Over the past 25 years, Alan Flusser’s journey in the custom clothing business can be neatly summarized by his changing taste in footwear. Flusser used to wear brown suede shoes almost exclusively, whereas today he’s most likely to wear Belgian Shoes that are as black as a moonless midnight. By Christian Chensvold
"I am an academician of clothes, for sure. Eccentric and eclectic. I basically like to think, underneath it all, people will be happier and more comfortable if they wear my clothes. I do want to add to a certain sense of not only aesthetics about clothes, but about life in general."
I had tried my best. I wore the chalk-stripe suit. But the verdict was that the shoulders were both too narrow and unnecessarily padded. It turned out that my shirt collar was too low for someone with a long neck. And the one-and-a-half-inch trouser cuffs were deemed meager for someone 6 foot 2 with size 11 feet.
Alan Flusser is one of the great authorities on menswear, having authored several books on the evolution of men’s fashion. He’s also a custom tailor whose bespoke creations are classic yet subtly distinctive; his fabrics and details are perfect for men who cultivate a unique, individual look.
“If there comes a time when owning a custom-made black cashmere blazer or tweed hacking jacket becomes unstylish for a woman, I will hang up my tape measure,” Alan Flusser declares. The designer has no reason to worry: male couture on a female silhouette is an aesthetic that appeals to something almost primal within us.
Can I wear a patterned dress shirt or tie with a striped navy-blue suit? Yes, definitely, as long as you keep the two patterns different in scale, such as a narrow-striped suit and a spaced-figured necktie, or wide-striped suit with a small-patterned check or plaid dress shirt.
I usually don’t button my jacket, but I’ve noticed with three- or four-button jackets-that many guys do. With all those buttons, how many do I actually button? I recommend avoiding any single-breasted suit or jacket that sportsmore than three buttons or less than two.
Once by mirrors, tape measures and the like, most men relinquish questions of styling and fit to the wisdom of the store’s salesman or tailor. Years ago, when men’s fashions were less fickle and tailors were more studied in the manners of correct dress, this was a reasonable act of faith. Unfortunately,in all but the very fine stores,today’s tailor is simply another cog in the assembly line. He is anxious to get you out with as few alterations, and as little cost to the store, as possible.