Where do you find your inspiration?
Many things inspire me; my heritage, different cultures, art and nature but I am mostly inspired by people and personalities.
Style is so unique and individual and I love being involved in the process of creating a garment for a unique individual.
Is there anywhere in the world you love to travel to for inspiration?
Italy is always a source of inspiration for me and I can’t get enough of it. My family is Italian and I have been lucky enough to travel back there often. Each region, city and village has a totally different story to tell and its style and traditions are unique. It still amazes me that even after so many visits I am constantly inspired by something new that captures my attention. The north of Italy really embraces a formal way of dressing whilst the south has softer more relaxed approach to tailoring.
What should a groom know before getting his suit tailored?
That it is your wedding day too! And you are allowed to wear whatever you like. Your wedding is not the time to be too experimental and you should go for a style that makes you feel comfortable.
Whether your suit is more formal, traditional or relaxed, always choose a colour that compliments your skin tones and don’t focus too much on trend. Trends come and go and your wedding style should be more timeless. Likewise with silhouette, do not go asking for an ultra tight suit. They are never flattering and you will look uncomfortable.
Instead, ask for a beautifully fitted suit that sits nicely around the shoulders and chest and tapers through the waist. Trousers should be tailored nicely through the leg allowing the fabric to drape and not pull.
Why tailored rather than off the shelf?
You will always a get a better fit with a tailored suit and you get to design every little detail. Off the shelf, on the one hand comes with its limitations, you don’t get to choose the actual fabric and you have to choose from a pre-designed size ready made. A tailor will enhance your features but also correct your posture and allow for more a flattering fit.
What trends are you seeing for 2019/2020?
I try not to focus too much on trends, I prefer to work with individual style and create something that has more longevity and versatility. However textile trends really do excite me! We are seeing a great deal of innovation in blended wool, silk and wool linen fabrics which are light weight, breathable and durable. These textiles are often textured and woven with interesting patterns, which make for a far more interesting suit.
Colour trends at the moment are also very natural, with an emphasis on greens and browns and even soft pastel hues. I love bold patterns and checks, but they are not for the faint hearted. If you prefer to go for something a little more classic you can always reflect these tends in your shirt, ties or other accessories.
What’s your favourite style for a groom?
I love a tuxedo. The groom should always be the best-dressed man in the room and who can compete with a man in tux? Unless of course the dress code for all of your guests is Black Tie, in which case the groom has to step it up a notch. This is where he may consider a white dinner jacket with satin lapels or even a contrast dinner jacket. Burgundy and emerald green has been particularly popular of late so have brocade and paisley woven fabrics. They will make you stand out from the crowd.
What’s hot in ties?
I love anything textured. In particular Shantung or Grenadine silk.
Shantung is a slub weave silk which is quite raw looking. It is a traditional Chinese method of weaving silk and I love the coarse texture. Grenadine is an open weave silk made famous in Italy. It also looks knitted but the large open weave nature of the cloth gives a linen look.
What tie, shirt and belt combo work best with a grey suit?
Grey is one of the most versatile colour suits you could ever own. You could go for a more elegant look and keep it monochromatic with a white shirt and black or dark tie, just make sure you shoes and belt are black also! For a more fun day time look, wear a pale pink shirt (or any other soft pastel colour), a pink tie to compliment and brown shoes and belt. This look is great for a garden wedding or even the Spring Racing Carnival.
What tie, shirt and belt combo goes best with a navy suit?
Anything you like. Navy is definitely the most versatile suit you will have in your wardrobe. And it’s my favourite. Every single colour works with navy. You can wear black shoes and belt with a white shirt and navy blue tie for a very corporate look or introduce soft pastels colours, or even deep colours such as burgundy, red and green. Brown shoes and brown belt always work, but if you’re a little braver, tan shoes work a treat too.
What do people need to know before going “White Tie”?
White is the most formal of attire within Western civilisation. It consists of a black coat with tails, black trousers, a white starched piquet cotton waistcoat, white dinner shirt with wing tip collar and a white bow tie. White Tie is the evening counter part to traditional English morning attire, where a coat and tails is worn with a three-piece ensemble. If you are planning white tie for your wedding, you will want to ensure that your guests follow suit, otherwise stick to Black Tie.
What is the most unique suit you have ever created for someone?
I once made a suit for a client out his family tartan. Rather than wearing a kilt and traditional Scottish attire we created a three-piece suit made out of his red and green checked cloth which had been custom woven especially for the day. The suit was accessorised with a black tie and white shirt and looked like it was more of a Vivienne Westwood punk rocker creation. I initially had my doubts but by the end of it, the suit looked amazing and I absolutely loved it.
How do you feel about sneakers and suits? How does one pull this look off?
Sneakers and suits certainly work in the right setting and on the right person. I personally don’t wear my suits this way, but it can be done. However, be sure you have the right sneakers. You cannot wear trainers or shoes you would usually wear to gym. You need to go for a white or tan sand shoe or something very plain. You must also pay special attention to the trousers. Ensuring the length is cut slightly shorter so that it sits on top of the shoe and not over the shoe. I would opt for a cuffed trouser and wear no sock.
How do you feel about the no socks look?
This is definitely acceptable. Whenever you wear a loafer or sneaker with a suit or trouser and sport jacket ensemble, the no sock look is called for. Once again ensure the trousers are nicely tapered through the leg and are cut just on the ankle so as it to reveal a bit of skin.
This is a very European look and is quickly becoming accepted here in Australia.
Located in the heart of Melbourne’s fashion precinct, Carl Navè’s Bourke Street studio offers a unique made-to-measure experience. Combining the art of bespoke with fashion design and textile expertise, each piece is carefully crafted with an emphasis on style, fit and comfort. Born in Williamstown, Melbourne to Italian parents, Carl Nave comes from a family of tailors, and has been sewing since the age of six.
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