The Merchant Fox opened in 2011 as an an online marketplace linked to cloth makers Fox Brothers. This site brings together many local artisans including leather tanners, belt makers and basket weavers. One of the things they offer, which caught my attention early on, is dressing gowns made out of Fox Bros “West of England” flannel. This dressing gowns are made in collaboration with Buddof Mayfair and come with a shawl collar, patch pockets, turn-back cuffs and contrasting piping.
Early this year I ordered a dressing gown to be made up in a classic chalk windowpane flannel. TMF also offer hand-embroiders initials which I decided have sewn on the breast pocket. After a very friendly email conversation with the people at The Fox Merchant, to verify size and letters to be embroider, I was told that my dressing gown was being made at Budd’s in London and that it would take approximately 4 weeks. Almost four weeks to the day, I got an email saying the dressing gown was ready to be shipped, and today the mailman was kind enough to deliver it to my house.
I must say that the finished product exceeds even my rather high expectations. The cloth is a wonderfully soft flannel that will come in handy for keeping me warm on cold winter days around the house. The web site states that the dressing gowns are generously cut, and I settled on a size “Large”, which according to the people at TMF corresponds to my usual jacket size of 42. After trying it on, it is indeed roomy, but not excessively so, and it generally seems to be a good fit size wise. I assume it will take a while to “break in” the cloth, just like on a new suit, and I expect the dressing gown to the mould to my particular body shape over time. I am really excited to try it out…..
Simon Crompton wrote a post about The Merchant Fox on Permanent Style right after they launched in 2011, that provides some more background information on the company.