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1500美元一条的定制牛仔裤是什么样子?

Bloomberg 2017年08月27日

这样的裤子适合骨骼比较清奇、平时难买到合适的裤子的人

1500美元能买几条牛仔裤?当然,这得看牌子。1500美元大概能买44条Wrangler(跟Levi's、LEE并称为美国牛仔三大品牌)。要是购买非常高端洋气的所谓“原牛”牛仔裤,大概能买四五条日本正蓝屋、武士或者其他高端品牌的裤子。当然,对于不差钱的白富美,也可以买一条巴黎设计品牌Vetements推出的改款不对称裤腿的Levi’s牛仔裤。

如果你觉得15张本杰明爷爷理应给你买一条世界上独一无二的裤子,可你也可以到曼哈顿的3x1去定制一条。3x1号称打造了全世界最好的量身定制的原牛牛仔裤。当然“定制”这个词现在早已经被说得滥觞了,不过它的每一条牛仔裤确实都是在纽约的SoHo区手工定制的。

3x1创始人斯科特·莫里森表示:“定制牛仔裤通常适合骨骼比较清奇、平时难买到合适的裤子的人,另外也适合那些有比较个性的想法的人。” 3x1公司是在2011年创立的,此前莫里森还成功创办了Paper Denim & Cloth和Earnest Sewn等品牌。我到了这家公司位于纽约默瑟街的销售店时,还拿了一件用于他们参考的样品,这是一条N年前我在弗里曼运动俱乐部购买的一条原牛牛仔裤。

刚买的时候,这条裤子就像挂在3x1墙上的一块块原牛布料一样板正,现在它已经磨出了“猫须”和“蜂巣”——“养牛人”也就是牛仔爱好者有时故意会不洗牛仔裤以特地追求这种效果。不过我的这条裤子已经穿了很久了,是时候考虑让它退休了。

莫里森说:“我们要谈的第一件事是:你想要在一条牛仔裤里寻找什么?”

我答道,我希望的效果和这一条差不多——当然要比它更好一点。莫里森用一条卷尺量了裤子的尺寸,然后又让我穿上那条裤子,给我照了张相。之后他们会把这些东西上传到电脑上。然后我们讨论了一下裤子的贴身度,我希望这条裤子上边稍微宽松一些,膝盖以下稍稍收紧。然后我们开始一点一点讨论起细节来。你想改变裤袋口的样式吗?后面的口袋呢?

莫里森觉得我带来的这条裤子的后口袋有点不合比例:“它看起来不赖,就是有点大了。”然后他温柔而坚定地建议我进行调整。同样他也建议我将后腰部提高一点点。他的语气好像并不是在提建议,更像随意阐述一个明显的事实。

“现在让我们谈谈牛仔布吧。”他继续道。店内的墙上大概挂了70多匹牛仔布,差不多都是织边牛仔布,也就是说它的边缘是非常耐磨的。除此之外3x1还可以提供800多种不同类型的牛仔布。如果你喜欢欧洲范儿,而你最喜欢的那款夜店风的白色牛仔裤Diesel又不卖了,那莫里森完全可以满足你的要求。他可以把原牛做成任何你想要的效果。

简单来说,要想选择牛仔布,首先要选择它的色光。莫里森表示:“如果你想要美国20、30、40或是50年代的那种风格,你可能喜欢红色色光的牛仔布。”而不是日式的那种绿色色光的牛仔布。不过不管你选择哪种色光,随着时间的推移,它的色光都会变得日益明显。

接下来要考虑的是牛仔布的重量。纱线越粗,意味着穿起来感觉越厚重,也越容易起褶,因而也会显示出锐利的褪色,不过一开始的磨合阶段也会越难受。比如莫里森自己就穿着一条较新的18盎司的原牛裤,看起来相当板正。他说:“这条裤子是用来自Select的坯布做的。我得承认,第一周穿起来感觉很难受,以后会好起来的,不过……”

