Wednesday, 30 April 2008

Hyeres, Hyeres, Hyeres

Just a quick note to let everyone know that I am still alive. I've just had a fantastic long weekend in the southernest city in provence, Hyeres where I was fortunate enough to visit the festival, I even got to have a long conversation with the Sartorialist. I am pretty tired still and want to save my postings until I can actually write again but this is a teaser. Apologies that I'm so late but what can I say...I'm lazy.

Sunday, 27 April 2008

Off the cuff

Men's jewellery is a topic we've neglected thus far. Rest assured it is a topic I wish to tackle, but I'm finding it surprisingly difficult to find anything that inspires me (suggestions on a postcard!). The cuff above, found via Iain Claridge's blog, took my fancy somewhat. It's part of a collection of cuffs by re:vision, all of which are made from discarded camera components and 'reshaped with love'. An interesting idea but, starting at $190 (AU), a little pricey.

If you're interested, they're available at Oye Modern... which tells us that "re:vision brings old school cameras into an entirely new focus". There's no reason for me telling you this other than because I love a good pun.

Saturday, 26 April 2008

Awesome or awful?

I'm well aware of most people's feelings regarding novelty socks, but these from Ozone Design were so unusual that I just had to share. I think if I saw these trompe d'oeil socks on a friend it would make me smile, especially if they had been wearing similar shoes over them... but then I do have an unnatural love of the kitsch. The child in me also loves the boot knife and ankle holster socks too... what do you think?

Bonus Saturday links:
- Beard alphabet! Slightly hard to read, but quite fun. I would be very tempted to try and photograph something along these lines.
- A great post on Androgyny by Giancinephile
- Some very lovely menswear over at Style Bubble
- Oh, and I wasn't joking before about Style Salvage-related entries to the Diesel Wall competition. Get to it. I want to see Fred Astaire dancing with Joe Strummer plastered all over the Urbis before the year is out.

(I'm hoping you're getting a taste now of the hundreds of links I bombard Steve with on a daily basis... and these don't even include the kitten related links)

Thursday, 24 April 2008

Short attention span

(Otherwise known as 'things that have caught my eye lately and, well, it's only 3 months and one day until my birthday you know' )

1. Print Liberation t shirts

I've not really been a fan of logo or t shirts with clever writing on them of late, probably after overkill on my part in my youth. That said, I really like the ones over at Print Liberation. I see this t shirt in particular as perfect Sunday gear, proving especially useful when the Sunday evening blues set in. I would be very tempted to wear the 'My boss is an asshole' tee one dress down day and see what happens...

If you're not tempted by their words, you can even custom order one that says whatever you want. Style Salvage t shirt anyone?

2. Flud Turntable watch

I know it's a bit gimmicky, but I'm a sucker. I never really got my head around those watches that cost more than cars, and at $70, the price seems about right. Found here.

3. Bontanika hooded coat

I saw this over at Brandish (it's environmentally friendly, as is the whole brand if you're interested in that sort of thing). I mostly love it because it's almost the exact same pattern as a coat I had when I was about 8 or so... and 12 coats is never enough, is it? You can buy it here, if you can handle Japanese.

4. Not for purchasing, just for... oddness

I'm slightly entranced by this. Not sure if it's genius or blasphemy.

EDIT: I get the feeling I'm going to be listening to this on repeat in the next month.

Wednesday, 23 April 2008

Shopping like a man?

Photo by pdxmac

I leave Steve to run the blog alone for a week and he uses it as an excuse to post about Dylan. Oh, he is a cheeky one; he knows how I feel about that man.
Ok, now I don't care what EJ has to say about Dylan, he is an interesting fellow regardless of whether one likes him or not.

Back from Venice last night: lovely time, great hotel. I took just under 300 photos if anyone wants a slideshow... Steve, I'm looking at you. Anyway, back to business. I was reading this article (another one of those pieces that newspapers and magazines run every so often about how much better men are at shopping) and found myself wondering how true it actually is. Which ones do you follow, or do you have any other 'masculine' shopping habits and tips you'd like to share. I think I'll go through them and compare Steve's and my own habits and see how we do.
Always good to have EJ back in the same country as myself. Welcome back! Ok I thought I should give my own opinion...although EJ does know me very well indeed (possibly more accurately than I do in fact but I couldn't tell her that of course!)

