In memory of George Dyer The Threadneedleman

Screenshot 20220329 093129

Whenever we spoke on the phone Georgie always told me I had a smile in my voice. The truth was the laughter and the smile was for him.

Speaking usually from our respective studios I pictured him surrounded by offcuts of fabric (‘We call it cabbage in the trade Eddie!’), his beloved Bob Marley looking down on him, needle and thread not far from his fingers and a full handwritten order book with much tickling up of garments to be done.

Screenshot 20220329 092920

Screenshot 20220329 093013

When he put the phone down I imagined he’d probably close the book, push back his specs and stroll next door to Amore cafe where he was resident sage, comforter and general philosopher to the people of the Walworth road. Of course it was called Amore and indeed everyone loved him there. George was surrounded by love and he was a vessel for it, pouring it into his beautiful family and his friends and customers.

Screenshot 20220329 092950

I will miss our chats over a green tea and a cappuccino in Amore cafe very much. George would tell me tales of leaving Jamaica for freezing London as a youngster and his musician father. We would catch up on family and the faces we knew while he sipped his tea and supped his soup.

Before long we would discuss wider matters and our conversation would take a deeper turn, expanding into spiritual matters and universal consciousness. We would always agree and I would leave lightened of cares and woes and enlightened about my place in the universe and my place in George’s world. Two empty cups left on the Formica, two replenished souls.

Screenshot 20220329 092710~2

We all left George feeling that way. Anyone who entered the threshold of his shop and cared seriously about smutter left that place a better version of themselves. I sometimes had the pleasure of sitting in his shop watching him work, watching his eyes dart around a person’s figure, clocking their desires and calculating their needs.

Cloth samples were perused, lining combinations explored, lapels debated, pockets elaborated over, vents negotiated and cloth buttons discussed. Small details that collectively reveal a much bigger picture.

Screenshot 20220329 092901

Then came the intimate shared look in the mirror as customer and craftsman were united in their best enterprise.

And finally I saw him gently steer customers towards outcomes that would make strangers stop them in the street and ask where their suit came from.

Screenshot 20220329 092819

It’s rare to be in the presence of true craftsmanship these days. You have to be obsessive to be a craftsperson, long lonely hours that come at a price to yourself and those you love. Your focus isn’t to make money, it’s on making the thing you love.

Often I’d drive down the Walworth Road of an evening and see Georgie’s workshop light on. It was a comfort to see that light but I know that obsession of that kind takes a physical toll and now his light has gone out too soon.

Screenshot 20220329 093117

George taught me the only phrase that describes what I do and it was his mantra too, Rock of Eye, meaning to do things by instinct rather than scientific means- feeling your way gently towards a conclusion, never pre judging and placing as much weight on error as trial. A true labour of love.

I will miss his friendship with Mark Baxter, the two of them in full colourful flow was like a Walworth Road double act of old. I will miss the big hugs (‘You’ve lost weight boy!’) and firm handshakes, but mostly his gentle wisdom.

He would always leave me with these words when we talked of the love and care we felt for those we knew and the creative life we had embarked upon,

‘Well Eddie, it’s what we do innit!’

RIP George

Nulli Secundus

Screenshot 20220329 093059

Screenshot 20220329 093037


Screenshot 20220329 093026


‘Rock Of Eye’ Mr George Dyer, Threadneedleman Tailor and Philosopher of the Walworth Road, Nulli Secundus 

Threadneedleman tailors walworth road rock of eye nulli secundus









  Comment: 24

  1. Nice words Ed, I only went to George’s shop half a dozen times or so, during the course of having a couple of suits made up. So can’t claim to know him very well, from my perspective, you just always came away with a big smile after chatting with him. But everything you’ve said resonates.

