Five years ago, Rae Tutera (then Rachel Tutera) had a fitting for a made-to-measure suit. “At the time it was very difficult or me to explain to the tailor what I wanted from him,” the Bindle & Keep clothier told Observer via phone Sunday. “I think he had a really hard time because I wasn’t really legible to him. It was both disorienting because I didn’t know about custom suits, but on top of that, I had to explain to him over and over again that even though he thought I was beautiful, which was nice, I still wanted a men’s suit. I wanted him to make me handsome.” It was that experience in a Midtown East tailoring shop that was a foundation for Mx. Tutera—who identifies as trans-masculine and prefers neutral pronouns like they—to get into tailoring.
“That was the perfect groundwork for me to approach fittings with certain sensitivities and even more open-mindedness than I already possessed,” Mx. Tutera explained.