经过五分钟的比较和思考,我选择了一匹14.5盎司的稀织红边牛仔面料。它是用天然靛蓝颜料染色的,所以价格上又增加了125美金。莫里森对这种颜料的性质如数家珍,介绍得不遗巨细。总之,据说这种颜料完全对得起它的高价,颜色更丰富,而且含有的人工合成的东西也更少。

面料选好了之后,该讨论那些外露的缝线了,这时我才知道牛仔裤居然有那么多不同类型的缝线。“我们可以做一些很夸张的样式,不过我并不推荐。”莫里森说。虽然我不喜欢任何夸张的东西,不过在这一部分,我们也颇争论了一番,才定了下来。作为一个传统主义者,我想要那种比较简单而常见的黄色或橙黄色的双缝线,就像经典款的Levi’s一样。

不过作为一名设计师,莫里森则温柔地向我施压,让我再考虑考虑。最后我选择了一具“蒸汽蓝”的单缝线,另一种缝线则是浅灰色。这两种柔和的颜色显得裤子整体更为考究,这两种颜色的对比则能表明它是在一种现在已经少见的单针缝纫机上缝制出来的。

我为裤子的口袋也选了一种料子。“你的标准别这么低嘛!”在莫里森的要求下,我选了一种蓝色的鸟眼花纹。我把放硬币的小口袋稍稍拓宽了一些,好能更方便地取出家里的钥匙。我又考虑了后面口袋的缝线,这两个口袋会向上挪动八分之三英寸。至于裤子的腰带环,我则没费心思考虑。除非你有52寸的腰围,想多增加几个腰带环,或是想弄个松紧带什么的。这部分没什么可说的。

对于前裆开口处,我想做成钮扣式的,只要不是金属钮扣就行了,免得在机场安检时带来不必要的麻烦。莫里森答应在这里缝上几个军用式的非金属钮扣。虽然他手里没有这种纽扣的样品,但他给我看了一款类似的木制钮扣。这几个钮扣是一个汽车收藏家预定的,为的是能搭配他的保时捷汽车的中控仪表盘。

对于前腰上的那颗扣子,虽然3x1提供了很多手工珐琅色的扣子,不过我还是选择了一颗传统的青铜色扣子。“你真走运,你挑中的很多东西正好NFL的运动员也用了。”(职业运动员薪酬很高,加之大多体格异于常人,因此也是定制牛仔裤的常客。)我又选择了几颗青铜色的铆钉,前期工作就算完成了。

要想试穿这条新牛仔裤,则不知道要等上多久了。第二次试穿一般要等上三到四周,不过如果你要求加急的话,也可以在两周内完成。我试穿的这条牛仔裤在所有方面几乎与我起初带来的那条穿过几千个小时的裤子别无二致,不过这一条却是全新的,没有一点被穿过的人气儿,也没有穿了几千个小时后磨出来的褪色。这条裤子几乎是完美的,尤其那柔和的缝线,的确是个明智的选择。

不过我选择将大腿部分收紧八分之一英寸,因为仔细考虑了之后,我发现那种上松下紧的款并不是我想要的风格。第二天裤子就修改好了,这次穿上之后的确棒极了。

不过这条裤子也是有一点小瑕疵的,那就是右膝盖上面的布料有一点点起球,应该是面料出厂的时候没有处理好。不过这种瑕疵也体现了老式缝纫工艺的高品质。另外由于它的做工的确非常出色,还有一个问题我直到回家后才发现——莫里森给我来了个先斩后奏,根本没有用我挑选的铆钉。不过这样一来,整条裤子显得更为考究,也显示出了技艺的精湛。另外由于3x1的缝线十分密实,没有铆钉也并不影响裤子的整体性。

我很快就觉得离不开这条裤子了,它不仅在我的衣柜占据了重要位置,甚至成了我生活中不可或缺的一部分。从来没有一条裤子让我更加喜欢过,而这正是3x1立身扬名的根本。

“在定制牛仔裤上,我们并不靠第一条裤子挣钱,”莫里森说。每定制一条裤子,他的员工都要花六个半小时打版,有时还得对版型做出很大调整。每做完一条,第二条裤子就要完全重头做起,所以成本是很高的。“我们跟裁缝不一样,裁缝可以用棉布或其他更便宜的面料制作西装,但我们不能那么做。”

