Earlier this, week Baz Luhrman’s “The Great Gatsby” opened up the 2013 Cannes film festival. We were very excited to hear that Dormeuil worked with “Gatsby” producer Catherine Martin to provide the fabric for many of the film’s Roaring 20s-style men’s suits. Although the famed and film-used Sportex (unveiled in 1922–the same year that F. Scott Fitzgerald’s book takes place) is now retired, three fabrics that were in the film are currently available through Bespoke:

From left to right: Fabric #885070, from the Naturals book, is a deep navy in a summer blend of 55% cotton, 25% linen, and 20% silk; #316259, a Royal 12 Classic, is a fancy stripe in 370g 100% wool; and #307300, from the Amadeus book, is a classic, plain black, which was selected for Gatsby’s high-sheen tuxedo.

The official word is that the first two fabrics were also worn by lead players, but we’re not sure just who wore them. In fact, we’ll take 20% off a Dormeuil-cloth suit for the first person who can conclusively identify those fabrics–885070 and 316259–in the film. Which actor/character wore them? And in what scene? (Email your sleuthing to


It’s not all Champagne and red carpets on the Croisette. It was reported late last night that a million bucks worth of CHopard jewels had been stolen out of a Suite Novotel Cannes Centre hotel room. The thief had drilled through a hotel wall and absconded with the safe intact (Details via the Hollywood Reporter).

So, if cat burglary is your bag, we recommend leaving the suit at home and going with this classic, time-tested get-up (in cashmere):

Both the Wingtip Gentleman’s basic turtleneck and the ribbed beanie are created by Scotland’s Johnstons of Elgin.

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Since 1797 Johnstons of Elgin has been creating some of the world’s finest cashmere and woolen cloths. And Since 2012 Wingtip has been proud to work with Johnstons on select products in our emerging Gentleman’s Basics line, namely, the black cashmere turtleneck sweater [below left] and the navy v-neck cashmere sweater. We got in touch with Johnstons of Elgin’s Managing Director of Knitwear, Nick Bannerman, to discuss the company’s heritage, adaptations to the shifting marketplace, and their recent recognition in the form of a Royal Warrant from His Royal Majesty, the Prince of Wales.

Could you explain the concept of the Royal Warrant? Who gives them out, to who, and what does it signify?

The Royal Warrant Holders Association was established in 1840 and represents individuals and companies holding Royal Warrants of Appointment. These are a mark of recognition of those who have supplied goods or services for at least five years to the Households of HM The Queen, HRH The Duke of Edinburgh or HRH The Prince of Wales. Royal Warrants have always been regarded as demonstrating service, quality and excellence, and are highly prized. There are around 800 Royal Warrant holders, representing a cross-section of trade and industry ranging from traditional craftspeople to global multinationals operating at the cutting edge of technology. Regardless of size or specialisation, Royal Warrant holders are united by their commitment to the highest standards of service, quality and excellence. See

What does the idea of luxury Scottish textile mean to someone from the UK versus someone in the United States or even Japan?

In our view the US and Japan place more emphasis on the importance of luxury heritage textiles from Scotland. The taste levels in the UK market can be varied and certain categories of consumers are less inclined to put great store in where a product is made compared to overseas consumers. Being so close geographically perhaps lends itself to a slight complacency as well. The UK thinks of tartan and not always favourably when luxury is mentioned, as they don’t always see the two as appropriate bedfellows, whereas the US and Japan have an interest and passion for the heritage of Scotland and how tartan weaves itself through the luxury offering we produce.

What can you tell us about the Fall/Winter 2013 plaid designs that Johnstons created for Patrick Grant’s E Tautz label?
The AW 2013 collection [example at left] took its inspiration from the Johnstons cloth archive and the heritage of Scottish tartans. We transferred the vintage cloths into heavy weight wools, to which we added a contemporary twist by over-sizing the checks and livening up the grey muted story with punchy overchecks in bright orange and aubergine. Compacted wools were made even heavier by the addition of fancy floats. Geometric plaids with complex hair lines provided a busy foil for the more classic and spacious giant tartans. The qualities were milled in finishing to enhance the weight and sculptural properties of the fabrics, in turn allowing for the architectural looks as seen on the catwalk by E Tautz.

In addition to everything else, you opened a new vistor’s center recently. What can tourists expect from a visit there?

We’ve had a visitor centre in Elgin for many years, and opened our new centre in Hawick last May, transforming the front of the ground floor of our factory into a Johnstons shop selling our cashmere and fine woolens, including jacketing and home interiors items plus a children’s section. We also have a small theatre showing our company DVD, shich is fabulous. From here visitors start their guided tour of the factory to see our cashmere knits being made by our staff and have the chance to see, firsthand, exactly how we make our wonderful knitwear with staff always happy to answer questions from visitors. We also boast the “Eastfield Cafe,” where delicious hime baking coffees, and lunches are served in our five star visitor attraction as granted by Visit Scotland.

