E Tautz high rise chino

In our last post in this series on new London shops, we looked at how readers – with a natural affinity for fit and materials – could analyse the casual wear offered by Private White VC. In this post we shall do the same for E Tautz, but look at the overlap with fashion rather than workwear.

E Tautz is a fashion brand. I define this not by the fact that it has collections and catwalk shows, but rather that many of its clothes are unusual, attempting a more radical re-think of line, proportion and material than any regular retailer. It also attempts to repeat that feat every six months.

But it is also a ‘heritage brand’. Not because the name is old, for that is irrelevant (the original Tautz was so different and, besides, it makes no real difference to any brand how old it is). It is a heritage brand because it is directly and obviously inspired by traditional menswear. It often attempts to recreate traditional designs, and favours traditional materials.
 

e tautz shetland sweater

E Tautz chinos

 
Take, as an example, the Tautz chinos. These were inspired by several vintage pieces that Patrick (Grant, owner and creative director) found in the Tautz archive. They have a very high rise at the back – almost three inches higher than the front. This echoes those old pieces, as does the use of 8.7oz selvedge cotton, and an unfussy, unwashed aesthetic.

The rise on the trousers isn’t a very bold move, but few standard retailers would attempt it. The Shetland sweaters are similar – although identical in make and quality to those at Anderson & Sheppard or Drake’s, they are offered in acidic yellow and violent violet. When in more sober tones, they are printed with a big ‘Tetris’ design. 

There is a sliding scale of this tradition/fashion crossover. A second line of the chinos, for example, has big, Oxford-bag-style legs; they would be ridiculous, were they not drawn directly from archive field trousers. The suits and shirts are more conservative (and good value, at £795 for a two-piece), while the overcoats are more ‘fashion forward’: oversized, multi-layered and often boldly patterned.
 

E Tautz quilted parka

 
But even with the most eye-catching of these – the cross parka – there are elements a Permanent Style reader would respond to. Great, heavyweight wool; pattern matching; functional details like a structured hood and thoughtfully positioned pockets. The black model is almost conservative; and it’s quilted.

Elsewhere, the Chanel-tweed coat is reversible, with one side waterproof. The plain parka, which achieves shape through drawstrings at waist and hem, has a detachable hood and a zipped, fly front. Everywhere, innovative shape with practical details.  
 

E Tautz parka

 

Postscript:

Interesting follow-up from Patrick on why the chinos feel the way they do:

“The chinos come unwashed with the natural veg starch still in them. Most other brands wash them then reapply a stiffening enzyme in the rinse to restiffen them (this usually lasts about 10 washes) but the chemicals used are unnecessary and a bit bad so i don’t do it.  You’ll find that when you wash them they’ll soften a lot, which some people like, others don’t. If you want to keep them stiff then some spray starch when you iron is the thing. As your batman would do.”

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Brincos

I LIKE, beautiful.. šŸ™‚

Cristiaan

Really beautiful brand doing something quite unlike anyone else. I’ve been admiring the collections for a while and didn’t know they had their own store now, I will have to visit. I like your features on new, interesting shops. Thanks Simon!

Fred

Very nice work and very nice brand. Patrick Grant is doing a great job with E.Tautz but to me, it is not really innovating. I think the approach of someone like Nigel Cabourn is more interesting concerning this “fashion/archive-research/tradition” mix.

Tom

Am I the only one thinking this doesn’t really fit the rest of the blog? oversized garments which even in their slim version don’t look very good. PWVC was casual wear with a classic vibe in the background, most items looked interesting, this shouts ‘fashion’ in a bad way. Not a fan.

T.

Mac

Simon, I’m planning to resurrect Scholte. Instead of drape-cut tailoring, it will be a ladies’ shoe brand but will cater to any sex who wishes to wear pvc knee-high boots and so on.

Yes, I am indeed cynical. This sort of corporate vandalism that involves appropriating a historic name (whether still trading or not), and piggy-backing off their history, is rather sad.

Patrick Grant understands heritage as the owner of Nortons. His company is very supportive of small independent suppliers.

‘E Tautz’ is a new company that is stealing the history of an extinct one, with a range of clothes supposedly created by a man with no training in clothes design or making.

I wish him luck with his company, but I do wish that he, and others like him, would build companies based on their own merits and create their own histories.

J

I agree with Mac.

Grant seems to be a very marketing savvy gentleman and of course, really dapper in his own style.

But if you are going to build a fashion brand, be honest about it, (and this is a generic message to the industry) – stop resurrecting long dead respectable companies and then pretending there is some sort of authentic heritage and continuation of a theme here. There is absolutely no congruence between what was extinct and what is being presented now in most instances.

It’s basically trying to fool a consumer.

Mac

Simon, the great man Hardy Amies would turn in his grave if he saw the new store at No8 Savile Row. It is cheapening his name and the company has little, if any, connection to the company that he built.

On a more positive note, I do think that companies who are inspired by heritage clothing, such as Private White (is it?), RRL and yes, even ‘E Tautz’, have much to offer, provided they make clothing that is comparable in style and quality to vintage pieces.

JKay

Grant’s Tautz has completely eaten itself. The initial collections under his control were at least respectful of the heritage. More traditional suiting, made in the UK, good quality, fantastic fabrics. A much more incremental development of the brand. We now have a full-flung London fashion brand with ridiculously oversized outfits to boot. The suit quality is really not very good – fully fused and made somewhere very far away. It NEVER sells in any of the online stores it’s stocked in. Marketing is fine but if the product isn’t there it will only ever take you so far.

Lawrence Gordon

I too, and not a fan of Grant. I have seen the Tautz pieces at Barneys in NYC and find that they do not compare to other brands with a similar sensibility and price.
They seem poorly made, amateurish and overpriced. Grant is best suited as a model for his collection, not as the designer.

Winot

Why are the models’ trousers all too long?!

J

I think one of the problems I feel with the current collection onsite is the use of the model, the young lad who looks about 15.

Doesn’t really sell the collection even to someone in their late twenties onwards, don’t really wanna look like a little boy dressing in dad’s clothes….

I do prefer when you write about bespoke though Simon, I think a lot of us who came to your site have left these type of brands behind in our early 20s and are now wanting to buy real clothes. This feels a bit GQ. So if Grant is a friend of yours, maybe writing about a Norton and Sons commission would connect more with your readers?

J

J I have to disagree, I think if the blog is only bespoke focused it alienates those that can’t afford it or are looking for a more accessible route into dressing well and buying quality.

Mac

Personally, I don’t expect 100% bespoke on Simon’s site, although I’d happily read it! Ties, socks, knitwear, eyewear, cufflinks, bench-made shoes – it’s all style. Hopefully permanent (though not sure if E Tautz is that). The popularity of this blog speaks for itself.

J

No not pure bespoke, but I guess my point was I can read about latest “fast fashion” brand on GQ or whatever I guess.

Of course, the articles on Smedley and tie-makers etc I see as very valuable.

But to the other ‘J’ šŸ™‚ don’t believe that bespoke can only be found on Savile Row or Italy, you can get good bespoke in most major British cities even today at a far more affordable price – OK maybe it won’t have 3 million hand stitches per square inch, but don’t let that put you off trying bespoke if you are on a lesser budget. I too, would struggle to justify commissioning some of the expensive houses Simon writes about, but I am still happy to read about them.

I have used all sorts of tailors, some high end, expensive and well known, some not so and very affordable. The difference is not as pronounced as some would have you believe once you select the right cloth – but you have to know how to work with tailors – that is the key.