August 4, 2008

Design that Fits

It takes time to make something beautiful. Tailor Joseph Centofanti knows this from head to toe. He owns and operates a tailor shop in Ardmore, Pennsylvania, where he’s been making custom suits for 51 years. All done by hand. This focused practice of craft required a successor who is Joseph Genuardi, a design graduate of Carnegie Mellon. There are clients who travel far to be fitted, but tailoring can be described as localized design in which tailors bring their services to distant locations in addtion to their own. Genuardi didn’t have to travel far to seek his passion for design by hand. He discovered Centofanti’s shop, observed the owner at work and became hooked. The two Josephs have more in common than their first names. They appreciate the relationship between fabric and human anatomy. They appreciate the value of craft and the rewarding dedication to it. “It takes a long time to learn, and the more I learn, the more I know it takes longer. And I’m OK with that, because I love what I’m doing,” Genuardi says. His mentor’s guiding statement of “We make the suit to fit the person, not the person to fit the suit” drives Genuardi’s sensibility to proportion and scale, from calculation to final cut. As Centofanti believes, “It’s about them, not me.” Genuardi strives to satisfy customers with design that fits.