1. Plan and research - I'd say we both do this one, though we are both equally guilty of just 'going shopping'. Steve seems to be better at aimless shopping than me though, as he more often comes back with something. I always find, though, that I plan and research, set my heart on something and then when I think I've found 'the one' it doesn't bloody fit.
Planning and research is a great part of shopping. It is like stalking one's prey, learning where it goes, what it does and then striking at the optimum moment! The internet makes this so much easier than ever before, so I agree with Thom, there is no excuse for not doing at least some research. However, nothing quite beats the feeling of buying that spur of the moment item which transpires to be a superb buy.

2. Have an eye for a long-term bargain - buying quality over quantity? I've made that promise to myself, but it's surprisingly hard to keep. I know that Steve's a fan of the idea too.
Menswear to me is all about quality and strong pieces. To avoid bankrupting yourself, the best way to gain a wardrobe that other men will envy is putting in the time and effort and knowing the market, sourcing the best high street, designer and sample sales.

3. Buy in multiples - does anyone actually do this? Really? Unless we're talking standard t shirts (I'm slowly building up a rainbow of American Apparel t-shirts), the only time I really bought something in multiple, I realised I actually hated it two weeks later. This meant I was left with two versions of a mistake. I don't think I actually know any men who do this, do you? The closest Steve gets to doing this is buying five very similar t shirts over the course of six months by accident... (don't try to deny it!)
I admit it. I don't intentionally buy in multiples because I think it takes the fun out of shopping. Shopping to me is more than just buying what you want or even need. It is a hobby.

4. Hold until the market falls - wait for sales? Hell yes! I am unashamedly cheap. I wait until the price is right for me, then wait a couple of weeks more and then buy it.

This goes without saying. If people aren't doing this they are foolish. That said, I am well aware of the lure of the rack and the desire to get an item when you actually want it. Not months after. The key is getting the balance right.
5. Don't buy that statement dress - I'm not convinced that there is an equivalent to the 'statement dress' in menswear, so enlighten me if you will. I think we both tend to avoid obvious trends unless it's something that can be adapted to suit our own personal styles.
I am coming round to the idea of the existence of the 'statement suit'.

6. Only buy things you don't need during sale time - surely people that stick to this one just aren't that interested in clothes?
Surely everyone does this?

Tuesday, 22 April 2008

Shoes snapping shoes

I came across a piece of 'news' on Dazed Digital which made me smile over the weekend. The Shoes, one of the latest acts to emerge from the French electro scene, have combined their current single "Knock Out" with a photography project. The duo have taken three hundred Polaroids (I have often discussed my love of Polaroids) of fellow artists' shoes and attached one to each of their limited-edition 7" records.

"The idea came to us all of a sudden," said Gui, one half of the pair. "We wanted each vinyl to be unique and offer not only music but also an object that could be collected. We know many people involved in music and art in general - some of them are famous, others aren't, but we fancied the idea of melting everyone in that project." Of course this is a promo gimmick but it is a nice one. I wish more bands did things like this- it has made me want to take more Polaroids of the people around me and their clothes. A visit to unsaleable is in order methinks to stock up on supplies.

Monday, 21 April 2008

It's been a while since we had reason left to smile

In response to EJ's rant the other day high street menswear heavyweights Topman have returned with another cutting edge collaboration for the masses (let's just hope that the stock are plentiful and is available nationwide), this time a sunglasses project with Linda Farrow Vintage. Following on from last Season's White Shirt Project, this will be the second in a series of designer collaborations with Topman. The five designers for this season are Bernhard Willhelm, Kim Jones, Oliver Spencer, 0044 and Linda Farrow along with Topman Design.

My favourites are the Linda Farrow Plastic Aviator's:

Aviator sunglasses with dark grey translucent acetate frame and dark grey graduated lens 3 Views Available. 100% Hard Plastic. Price £50.

My shopping list reads as follows:
SHIB Bag (today I've found out that the prices for this vary depending on the choice of lining), Spring Suit (not yet found) and the above sunglasses. That is it. See how I've managed to control my consumerism!

