VM choice: Hilditch & Key hands

Edging its shallow windows towards summer is men’s formalwear and bespoke tailor Hilditch & Key.

Based in London’s Jermyn Street on an enviably large corner site, the backboards on either side of the long window are a spring-like, lime-yellow, bearing serried ranks of pink collars and cuffs in different styles. With wing-tipped, cut away or button-down collars, and barreled, winged or double cuffs, there is a bespoke option here for every well dressed man.

Dividing the left and right windows is a pile of picnic baskets, complete with tailor’s tools, all set on faux grass.

Containing metre rules, a tape measure, shears, shirting and lining fabrics, and the all important appointment book, the picnic baskets set on the grass suggest a light, carefree mood, and the tailor’s mobility. A small screen showing a customer being measured for a suit serves to reassure a novice bespoke customer of the process required to create a suit that fits perfectly and looks totally wonderful.

The part closed-back/part carriage window showcases folded shirts and ties, umbrellas and briefcases, all held by wooden glove mannequin hands, either projecting from the side wall of the windows or from the carriage-window backboards. The effect combines to make the customer feel as though their appearance has been tweaked to perfection, with the hands straightening a tie, offering an umbrella or handing over a briefcase.

In to the side window rows of wooden mannequin fists proffer pre-knotted ties in a spectrum of solid colour. Adding a vertical row of bright red ties to the left of the pink/pale blue/golden yellow ones gives the pastel ties a little sharpness, the stronger colour attracting more attention. Beside them are two suited mannequins. While one ties ‘his’ own tie, the other casually thrusts a hand in a pocket. Formal but casual: a very nice message that promises something for every customer.

Hilditch & Key CEO Steven Millar’s concept, beautifully executed by Visual Merchandising specialist, Francesca Zagari, makes this store look relevant, interesting, smart, and fashionable. Exactly what Jermyn Street needs to attract a new generation of men, all ready to fall in love with bespoke suits and tailored accessories.

Images: Francesca Zagari