Waistcoat in canopy cotton in desert tan

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£220.00 — ex VAT

Waistcoat — or vest, depending on your geography — made in London, with heavy (11oz) weatherproof cotton from Scotland, and horn and brass parts from the Midlands.


The waistcoat fits true to size, and is intended to be neat and close-fitting. If you like things more relaxed, or are more likely to wear it over thicker things, then going up a size isn't a bad idea. The mannequin here, with his unwavering 38 chest, is wearing the waistcoat over a linen shirt, so has gone for his usual S.

To fit chest 36 38 40 42 44
Pit-to-pit 18 19 20 21 22
Shoulder 14½ 15 15½ 16 16½
Back length 25¾ 26 26¼ 26½ 26¾


This is cotton, but with elements like the lining and the button and buckles which are not. As such, it is best washed by hand in lukewarm water, or dry cleaned. If a washing machine must be used, a cold wash and no tumble-drying is the only option. Bonus points may be earned by using one of those clever washing potions designed for hydrophobic materials.

This is a waistcoat — or vest, depending on your outlook on these matters. It is short, fastens with a single button, and has a fixed collar. The thinking with the lapel — which stops at the shoulder seam — is that by not running around the back, the jacket worn over the top will be able to sit more flat and cleanly.
The single button which sits astute, alone, at the front of the waistcoat is a large one, made of horn, and dark in colour and matte in finish.
There are four pockets at the front — all of them jetted, with stitch-through pocket-bags, and covered with flaps whose corners are slightly rounded. There's a pocket on the inside, too: a subtle, sideways one, which is tucked into the join of the inside-front and inside-back panels.
The button at the front of the vest isn't all alone in fastening duties, for there is, at the back, a belt, emanating from the rear seams. It is fixed down until it reaches the darts running down the back of the body (and which give the waistcoat some shape) and fastens with two brass loops.
Heavy bar-tacks are employed at various points of stress and wear on the waistcoat, and are nowhere more evident than the point at which the belt is fixed onto the body.
The waistcoat is fully lined with a slinky satin, making donning and undonning it a breeze, and helping to reduce friction with whatever is worn underneath.
Formidable cotton, this. It acts like waxed cloth in wet weather — and over time acquires the same parchment-like patina — but is completely dry to touch. It is seriously rigid when new, but like raw denim soon softens up, and, with its already soft, brushed handle, soon becomes a man's best friend.

As worn

The gent here is 6'1", 11 stone, and as standard a 38 chest as you could ever hope to meet. The waistcoat he's wearing here, however, is a size M, because he is wearing a particularly thick shirt — bordering on a jacket — underneath.

Makers of

The waistcoat is made at an outerwear factory in London: the best, many agree, in the capital. It is cut by the hands of a cutter with some 30 years in the trade, and sewn by one of four seamsters whose meticulousness and pursuit of perfection would be caricature were the end results not always so good.
The cotton comes from Scotland, from a mill on the coast, where the making of heavy, waxed, and otherwise element-proof materials emerged in hand, centuries ago, with local seafaring trades. Industry-strength cottons finished in industry-leading ways is very much the order of the day here.
The brass hardware is made by a foundry in the West Midlands, which was founded in the 1800s. It is the last such foundry in an area once heaving with them. Its sand-casting method — which sees 940°c molten brass poured by hand from a crucible into sand-made moulds — is ancient and infallible.
The horn buttons were cut, shaped, and polished by the last such factory in Britain (now defunct). It was part of a tradition in the Midlands first linked to the meat industry of the 18th century. "It is no easy task," said William Hutton in 1780, "to enumerate the infinite diversity of buttons made in Birmingham."

So they say

Thanks so much, and thanks for not pointing out I've now purchased this waistcoat in three different fabrics, as I'm pretty sure my wife will have discovered. I've been a fan for quite a while, but with this waistcoat, I feel like you've outdone yourselves ⁠— functional, rugged, and flattering.

So said a man in the States who bought the waistcoat in canopy cotton (and others prior) in August 2018.