Now all we need is some sunshine... The BBC weather report informs me that I might have a few more days to wait yet. I am just eager to start singing along to some classic Super Furry Animals...

"In honesty, it's been a while, since we had reason left to smile...hello sunshine...come into my life"

List Update - The sunglasses have been bought, using a £20 gift voucher given to me by EJ (she doesn't deal in money but she uses the old currency, instead of the usual animal though this time she gave me the voucher). Thanks EJ!

Sunday, 20 April 2008

Smartening up

I had to return to Michael Bastian's rules because the last one left an impression with me.

Rule Number 10 - There are fewer and fewer guys who have to wear a suit to work. So there’s this weird thing happening where the cool guy actually wants to wear a suit, and he
doesn’t have to. The suit becomes a choice, not a gun held to your head.

EJ has told me that she is going to post about work wear in the coming weeks. It is certainly an interesting area of discussion. There are so many ambiguous terms, like smart casual or smart business that leave confusion and troubled decisions on what to wear in the mornings. Regardless of which terms are used there has been a definite trend of dressing down in the workplace. It has been well documented that a suit does project the right image of what it is to be a businessman. Dylan Jones has remarked "The way people dress at work, particularly the way men dress at work, is fantastically important not only in the way people perceive them but also how they perceive themselves." However, I have certainly enjoyed this casual-isation of office wear. It just makes things so much simpler as it means that if I'm going out after work no change of clothes is needed! However, although I've enjoyed wearing jeans to work I am beginning to feel that itch to dress up because...well, just because I can and we all look so much better in a sharp suit. I for one am pleased that the suit can be worn out of choice. Worn not because it is compulsory wear but because it just looks great!

I have noticed a number of stores opening up their own bespoke (and made to measure) outlets. Start London has recently opened a new men's made to measure store. I am ashamed to admit that I've not ventured down there yet but it caters specifically to tailored suiting, shirts and the customary accompanying accessories (think bespoke ties and handcrafted cufflinks), the shop is located on 40 Rivington Street and I will venture in the coming weeks.

Smarten up in this mid grey wool suit from Start London. The three piece suit comes with a one button single breasted jacket featuring classic lapels, a breast pocket and two envelope pockets on either hip, a pair of trousers with adjustable waist tab, belt loops and zip closure as well as a button up waist coat with silk back. The suit is as luxurious as they come, lined entirely in silk. My suit fund is coming along nicely and as soon as I invest it, I will let you know.

Carrying around the past

Hitomonokoto is an online shop and gallery based in Tokyo, selling a range of goods inspired by tradition but representing the sensibilities of today. The signature products on offer feature Asian textiles, reinvented in contemporary ways yet still retaining their heritage. This is no more true than in the limited edition SHIB tote bag. These rare totes (only 100 have been produced) are made from the original sakabukuro (literally translated as Sake crock's sack, which is made of very durable, fleeced fabric) - bags used as far back as the Edo period by Sake brewers to filter the drink. Persimmon juice gives the bag its awesome auburn sheen and was used as waterproofing and as an antibacterial agent, over the decades the colour has evolved into the beautiful tones we see today (NB. No two SHIB will be the same colour). Although the fabric fell out of use and favour after WWII Hitomonokoto have been collecting the remaining sacks and have been working with a top leather craftsman to stitch the lining fabric, handles and trim. Even the lining is steeped in history. The lining being made from Japanese Kimono and Obi fabrics, the one featured in this months Monocle combined red, blue and white, it was a Japanese fire fighters uniform the 1950s (Hanten) but other fabrics include Tairyo-Bata (fisherman's flag to wish a large catch and to signal a large catch tot he family).

The Tairyo-Bato fabric

Thom at The Sunday Best wrote about a legacy bag, a leather bag he could pass onto his, well at the moment, theoretical children. A bag which he would use until they were of age to fight over it...well...this is my legacy bag...if only I knew how much it costs...or maybe ignorance truly is bliss.

Regardless of the price this tote truly symbolises the ideology of Style Salvage and demonstrates the importance of history and subtle creativity to menswear. I like the good people at Hitomonokoto hope the sake sack of yesteryear can live on for decades to come as a useful Tote bag, both for the likes of me and my nippers.

