Label watch - Rake

Something’s stirring in Mayfair menswear. A new breed of big-thinking young tailors has arrived, from the slick, modern aesthetic of A Sauvage to the more traditional take of Patrick Grant at E Tautz. Leading the charge is new label , which was established in 2009 by Clive Darby (Richard James’s former right-hand man and one-time sales director of Savile Row mainstay, Kilgour) and Will Adams (who also worked at Kilgour).

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“Our customers tend to be quite young, but we also make clothes for captains of industry,” says Darby. “Rake is all about separates. We want men to be freed from the constraints of the three-piece suit. If they want to wear a dress jacket with jeans, they can.”

Rake’s garments are cut for lean frames and a far cry from the boxy suit/cut-away shirt combinations manufactured by some more established houses. But there’s no compromise on quality: the clothes are immaculately tailored with acute attention to detail — and a price to match; an off-the-peg suit will leave you with little change from two grand.

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“We’ve just presented a brand new collection called Rake Lounge,” says Darby. “The styling is the same, but it’s more about laid-back eveningwear. There are even T-shirts in there.” The collection hits stores in October. There’s currently no standalone Rake shop, but the label’s rapid success (the Far East is gobbling up Rake clothes by the container load) would suggest it’s not far off. Stocked in Matches and Harrods in the UK and Lane Crawford in Hong Kong, is a return to Darby’s old patch on the cards?

“We want to open our first store in Mayfair, obviously,” says Darby. “Somewhere men can relax and hang out.” So then: next stop, Savile Row.

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