Reporting Harry Porterfield
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CHICAGO (CBS) — He works quietly in his studio and never advertises, but people come to him from all over the country for his amazing talent as a self-taught tailor.
Maurice Hood is someone you should know, CBS 2’s Harry Porterfield says.
Every celebrity needs a tailor, even Benny, the Bulls’ mascot.
“The guy who is the mascot coordinator came by,” Hood explains. “He found me out of the Yellow Pages. He was looking for somebody to do some of the work, and I just happened to be down the street.”
His work for famous clients doesn’t end there. Earlier this year, two animators wearing his tuxedos each garnered an award at the Oscars.
“I had told my son, ‘You know this suit that you saw your dad work on last week? Here it is on the big stage and there are millions of people watching this,’” Hood says. “When they got to the category, I jumped up with excitement.”
He also outfitted singer Prince for an appearance as an Oscar presenter in a previous ceremony.
For nearly 20 years, Hood has been cutting and sewing fabric in a second-floor location on West Hubbard Street in what he calls his “super fine” tailor shop. A number of his customers are professional basketball players who range all the way up to 7 feet, 3 inches tall.
“One of the big things about large guys, especially the tall guys, they have this thing about being able to walk and be normal,” Hood says.
Hood is an alumnus of Dunbar High School, where he graduated wearing the first suit he ever made.
But did he ever study tailoring? The answer is no. He concentrated on cabinetry and even for all he does as a self-taught tailor, he still makes furniture.
“I’ve been called the best kept secret in Chicago by a lot of people,” he says. “I’ve just been working off word of mouth, and it has been pretty good to me up to this point.”