Saturday, 23 March 2013
If you’ve ever dreamed about drinking a fancy coffee next to a urinal, and I know from your letters that many of you have, then this underground hot drinks emporium will be right up your street. An 1890′s victorian public lavatory has been scrubbed and disinfected to within an inch of its life, transformed into an incredible looking cafe whilst retaining much of the original features. The Attendant’s itself office now acts as a kitchen while the Doulton & Co toilet bowls separate the space across the bar. The cisterns, well, they’re just there to add a bit of glamour. Breakfast, Lunch and Caravan coffee on offer, take a look at before and after in the gallery.
Thursday, 21 March 2013
Stripes on the runway:
Collections by Gucci and Diesel Black Gold both featured classic pinstripe suiting in orthodox black and grey hues, which came in sleek, well-tailored styles.
The pinstripe tailoring from Gucci was particularly striking as a vivid red pinstripe was applied to traditional black 3-piece suits. Diesel Black Gold also showed support for the popular bomber jacket trend with silk bombers featuring subtle monotone stripe patterns.
Similarly, Salvatore Ferragamo, although not prolific in their use of stripes, included a selection of striped pieces in bold colours – the tangerine striped knitwear and multi-tone double-breasted tailoring in vivid lilacs and purples were particular highlights:
Key Show: Jean Paul Gaultier
Another supporter of the stripe pattern was Jean Paul Gaultier. It is common knowledge that the sailor stripe is a house signature at Gaultier (just look at the bottle for their iconic fragrance ‘Le Male’), so it should come as no surprise that the collection featured heavy use of the Breton stripe.
Breton stripes in black and red were applied to scoop neck sweaters, polo shirts and long sleeved dress shirts, creating a perfectly wearable set of clothing that would work particularly well as separates rather than paired together.
Looks showcased played on this underlying nautical theme but were given an ethnic twist via the bearded, turban-wearing models.
At the slightly more extravagant end of the collection were trousers and blazers featuring wide stripe patterns in humbug, black and white styles – they even included a sleeveless biker giletcomplete with wide humbug stripes in black, red and white:
Adventurous Collections: Nicole Farhi & Acne
Other designer collections featuring more adventurous use of striping included Nicole Farhi and Acne.
The inspiration behind Nicole Farhi’s collection came from the UK seaside town of Brighton and the collection included deckchair style stripes in bold colours applied to shorts and blazers.
Similarly, Acne included wide-striped shirts and matching shorts with an almost pyjama-like feel. These wide stripes were also applied to oversized suits, sleeveless shirts and wide-legged trousers:
High Street & Designer Campaigns
Looking at some of the current advertising campaigns for the major high fashion houses,stripes are again used prolifically. In one of the shots for the SS13 Dolce and Gabbana collection the same striped pattern in red, white and blue is featured on a series of knits, shirts and tees worn by both men and children.
Similarly, Tommy Hilfiger’s SS13 campaign features their stereotypical family setting with different generations of men and women on board a yacht. The nautical theme is carried through to the models’ clothing, with Breton stripes incorporated on polo shirts, knitwear and shorts – proving just how popular the stripe trend is proving to be:
Current Lookbook Inspiration
Below you will see how the high street and mid-priced designers have chosen to incorporate and style stripes in their latest collections, including the likes of H&M, AllSaints and LBM 1911:
So there we have it, one of the biggest pattern trends to feature this upcoming season is the return of the humble stripe.
Personally, I feel the traditional Breton stripe is a classic style that will never fall out of favour and will add a touch of French Riviera chic to any summer outfit.
I can understand there may be some wariness towards wearing stripes from head-to-toe, as featured in some of the high fashion designer looks, so would instead recommend pairing bold striped garments with your current collection of neutral wardrobe staples in order to ‘anchor’ them and allow the stripes to make the statement.
Orange: On the Runways
Orange is an undeniably striking colour, and many of you will feel rather sceptical about its wearability. However, it is actually one of the more versatile statement colours you can choose, especially when utilised in a casual domain.
Orange also has a natural affinity for white, something Gucci (below bottom) demonstrated in an exemplary fashion. The combination of the two brighter colours is appropriate for the warmer months, with the zesty hue lending itself perfectly to Riviera inspired outfits.
Finally, Dries Van Noten (below middle) gave a convincing account as to why orange should be on your shortlist this season. The Belgian designer displayed the colour alongside another one of SS13′s big trends: camouflage, with the colour helping to add an additional standout layer to a print that is invading fashion from all angles this season.
