Absolutely a fantastic read if you want to know the history behind J.Press from the mouth of the man who used to be its president. So many interesting nuggets of information are stored away in this four-part interview, like this bit, when discussing the origins of the J.Press jacket “hook vent”:
IS: And the hook vent?
RP: Up until World War II J. Press was primarily a custom tailor shop. But after the war Irving and Paul decided to manufacture readymade suits, but knew they had to differentiate themselves from competitors.
They noticed that with single-vented jackets, particularly if a guy had a big ass, the vent would separate and it was very unsightly looking. So they developed the hook vent in collaboration with our designer at the time, a survivor from Auschwitz named Felix Samelson who survived by being a tailor to SS officers, so he didn’t make any mistakes.
Press also talks about their competition with Brooks Brothers, moving away from a campus-only shop to an urban retailer and what he thinks of the new Japanese ownership.