Bespoke Prodigy

Paolo Martorano is well aware that measurements are just a set of numbers—the foundation of bespoke tailoring that barely captures the soul of the wearer. Says his Grammy-winning client, John Pizzarelli, “I had a lawyer who said his suits were armor. They were what the jury saw him in, and it influenced his case outcomes.” Perhaps that legal eagle missed Joe Pesci’s iconic performance in My Cousin Vinny…nonetheless, the point remains well taken and such is the impact of Paolo Martorano’s brilliant tailoring on his loyal legion of impeccably dressed clients.

Paolo Martorano

Which has resulted in a long line of devoted patrons who want to join the club of sartorially splendid gents who have followed this Pied Piper of bespokeness from Manhattan, down the Eastern Seaboard to Palm Beach. Evoking the current Gilded Age phenomenon, this magazine’s very own David Patrick Columbia has said, “We never think of a well dressed man actually buying his clothes. Many have the same passion that Paolo holds for bespoke tailoring. They buy for quality—how it’s made. And they want something that is going to fit exactly the same as their last order.” Needless-to-say, Paolo never disappoints.

The natural product of an Italian family chock-full of tailors, Paolo did his apprentice work studying under the celebrated eye of Alan Flusser. He then directed the custom shirt department for six years at Paul Stuart, where the legendary taste of Clifford Grodd was still in evidence. A shorter term at Dunhill followed, where he schooled himself in the Brit’s cultivated Savile Row style of refined fitting. Itching with fashionable entrepreneurism, Paolo soon opened his own clubby atelier on West 57th Street, where much of the needle work is still created.

His devoted clientele take comfort in knowing that Paolo’s suitings are truly hand sewn, and not just made-to-measure—more than a subtle distinction in bespoke shaping and trimming. Says the master himself: “I’m much in favor of restrained elegance—not overly designed or gimmicked up with trendy little touches.” From his meticulous shoulder construction to his hand cut buttonholes, Paolo has emerged as the new standard for genuine custom menswear. Brava!