A Master's Technique: Bespoke Shoes are a Reflection of the Wearer
Which Style(s) Are Right For You?
Perry Ercolino, Bespoke Shoemaker

Technical Dissertation: Factory-Made vs. Bespoke Clothing
Differences - Shortcuts - Attributes - Disadvantages - Quality Levels
Alexander Kabbaz & Joelle Kelly, Bespoke Shirtmakers

Caveat Emptor: The Ignominy of Wedgies ... More Than You Ever Wanted to Know about: Underwear
[SIZE=-1]OK ... OK ... Just had to see if you were really reading[/SIZE]

Beyond the Basics: A Shoe Compendium
The Makers - A Style & Quality Comparison

John Cusey, Sr. Moderator and Renowned Shoe Expert

And what would a show like this be without an opportunity to grab some of the luxury clothing ... for free? Over the years, the Collection of Sartorial Excellence Raffle has become somewhat of an eagerly anticipated focal-point. Every ticket-holder automatically receives one raffle entry. Additionally, each purchase made from one of the show's artisans will net you another raffle entry. (Except for our long-time raffle administrator Andy, who not only buys nothing, but is constantly peering into the ticket bowl trying to wiggle his entry up to the top of the pile!)


[SIZE=+2]Grand Prize[/SIZE]
[SIZE=-2]Donated by Zimmerli Of Switzerland and CustomShirt1.com - Valued at $2500+
[SIZE=+1]His and Hers Mega-Package: An Entire Week of Zimmerli of Switzerland[/SIZE]

A Most Exclusive Zimmerli package consisting of a special assortment of seven men's shirts, seven women's shirts & camisoles,
seven men's briefs or boxers, seven women's panties, a women's Eternity Swiss Cotton nightshirt pajama,
and a pair of men's Filo di Scozia cotton pajamas**

[SIZE=+1] First Prize [/SIZE]
[SIZE=-2]Donated by Kabbaz-Kelly Fine Custom Clothiers - Valued at $2000+
[SIZE=+1]Two Kabbaz-Kelly Made-to-Measure Woman's or Man's Shirts of Choice[/SIZE]

Choose from a selection of more than 3000 top-quality Swiss and Italian fabrics made in any style of dress shirt ***

[SIZE=+1]Second Prize[/SIZE]
[SIZE=-2]Donated by Donati-Firenze and CustomShirt1.com - Valued at $1550+
[SIZE=+1]Hers or His Custom-made Leather Outerwear:
Woman's Belted Leather Jacket or Men's Reversible Leather/Suede Blazer

For Her: Custom-made Leather Jacket with set-in pockets and matching belt in a choice of 15 fashionable colors ***
For Him: A beautiful patch pocketed, unconstructed styling, custom-made blazer of reversible leather suede
in a choice of 10 exquisite & tasteful colors ***

[SIZE=+1]Third Prize[/SIZE]
[SIZE=-2]Donated by Marcoliani-Milano and CustomShirt1.com - Valued at $600+
[SIZE=+1]His and Hers Mega-Package: An Entire Week of Luxury Socks![/SIZE]

An exclusive CustomShirt1.com assortment of Men's Cashmere, Women's Cashmere, Men's Merino, Women's Merino, Men's Cotton,
Women's Cotton, Men's Sport, Women's Sport, ... a complete array of 14 fabulous pairs
of assorted Dress, Casual, Luxe, and Sport socks for Him and for Her **

[SIZE=+1]Fourth Prize[/SIZE]
[SIZE=-2]Donated by Scott & Charters and CustomShirt1.com - Valued at $495 (Men's) $395 (Women's)
[SIZE=+1]A Fabulous Luxury Cashmere Cardigan Sweater[/SIZE]

Made-in-Scotland of the World's Finest Cashmere
For Her: Lightweight Dress Cardigan in Black **
For Him: Mid-Weight Cardigan in color Natural
Add a bit of luscious warmth to your Winter! **

