Earlier this month I sneaked off to Calvert Avenue to spend my lunchtime inside one of London's most intriguing and inspiring of independent menswear stores, Anthem. The brainchild of Simon Spiteri and Jeremy Baron, the shared vision for the retail concept is one based firmly on handpicked quality from across the globe, from the covetable and eclectic mix of design talent right through to the well curated furnishings. The pairs passion and personality is visible throughout the inviting space. In addition to asking the avid collector Spiteri to share the story behind two of his most cherished of possessions for our Treasured Items series and armed with my camera, I snapped up the opportunity to explore the SS12 season.
Now, the store has of course its e-commerce site and as much as I enjoy the ease of shopping online, it is no replacement from Anthem's physical experience. It is precisely that, an experience. Each visit is a joy and one of discovery. Complimenting the bank balance draining buy from Kapital, 45RPM, Dries, Folk, Our Legacy, Remi Relief, Marni and Comme (to name but an eager mouthful) and tying in the feelings of the season are a selection of Spiteri's own books, artefacts and mind boggling curiosities...which include a custom built Totem pole displaying Kapital and various cultural artefacts from South America. Take my outstretch virtual hand and allow me to take you on a visual tour of the current incarnation of the ever evolving Anthem...
From Kapital to Remi Relief and Dries Van Noten, the above is just a small snapshop of the SS12 season.
With the rise of online shopping the physical experience of a store has to be special. In this emerging virtual world of white backgrounds and minimal mouse clicks to ensure a speedy retail journey to the checkout, it is so important for bricks and mortar to offer something more. Anthem undoubtedly does just that.