一旦客户体验到整个流程,他们就会发现,自己已经穿不了商场货架上的大路货了。莫里森表示:“虽然我们这不算赔本赚吆喝,不过我们是以客户的目标为导向的,而对我们来说,这个战略的效果是不错的。”结果就是,一条成本高达1500美元的牛仔裤,却变成了很多客户的终身习惯。(财富中文网)

译者:朴成奎

What does $1,500 get you in blue jeans? One answer is 44 pairs of Wranglers. Another option: four or five pairs of raw denim—a rigid, rugged, unrinsed jean for true connoisseurs—from Pure Blue Japan, Samurai, or any of the other excellent brands frequently hailed on Reddit’s /rawdenim subthread. A third, for a sophisticated rich-brat look, gets you a single reworked pair of Levi’s, with asymmetrical cuffs, from Parisian design collective Vetements.

But if you believe that your 15 Benjamins entitle you to completely personalized perfection, you’ll want an appointment at Manhattan’s 3x1, reputed to offer the best best tailor-made denim in the world. Though the word bespoke has been misused and degraded, it legitimately applies to the custom work done at the company’s SoHo premises.

“Bespoke is typically for harder-to-fit guys, or people who have something really specific in mind,” says 3x1 founder Scott Morrison, who launched the company in 2011, following the entrepreneurial successes of Paper Denim & Cloth and Earnest Sewn. For my part, I arrived at Morrison’s Mercer Street sales floor bearing a reference garment: a pair of raw jeans purchased (a million or so years ago) at a Freemans Sporting Club sample sale.

Back then, my jeans were as crisp as the bolts of new denim I found hanging on 3x1’s wall. Now, they were deeply marked by decent whiskering and honeycombs—jargon for the types of fades that some hard-core denim-heads pursue by putting off washing jeans. Mine had been worn often enough that it was time to consider retiring them.

“The first thing we talk about is: What are you looking for in a jean?” Morrison said.

I replied that I was looking for the same jeans—but better. Morrison gauged them with a tape measure and photographed me in them, a prelude to digital rendering. We then talked about the fit: I wanted them slightly looser in the top block and maybe an added bit of tapering below the knee. Then the discussion gave way to a point-by-point discussion of particulars. Did I want to change the pocket opening? How did I feel about the back pockets?

Morrison felt that the back pockets appeared a touch out of proportion—“This doesn’t look bad; it’s just a little bit, like big,” he said—and proceeded to softly but firmly recommend adjusting them. In much the same way, he recommended lengthening the rear rise by a fraction of an inch. His tone indicated that this wasn’t really a recommendation, more the casual statement of an obvious fact.

“So, let’s talk some denims,” he segued. Along the wall in the shop hung 70 bolts of denim, almost exclusively selvage, which means (long story, short) that its edges are resistant to fraying. But 3x1 can source more than 800 different types of denim. If your tastes run Euro, and Diesel discontinues white jeans in your favorite club-going cut, Morrison is your man. Moreover, he can give raw denim any rinse you might dream of.

But for a relatively straightforward order, the matter starts with a simple choice, which concerns the slight tint beneath the blue of any jeans. Morrison said, “If you want more [the look] of the American jeans from the 1920s, ‘30s, ‘40s, ‘50s, you want red-cast denim”—as opposed to the green-cast denim traditionally associated with Japan. In either case, the shade becomes more apparent over time.

Our next consideration was the weight of the denim. A bigger yarn size means a thicker feel, a greater ability to crease and thus display sharp fades, and a more strenuous initial break-in period. Morrison, for instance, was wearing a fairly new, fairly stiff pair of 18-ounce raws. “This is the loom-state selvage from Select,” he said. “I gotta be honest: The first week was miserable. It’ll be good down the road, but …”

After five minutes of browsing and contemplation, I settled on a 14.5 oz. Kaihara open-weave, red-line selvage for my fabric. It was made with natural indigo, which added $125 to the price. Rest assured that Morrison can explain the properties of indigo in, literally, microscopic detail; let’s just say that natural indigo justifies its high cost by being richer in tone and rarer than the synthetic stuff.

