Suits, tailoring, bespoke – all words that I like to use on this blog…if you like these three words as much as me you’re going to love this post as my next feature on this blog is with a new bespoke tailoring company called ‘Anthony&Elliott’. Anthony&Elliott comprise of lifelong friends Anthony Leslie and Ashley Elliott, hence the name being an amalgamation of the two. They both share a deep passion for quality suits and menswear and have extensive experience within the industry, Anthony has previously worked for Spencer Hart of Savile Row and Ashley has worked for the likes of GQ, L’uomo Vogue and Sunday Times Style as a Stylist. In my opinion that’s a bloody good mix to start your own tailoring business!
Anyway, wanting to get a better understanding of this new men’s tailoring company, I headed down to meet the suitably dapper attired Anthony and Ashley for a drink and a good chat at the Groucho Club in Soho…which also happens to be where they offer private fittings.
So then Gentlemen, how did the idea come about that you wanted to create your own bespoke tailoring brand?
It was all about timing really…we talked about it for a couple of years, we always knew that we were going to do it, and it also happened to be the right time financially.
So you’re both stylish guys, do you find that your client base is also fairly stylish or not?
Yeah we do, generally it’s a guy that likes clothes whether he is a doctor or works for a hedge fund they like clothes and they like them to fit…simple as that! Obviously the hedge fund guy will go for something a little bit wider a little more classic, but it’s going to fit him just as well. Then we get guys that are involved in media that like slimmer lapels, skinny, bright blue inside…exactly the kind of thing we promote.
What are your feelings on general tailoring?
It is all just down to the fit and proportions (note: Antony cut’s in to tell me he likes the proportions of my suit) Sometimes I have so many suits, I have a short leg, then I will have one break, you know it’s all do to with proportions and fit. It’s that attention to detail; dressing isn’t that hard…It’s just down to the proportions. Its cut, fit, fabric! It’s these little attention to details, like the suits that we are wearing everything has symmetry to it…wallet pockets etc, our armholes are also cut quite high and some guys may be like it feels a little tight, but it’s actually just cut well.
Obviously, you have a fully bespoke service and a semi bespoke service, what is the difference between these two?
There’s one fundamental difference between bespoke and semi-bespoke and that is that a fully bespoke suit is cut and finished by one individual and semi-bespoke is done by a team.
How long is your service for a fully bespoke suit?
A fully bespoke suit takes about six weeks maybe seven weeks. It’s kind of more dependent on when we have the first and second fittings.
So, we are currently sitting in Groucho Club, so I read that you take appointments here?
Yeah, we can book a room upstairs and do a fitting here, but then if the customer is at home, then it’s just as convenient for us to go there…
So what is this A&E range you’re working on currently about?
It’s literally like a cord and cotton range…It’s going to be separates – it’s going to be for somebody that maybe doesn’t have as much income, a cheaper range. Keeping it reasonable..Like I love Margiela, but a granddad collar shirt for £450. I mean we both come from like a normal background…so we don’t get delusions of grandeur. The stuff we currently do is obviously not that seasonal but with the A&E range it’s something where we will have a range for the seasons. Spring/Summer, Autumn/Winter and maybe a cruise collection in-between. I want to keep the collection pretty small, and create a look…We are also in the process of making shirting.
So, in terms of shirts, I see you Anthony have a penchant for a penny collar and Ashley I have seen a few pictures of you in granddad collars, are we going to be able to buy anything like this?
Yeah…lots of different collar shapes, I mean I kind of like you know the Goodfella’s style of shirt, you know where it’s pulled in nicely, an indentation going in, just pulls it in tight, and all our shirting will also be made-to-measure.
In terms of ties, will you be making any of them?
Yeah definitely…We both like our ties quite narrow, about three inches and then we like them in lots of different fabrics: knitted ties, fabric ties, silk ties. We are doing it slowly though, we are not trying to take over the world, I mean it took us a while to get to this stage.
What are your feelings on tailoring today and Savile Row…How important do you think it is? I feel like tailoring popularity has risen in the last couple of years, what do you think?
There is a lot more awareness for tailoring now; we have both really seen it creeping up over sort of the last ten years really. You know there wasn’t really any of these men’s fashion magazines like there is today with the likes of Fantastic Man and then the whole rise of male grooming. It’s great, a brilliant thing! The awareness for menswear has definitely grown; men are definitely taking more care in the way they dress.
What is a suit to you guys…For me, there is nothing better than putting on a suit?
Anthony – I have always loved suits, ever since a little boy.
Ashley – I mean our backgrounds are different, Anthony has been more involved with suiting where as mine as a stylist is from more of a fashion world. The great thing with suits is that you can have a suit made up in cotton, cord; linen…it can be worn every single day.
Anthony – Come summertime I will be wearing cotton suits, with maybe a pair of converse or some sort of sturdy pump and it will look completely different, a granddad shirt on, you know I just love a suit so even when I’m not working I will still be wearing a suit, but just more of a casual one.
So gents, what was your first suit purchase...You know for your first proper job or something?
Anthony – Even from 16, I had a part time job in a menswear shop that did suits, so I had my first purchase since then.
Ashley – For me a major suit purchase came later on maybe about 15 years ago.
Where would you like to see the brand go in the future?
Well we are obviously expanding the brand with the A&E range, you know maybe we will need a studio in the next year or so and obviously it would be nice to do some collaborations.
And finally, how would you sum up your brand in one sentence?
"British designed classic tailoring with a contemporary feel. Sharp, strong, elegant silhouette’s for the modern man"
If you wondered what they look like here they are - Anthony (left) and Ashley (right) - photographed on the terrace in the Groucho Club.
It was great to meet these two gentlemen, thinking back on the meeting I had with these guys, it really inspired me…they are inspiring guys with a clear, precise vision of where they want to go with the brand and that is infectious. It was also nice to meet two guys that are offering a product that is right up my street and that they value things such as cut, fit and proportions above anything to do with branding. I guess thinking about it that is there ‘niche’. I hope you the reader share my appreciation for this new and exciting tailoring brand as much as I do…Anthony&Elliott are going places…you heard it here first!
To book an appointment with Anthony&Elliott visit there beautifully designed website at: www.anthonyandelliott.com