[SIZE=+1]Fifth Prize[/SIZE]
[SIZE=-2]Donated by RVR and CustomShirt1.com - Valued at $395
[SIZE=+1]24kt. Gold and Navy Silk Necktie[/SIZE]

Beautiful and exclusive Made-in-Italy of 24kt Gold and Navy Silk yarns, Basketweave Necktie - a Unique Conversation Piece! *

[SIZE=+1]Sixth Prize[/SIZE]
[SIZE=-2]Donated by American Sember Trading Corp. - Valued at $300+
[SIZE=+1]His or Hers Ultrafine Swiss Shirtings[/SIZE]

From Alumo of Switzerland, the world's finest shirting mill, a shirt-length cut of the latest 2x2 200s broadcloth
and shirt-length cut of the new 3x3 160s broadcloth. *

[SIZE=+1]Seventh Prize[/SIZE]
[SIZE=-2]Donated by Alpo Guanti and CustomShirt1.com - Valued at $185+
[SIZE=+1]His or Hers Package: Italian Lambskin Cabretta Gloves[/SIZE]

Beautiful and exclusive Made-in-Italy, luscious, soft Lambskin Cabretta
For Her: Semi-opera Length Cashmere-lined in color Rosso
For Him: Fur-lined Dress Gloves in color Arancio.
Add a bit of splash to your dash! **

[SIZE=+1]Eighth thru Twelfth Prizes[/SIZE]
[SIZE=-2]Donated by CustomShirt1.com - Valued at $140+ each
[SIZE=+1]Exclusive Grab-Bags of Swiss and Italian Men's or Women's (Winner's Choice) Socks[/SIZE]

Each Including Five Pairs of assorted dress and/or casual luxury socks by Zimmerli, Bresciani, and Marcoliani
on premises and ready to be taken home. No peeking!*

* Single asterisk items will be at the event and can be taken home if the winner is present
** These items will be shipped to the winner on the Wednesday following the event
*** These items are custom-made and will be shipped to the winner 8-12 weeks after the event
Photos shown are stock examples for illustrative purposes only. Actual prizes may vary from the photos.

The Sixth Annual Collection of Sartorial Excellence will take place in Suite 1731 at New York City's Regency Hotel on Friday, February 26th and Saturday, February 27th. Show hours are from 10am to 6pm. Sartorial Excellence is open to members of AskAndyAboutClothes, the clients of the artisans & exhibitors and their guests.

An advance ticket to A Collection of Sartorial Excellence entitles the holder to :
---Admission to the Show, to all Refreshments, to all Exhibits, and to all Seminars.
---Each ticket also serves as a Credit Voucher in the amount of the ticket purchase, good as cash for any purchase made at the show.
---Tickets are good for both Friday and Saturday admission.
---Tickets admit the holder only. Every attendee must have an admission ticket.

Tickets are available only at SartorialExcellence.com. Note that the Sartorial Excellence suite, though huge by any hotel's standards, has a maximum capacity. If that capacity is reached, ticket sales will cease.

Here's a bit more information about the event for those who are new to AskAndy's:

1] All of we artisans, and our partners and/or members of our staffs will be available to answer questions during the entire seventeen-plus hours of the event.

2] There will be no long-winded speeches by the artisans. Our concern lies not in offering self-serving monologues topically germane to microcosmic manifestations of each of our particular sartorial arts. The agreed goal is to try to respond intelligiently to your concerns with respect to the design, quality, construction, and usage of the clothing you either wear or aspire towards.

3] More specifically, "demonstrations" will be continuous. That is the entire premise ... that there is much about clothing frequently asked on the fora which is ever-so-much better shown rather than written. Seminars aside, "presentations", insofar as they are to be differentiated from demonstrations, will be in the form of the clothing & furnishings available for inspection ... and the interogation of its maker. In reality, the entire event will consist of one long "discussion session".