How To Wear: SS13
Although not currently as widespread as the blue colour trend that appears to have swept through the industry, orange is certainly going to make a splash over the coming months.
Through clever use in both a smart and casual capacity, the colour can act as a statement or an accent whilst retaining a strong level of versatility and wearability.
Monday, 18 March 2013
Friday, 15 March 2013
In keeping with the current penchant for reworkings of classic sixties looks, Paul Smith’s recent offering gave fashion lovers a colourful sixties style revival. A mixture of bulky, double-breasted coats in statement prints and skinny lapelled blazers heralded the rebirth of the swinging-sixties, demonstrating the true longevity of classic British tailoring.
A colour palette of muted brights – cobalts, browns, greens, reds and purples – was instantly evocative of 1960s and 1970s décor, triggering memories of the shades used in wallpapers and furnishings. Patterns also evoked similar flashbacks, with striking Piet Mondrian inspired prints making a comeback on knitwear and outsized houndstooth covering coats and jumpers.
Arrow print was a prominent part of the collection, drawing the eye to where each garment finished and emphasising block-like tailoring. The use of pattern and colour managed to be bright but not garish due to the careful consideration given to each ensemble.
Meanwhile, a wide array of textures and fabrics made the collection exciting and well equipped to cater to every taste throughout the winter months. Leathers, cowhide prints, wools and flashes of fur on coat collars lifted the range as a whole, melding the tried and tested aesthetic of the sixties with modern day printing techniques.
Key Bags For 2013
After losing favour over recent seasons to its highly lauded tote and messenger counterparts, the backpack’s relaxed and rugged style is well and truly back on the menswear map. In keeping with the modern world of multitasking and hands-free lifestyle, the backpack is ideal for the rigours of the daily commute or regular trips to the gym.
Leather, canvas and suede appear to be the backpack fabrics of choice by high-end fashion houses, offering an organic and masculine aesthetic whilst remaining lightweight and durable.
The ever present holdall represents a luxurious alternative, slotting suitably into overhead compartments and car boots for long haul flights and weekend breaks alike.
Many now feature interior zip pockets and detachable shoulder straps for extra practicality and whilst the traditional leather design is a perfect accomplice for the modern man on the move, those who live for the country air and outdoors way of life may prefer the more contemporary, military inspired duffel.
Key Hats For 2013
The Baker Boy Cap
Although not everyone’s cup of tea, the addition of a hat can bring life and personality to an outfit, allowing for further expression and experimentation. The key pieces for 2013 appear to have taken reference from one of this year’s most highly anticipated films, ‘The Great Gatsby‘, and the art deco period in which it was set.
One such example is the Baker Boy cap (as worn by Robert Redford in the original 1974 version of the film), similar to the flat cap in shape but with a rounder, fuller body and recently sported by the likes of David Beckham and Jason Statham.
Herringbone patterns in traditional textures such as tweed, wool and twill are the order of the day, adding a fashionable flourish to any heritage inspired ensemble.
The Panama Hat
A slightly braver choice is the Panama hat, also indicative of the 1920s and heavily featured at Pitti Uomo and in a number of spring/summer 2013 menswear campaigns.
The Panama’s Saint-Tropez chic pairs elegantly with linen blazers and cotton chinos/shorts, making it the consummate holiday headwear.
Sunglasses: Round Frames & Clubmasters
Although something of a premature selection, planning purchases for the warmer months is never a bad idea. In regards to eyewear, retro styles and round frames are the must have pieces for 2013.
Pairing vintage tortoiseshell details with modern materials such as titanium and acetate, these sophisticated sunglasses have an artisanal feel inspired by the iconic dress code of 1950s era America.
Other styles to look out for over the warmer months include frames glazed with solid and vibrant hues, whilst the timeless Clubmaster design also sees a return to popularity. These bold and colourful lenses maintain a clean and minimal aesthetic, complete with keyhole bridge and a contemporary silhouette that fuses flair with function.
Ray Ban’s classic Clubmaster is a more versatile option, cutting a restrained yet distinguished figure that effortlessly complements both formal and casual attire.
Ties: Prints & Lightweight Materials
As part of the modern white-collar man’s daily routine, the tie is an everyday accessory that has the ability to spice up the sometimes dreary world of spreadsheets and middle management.
The current trend for floral and Hawaiian prints prominent in many SS13 menswear collections are a great example of this; vibrant enough to brighten up the dullest office, conference or meeting room. These flamboyantly patterned ties work wonderfully well with a contemporary, slim-fit suit and light coloured poplin shirt.