Saturday, 19 April 2008

Designer Musings

Be it a muse's most effortless style gestures proving most inspiring or a lifetime of work which requires repeated scrutiny, there can be little doubt that muses play a vital role in the evolution of male fashion. The intricate relationship between designers and their muses and inspirations more generally is what drives the makers of menswear and also our own sartorial choices. After picking up a copy of 'Man About Town' in Borders I was allowed into the minds of a number of designers, from Duckie Brown to Yohji Yamamoto and their muses ranged from architects, to music artists to family members. Below is a summary of the article, in case you missed it or can't get hold of a copy

Thom Browne - David Biscaye (close friend, architect) - "He is interesting simply because he is smart, with an individual sense of style."

Luca Missoni - Octavio Missoni - "He is a refined, masculine, unconventional, contemporary man.

Yohji Yamamoto - Bob Dylan - "He has always represented a rock'n'roll attitude - in his words, songs and his imagination"

Yamamoto used the following Dylan tracks during his mne's Spring/Summer08 show - It's Alright Ma (I'm only Bleeding), Love Sick, The Times They are A Changing.

Paul Smith - Daniel Day Lewis -"He has a confidence in the way he dresses, so whenever he puts an outfit together it looks effrotless"

Daniel Silver and Stephen Cox for Duckie Browne - Charlie Chaplin - "There's an incredible intensity to Chaplin without him even saying a word."

Away from the inspirations of designers, there are certainly iconic figures which exude an influence on my own aesthetics and sartorial choices. Fred Astaire and Cecil Beaton have shown me the way in terms of creative elegance (although I've not yet grown in to this, I aspire to be one day). I would love to say that a male family member has inspired me but only in the sense of 'not wanting to dress like that' although I do like my Grandad's collection of cravats! In terms of modern day icons, my tastes change too frequently and I am more inspired more by images on the Sartorialist or the pages of Fantastic Man or Monocle (I'm particularly liking the style of architects shown within this magazine - when I grow up I don't want to be an astronaut, I want to be a architect) than on the red carpet or silver screen.

Tuesday, 15 April 2008

What say we settle this on the runway...?

The clever people over at Getkempt ran an interesting article about the battle of the Atlantic mounting and no more apparent are the two ideologies more apparent than in Tom Ford and Thom Browne. DNR thinks the differences in aesthetic between these two nations could turn into a full blown war - "Menswear is in the midst of a British-American crossover, and nowhere is the transatlantic trend more evident than in the contrasting assortment of fall furnishings." If a war was to break out whose side would you be on?

On the Thom Browne camp Gillian Koenig of DNR states - "Designers like Thom Browne are leading the way in laid-back American sensibility, injecting the dress shirt with a casual-chic, slightly preppy demeanor." The man behind the shrunken suit is certainly a showman and has always been his own best advertisement—literally. A Hollywood actor-turned-superstar tailor, he presents his high-concept menswear in overtly theatrical fashion shows. Most people have fallen in love with Browne’s slim lapels and slightly cropped, skinny trousers in the wake of the disheveled “business casual” trend that has swept menswear in recent years. I love the way that he has tweaked a very Brooks brothers aesthetic, exaggerating it to great effect and then sell it back to them. Claudio Del Vecchio, Chairman and CEO of Brooks Brothers, felt that “Thom Browne’s brilliant eye, his ability to foreshadow the market and offer a special look will bring a new dimension to Brooks Brothers.” Here are Browne's Rules For Wearing Suits which makes for an interesting read. All In all Browne’s aesthetic is extreme which leads to it striking a chord with people...good or bad. You either love the cropped pants or you hate them. You adore the shrunken jacket or you despise it. I'm a fan of the later but not really the former....

