No Man Should be Hard to Fit

Everybody seems to have heard of Fletcher Jones trousers.  From 1956, FJs made women's skirts and then gradually increased their range of garments for both men and women.  But Fletcher Jones initially became famous when he turned his business to making only ready-to-wear trousers in scientifically designed sizes that could accomodate most men's shapes. 

Fletcher Jones, with his tailors at 'The Man's Shop' in Warrnambool, focused his business in the depression and war years of the 30's and 40s on producing trousers with high quality fabrics and craftsmanship that offered good value to their customers.  The business consequently began to thrive. In 1944 Fletcher Jones registered FJ Trousers Pty. Ltd and this name took over from 'The Man's Shop'.  

In this process, FJ and his tailors were studying the male shape and concluded they could offer a range of 'fractional fittings' that would suit the shapes of most men.  No Man is Hard to Fit became one of the many famous FJ advertising slogans.    

At first FJ offered his trousers in 72 'scientific' sizes to 120 retail outlets with strict instructions that no FJ trousers could be sold without a fitting.  FJ apparently used to see men in the street wearing his trousers that looked terrible because they didn't fit them properly!  He would go up to them and ask where they bought the trousers and beg them to bring them back and get a new free pair properly fitted.   In answer to this ongoing problem, FJ decided to open his own retail store in 1946 in Collins St. Melbourne, selling only men's trousers available in 72 'scientic' sizes and only with a proper fitting.  From then on FJ trousers could only be purchased from FJ's own retail stores.  The 'mathematically determined' range of sizes was continually added to.  By 1952 there were 134 off the shelf sizes on offer and by the late 70s there were 300 'scientific' sizes just in men's trousers with around 200 fabrics to choose from!  If a man could not be fitted from amongst these sizes on offer, FJs would make them a special order.  

"If you have had previous experince as a clothing salesman, trained in the 'positive salesmanship' you will probably find it difficult to follow the FJ policy of saying "No, no, no", even to the tune of missing sale after sale, rather than allowing customers to purchase anything but a perfect fit, according to accepted FJ standards." From FJ Staff guide booklet.  

132 scientific sizes!
300 scientific sizes!
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If you would like to share images, stories or anecdotes about Fletcher Jones, the man or the business, please contact the Project Coordinator, Julie Eagles, through this website or contact via the Save the Silver Ball and Fletcher’s Gardens Facebook Page.  

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