Meeting in The Hague

In the week before Christmas, I met Mr. Schaper, a charming older gentleman in The Hague. He lives in a quiet square just behind a busy shopping street. He wears a beautiful checkered suit, a classic coat, and a cool cap. Of course, I would like to know more about his clothing. He likes to tell it during a cup of coffee.

Schaper (1931): “My wife was always the one who made sure I was dressed properly. I worked as a lawyer in a large office, it was a busy job. I didn’t allow myself to spend much time on clothing. But I remember that a friend came to visit once in a nice suit with pointed, cut-open lapels, which was new at the time (around 1970). I was impressed by that, the suit was custom made in London.”

Ontmoeting met een heer van stand in de Hofstad

English tailored

“Because the pound was so low at that time, it was interesting to have a suit made in England. So this is a tailored made suit by Airey and Wheeler in London. On the inside, you can see my name. After that, I ordered two dark blue suits. For the second blue suit, the tailor suggested: “Let’s add a little gaiety …” He meant a very light waist of the jacket. It was an excellent idea. I regularly get a compliment about it. Fortunately, my figure has not changed so I can still wear these suits.”


Mr. Schaper radiates a vitality that I wish all of us to have when we are 88! What is his secret? “Apparently I have the good genes and I am cheerful by nature, that certainly helps too. In addition, I recently started pilates lessons at Aspire Pilates. That certainly benefits my mobility and health.”