Stylish Swedes pop punks The Hives have traded in their Vegas lounge act look and are channeling Thom Browne for their recent effort, The Black and White Album

On Tom Ford's camp Koenig states "Dramatic dress shirts featuring British cutaway collars and large checks in bold colors are becoming fashionable at the hands of designers such as Tom Ford". Tom Ford might have dressed Bond but surely he is his best model. Ford’s clothes come across so well, precisely because they’ve been road tested and perfected by the man himself, who just happens to be one of the most stylish men out there. Tom Ford is all about personalized luxury, reinvented age old tailoring for the modern man. Suits, shirts, and shoes may be made to measure. Leather goods are crafted in small workshops, and finished according to the owner's needs. Knitwear, evening clothing, and even sporting wear can be commissioned in personalized colour and fit. What Tom Ford does best are timeless, classic looks combined with a dash of modern reinvention and rejuvenation. For an interesting article on Mr Ford I would suggest checking out SavoirVivre New York's musing on the subject...he put the matter far better than I could.

Tom Ford stylishly relaxing

Which one of these two heavywights are you standing behind? I'm going to be like Switzerland on this one and perch myself on the fence as you lot fight it out....

Monday, 14 April 2008

Colourful Collaboration

Unless you are a goldfish or maybe you just don't visit us enough at Style Salvage you will remember that I recently posted about the Mondrian inspired Nike Dunks, which received a good response from you all (EJ was the exception but she was just being awkward). As much as i liked those, I have however turned my attentions to the somewhat similar in style Jonathan Saunders collaboration with Gola (available on ASOS) after seeing them over at Style Bubble. I am sure that J will approve of these...

Sunday, 13 April 2008

Dear Topman

Dear Topman,

Why do you hate men?
Ok, maybe hate's a strong word. Why do you put so little faith in the fact that men want to dress well, that they're interested in more 'edgy' fashions? Let's compare what your sister shop, Topshop, provides for us women and what you offer up to men.

You have no less than TWO specialist ranges for women, Unique and Boutique, which seem to be available in most of your stores... or at least the bigger ones that I've been to.

Silk Pocket Dress by Boutique

You then have TWELVE other different designers who have created ranges for you, five of which specialise in just shoes. SHOES! Let's see what you offer the men...

Carolyn Massey Funnel Shirt

Four designers for your LENS range. It was five about a month ago, but Nueue seemed to disappear without a word. There are currently 19 pieces available altogether. NINETEEN! No shoes, no accessories.

Now don't get me wrong. The men that I know are grateful for this range... when they can get it. Yes, it's available online, but most people like to try stuff on first. And if you want to try on, you'd damn well better live in London. I'm sure you'll tell me that it is stocked in stores other than your Oxford Street flagship store, but if/when it is, it's a bugger to find. I have previously just stumbled across odd pieces from the range, tucked away among other clothes in random sizes with absolutely no signage whatsoever. What is the problem here? Don't tell me that it's floorspace as you devote half your shop to bloody jeans. Are you not proud of the range?

Sort it out Topman!


Oh not much gets you this riled up! Unfortunately, this isn't just the case with Topman we have seen it across the High Street and also online. Menswear is the poor cousin of womenswear...Unfortunately, women just spend more money on clothes, not only that but a greater percentage of women are interested in fashion and style...we are in the minority still despite the continued growth of the menswear market. Topman has taken many strong, definite strides forward in recent years but it will take some time for the store to reflect the changing attitudes towards menswear. I agree that they need to do more than they currently are though. I have been the victim (on a number of occasions) where I have seen an item within the Lens collaborations, only to see the item sold out in my size (small to medium)..the just don't stock enough and i am one of the few who have the items available in my local store (the flagship store)! I hope that within my lifetime, the floorspace is divided equally between menswear and womenswear...I'm having a Martin Luther King moment..."I have a dream..." What are our readers experiences, how do our readers from abroad fare in stores...?

Friday, 11 April 2008

Yvan beware!

Last night I attended the launch party for the Diesel Wall 2008 competition. It's an interesting idea so I'm quite excited to see what they'll come up with... Oh, and details of how to enter are here. May I recommend that you paint a giant portrait of me?

It seemed to be more party than launch (though there were loads of people drawing on the walls of the shop which was pretty cool... I had to stop myself pulling out the felt tip pens when I got home), which gave ample opportunity for me to get a few pics of the (disgustingly) young and trendy people. I felt hideously old and uncool in comparison; must watch more Skins. I should warn you though, I've still not got the hang of my camera yet.

