Launching “Walter Beauchamp: A Tailored History of Toronto”
Over the last week, Terry Beauchamp and I had the great pleasure of hosting two events for the launch of our book about his company’s – and Toronto’s – history.
First we had a get together at King Street East’s Galerie Beauchamp (no relation, not even pronounced the same way – more about that in the book). We were honoured to have famed Canadian military history writer Ted Barris introduce us and lead a discussion about how the book came to be.
Historian and writer Ted Barris MCing our launch night talk with Terry and myself.
Terry and I were thrilled by the turnout. A number of Hogtown Rake readers were in attendance while the majority of the crowd were long time Beauchamp customers and friends. There were also plenty of family present. And this is going to sound like a humble brag, but isn’t: I regret not being able to chat with more people as we ended up spending the entire evening signing copies of the book.
Happily signing books with Terry at the Galerie Beauchamp.
Amongst the attendees were Beauchamp customers who remember the earlier generation of the family, Terry’s father Walter.
With Judge Donald Dodds, long time Beauchamp customer, who I interviewed for the book.
And we were both humbled and thankful that Harry Rosen himself – who was kind enough to provide a statement for the back of the book – attended the launch.
With Canadian menswear retailing luminary Harry Rosen.
And then just yesterday, Terry and I hosted a special evening at Toronto’s Royal Canadian Military Institute. Not only does the RCMI museum house a number of Beauchamp military garments stretching back to the First World War, a fair amount of the tailoring photography in the book was shot in the RCMI’s lovely dark-wood library. Having this discussion on military tailoring surrounded by the history of the RCMI’s medals room was a moving experience.
Terry and I during our military tailoring talk at the RCMI.
Terry and I touched on the history and significance of the garments on display as well as the stories of the soldiers who wore them.
A mess kit from 1930 and a Greatcoat from 1940, both tailored by Beauchamp’s and featured in the book.
We were also happy to welcome a number of special guests to the event including Harry Rosen, Beauchamp’s most recent master tailor Alfonso Prezioso and none other than Gordon Lightfoot, who wrote the foreword to the book.
With Canadian songwriting legend Gordon Lightfoot.
My huge personal thanks to everyone to attended these events, showed your love and support and, of course, to those who bought the book. It was a remarkable week.
A few signed copies of Walter Beauchamp: A Tailored History of Toronto are still available. Please contact me if you are interested.