posted on July 16, 2018 posted by Howard Bibby

From Mill to Merchant Taylor’s Hall

Whilst having recently attended the BTBA Summer ball I was deeply impressed, firstly noticing all of the attendees gave their best not only to look great but also appeared to have made a genuine effort, to dress in a way to showcase the various individual house styles in addition to celebrating what is the true spirit of Savile Row bespoke. I can’t think of any other industry where technically “competitors” break bread together in such an honest, respectful and cheerful way.

Starting off somewhere in the mid to late 18th century, this event has been returning every year for those who are still apart of this special industry with an interest in supporting one another and ensuring the skills and age old secrets are passed on correctly to the next generation. The Tailors Ball is actually a merger of two key charity organisations in Britain: The Tailor’s Benevolent Institute (1861) and the Tailor’s Benevolent Association (1887).

The purpose of the BTBA is to add grants to those in the British tailoring industry – the event gathers annually over 60 grants. Plus, aside from the grants given, the association in itself has around 400 members – aside from the ones receiving grants.

These members are broken down into several categories. You have tailors who create handcrafted suits with each edition – but you also have woollen & trimming merchants. If you need some special buttons to go with a suit, you’ll likely to find a member that provides that as well.

Overall, this evening was highly enjoyable and it was brilliant to not only catch up with existing customers and industry friends, whilst gaining the opportunity to see people wearing ensembles crafted from Standeven cloth.

Howard Bibby.

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