I have three leather jackets that are about 10 years old. They are soft, well-made jackets and were expensive back then. I don’t want to throw them away, but rather revamp them; that is shorten the sleeves, collar, taper them … Do you know anyone who works with leather and can do this type of job, and how expensive it would be?
Mr Dandy: I don’t know, dude. All that says to me is it’s time to go shopping. This is kind of the perfect moment, too, since you should still find a bunch on sale. Hey, who knows? You might even find that one of your old styles is back in fashion! Check out what the gurus are making these days at everywhere from Burberry, to Diesel, Brioni, Bottega Veneta, Balenciaga … I could go on …
Mr Dapper: Please don’t go on, Dandy. Dear readers, the new year is well underway. However, this might be an opportune time to redraft your resolutions: find an alterations expert with whom you may work over the long term to develop an understanding of your tastes. One hub of such services is Melbourne Plaza (33 Queen’s Road, Central). It houses such reputable companies as Perfect Dress Alteration (aka Ann & Bon; shop 201A, 2/F, tel: 2522 8838), Wonderful Alteration (shop 136, 1/F, tel: 2849 3366) and Dorothy Alternation [sic] (shop 125, 1/F, tel: 2521 1180). At Dorothy, for example, leather jacket revamping costs a minimum of HK$220 for a collar, HK$180 for shoulders, HK$120 for sleeves. I recommend a test run with just one jacket to begin with. Note, too, that many tailors also provide leather alterations.
I’ve had my eye on some of those two-tone lace-up shoes, but I’m just not sure if they’re too much. What do you think?
Mr Dandy: Let me jump right in and say I love correspondent shoes! Apart from the way you dress, obviously, you can make the look more current by getting updated versions. I’ve seen a whole bunch of them with cool, thick, sportier rubber soles, for example. Try on a modern pair by the amazing old British shoemaker Tricker’s (HK$7,200; Lane Crawford, IFC Mall, Central, tel: 2118 7777 ). Or check out cheap and cheerful ones by cool London brand Swear, (HK$1,800; d2r, Pacific Place, Admiralty, tel: 2524 6992). Always good at funkifying classics, Paul Smith has got some, too (HK$4,150; The Landmark, Central, tel: 2523 5868). They’re out there, now get some!
Mr Dapper: Oh, Dandy. I believe the term is co-respondent shoes. The name refers to divorce cases brought against philandering men. The co-respondents were identified by their conspicuous shoes during a period when they were especially popular, from the 1920s to the 40s. Also known as spectator shoes, the style usually applies to brogues or oxfords, but the definition seems to have broadened to include any twotone footwear. Be warned: there is nothing understated about this style. Famous men such as the then Prince of Wales, Edward, and Cary Grant were notable wearers. Most fine shoe shops should have a pair or two worth your consideration, including Corthay, John Lobb, Church’s, etc. Or order online, where you will find good, affordable brands such as JD Fisk, at sites such as nordstrom.com .
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