As with every “The Ensemble” post I like to focus in on a special piece of clothing or accessory.
This installment is no different.
I’m going to focus on this custom made English shooting jacket inspired sports coat.
Being from England and living in the USA for the past 11 years, I do like to “touch base” with my sartorial roots, and what could be more English than a tweed shooting jacket? With its patch pockets, button flaps, wind tab collar and back belt.
I’ve split this article into two main sections; first we look at the fitting process, and then the finished jacket.
So sit back and enjoy this picture-heavy post of tweedy greatness!
Jacket Design & Fitting Process
Above I’m pictured (left) with Tony Martin (right) in his London shop during my second jacket fitting.
The initial measurements and design elements were decided during his fall tailoring trip to Philadelphia. He selected the fabric, and we both came up with the styling options.
The jacket was ready for me to go for a second fitting during my travels back to London over the Christmas holidays.
Below I’ve included an array of pictures focusing in on the jacket’s details.
I personally do not know of any other custom or bespoke tailor that offers traditional leather shank buttons.
They are a real treat and a fantastic touch. Originally we had picked red buttons, but decided that the blue ones brought out the fabric’s amazing colors much better.
No self-respecting English countryside jacket would be complete without a wind tab! As shown above being buttoned by Tony himself.
From this fitting point, it took about three weeks for the finished jacket to arrive at my door in Philadelphia.
The Completed Tweed Shooting Jacket
Upon a recent visit to the Union League of Philadelphia’s library, I took the opportunity to showcase the jacket in apt surroundings.
Here you can clearly see the signature turn-up cuff that Tony sports on most of his jackets. I thought I would also give it a try on the sports coat as well!
Above right you can see the faux belt, being a design element from the functional shooting jackets of old.
Very traditional touch suggested by Tony to add buttons to hold the flap up. This gives easy access to the pockets for shotgun shells and the other similar items.
Another great reason for going custom is having the ability to pick all details, even down to the number and placement of the internal jacket pockets. I have two for pens and business cards – one on each side so I can stay organized at business events.
From here we went down South Broad street to the Kimmel Center for a performance of the Philadelphia Orchestra.
Even though it was in early February and temperatures were around freezing, the weight of the tweed was sufficient to not wear a topcoat. With that being said, was also not too warm while inside. Thus the greatness of tweed!
Overall another fantastic piece from Benson & Clegg!
Until next time….