I fell for this chap's boots (Diesel from a few season ago apparently), but didn't quite manage to get a good shot of them. You'll have to trust me on this one.
I think this bloke may have been my favourite person there. He was busy drawing on the wall when I asked to take his photo, fervently expressing my love for his quiff. He had some quite excellent glasses (as did quite a few people, actually. Almost enough to make me consider wearing glasses again)
Just brilliant. I think I scared him a little though. UPDATE: This man's work can be found on his Flickr page here. Turns out I have taken pictures of his work before. It's a small, er, Manchester after all.
I had to get a snap of this bloke (who was lovely by the way) as not only is he rocking the slightly unbuttoned white shirt but he's also sporting a rather nice beard. Turns out he was another one of the artists (see below)
This photo does not do this guy's quiff justice. I was stalking around after him for about half the night until I cornered him on the stairs.
Yet more awesome glasses... and can you believe I didn't properly clock the guy on the left's tash until after I took the photo?

If you're interested, the rest of my photos are on Flickr. I completely forgot to ask anyone their name as well, so if you met me last night I apologise for this rudeness!

Rejuvenated by a simple white shirt

This post quite nicely follows up from EJ's post below...I woke up this morning, as I do most mornings, extremely tired and looking a little worse for wear (this wasn't a hangover I can assure you) but as I was getting dressed this morning my sartorial choices perked me right up. I had no time for a cup of tea or breakfast of any description as time was severely lacking as I peeled myself off my mattress. However, when I reached into my wardrobe, picked out a freshly washed and pressed white Reiss shirt and covered my weary, naked flesh I was instantly rejuvenated. There is nothing like a white shirt to breathe fresh life into you.

Talk of white shirts make me want to go home and pick up Issue 5 of Fantastic Man (which contained 'The White Shirt' - eight white shirts and what makes them such refined pieces of understated design) and made me re-read a piece of my own posts where I pleaded that white shirts are certainly worth celebrating and deserve much more than their, at times, dull image allows them. Unfortunately I am at work at the moment and off home in Kent for the weekend (which means only a dial up connection and although i like the dialing tone I don't like the pace of it) so there are no images to support this post but I'm sure EJ will find some great ones for you to enjoy.

As promised...

Our man Picasso sporting a more casual white shirt and looking amazing as always.

The quite spectacular Jonathan Rhys Meyers modelling for Versace a couple of years back. If there's a man that has repeatedly proven how good a white shirt can look, it's JRM.

Why stop at a white shirt? Why not white everything. It's possible that only Cecil Beaton could pull this one off so well though. Apologies for the dodgy image quality on this one.

Wednesday, 9 April 2008

Sod it

I simply cannot be bothered with these complicated outfits any more. From now on I will only wear white shirts unbuttoned with abandon, black trousers and a killer quiff. When I am older, I shall subdue said quiff, and trade the white shirt for a black one.
I shall be Morrissey.

I kid of course. I cannot do without accessories and bright colours. But, for today at least, I'm practising my whithering looks. Who are you channelling today?

Discovered by Madame Curie

I stumbled across these jeans on eluxury, luisviaroma and then again on Kanye's blog and I just had to post about them because I just don't know how to feel about them. There is a battle going on inside of me whilst I stare at them...I guess I just have to see them up close.

Whilst I make up my mind about them, I thought would do some research on all things radioactive. Would Radioactive Man wear them? I think not. I then found at there is a Radioactive Man in The Simpsons...god bless Wikipedia and the fountain of knowledge that it is. Ok, enough thinking (time wasting) my conclusion about these jeans is that they could be cool but they are far too expensive for me. If you didn't understand the title of this post, it is a lyric from the Kraftwerk song 'Radioactivity'.

Sunday, 6 April 2008

Eyebrows like frozen fire

On the subject of both GQ and beards, I could not resist posting this picture from GQ Style. I'm quite enjoying this issue, even if it does seem to be a little obsessed with Lanvin... but then, Arena Homme + dedicated a whole 6 pages or so to Lanvin recently, so I guess it's Lanvin's time at the moment.

If I wasn't convinced of the wonder of the beard, after checking out the Poseidon photoshoot by Nathaniel Goldberg, I'm postively preaching to the world the word of full blown facial hair. I fear that the photoshoot may have had some dark mystical effect over me, however, as it has almost convinced me that men can look brilliant in a kaftan.

