This weekend at Gallifrey One, I managed to hang out with one of my favorite cosplayers (and good friend) 10nant Cosplay. He’s a fabulous man and an excellent Ten cosplayer, and is quite fond of Magnoli Clothiers and owns a good many pieces from them.
I haven’t purchased any Tennant ties from Magnoli because I’ve been lucky enough to find originals and my funds are limited – each piece I buy needs to be carefully considered and saved for 99% of the time. As such, I haven’t been able to compare Magnoli’s tie work to the originals I own because I don’t own any of Magnoli’s.
Luckily for me (and Magnoli aficionados), I was able to spend some time with Kazran when we both had our Utopia ties on us, mine being an original St. George by Duffer and his being the latest Magnoli replica (his original is currently out on loan).
At first glance, you’ll notice two things: One, the colors don’t quite match, and two, otherwise it’s damn good.
This problem with the colors not matching is actually due to the two-toned weave of the original, which is absent on the Magnoli. The Duffer’s two colors are a very very dark brown and a lighter, more golden brown. Magnoli’s color choice in background color (which is woven correctly, for the record) is a very good average between the two colors and only in certain lightings do the colors not match, as the Duffer has an iridescent quality that changes in different lighting conditions. It’s possible the actual tie manufacturers refused to weave the background in two colors (it wouldn’t be the first time they’d refused such a request), but regardless, if someone was to average the two Duffer colors out, they’d probably hit right where Magnoli’s sits.
Moving on from the background, the actual jaquard pattern is almost 100% perfect. The only place it faulters is in scale, which is so subtly larger and thicker (maybe 5%?) that I had to match the two up to notice that it wasn’t flawless. The actual pattern, however, is perfect.
In terms of colors, only two minor quibbles, in that the pink yarn is a little too saturated, and the blue is a little too light, giving the yarns the tiniest bit more contrast against the dark background. The Duffer’s pink is almost silver, and the blue is closer to the blue on the brown suit, but you still really have to put the two ties next to each other to notice. I mean, think back to when you looked at the first picture I posted – did you notice the extra contrast on the Magnoli tie then? Because I honestly didn’t until I stuck my face right up in it. It’s very subtle and not something anyone would know unless they owned an original and were very familiar with it.
Beyond things demonstrable in photos, the two are an excellent match for size and heft. The Duffer is quite thick (it’s honestly a cheap tie – lovely, but cheap – and sold for £22 when Louise Page bought them) and has almost a polyester feel – Magnoli has interfaced it to a perfect match, and hit for length and width as well. It acts the same way an original does when on, which is fantastic.
Honestly, I’d give this replica a solid A. The minor issues are only noticeable when you have an original up against it, which is why it’s not an A+. I will eventually be picking one up for use at cons where I don’t want to risk losing my original.
Speaking of solid Magnoli replicas, I caught a Ten cosplayer roaming the con floor with an original Armani at Gallifrey One, only I didn’t recognize this cosplayer and I’m pretty sure I know everyone who goes to Gally who owns an original. I knew it wasn’t a Magnoli because I own an original Armani myself and know the way it catches the light and I know that Magnoli’s replicas fall short in that category, not to mention the color was much better than the Magnoli. Because of this, I made sure I stopped him to chat about his tie, as I wanted to get to know him and learn what he did to secure an original Armani.
I did finally get my chance down on the Ballroom level near the restrooms, where I asked about his tie. He happily stated “It’s from Magnoli!” and pulled it out to show me.
Apparently I’ve only seen the new tie in the unfortunate “French blue” colorway (a mistake from the manufacturer). Unfortunately, I was wearing Matt Smith attire and was unable to compare the Armani to Magnoli’s excellent interpretation. We chatted for a while, he was (apparently) interested to hear me drone on and on about the original and how Magnoli’s compared based on my (very positive!) observations, until we were suddenly interrupted!
In my tie-obsessed stupor, I hadn’t even noticed that the entire con floor had erupted in laughs and screams. When I finally asked what had happened, I was informed that the group of cosplayers DIRECTLY NEXT TO ME (other friends of mine, whose photo I considered joining until I noticed the “Armani” walking by) were photobombed by none other than John Barrowman, who proceeded to get on his hands and knees, grab the junk of the Capt. Jack cosplayer who was laying on the floor, and then escape to the bathroom!
You’ll notice my face peeking out JUST behind the Ten cosplayer, deep in discussion about Armanis and Magnolis and ties of all sorts.
We waited around for him to come out of the bathroom, hoping he may get in on another photo, but he scrambled away, presumably cackling with glee.
I would have been in that picture too, if it hadn’t been for my horrible obsession with Tennant ties and that Magnoli!
Oh well. There’s always next year, right? Now, how much would it cost to do a Captain Jack…