Longtime Tulsa Tailor Sews Up 70-Year Career

Monday, November 5th 2012, 4:26 pm
By: News On 6

A longtime Tulsa tailor has decided to close up shop after decades of service. Tino Tudisco is ready put down the needle and thread and pick up a book - just relax a little bit.

Tino Tudisco has been a tailor for 70 years, He's had this little shop on Bartlett Square for almost two decades and says it's time to retire.

"This is my job," Tudisco said. "I have many customers who say 'Tino, what am I gonna do now you gonna retire?' Have to find somebody else."

That might be easier said than done. People don't learn to sew the way they used to. Tudisco started in Italy at age 12. He learned to sew by hand - first you learn pants, then sleeves, then the vest and then the jacket cause it's the hardest. 

Tino came to America from Italy in 1967 at age 37. He had a successful tailor shop in Milan, but he loves new adventures and he had a dream.

"I like to see new places, I like to meet new people," he said. "The dream is to see New York."

Then someone suggested he might like Oklahoma. He's been here 34 years.

"I love this place," Tudisco said.

He's working on the last of four jackets a customer brought in to have re-tailored. He's taken them apart and put them back together by hand.

It'll be one of his last projects. He'll be 82 next month and says it's time to retire.

A favorite picture is one a customer took 15 years ago of him standing in the door of his shop. It's still a favorite spot to stand and watch his city walk by. Occasionally someone will even take his picture.

Tino says he's not sure when he'll close, but around Thanksgiving - maybe a couple of days before or after.