Monday, 15 February 2010

Nutters...The Beginning

It was 41 years ago to the day, that Edward Sexton and Tommy Nutter opened their shop on Savile Row.

In 1967 Sexton joined Donaldson, Williams and Ward in the Burlington Arcade and it was here where Edward met Tommy Nutter. Tommy had originally trained as a plumber, but had a career change to tailoring. Tommy was the salesman as he had an abdunce of charm and along with Edward's cutting ability and technical know how, the pair decided to join forces and opened their own shop ‘Nutters of Savile Row’ on Valentines Day in 1969. They were backed by clients including Cilla Black and her husband Bobby Willis, Peter Brown, then Managing Director of the Beatles' Apple Corps (also on Savile Row) and by the lawyer James Vallance-White.

Situated at 35a, Savile Row (opposite Huntsmans),the pair had a new approach to tailoring..They continued practicing traditional bespoke tailoring but added a contemporary edge to their garments. This is why they were so successful.‘Nutters gave Savile Row the nudge it needed’ and the duo brought a ‘new lease of life’ to the Row. 

The shop opened with extravagant window displays. Nutters had the first ‘opened window’ in Savile Rows history. Light was let in to the shop, and allowed passers by to view the interior of the shop. This was also very contemporary with concealed spotlighting, mirrored walls and a chocolate brown carpet. This meant that people were intrigued and wanted to be part of this new, modern company. Tommy was the face of the business, whilst Edward was the master cutter, who took Nutter’s ideas and made them a reality. 

Pictured is Tony King, who I bumped into in London recently. He was modellng the suit, which Joe Morgan of Chittleborough & Morgan had just altered for him. This was the very first Nutters creation, which was made for him shortly befored they moved into the Row, whilst still at Donaldson, Williams and Ward. Tony is involved within the music industry and he and Tommy met through mutual friends.

The suit Tony is wearing is the beginning of the style that epitomises what Nutters were famed for with their exaggerated sholders and wide lapels, which developed into a more eccentric and exaggerated look illustrated by Ringo Star.

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