Antique Steel Store Sample Book Stand c.1900



This is an original steel sample book stand. This large piece has two large foldout sections with six clips that held a large J.L. Taylor & Co. swatch and sample book that was on display in department stores. The graduated steel bottom reads "Let Taylor Tailor You" and "New York Chicago". This piece has retained its original finish and has the appropriate patina for the age and use.

  • CREATOR J.L. Taylor & Co.
  • CONDITION Excellent. Wear consistent with age and use.
  • DIMENSIONS H 44 in. x W 33.75 in. x D 18.5 in. Base: 15" Dia. Closed: H 55" W 3.25"


The J. L. Taylor – International Tailoring Company was a large men’s clothing supplier in the early 1900s with major offices and production facilities in Chicago and New York.
The company did not sell directly to customers. Instead, it provided department stores and tailors with large swatch/sample books. After customers picked out styles and fabrics, on-site tailors would take measurements and forward them to the company where the clothing was made. The company provided its retailers with elaborate pre-cancelled advertisements to mail to their local customers.

Both of the International Tailoring Company buildings are still standing. The ten-story Chicago headquarters/factory on Jackson Boulevard (also known as the White Tower Building) was a truly remarkable facility when it opened in 1916. Instead of the usual dark, dirty, cramped and unsafe sweatshops where most clothes were made, the building was clean, spacious, safe, and brightly illuminated with natural lighting. It was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2008. Today the building is shared by the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and “The Tailor at Jackson” condominium complex.
The company's New York building on 4th Avenue has been converted into residential condos.

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