Quick Study in Neapolitan Shoulders

When commissioning a bespoke jacket in Naples, the choice of which shoulder construction to use tends to fall into two main categories. 

Much has been said, written and many diagrams drawn on the topic, so rather than post yet another essay, we thought we would share a quick photo comparison to illustrate the differences.

Showing here side by side, two beautiful examples from the master tailors at Sartoria Formosa in Napoli :

  • Spalla cadente morbida (regular soft construction) : First two pictures of the navy birdseye suit. The shoulder is still very soft with minimal padding but the seam allowances inside the sleevehead are pressed open to give a slight bit of volume. The shoulder is “cleaner” than the second example.

  • Spalla manica a camicia (shirt sleeve construction) : second set of pictures of the blue nailhead flannel. Constructed like a shirt with a lapped seam along the shoulder line, and seam allowances are folded up and pressed up inside the shoulder. The sleeve is also cut a tad fuller at the sleevehead to create the shirring seen here when inserted into the armscye, which gives a little bit of extra freedom of movement.

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