I returned from New York last week having attended dinner at Le Bernadin to celebrate the opening of Huntsman’s Pied a Terre on 57th Street, also showing the Emma Willis for Huntsman ready to wear shirt collection and Cleverly shoes.
Dinner was hosted by owner Pierre Lagrange who spoke of his enthusiasm and respect for British craftsmanship in tailoring, shoemaking and shirt making, encompassing them all at their new apartment on 57th Street.
I took former Captain Garth Banks as my guest, who is in New York auditioning for the lead part in a new film, and one of the ten injured servicemen kindly given a bespoke suit by Huntsman in their support of Style for Soldiers. Pierre spoke of the pleasure it gave to him and his staff to meet and be able to make suits for the young servicemen. It is easy to imagine how thrilling it is to visit Savile row to be fitted for a bespoke suit, particularly from the inimitable Huntsman who has recently shot to world fame amongst a very wide and much younger audience thanks to ‘ The Kingsman’ starring Michael Caine and Colin Firth.
At dinner in the private Le Bernadin dining rooms I sat next to New York businessman, friend and customer Christopher Heath and Nick Sullivan, British editor of US Esquire. After dinner myself, George of Cleverly Shoes and Mr. Porter’s US editor Dan Rookwood were photographed in front of the Huntsman Pied a Terre Steamer trunk accessorised with the imaginary wardrobe of a 20th century gentleman embarking on a trip by boat from England to New York, and I found myself next to Ed Hayes. US TV Attorney who I had made shirts for on one of my many trips in the 1990’s, kindly introduced to me by father George of Cleverly Shoes on one of our coinciding trunk shows. He politely apologised to me for not continuing to buy over the years, while I remembered his comment to me in my 30’s, as one that lasts, ‘’ You have the right amount of lines on your face Emma to show you have properly lived a bit of life’’, as we mused over the fine Swiss cotton choices!