Two other quick Sunday links for you:

Ten rules of style by Michael Bastian via The Fashion Spot. Point 8 is my favourite.

A rather nice 1930s collegiate letter sweater which brings to mind Andre 3000's style (top item, stock number 30SW). At $98 it's probably cheaper that Andre's own range of clothes will be.

I feel so guilty that I've not responded to this post until now. Firstly, the Goldberg shot shown above makes me feel inadequate as a man, I have to echo Thomas there. I'm not so sure about men being able to rock kaftans but beards they certainly can look brilliant with. We are definitely championing beards a little too much in recent weeks...especially as my growth can never be classed as a beard which emasculates me further!

In terms of Bastian's rule, number 8 needs to be present on this blog, so here it is - "If guys step back and are just honest about what they think looks good on them, it’s really hard to lose. You can spot guys who take on personas that are not theirs" - it is pretty much the only style commandment required. I am certainly agreeing with rule number 10, a suit has become so appealing to me in recent months (since my work wear has become even more relaxed). Infact, I have two types of suits on my wish list, a really great relaxed Spring/Summer suit, I am thinking light navy or grey, and a well tailored black suit which will make other men dribble!

The joy of lists

Daniel Craig was voted Best Dressed Man in Britain for the second year running by GQ magazine. The pic of Craig in his short shorts was for EJ's benefit...reports from other other people in the cinema showing of Casino Royale say she was actually salivating at this point in the film.

Eliza is passionate about lists, she writes lists for everything and through her passion I am a big fan of writing all kinds of lists. My favourite list is my 'Clothes of the Month' list which details any items that I need to complement my wardrobe. Of course there are times when I'm out shopping and the tempting shade of a shoe, or the cut of a shirt will catch my attention and make me forget the list, but I always have the list in the back of my mind and it helps me...list are great. However, when it comes to other peoples lists, I'm not so keen. I pick up GQ from time to time now, for me it has been surpassed by Esquire and Arena in the everymans (allbeit slightly wealthy and middle aged) market, it has become the male equivalent of everything that is wrong with Vogue, far too many adverts, lazy styling and leaning far too far to the right (I'm getting political this morning!) This little rant is after GQ has published their '50 Best Dressed Men in Britain in 2008', for a great run down of the list go here.

With regards to their number one, I have little to complain about, I've talked about Daniel Craig recently - Craig dresses in Savile Row, he is always sharp and crisp, not very adventurous but he knows how to wear clothes well. Noel Fielding (for anyone who doesn't know he is the chap above) at number 2? GQ isn't meant to be picking someone like Noel Fielding; he certainly is an interesting dresser (a man who's never been afraid to wear silver space shoes down the local cafe) but one of the best dressed men in Britain he is not. Apparently he got the female vote. Which is surprising to me because I thought they might be angry with him for stealing their jeans in Topshop.

Now onto James McAvoy, I like the Atonement actor a great deal but he should not be anywhere near the top 50 best dressed men solely because of the cover he did for W. I could go on and on in this fashion but I will try and keep this short...

4th best dressed man in Britain...I'm packing my bag and heading anywhere else...

The Royal Family also find themselves surprisingly well represented, with Princes Philip, Charles, Harry and Michael of Kent all making the list, which was voted for by a panel of international judges including Tom Ford, Giorgio Armani and Naomi Campbell. Conservative leader David Cameron made the top ten, while Gordon Brown fell (or climbed, depending on how you look at it) to third worst-dressed. Can the Conservativeness of this publication being any more subtle?

I will stick to writing my own lists and will be miffed by other let's start our own list...recommendations welcome...this is a democratic blog after all.

Is it bad that I've not actually heard of a lot of people on their list? I can't understand how David Beckham can be one of the best dressed men in Britain largely because he doesn't really live here any more. It seems odd that at number one they have someone who dresses so classically, while at number two they have someone who dresses out of a manic 8 year old girl's dressing up box (sorry, in the past year for some reason I've grown to really dislike Noel Fielding).

It's funny though, as much as I love lists, I don't really have a list of stylish men in my head, just particular outfits, films, photographs and moods in a gigantic collage in my memory. I guess for me that's a large part of what this blog's about, trying to pin it all down. Still, I'd love to know who's our readers' number one, or if indeed they have anyone specifically in mind.

