LONDON — Gresham Blake is taking a city break from his Brighton residence.
This month the British tailor, known for his quirky style and roster of celebrity clients, has added a London studio to his business, with long-term plans for an online ready-to-wear retail facility, women’s rtw and a stand-alone London store.
“Most of my clients are here,” said Blake. “It made sense to set up a base.” Currently Gresham Blake has a 1,563-square-foot store in costal town Brighton, offering ready-to-wear, semi-bespoke and full bespoke suits for men and women, alongside ties and accessories.
The company was founded in 2000, and counts Christian Slater, Steve Coogan and Fat Boy Slim DJ Norman Cook among its fans. “Repeat commissions make up 70 percent of my business,” said Blake. “I know I’m doing something right.” Gresham Blake ties are stocked at Bloomingdale’s and the London boutique The Cross.
The new Gresham Blake studio, a 672-square-foot space, is based on South Molton Street, among such trendy boutiques and accessories shops as Browns and Browns Focus. It’s also near Savile Row and Bond Street. “I’m not trying to compete with Savile Row,” he said. “I think this fits with the Gresham Blake image. I’m doing my own thing.”
Blake said the studio space, housed on the third floor with rich, gray shag-pile carpets, red suede sofas, and fabric curtains made from pinstripe suiting fabric, was intended to be a lounge for clients. “I wanted it to look classy, but funky. I wanted people to feel at home.”
There are also plans to use the property’s 450-square-foot roof garden for al fresco fittings in summer. Blake said that currently women’s rtw was scheduled for launch in March 2008, but could not give further details on the time frame for his stand-alone London store, or online services.
Prices at Gresham Blake currently run $978 for a rtw suit and $2,526 for a full bespoke suit. Ties retail for $115, and shirts at $115 to $252.
Blake’s current annual sales volume is $2.94 million, but with the introduction of the new London space he hopes to up that figure to $3.59 million. “Everything so far has grown naturally. I want to keep doing what I am doing,” said Blake. “If you have a business, you are always just trying to move it forward.”
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