THE GILIBERTO FAMILY / GILIBERTO DESIGNS
What percentage are you doing theater versus customers coming in?
I have to tell you, the entertainment business is through the roof. My regular retail clientele, remember we deal with an affluent clientele, these are major guys they’re ceo’s and business owners. From the year of 2003 when things started getting rocky, I got involved with a costume designer and from there it just multiplied and kind of snow-balled and now I’m an entertainment tailor believe it or not.
What is it that is different that your doing for them versus a person coming in off of the street?
Nothing. Made the same way, all the same quality. It’s just that they provide me with their fabrics as opposed to me giving my client a choice of choosing fabrics. They come in and pick their own fabrics, my clients, but in theatre, tv, entertainment, they supply me with the materials and sketches. I make the garments based upon their sketches.
This is not what I was expecting walking into your operation.
They think I’m like a little Guipeddo sitting behind the counter sewing one stitch at a time. So when they se me they’re like, “you’re too young to be doing this.” And say I’ve been doing this my whole life.
Are you a tailor by trade?
My father, my brother, the whole family, we’re a family operated business. The whole Wolf of Wallstreet thing—I used to deal with those guys, the original people. I could draw them Belforts, I took care of the entire firm. And then they came to me when he wrote the book. He wrote the book in jail believe it or not and they have a page about me in the book. And it just so happens that the costume designer whose going to do the movie, she read the book and she came in here and we went through everything and we did everything based upon what they were wearing back in the 80’s and the 90’s. It turned out to be a good thing cause we had just finished out the Irishman with the same costume designer. Now the Irishman is a new movie that is going to be coming out next year. It’s Scorsese, Deniro, Pesci, it’s a whole new movie. Wait til you see this movie, it’ll be out in 2019. We just finished that with the same costume designer that we did the Wolf of Wall street..
Were the fabrics the same fabrics?
They shopped the fabrics, she had her own vision of what they were doing. I can show you Jordan’s actual folder that we done for him back in the early days and see all the colorations and things that we did. She came in and saw all that and just kind of, they didn’t want to copy exactly, but they wanted to kind of take it and improvise a little bit.
What do people want in terms of clothing? Do they want a more tapered leg, shorter jacket?
Everything is shorter, fitted. You know, you gotta make it to what the client really wants, I mean if a guy who has a thicker body, it doesn’t work, you could try it and you’re gonna make him look like a fool, basically. So I try to give a guy comfort, with a little style, nothing over-the-top. I mean if a guy wants this really skinny suit, I can do it, but again, you have to be a really skinny guy to carry that off.
So a little narrower on the pants, jackets, lower rise?
Lower short rise, and that’s basically what they want. And now if you take the entertainment business, everything is period. 70’s. 80’s, remember, we just did Pretty Woman the musical, which will be here in July, that’s if you recall all 1990’s looks, Richard Gere with wide shoulders, baggy pants, pleated trousers, today that doesn’t go.
How did you get started in theater?
We took on a Broadway Show back in 2002, our first one and Barry Manilow was the producer…you know who Barry Manilow is… It was called Harmony. So we made all are own clothing, it was our first show, some money, some deposit…at the last minute, Barry Manilow and the producers pulled the money. I got stuck with all of it. My first loss, but it was my best loss because the designer of that show said, “don’t worry, Anthony, I’ll make it up to you, I promise you. I’ll introduce you to some of the other designers.” Low and behold he’s introduced me to everybody. And this is kind of how we started; it’s the theatre business. And the theatre business went from one loss to like we probably did like 150 shows in the last 15 years.