Boutique Tailoring House Racondier designs modern suits that nod to traditionalism and crafts high-quality, custom pieces that perfectly complement your style. Owner Chris Callisto talks to South Australian Style about menswear fashion, suit trends and Racondier’s timeless designs.
You have 15 years of experience in the fashion industry. Why did you decide to launch your label, Racondier?
I’ve worked for several brands in the premium and luxury menswear space. These are the places I learnt my craft, cut my teeth and was exposed to quality products. But I’ve always been a creatively-minded person who wants to manifest my ideas in the world. The only way to do that was to go out on my own.
Tell us more about Racondier.
We’re a boutique tailoring house. We offer a refreshing and modern perspective on custom menswear. We want to create our own world to invite people into. We’re quirky – it’s soulful, it’s exciting, it’s nostalgic, it’s modern, it’s classic. Even our suits and shirts have a style unique to the house. It’s subtle, but it’s there.
You say Racondier’s made-to-measure pieces are a ‘modern twist on a time-honoured practice’. How are you achieving this fresh perspective?
We really respect traditionalism and high-quality craftsmanship. But it’s still important to be progressive in what we do and bring our ideas to the table. Our garments are super clean, minimal and elegant. We’ve tried to strip it back. [Racondier] is an interesting mix of classic design– which is what we’re inspired by – with our own contemporary spin.
Your custom suits are perfect for wedding days. In your opinion, why should grooms consider a custom-designed outfit?
A special day requires a special suit. I think it has to mean something to the person wearing it. A tailor-made suit will take a little longer than choosing something off the rack, but the patience in the process – the fabric selection, the fittings – adds to the theatre of the wedding day. It makes the suit represent the significance of the day. Plus, you can influence the feel of the fabric and the fit throughout the process.
Walk us through the process of having a custom suit designed.
It’s a three-step process, that takes between four to six weeks. Firstly, we’ll have a casual chat in our salon, and if you’re interested, we’ll look at fabrics and record your body measurements. Then, after four weeks, you’ll come and try on the suit, and we can make small adjustments. Lastly, you’ll come to pick up the product! However, during the process we often see the groom, their partner or their friends more. We want the salon to feel like a second home – you can have a martini, enjoy a cigar and listen to vinyl. Our garments are built on body measurements. We recommend people start the made to measure process two to three months before the wedding so that they’re comfortable for time.
What are the next big trends for groom fashion?
We’re seeing a real casualisation of weddings, but I think the wheel will spin back the other way. There’ll always be space for the classic black tuxedo. It’s timeless. And I think soon we’ll see something more extravagant, like more velvet, silks and dinner jackets. Something a little more glamorous.
How can grooms incorporate their personal style into their wedding fashion?
With the made-to-measure process it’s easier to weave in your style. Fabric selection is a big one, as is the lining selection – a subtle detail only you know about. Wedding fashion also doesn’t have to be about your personal style, it can also be something you’ve never done before, and will never wear again, so it’s special and unique to your wedding day! It can swing two ways: understated or overstated. It depends on the vibe you want to give off.
You also have a range of ready-to-wear clothes. Where do you draw design inspiration?
I’m influenced by different creative art forms, like cinema and music. Some pieces are inspired by places I’ve visited recently, like Lake Como. Not necessarily fashion I’ve seen there, but pieces I thought would be cool to wear in that atmosphere. Even emotions, like nostalgia, are a big one for me – just trying to capture that emotion in a garment. I don’t gravitate towards one particular inspiration, I find it everywhere.