    • Thanks John. You really did. I’m so glad you have those suits to remember him by

      • A lovely man and a true gent. Your words are so true Ed . Had a couple of suits from George in recent times and enjoyed putting the world to rights with him ! We mostly saw him in our shop enjoying his eels . Another Walworth Road character departs the stage . God bless you George you will be sadly missed

        • Roy, thanks for your words. He loved your shop as you know. And you are right, the world did always feel it was on the right track after a chat with George

  2. Great words Ed, he always had time for a quick chat or a simple, “ how are ‘ya?”…. so sad when Real characters die, larger than life, that’s for sure 🙏

    • Thanks Grant, so true. It’s very hard to think of him not being among us

      • Only had the one suit made but was due to go in to see him in about 6 weeks ,spoke a few times on the phone and told many of my taxi passengers about him what a loss to his family , friends and to us punters God bless George

        • Warren you knew what he was and what he could do. Thank you for sharing that with your passengers and for being a part of his world

  3. Louise Baxter

    Oh Ed, beautiful words, now we have to carry on those bear hugs he was good at with George in hearts. Much love and catch up very soon xx

  4. Such a huge loss – RIP George 🙏

  5. I’m sadden to hear of George’s passing, as a Skingirl I introduced George to my friend Jane who George made a Tonik Suit for, he made it just how we asked to make it as original as the ones wore in the first Skinhead era 1969.
    We’d pop into George’s just for a chat when passing and when I was going to Arments Pie Mash shop, and he was always up for a chat, we’d pop into the cafe next to his shop for a cuppa. We’d chat about the old days in Peckham as we knew it growing up, fond memories.
    The Walworth Rd will not be the same without him.
    Rest in eternal peace George, it was an honour and privilege to have known you. 💙

    • Beautiful words Brenda. He had such an eye for detail and so much love for his customers, like yourself, who became friends over time. The Walworth road will indeed not be the same.

  6. Ed your words some up George perfectly. From the whistle’s, the strides, scarfs the jeans he altered and the cuff links he would put by knowing I’d like them. One of the high lights of it all was going next door for a cupper to carry on rabbiting. Even my old man would tag along just to have chat with George. A gentleman, a man and a great tailor. I will miss The threadneedleman.

    • Thanks Tom. The chat was indeed as good as the clothes. Hold onto those memories and enjoy your Threadneedleman wardrobe for many outings more

  7. Neil Daugherty

    Words befitting a legend. I need to dig out the houndstooth strides he made for me. Thank you and sorry for your loss.

  8. Darren Murphy

    Ed, these are kind words that deftly and vividly summon that gentleman tailor of Walworth. I only heard today. I know you and he shared a sensibility when it came to work, both in approach and execution. I also know that Walworth road has lost some of its unique flavour and spice with George’s passing. I haven’t been back in years, but Walworth road always began at Threadneedle Man as far as I was concerned. I was always too nervous to go in to make a general enquiry when I moved there in 2003, even though the place intrigued me from the get-go. It just wasn’t a place you went into to browse. The bevelled window (then displaying copies of The Mumper with its original cover) implied that this was a place of curiosity, but also of serious and special industry. The tiny space opened up like a TARDIS once inside, but it seemed too hallowed a place to just casually drop in. Threadneedle Man wasn’t just a shop, it was a state of mind. Before I ever crossed its threshold I knew it housed an old school craftsman, and in the end it was Caitriona who booked an appointment for me to be measured for a suit for my wedding. Of course, George was charm personified. I asked him what he recommended. ‘Oh no, son, we have to build the suit together.’ He took out swatches of cloth and lining, and told me to walk up and down the shop to see the subtle shift in texture and shade between the fluorescent light and daylight. He took his time, and encouraged me to do likewise. I never felt rushed or harried. He asked me how it felt. It had to feel right, not just look right. He liked to chat lyrics. That’s what conversations were: lyrics. ‘There are two types of people, Darren: radiators and drains. I always try to be a radiator.’ Once finished, my suit slipped on like something both strange and familiar; a garment of everyday exotica. That’s what George did, he created everyday exotica. He was a craftsman and a wit. Rock of Eye, indeed. I’m sorry for your loss. mate x

    • Thank you for this Darren. You have captured George and the experience of going to the shop perfectly. I don’t think we will ever have an experience like it again. It was so unique. It’s a blessing to share this with you x

  9. Pearl Sellars

    George you will be sadly missed.

  10. A very beautiful eulogy Ed. Even though I had never personally met him, or you, I know you both through Bax and knew of the great friendship and the great skills of this man. Thanks for sharing those words and wonderful pictures.

    Kind regards,



Share this page in:

twitter sharefacebook sharelinkedin sharegoogle plus shareemail sharewhatsapp share