Saturday, 5 April 2008

Picture postcard: keeping it simple

Why hello there Steve,

A lovely looking gent courtesy of Stylesightings for you today. My obsession with wardrobe_remix has been upped the past couple of days since your post on the subject. Something I've noticed though is that more quietly stylish outfits (no bright colours or outlandish shapes) such as the one above don't get commented on as much as others. I suppose this is why I felt like lauding this picture today. I very much hope that this sort of outfit is this chap's standard attire: not showy, not over the top and with an excellent bag. Of course I don't want everyone to dress like this all the time, but if more people did, you wouldn't hear me complaining.

Note to self: bright white trainers aren't always the enemy.


Well, I have to agree with you that more men should dress like this. It is simple which should attract the attention of most and the look is pretty universal yet stylish. The bag is the perfect 'busy day' bag.

Thursday, 3 April 2008

Shoes like Opal Fruits

These shoes by Jaime Hayon have got me salivating. The beautiful, slightly unsual shades have got me dreaming of one-colour outfits: men in crayon colours with a grown up twist. That shade of blue is particularly appealing and would look amazing with the right grey suit. It's days like that I'm glad that I have freakishly large feet to match my freakishly large hands... with a bit of luck I might be able to get myself a pair.

More info here.

Wednesday, 2 April 2008

wardrobe_remix needs you!

I recently signed up to the wonderful world of wardrobe remix, well I couldn't leave Thom Wong by himself now could I? I wanted to accompany this post with a Lord Kitchener inspired poster but alas I am writing this feeling poorly and in an Internet cafe so hopefully you can forgive my lack of creativity.

There is a lack of men within the group so I urge you to start sending in your pics. If you are worried about the comments don't be, everyone is so fact they might be a little too nice, lulling me into a false sense of security and then bam, they become so bitchy I run away from my laptop one day in tears, never to venture online again. If you aren't aware of wardrobe remix - briefly it is an online 'DIY fashion community' created by Tricia in 2005, if you are aware of it, why aren't you on it?

I personally like trawling the pool of images (there are currently over 34,000) because I'm a aesthete and enjoy the variety on there, a nice mix of handmade/modified, vintage buys, high street and designer...I just wish that there were more men on there and then it would be become a great resource for inspiration for the blog. The community is so much more interesting than the exactitudes project (an ongoing exploration of the so called striking dress codes of various social groups, and the way clothing and fashion can be used to both fit into and stand-out from the crowd) which I recently saw at Selfridges but I will soon be amassing a favourites portfolio containing a similar volume of images!

Channeling his inner 1950's dad/1960's French assassin Mr Wong above is an inspiration. I seriously need to smarten up my act and most importantly invest in a few hats...I do not possess a single smart hat and this is a fact I will change very soon. In fact I think I've found the perfect one at Hurwendeki but decided against buying it just yet because I now have a clothes budget in place and I'm actually sticking to it pretty well...Anyway, enough of my consumer I said, this is a serious post, I want to see more guys sign up to wardrobe remix, so start taking lots of pics. I have to admit that I'm not the most regular of contributors to the w_r community because...well I can be a little lazy and uninspired but I am beginning to get the desire to attack my wardrobe and drawers with gusto and start taking more photos to post and I urge you to do the same.

Tuesday, 1 April 2008

Dunks Boogie Woogie

I just saw the news on getkempt and sneakerfiles that Nike SB are releasing a pair of dunks inpsired by the man known as the 'father of geometric abstraction' (I often wonder what I'll be the father of) - Piet Mondrian.

To me these are perfect for Summer...I normally shy away from trainers with more than two colourways but the use of multiple colors here does not detract from the overall cohesive simplicity of the dunk design (that we all know and love) in fact I think the primary colours enhance the simplicity of the shoe.

I will leave you with a quote from Hannah Hoch on Mondrian "Everything in his life was reasoned or calculated. He was a compulsive neurotic and could never bear to see anything disordered or untidy. He seemed to suffer acutely, for instance, if a table had not been laid with perfect symmetry" (I sometimes wish I was like this....)


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