With the fabric selected, it was time to discuss the many, many options for the exposed stitching thread. “We can do something crazy, which I’m not advocating,” Morrison said. I didn’t want anything crazy, but an interesting tug-of-war played out nonetheless. As a traditionalist, I thought I wanted the simple yellow or orange double thread familiar from, say, a classic pair of Levi’s.

As a designer, though, Morrison suavely kept urging me in a different direction. I ended up with one thread in “steam blue” and the other in a heather gray. The muted colors made the jeans dressier, while the contrasting colors showed off the virtue of work sewn on a rare, single-needle machine.

I chose a lining for my inside pockets. “Don’t go basic on me!” Morrison pleaded, steering me away from plain; I settled on a blue, bird’s-eye pattern. I had the coin pocket slightly widened to accommodate easy retrieval of my house keys. I pondered the best stitching for the back pockets, which would be moved three-eighths of an inch higher. I needed only a split second to ponder belt loops. These are straightforward, unless, say, you’ve got a 52-inch waist and want additional loops, or even an elastic insert, to achieve a proper balance.

For the fly, I wanted buttons, though not metal ones that can attract unfavorable scrutiny at airport security screenings. Morrison promised to order some non-metal, military, sew-on, fly buttons. He didn’t have the exact model on hand, but he showed me a similar wood version he’s used for a car-collector client who wanted the buttons of his fly to match the dashboard of his Porsche.

I took a traditional gunmetal button for the waist, despite the fact that 3x1 offers many of them in hand-painted enamel. “As luck would have it, there are most of your NFL-team combinations,” Morrison said. (Professional athletes, well compensated for being freaks of nature, are ideal bespoke-denim clients.) I chose gunmetal rivets, and we were done.

Stepping into the new jeans at the next fitting was a uniquely disorienting event. The second fitting generally takes a three- or four-week wait, but if you pony up for rush service, they can be ready in as little as two weeks. The jeans I stepped into were—in most respects regarding the all-important fit—identical to the garment I’d brought to my first fitting and spent thousands of hours in. Yet they were alien, impersonal, naked of the fades earned over those thousands of hours. They were very nearly excellent; the muted threads in particular had been a smart call.

But I decided to narrow the thighs an eighth of inch because, on further reflection, the taper wasn’t doing what I’d wanted. After adjustments were made the following day, they were really quite terrific.

There is one tiny flaw, though, on the fabric surface, above my right knee. It’s a bit of fluff that wasn’t singed off when the raw material left the mill, the kind of fault that, as it happens, indicates the high quality inherent to old-school craftsmanship. Also, the garment was helped along—I didn’t notice this until I got home—by the fact that Morrison had gone rogue and ignored my request for rivets. This feature made the garment look dressier and hinted at its craftsmanship; because of the number of stitches per inch that 3x1 uses, rivets aren’t essential to the jeans’ integrity.

But the jeans, very quickly, did come to feel necessary: an essential part of my wardrobe and my life. It’s hard to imagine a pair I’d like better. Which, it turns out, is the whole business plan.

“With bespoke jeans, we don’t make money on the first pair,” Morrison said. After his employees have spent six-and-a-half hours of pattern-making time on a prototype and then often, unlike in my case, made significant changes to that pattern, plus a whole do-over of a second garment, the costs add up. “Unlike a tailor, who may be making a suit out of muslin or some kind of cheaper, substitute fabric, we can’t do it that way.”

Once customers have been through the process, though, they find it impossible to revert to buying off the rack. “I wouldn’t say it’s a loss-leader strategy, but it’s a little more goal-oriented,” Morrison said. “It works out well for us.” Turns out the true cost of $1,500 jeans is a lifetime habit.

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