Dirty Secrets: Part II

It hasn’t taken very long for several more interesting – but ultimately unwearable – items to surface from the depths of our wardrobes for public display. After all, if they’re floating around on display somewhere on the vast sea of the internet, they’re not useless, right?… right?

Very Early C20th ‘Stresemann’ Black Lounge Coat; 36R

First, this black lounge jacket has been kept on as a more or less perfect example of a German Stresemann style coat.

It looks more awesome on the mannequin than it actually looks on a properly proportioned human (with legs)

Supposedly, Gustav Stresemann took to wearing this kind of jacket while working at the Reichstag during the inter-war years. According to some sources, it differs from typical black lounge jackets by preserving some formal aspects of frock and morning coats.

Very impressive cuffs with some pretentious damask buttons.

Unusual half-peaked lapels with excessively embroidered button-hole.

This jacket is amazing, but unfortunately it’s rather short in the body (the hem is the same height as the cuffs) and as a result doesn’t look especially elegant. It’s hard to imagine an occasion when one would choose to wear this instead of something with a more fitted, flattering shape.

The final interesting point is that it was tailored in Garmisch, an old Bavarian market town that Hitler considered too small and insignificant to be allowed near the Munich Olympic games, so forced it to merge with neighbouring Partenkirchen in 1935. We know at least therefore, that it was made before 1935.

Hans Weiss & Sohn of ill-fated Garmisch in Southern Germany

1940s Swedish M109 Field Coat

Although not especially elegant, these coats are actually highly sought after, and not just by men hanging around markets in small south-east towns selling imported, fake cigarettes out of carrier bags. Indeed, it is the coat worn by Bruce Willis throughout the film Twelve Monkeys and by Ed Harris in Enemy at the Gates. Anyway, I bought it with the intention of using it to watch rugby matches in the freezing cold… unsurprisingly, I have yet to do so!

Swedish M109 Field Coat

It is very very heavy, and very very warm

Swedish M109 Field Coat

This is a cool feature, although you can't see out when utilised...

1907 French Bespoke Velvet Evening Waistcoat

This is incredible and quite honestly one of the nicest things I have ever seen…

Incredible Charvet Waistcoat

This waistcoat is not credible

It was tailored by a company called Charvet in 1907 for the impressive sounding Marquis de Morra. It is cut from a wondrous almost iridescent dark blue velvet, which, apart from one nick on the right hand edge, is in perfect condition.

Charvet label

It's hard to tell but the top half of the label says CHARVET 25 Place de Vendome

Unbelievably Charvet still exist and are one of Europe’s most elite shirt makers. In case you’re interested, here is a picture of the shop in 1909, two years after this waistcoat was made.

The Charvet premises in 1909

The Charvet premises in 1909

Any suggestions as to how to pull off wearing this waistcoat would be very much appreciated!



Filed under Morning Dress

5 responses to “Dirty Secrets: Part II

  1. Wear the waistcoat with your smoking jacket. 😉

    Best regards, Dr

  2. Well, the main issue is that the waistcoat requires quite a lot of restoration work before it can be worn (or fit comfortably). If I were the kind of person who wore a smoking jacket I would get the work done, but I’m not…

  3. John T

    It might work with a midnight blue dinner jacket, if you were to own one.

  4. Allen

    The waistcoat is a great idea for something you’d wear at one of those “creative black tie” events.

  5. John T

    I wouldn’t necessarily say that it would classify for “creative black tie” and leans towards “classic black tie,” as it does qualify under the guidelines of “tasteful addition of colour” described on the Black Tie Guide.

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