Ever since my initiation into sartorialism, I have never been so anal about what I wear. Indeed, I now look at every item of clothing I plan to buy under a microscope and put it to my very rigid scrutiny. Anything that does not fit the bill is immediately rejected.
The item of clothing that I have never been so anal about are trousers. The stuff off the high street just will not do. For one, do they have button flies? No. Are they high rise? No. Are they meant to be worn with braces? No. Do they have double forward facing pleats? No. Do they have a fish-tail back? No! It may seem OTT but if the trousers do not meet any of these criteria I would have to relectantly reject them.
There are only a few RTW purveyors that do provide trousers that fit the bill mostly. Pakeman Catto & Carter produces trousers with a high-rise, button fly, forward pleats and brace buttons. The only thing they do not have is fish-tail backs but one can forgive them for that and I do buy and like the trousers there as they are the only ones that are RTW and fit most of the bill. But, they only just.
To have a pair of my dream trousers made up, one must look to Bookster. Of all the items of clothing I have bought from them, it is only the trousers that needs no further alterations. They are perfect just out of the box when I get them through the post. Why? you may ask.
As you all know, Bookster is made-to-order. But their options are what makes these trousers so bloody good. I am given all the choices that I want from what I deem to be the perfect pair and all my boxes have been ticked.
For this order, I chose a Harris Tweed cloth: almost black herringbone.
It shall be half-lined with black satin (so it is more comfortable to wear), have button fly, brace buttons, fish-tail back, double forward pleats, 1 3/4″ turn-ups, black horn buttons, etc.
These options adds more money to the base order price but they are worth it IMHO as if I asked a tailor to make them up for me like I require they would probably charge me even more than £160.
There is also another service that Bookster offers that is the ultimate in trouser tailoring. You could, for £70, send them an existing pair of trousers that you absolutely adore for them to transcribe a unique pattern from or even get them to measure you for a bespoke pair of trousers. They would keep this pattern subsequent orders will be made from that pattern and you do not have to pay that charge again. I am certainly going to use this option in the future when I finally get a bespoke pair of trousers from Savile Row so I can have them copy it and my trousers would be as perfect in fit as SR’s save I do not have to pay SR prices for future trousers!
From my two existing pairs that I have bought from them, the moleskin and the tweed, both fit impecably well and they are very comfortable to wear. Indeed, the fit is similar to my vintage pair of cashmere stripe trousers that I wear for morning dress. Certainly, if you want an affordable pair of trousers that is on par with vintage trousers, you could do no better than Booksters.
I will post photos of the outcome of my latest pair in due course.
Update: here are the finished trousers.
I got rid of the turn-ups soon after as it was a bit bulky for such a heavy cloth. Other than that, they are rather good.