Regency Hot Spots: Savile Row

Every girl is crazy about a sharp dressed man.  Or so they say.

The Regency man was not immune to displaying his charms to catch the eye of the ladies.  And in an era when the aristocratic class was still largely one of leisure fashion was formidable in terms of accomplishment.

While Heyer frequently references Weston as the premier draper and tailor, it was several blocks away that most Regency men had their tailoring done.

The “Golden Mile of Tailoring” in Mayfair was the place for a tonnish man to see a tailor.  Beau himself frequented Savile Row, lingering around Cork Street on Burlington Estate to pick up his Pink of the Ton clothing.

Running parallel to Regents Street, Savile Row of course had a Mayfair address, making it an easy destination. 

Many of the tailors found on Savile Row were specialists in military regalia.  Beau himself favored two military tailors Schweitzer (on Cork) and Meyer (on Conduit Street).  It was his work with such tailors that helped him to create a men’s fashionable revolution with the introduction of the trouser, a variation on riding breeches and singularly distinct from the previous fashion of knee breeches and tights (still required at Almack’s).

It was Beau who helped to cultivate early and now traditional images of Savile Street as a severe, ascetic sort of fashion.  Beau also helped transition men’s fashion from overly floral and fine silks and ornate coats to a more simple, masculine wardrobe of dark colors and clean lines.

This turn in men’s fashion would continue to influence the look of men’s clothing as men of all social classes began to enter a new, industrialized workforce.  In essence, the look perfected by Brummel would be the prototype for the men’s suit and all its iterations.

Savile would, and still is, at the forefront of the man’s suit.  You can read more about it in James Sherwood’s Bespoke: The Men’s Style of Savile Row.


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