The craftsmanship can be demonstrated when they take measurement
Mitsuhiko Hishinuma always chats with his client while he takes measurement for the shirt they ordered like a barber in London.
“So you want to know the recent trend on market. Well, we have more women customers visiting our shop than before since several years ago.”
“You mean they order shirts, not blouses?” I asked. “They don’t want the blouses whose collar is flat and soft around their necks. Instead they request the shirt with stiff turned-up collars.” He explained. I would presume that a lot of women have been working as full time in our society now, which comes to the ripening period. Among them are female executives who have more opportunities to wear suits coordinated with suitable shirts. I was concluding my impression in such a way when Mitsuhiko Hishinuma was about to finish taking measurement on my body.
Narumi Ishikawa, the sixth generation president of YAMATOYA SHIRTS, started to talk about the current status of Japanese shirts. “Japanese government has been promoting the Cool Biz campaign since six or seven years ago. “ Cool-Biz is a new summer dress code that encourages office workers to wear open-necked shirts without jackets or ties to cope with high-temperature and humidity weather in the country. This dress code won’t be considered impolite business manner anymore, which is the key part of Japanese Cool-Biz.
“Quite a few number of our customers order the open-necked shirts with stand-up type collars recently, such as button-down or snap- button shirts. They aren’t going to wear jackets or ties, I believe.” So, business man/women desire the formal shirts they can see their clients without hesitation even wearing no jackets. YAMATOTA recommended me the material Grandi & Rubinelli for my shirt, an emerging maker since ten years ago.
A shirt was used to be recognized as underwear therefore it was ashamed to see someone without wearing jackets, or otherwise you might have been considered insulting your friend. On the contrary we are now in the age when the shirts are given the status of formal dress code in Japan. It’s interesting twist, isn’t it? Then Mitsuhiko Hishinuma suddenly interrupted my thought. “Mr. Urayama, would you mind if I take measurement of your size again?” He had been carefully observing my movement while I had talked to Narumi. “Your back bone in S-shape will change the form slightly when you are relaxed, such as just after having a chat. The straight shoulder line in tensile will go down as well as your straight elbows will be bent gradually.” He suggests that if I take measurement again in this timing my shirt will be finished in the ideal shape fitting along with my body movement naturally. I realized that although the factory workers will cut and sew the shirts directly in the production, the worker’s special skill has been demonstrated already at this point of taking measurement that controls whole shirt making.
The size table showed the results of my measurement taken, such as shoulder width, neck size, sleeve length, and others. The record included the descriptions of my physical features too: “back of collar should be covered deeply”, “pigeon-chested”, “round body”, “width in front body needs to be broad”, “bending backward”, “neck is thick but short” and so on. A skilled worker doesn’t only rely on the values indicated on measuring tapes but can see client’s body clearly through his own eyes while he is talking to them.
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