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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Gentlemen,

I've been driving myself a bit mad trying to purchase a black grosgrain 3 button formal waistcoat to wear with my DJ. I know polo purple label used to carry a four button a while ago, but it seems no longer. Any advice would be much appreciated. Thank you.
 

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The website says it is barathea. I don't know what the difference is between barathea and grosgrain. I hope someone who does will weigh in.
 

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Barathea is a sort of thick wool, almost like felt but not that stiff. When describing silk, it means it has a texture to it and is not shiny like satin. Grosgrain (faille, ottoman, etc) are ribbed or corded silks (think ribbons).

I would think a waistcoat made completely out of grosgrain would be too light (unless you use pure silk ottoman which has more weight to it).
 

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The waistcoat pictured is wool with self faced lapels. Personally I would have no problem wearing a wool or cotton self-faced waistcoat with a dinner jacket. Another option, which is traditionally nice with a dinner jacket, would be a wool or cotton waistcoat with a u shaped opening, possibly double breasted, that may not have lapels at all, or may have a shawl collar.
 

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Barathea is a sort of thick wool, almost like felt but not that stiff. When describing silk, it means it has a texture to it and is not shiny like satin. Grosgrain (faille, ottoman, etc) are ribbed or corded silks (think ribbons).

I would think a waistcoat made completely out of grosgrain would be too light (unless you use pure silk ottoman which has more weight to it).
I would agree that it would be too light, I'd look for a heavier fabric
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I imagine then that bespoke is the only way to go to get a heavier fabric and then get the waistcoat's lapels in grosgrain. Any suggestions of who I could go through to get this made? I live in DC.
 

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The waistcoat pictured is wool with self faced lapels.
It's silk, not wool.

As far as I can tell, the question at hand is whether silk barathea is very different from grosgrain. The OP might just bring the dinner jacket to the local BB (the one on Connecticut Avenue) and see how closely the vest matches the lapels of the DJ.
 

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It probably won't but if it is different enough it might be OK. You want either exact match or distinct difference.

Black brocade, for example, can complement grosgrain lapels well.
 

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I own the BB waistcoat shown. I can offer that it looks perfect with my Ralph Lauren dinner jacket (single-breasted/peak lapel of course).

It did take a bit of cajoling though, my local BB store acted at first like they didn't have one... then relented and let me order it directly (after I showed it to them on their website via my Blackberry).
:pic12337:
 

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I think Robert Talbott makes what you are looking for ....

a black faille waistcoat to wear with a grosgrain peak lapel tuxedo. I know I had a hard time finding a faille tie and cummerbund and Robert Talbott made one. Hansens or Direct Clothiers may have one. Just google Robert Talbott formal waistcoat.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
no luck with the Robbert Talbott. They do has a faille cummerbund, but not a waistcoat. I called my contact at polo and they're going to try to track down the PL waistcoat for me in my size. It's expensive, but I'm sick of trying to find what I'm looking for. Hopefully that will turn out well. Let me know if you can think of any vendors who would carry such an item.
 

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From the Fabrics Chapter of The Encyclopedia of Men's Clothes:

Barathea: An indistinct twill or broken rib, usually a twilled hopsack weave, with a fine texture, and slightly pebbled surface. Often of silk or silk blended with wool, Used for neckties, women's fine suits and coats, and men's evening wear.
 

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RLPL

I was in the same situation and with patience scored a RLPL grosgrain backless waistcoat on ebay for a bin of $110. They retailed at $395, but as you noted, they are nearly impossible to find in the stores. I even called the mansion in NY when I was looking. Note that they are number sized like suits and not M,L,XL etc. Length is handled by adjustable button neck strap.

I like it better than the Brooks one, but both are nice and definitely not too light as has been mentioned. You'll be glad they are backless to stay cooler, especially if you dance.

The Ben Silver brocade model looks good, but I haven't actually seen one.

Good luck!
 
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