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Stòffa is a smart menswear brand, in all senses of the word. It deals in elevated versions of classic basics, such as pleated trousers, camp-collar or regular shirts, T-shirts, scarves and knitwear, and has a great selection of outerwear. The clever bit is that the majority of those pieces are produced only once ordered, which makes for a far more efficient and sustainable business. You get well-fitting clothes—because they’re made-to-measure, meaning the cutter uses a standard pattern but adjusts it to your measurements—and there’s less waste in the production process, which is better for everyone.
One of the things I like most about Stòffa is its color palette. Look on the website, or visit its New York showroom, and you’ll see a range of elegant, muted shades that all go beautifully together. I’m already a customer: I’ve had a pair of trousers and a shirt made. Both took some back and forth (par for the course when working with a new tailor), but now fit well. The standout piece for me, however, is Stòffa’s version of the field jacket.
Inspired by the M-65 jackets worn by American soldiers in the 60s, the modern field jacket is a menswear staple, whether it’s a version true to the military original or a more upmarket rendering. Stòffa’s example borrows a little from a biker jacket with its reinforced shoulders, keeps the ‘two up, two down’ pocket configuration on the front, adds two inside pockets, a cinched waist and a double vent at the back which can be secured by press studs. It’s clean, smart and perfect for travel.
Stòffa offers it in a range of fabrics from soft, plongé leather to linen, but it looks particularly fine in suede. And as Stòffa includes a water-repellent treatment in the dyeing process, you can treat this suede jacket a little less preciously than you might otherwise. I went for taupe, a neutral that works as well with dark denim as it does cream flannels and is dark enough to camouflage any errant scuffs.
Rather than go through the made-to-measure process, I wanted to try out Stòffa’s made-to-order (MTO) deal, introduced for those who cannot be measured at one of the brands’ trunk shows or at the showroom IRL—a smart and timely move, for obvious reasons. All MTO items can be ordered directly online: you can pick your usual size but, in addition to ‘regular’, you can opt for short or long versions, which go up or down a centimeter or so in terms of sleeve and body length. If you’re unsure, there are guides to help you measure yourself. I wanted to be able to throw the jacket on over a blazer if needed, so opted for a ‘long’, which also had the advantage of lowering the waist slightly.
And that was that. My specs were sent off to Italy, where all of Stòffa’s clothing is produced, and five or so weeks later a box arrived in the mail. The fit is excellent. The hardware is simple but well made. The detailing on the pockets—particularly on the bottom bellows pockets, which have hand-warmer side openings as well as flaps on the top—are thoroughly thought-through. And the lambskin suede feels unmistakably luxurious.
It’s been way too hot this summer to wear it in the wild, but I’m impressed enough to be tempted to get a linen version in time for next summer. And as the temperature starts to drop, I’m looking forward to it being my go-to coat for fall…even if it looks like rain.