4] Will the makers display their wares? How can I show you the difference between a French front and a placket center without having them available? Will Joelle, Damien, and I be loading 2000 boxes of Zimmerli underwear and 60 dozen Marcoliani socks into a tractor-trailer and moving it to the Regency? Not likely! Will I have one of each type so I can show all those who have asked what the difference is between Pure Comfort, Pureness MicroModal and Royal Classic Cotton Lisle? Positively yes. I would be derelict if I didn't. Will there be ties, a number of suits, a sampling of shirts and a range of shoes? Of course ... what else would you be coming to learn about if not the positive and negative aspects of the clothing we so frequently discuss? Will there be items for sale? To a man (and woman) we're all damn proud of what we do. We're certainly not going to show it to you and then say you can't have it if you want. But that is not the focus of the event.

5] In relation to bespoke making, I view the event to be somewhat similar to my first meeting with a new client. We spend some time discussing style and wardrobe coordination. We usually segue to a more intense back-and-forth regarding the many various options available in the design and construction of shirts - as well as the advantages and detriments of each. We then go over measurement and fitting parameters in relation to occupational & "social needs" requirements, body type, and esthetic preferences. Finally, we begin to carve a synopsis of our meeting into a more concrete agenda for the building of a shirt and furnishings collection. That's where I see the event from my shirt perspective - taking you through the process up to but not including the bespeaking part where AmEx enters into the equation. The other artisans see similar courses of action in their own fields.

6] All the while, our official photographers will be taking pictures with and of our guests and posting them on the fora so that those far from NYC can get a bit of vicarious enjoyment. As no other cameras are permitted at the event, the photographers will gladly shoot anything you would like and supply you with copies at no charge.

7] Finally, as to the Dress Code for the event, Proper Attire is required. That does not necessarily mean business dress which is, of course, perfectly acceptable. Weekend casual is fine as is White Tie & Tails if you are so inclined. But ... your fave featherweight flip-flops ... just will not pass muster.

Let me close with a memorable quotation from Mark Seitelman, AAAC's own Son of Beau Brummel who, at the end of the First Annual Collection of Sartorial Excellence, posted the following:

Son of Beau Brummel said:
For two, brief days, a hotel suite in the Regency was turned into a mini-department store. Although it was smack in the middle of Manhattan's luxury retail district, this store on the 17th floor became the city's finest and most exclusive mens store. I heard the managers of Bergdorf's and Barneys breathed a collective sigh of relief at 6:00 pm Saturday when the show ended.

FYI: A Partial Listing:


- Premier Men's Online Forum
Donati-Firenze Leather
- Custom-made Italian Leather Jackets & Coats
Scott & Charters
- Custom-made and RTW Scottish Cashmere Sweaters
Begg of Scotland Luxury Cashmere
- World's Finest Scarves & Throws
- Luxury Furnishings and Accessories
Bresciani 1970
- Custom-made and Stock Luxury Socks
Alpo Guanti, Glovers
- Exquisite Italian Gloves for Men and Women (World premier)
Zimmerli of Switzerland Women's
- Luxury Women's Intimates, Pajamas, Loungewear, and Outerwear
Chester Jefferies, Glovers
- Handmade English Gloves
- Exquisite hand-made Italian neckties
Jon Green New York
- Fine Custom Clothiers
- Fine Custom Shirtmakers
Perry Ercolino, Shoemaker
- Fine Bespoke and Made-to-Measure Shoes
- Luxury Men's and Women's Socks
- Italian Wool, Silk & Cashmere Scarves
Ulster Linen
- Hand-Rolled Irish Linen Handkerchiefs
Kabbaz-Kelly Accessories
- Custom-made Belts, Braces, and Neckties
Wurkin Stiffs
- Magnetic Collar Stays
Zimmerli of Switzerland
- Men's Underwear, Sweaters, Polos, Pajamas, Loungewear

Tickets to the Sixth Annual are available at SartorialExcellence.com

We'll Close With A Bit of History From past Collections of Sartorial Excellence:

Tickets to the Sixth Annual are available at SartorialExcellence.com

See You at The Show!

Alexander Kabbaz

Tech and Business Advice Guru
If you have questions or replies, please post them in the of this thread on the Fashion Forum. Thank you.
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