Looking good, Rusty Ford!
Looking good, Rusty Ford!
The Good Family played the Starlight in Waterloo, May 30, 2013. They put on a great show for a really mixed crowd. Some there for Dallas and Travis and the Sadies, and plenty of Good Brothers fans looking (unsuccessfully) to hear “Fox On The Run”. This one, written by Bruce and Larry, also features Larry on the banjo.
I was talking to my friend Shelley after, who remembered seeing the Good Brothers at an Ontario festival in the late 70s, when she was 8 or 9. I saw them then too, at the Exhibition in Bridgewater, Nova Scotia. Doin’ The Wrong Things Right was on the charts, and they were in the middle of an eight year run as Canadian country group of the year.
Dallas and Travis have worn these Tony Alamo outfits the Goods got in 1970s Nashville. I spoke with Richard Hydell last year, who once worked for the now-imprisoned-in-perpetuity Alamo, and he told me how he would get westernwear made in California for the store on Lower Broadway, since there was not much to buy in Nashville at the time.
Dallas and Travis always wear jackets on stage and I was happy to do up one of Dallas’s last year, with the Louvin’s Satan embroidered on the back.
Once I got the pentagram design right, everything went great. There’s a 666 on the other front yoke.
The Good Family show was the first time I really saw him wear it. You can see him sparkling a little in the corner of the video. I hope Charlie, and perhaps more so, Ira, have seen it too.
The Good Family, featuring Travis, also did the Louvin’s “There’s A Higher Power”, off Satan Is Real, a Sadies live staple.
This is from one of their two Dakota tavern shows, also in May. They’re playing the Stewart Park Festival in Perth Ontario, July 19.
The undercollar is linen canvas and felt stitched together and shaped.
The exact proportions don’t have to be decided until it’s on the jacket.
The top collar is cut to shape as it is basted and stitched to the undercollar and lapel.
The shoulder pad is sewn to the canvas before the sleeve is put on.
The whole sleeve is made, with the lining, and attached.
Basting holds the canvas in place during the process of fixing it to the jacket.
Of course, there is no hand sewing like this in an off-the-rack jacket. Even what is called a “custom” or “made to measure” jacket these days is unlikely to have any handstitching on it at all, except for the buttons.
I use quite a lot of vintage silk thread, made in Canada. There’s also synthetic ‘silcora’, white cotton for basting, heavier silk for buttonholes, cotton “gimp” for inside the buttonholes.
On this jacket, the pickstitching and arrow tacks are Gutermann, just to get the right colour. I use various kinds of new poly thread for the machine stitched seams.
The facing finishes the front edge and makes the lapel. It’s set up and held in place with more basting, and attached to the canvas on the inside. Ease and tension on the cloth is used along with handstitching and pressing to build the shape exactly as it should be, a process that begins with a customized pattern and continues with fittings as the jacket is constructed.
I always use bemburg lining, which is made of rayon. It is slippery and kind of hard to work with, but there’s nothing else like it.
Another try-on at this stage will make sure the armhole is just right. The high armhole in a true bespoke suit like this gives better movement when the sleeve is on. That is really good for guitar players like Steve, who will be wearing this jacket very soon!
I’m working on a new suit.
Decoration is one of the distinct components of a western suit.
I like flowers, and so does the person it’s for, but this one needed something more. I did a lot of samples that weren’t working.
I happened to be admiring this Japanese jacket, with its big scroll pattern, as I made test after test of vines and flowers I didn’t like.
and making patterns
Full time embroiderers, who worked for western tailors like Rodeo Ben, Nathan Turk and Nudie, had books around they would use for reference. They also were not tailors–they were embroiderers. Tailoring and embroidering are really different skills.
Daniel Romano with Aaron Goldstein on steel guitar, last night at the sold-out Starlight in Waterloo.
Tomorrow night, they’re at Massey Hall in Toronto. And there’s more shows after that in Canada and the US , including SXSW in Austin.