Lot 144 of 253:
Superb trade catalog for The Royal Tailors 1912-13 season  

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Lot closed - Sold For (Includes Buyers Premium):$1,020
$1,500 - $2,500

"Pay Less and Dress Better." - Trade catalog for The Royal Tailors, Fall & Winter Season 1912-13

Royal Tailors

Chicago & New York

The Royal Tailors



64 pp. printed on thick card stock, each leaf mounted on linen hinge. 21 color plates, 5 leaves with color-illustrated borders very much inspired by the art of Maxfield Parrish, some sample leaves w/ color-printed borders and designs, head-pieces with Tiger logo in color, decorations, and charts, a few plates in black & white showing a birds-eye view of the Royal Tailors Plants in Chicago & New York, portrait of Vehon family founder on front pastedown. Contents include some 500 mounted textile samples in wool, wool-rayon blends, silk, cashmere, tweeds, silk stripe flannels, and more. (Folio) 55x48 cm (21¾x18¾") original full black embossed cloth, gilt lettering on front cover and spine, color lithograph illustration of a Tiger, the company mascot, mounted on front cover.

Scarce salesman sample catalog for Edwardian-era men’s suits in the Fall and Winter of 1912 and 1913. Royal Tailors maintained huge tailoring operations in both Chicago and New York, and this volume represents one of their largest and most lavishly illustrated catalogs. This catalog is the most expansive and largest of the series issued by the company in 1912 and 1913, with 500 samples, and additional pages. A couple of the color plates show men being measured for suits in their sales room with Mission Tables, Mission Settees, and Royal Tailor advertising signs in the background. These catalogs were very expensive to produce and so were most often found in department stores, mercantile, and men’s stores which would have these catalogs on the sales floor for two years, or more.

This work offers a splendid example of American commercial art and color printing during the Arts & Crafts era, providing an invaluable illustrated historical reference for the colours, styles, and fabrics prior to World War I, showing men at the country club, shooting pool, at the office, on the deck of an ocean liner, and many with beautifully dressed women in the background, along with the suit backs inset in lozenges at the lower corner. Mitchell (1885-1940) worked as an advertising artist, cartoonist, and actor, and his illustrations were published in The Saturday Evening Post, the Springfield Republican, The Brooklyn Daily Eagle, McCalls, Physical Culture, and more. Loewi illustrated for Royal Tailors, J.L. Taylor, and contributed fashion art to many magazines while living in Chicago and New York. Joseph Vehon (1834 – 1918) was a pioneer in the idea of wholesale merchant tailoring, and built one of the largest firms of its type in the world. He had emigrated from Poland to the United States just before the Civil War, and initially founded a dry goods store which failed, and began building a thriving business across eastern Texas as a traveling store with large wagons of stock. He later established his clothing store in Iowa in 1870, and was one of the first to offer a money back guarantee if the customer was not satisfied. His business took off, and within 20 years he was building an empire which would expand to over 10,000 towns and cities across the United States. his children Morris Vehon (1876-1950) and Emma Vehon, continued to build and expand upon the company success employing over 2000 tailors and seamstresses at its height. No copies located in Worldcat; See; Nationalizing the Long Distance Tailoring Idea, In: Printers’ Ink, Vol. 103, pp 72-80 (1918).

Lot Amendments

Minor wear to binding, some samples with very minor insect predation to edges; near fine.

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