Visitors to Scotland can find more information about visiting Johnstons at their website.

Cheers to Nick Bannerman and Jenny Stewart at Johnstons of Elgin for taking their time to work on this interview.

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There’s a hot ticket in town. It only cost $10 on Event Brite, but now it’s sold out, so who knows what it takes to get in.

The event?

FlipSideSF and the San Francisco Museum and Historical Society are screening “Bullitt” at the Old Mint. If you haven’t seen the film, it stars the turtleneck sweater [UPDATE 12/28: The sweater was just rated the #16 Greatest Sweater of All Time by Urban Daddy's Kempt mag], with support from Steve McQueen, a 1968 fastback Ford Mustang, and San Francisco. Those four elements culminate in a groundbreaking car chase.

If you were lucky enough to snag a ticket to the event, but still need a black* turtleneck to complete your McQueen ensemble, we have two options:

Wingtip by Johnstons of Elgin cashmere black turtleneck — $425

Left Coast Tee black turtleneck — $25.83 (Part of our on-going Risk/Reward Sale. It will be even less expensive tomorrow, but there’s very limited sizing available).

*Sure, the turtleneck in the movie is actually dark blue, but don’t you always remember it as black? Maybe it’s because of all the B&W stills and graphics. If you can wait till next Fall, we’ll have a navy turtleneck from Luciano Barbera coming…

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Leather Shoe Throw PillowThroughout 2013, our club will be opening several themed, private parlor rooms for members to entertain in. The Velvet Room, inspired by the tuxedo, will open first. The Tweed Room, whose fabrics were generously loaned to us by Johnstons of Elgin, will open second. It is likely the third room will be the Leather Room, partly sponsored by Moore & Giles. Of course, telling anyone you’re opening a “Leather Room” in San Francisco their imagination runs wild, but that’s for another post.

Perusing the blogosphere on this Christmas Eve, we came across this interesting leather shoe throw pillow which just may have to find a spot in the Leather Room…

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Look of the WeekJohnstons of Elgin Shawl Collar Cardigan

Bills Khakis Sporting Twill Shirt

Michael Toschi Berta, Natural w/ Blue Sole

Bills Khakis Flannel-Lined Khakis

W. Kleinberg Italian Calf Belt in Navy

Moore & Giles Wilson Slim Brief

Johnstons of Elgin Cashmere Ribbed Hat

Gold & Wood Aviator Sunglasses

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Tweed RoomOne of nice built-in features of the new club space are the old executive offices on the 10th floor built by the Bank of San Francisco in the 1980s. There are 7 of them, but one will remain management’s office, another will become the new Billiards Room, and a third will house a full swing golf simulator. The other four, however, will become private parlor rooms that members can reserve for entertaining. And each parlor room will be outfitted by some of our favorite vendors.

Johnstons of Elgin, world-class cashmere producer since 1797, and provider of scarves, caps, gloves, robes, and soon-to-be sweaters for us, has sent us 80 meters of Estate Tweeds that are already being turned into furniture pieces for the TWEED ROOM. Sanson Jaillot Map of Scotland The room will seat six in a combination of club chairs and sofas. Cashmere throws will hang elegantly on the wall in case any guests need extra warmth. A selection of single malts will be locked away and exclusive to the Tweed Room, and of course a few Abbeyhorn pieces will be sprinkled throughout for bartending, dining, or gaming. A final touch will be provided by our local friends at Arader Galleries who have offered an antique map of Scotland printed in 1665 by Sanson and Jaillot, who were the Royal Cartographers to the ‘Sun King’ Louis XIV of France.

We’ll have photos of the room when it’s done, but we were so excited to receive so much tweed, we had to share. And stay tuned to hear about the themes of the other three parlor rooms…

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While we are neck deep in construction, with Heidi keeping a close eye on proceedings (above), we also have some exciting updates on the Grand Opening Party, which will be Thursday, September 27th. As you may know, the event will take place all day in the store from 10am – 6pm. Many of our vendors will be on hand, and most will have gifts with purchase or door prizes. We also expect to pouring some libations. All in all, it should be a festive affair in an unbelievable space, and we hope you can join us.

Visiting vendors now include:

  • Chris Knott, founder of Peter Millar
  • Bill Thomas, founder of Bills’ Khakis
  • Michael Toschi
  • Jeff Shafer, founder of Agave Denim
  • Kirby Allison, The Hanger Project
  • Todd Fisher, CEO of Truefitt & Hill, N.A.
  • Robin Rotenier
  • Margo Petitti

Plus representatives from Paul’s Hat Works, Agave Denim, Johnstons of Elgin, Mulholland, Martin Dingman, W. Kleinberg, Visconti, HollenWolff, and more.

Keep your eyes on our Facebook event page for more updates.

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