Bespoke Tailors of Savile Row / Ready-to-wear menswear fashion
View Norton & Sons and E Tautz Fashion collection on London Fashion Review Blog.
Norton & Sons Tailors: A Brief History
Norton & Sons have been synonymous with impeccable bespoke tailoring since their foundation in 1821on the Strand, London. Norton & Sons was founded by Walter Norton, and has always been recognised as tailoring the prestigious men of London. In the 1860’s, the brand moved to the now home of bespoke tailoring Savile Row, London, where their sole shop still remains. Over the 20th century, Norton & Sons brand incorporated fellow Savile Row houses Hammond & Co., J. Hoare & Co., E. Tautz and Sons, and Todhouse Reynard & Co.
A highly personal and meticulous service (everything is done by the hands of the cutters and tailors) means that they produce only 300 suits per year. Garments of flattering lines with neat structured shoulders and a shaped waist without heavy detailing have gained the brand a number of high profile clients. Cary Grant, Frank Sinatra and David Niven have all been dressed by Norton & Sons, and a young Winston Churchill, whom was a fan of their sports and traditional tailoring a. Additionally, Norton & Sons have been tailors to the royal households of Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Italy, United Kingdom, Prussia and Spain, and three US Presidents to date – not a bad little CV for a single store.
The brand works closely with the fashion industries of London, New York and Paris – cutting and sewing specially tailored pieces for the catwalk. Norton & Sons made several pieces for the Kim Jones Autumn/Winter 2007/08 collection, a collaboration which continued with Jones’ Spring/Summer 2008 show. In addition, the brand has worked with prize-winning designer Richard Nicoll on garments for his Spring/Summer 2008 catwalk collection. The brand has also collaborated with actor and jewellery designer Waris Ahluwalia, Giles Deacon and Christopher Kane, each in recent years for parts of their own collections.
Norton & Sons also regularly feature on the pages of prestigious fashion magazines, including Vanity Fair, which dressed actor Edward Norton in Norton & Sons for a shoot in 2007. The label has also a claim to fame by suiting up James Bond (in this case played by Daniel Craig) for movies Quantum of Solace and Casino Royale.
- 1821: Norton & Sons is established by Walter Norton as tailors to the ‘rugged and robust’ men of London.
- 1860’s: Norton & Sons moved to London’s Savile Row.
- 1968: The brand incorporates tailoring house Hoare & Tautz, formed by the merger of E. Tautz & Sons and J. Hoare & Co.
- 2005: Oxford MBA business graduate Patrick Grant, becomes the owner of Norton & Sons, buying the shares to the company along with a small investment pool of friends and family.
- 2009: E. Tautz was re-launched by Norton and Sons as the ready to wear collection.
- 2010: Patrick Grant collects the Menswear Designer award for the Norton and Sons ready to wear label, label E. Tautz.
E. Tautz Men’s Fashion Label
E. Tautz was founded in 1867 in London’s West End by Edward Tautz . The label achieved great success during the 19th and first half of the 20th century – even gaining a mention in the biography of Winston Churchill. In 1968 the label was acquired by Norton & Sons and launched as their ready to wear collection in 2009, with owner, Patrick Grant as head designer. Just a year after launching, Patrick Grant picks up the Best Menswear Designer award at the British Fashion Awards, beating off stiff competition from Christopher Bailey (Creative Director for Burberry) Margaret Howell and Sir Paul Smith.
“The Tautz man has a classic English sensibility mixed with a kind of schoolboy humour; he likes to dress elegantly, but enjoys clothes with wit”. Patrick Grant.
At the heart of each E. Tautz collection is the cutting of Savile Row quality; elegant shoulders with a shaped waist producing a well proportioned garment that is free from too much detailing, keeping in with traditions. E. Tautz combine simple cuts with bold accents of colour and pattern – cloths with scale and texture; big checks, fine flannels, and stripes, to give a contemporary twist to the tailoring. The collections of E. Tautz are inspired by the streets of London and the way in which the young men on London style and wear their clothes. As Patrick Grant cycles through London every day he finds inspiration from the eccentricities in the people he passes.
Norton & Sons and The Kooples
Norton & Sons began working with French fashion brand The Kooples in 2007. The Kooples utilise the pattern cutting and construction techniques used at Norton & Sons to make their suits. They turned to Patrick Grant and his team of tailors and cutters at Norton & Sons to help create the patterns for their own jackets and select the best materials.
Future of Norton & Sons
The biggest challenge facing Norton & Sons is the inability to employ and train new talent to meet growing demand for the brand. The high cost associated with training individuals is the biggest constraining factor on growth – particularly given the reputation of Norton & Sons as a premium tailor of only the finest garments, outsourcing overseas is simply not an option.
The available avenue for brand expansion comes from the ready to wear collection, E. Tautz. The ready to wear collection is currently stocked in London’s Harrods, Matches and Selfridges, Beams in Tokyo, Barneys in New York, Galleria Department Store in Seoul as well as the online stockists Mr Porter and Oki-Ni. In the future, expect to see further concessions of the E. Tautz in high fashion boutiques and perhaps even a stand-alone store backed by the strength of future seasonal collections.
To take a full look at the recent collections of Norton and Sons and E. Tautz visit the official Norton and Sons website.