When journalist Meg Lukens Noonan learned of an unthinkably expensive, entirely handcrafted overcoat that a fourth-generation tailor had made for one of his longtime clients, she set off on an adventure to understand its provenance, and from that impulse unspooled rich and colorful stories about its components, the centuries-old bespoke industry and its traditions, and the master craftsmen whose trade is an art form.
Featuring a cast of offbeat, obsessed, and wildly entertaining characters, The Coat Route presents a rich tapestry of local masters, individual artisans, and family-owned companies that have stood against the tide of mass consumerism. As Noonan comes to realize, these craftsmen, some of whom find themselves on the brink of retirement with no obvious successors, have increasing reason to believe that their way is the best way--best for their customers, best for the environment, and best for the quality of life of all involved. The Coat Route is a love song to things of lasting value.
"A fabulous story, brilliantly told . . . I couldn't have enjoyed it more."--Bill Bryson
Meg Lukens Noonan spent ten years as a correspondent for "Outside" magazine and has written for "The New York Times, National Geographic Adventure, Travel + Leisure, Esquire, Men's Journal, Vogue," and many other publications. She lives in New Hampshire.
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In today’s world of fast fashion, is there a place for a handcrafted $50,000 coat?