Winter’s wool knit ties make way for the lighter yet equally tactile fabrics of cotton and silk, as pastel hues and matte textures provide an understated alternative to the burnished luminosity of menswear’s current micro-trend. These more subdued tones add a cosmopolitan and cultured maturity to one of the few items that escapes the androgyny of twenty first century fashion.
A slightly wider and formal shape has overtaken the skinny tie in popularity for the coming seasons, although when featuring colour blocking, wide stripes and contemporary geometrical patterns will work equally well beneath textured knitwear as they do when paired with an impeccably tailored suit and spread collar shirt.
The importance of accessories should not be underestimated. Whether it’s bringing a little fashionable flair to the nine to five or topping off a trip to the tropics, investing in just a couple of key accessories this year will help add a shot of individuality to the most minimal of ensembles.
Prints are now a firmly established menswear favorite Every high street store and brand (big or small) is pushing the current pattern trend for all it’s worth – so much so that I don’t think it’s possible to walk down a street without seeing someone wearing prints.
But wearing prints is not something to be taken lightly. Our old friend confidence plays a huge role in the success we have when wearing them. Prints are a bold statement, especially on a larger scale, and any kind of second guessing will make you look uncomfortable. Awkwardness is extremely difficult to hide.
The best advice I could give to anyone contemplating prints is this: work them in and then forget about them. See it as just another part of a well put together outfit. You’ve made a deliberate choice to wear the item in question so put it on and then leave it alone, constantly checking yourself in any reflective surface is a sure sign of discomfort. Be confident that you made the right choice when you pulled it on in the morning and feel proud of your achievement when you take it off in the evening.
Print items make for great statement pieces; they don’t really require much forward planning and they simply replace something more restrained. My personal favourite is the print shirt – easy to wear and anchor and ridiculously simple to incorporate into almost any existing outfit. With a huge variety available at every price point at the moment there really isn’t a reason not to get involved.
How To Wear: The Bold Print Shirt
Individuality is the key to transforming a good outfit into a great outfit, it marks the line between blending in and standing out and it is something that we should all, on some level, be striving for. The little touches are a great start, but it doesn’t hurt to take it up a notch.
The bold print shirt is just one way to do this and I personally believe it to be one of the best. They aren’t difficult to wear, they slip into your wardrobe next to all your existing staples andthey can make a huge difference to any current outfit.
Despite taking a few seasons to gather pace, camouflage – with strong showings at Pitti Uomo and on the runway as of late – has been growing in popularity. Designers, in particular, seem to have finally pinpointed fresh ways to use the print in order to avoid the once unfortunate stigma that came attached.
As we slowly but surely enter the spring season, camouflage has been invading collections from high street to high fashion. Valentino was a huge advocate of this militaristic print in their SS13 collection, as were Dries Von Noten. The former opted for bomber jackets featuring the ironically standout print whilst the latter went for relaxed tailoring, trousers and detailing in the military favourite:
Camouflage has soldiered on, despite its critics. Having fought the good fight it has established itself as a major force in menswear. As a print it’s versatile and, as Mr Allinson described in his five key pieces to keep article, should be considered a “new neutral”.
From the longstanding elegance of Valentino to the on trend high street players like TOPMAN and ASOS, menswear has finally begun to surrender to this unashamedly unsubtle of prints.
Im back guys and sorry for not blogging, its definitely been a while but im back, so i just wanted to hint to more accessory options as we see an extensive collection from Marni. Taking a moreapproach this season, we see rich leather backpacks, embossed totes and wallets with contrasting patterns. Double strapped boots and patent oxfords with a thick sole in dark greens, blacks and reds make up their footwear line. Fur scarves, hats and gloves were also present, complementing the Fall Winter 2013 collection.
Friday, 28 December 2012
Founded in 2007 by Valentin Ozich, the brand has flourished ‘down under’–with Ozich being announced as one of Australasia’s young men’s designers to watch in 2011. However, the designer now wants to broaden his horizons and expand into Europe, and if these caps are anything to go by, he should find the transition seamless.
Each individual style within this extremely limited edition range features a completely unique print, which range from horses and plants to cherries and butterflies. To add to the sense of individuality, the caps have been constructed in unique fabrics and materials from the Far East – many of which are dead-stock, meaning they are the last of their lines, never to be used again.
The fabric moleskin is named as such because its heavy, cotton composition bears a close resemblance to silky fur of a mole. Moleskin has traditionally been used for constructing trousers and outerwear, as well as accessories like flat caps, but recently designers have begun utilizing moleskin in more formal pieces – specifically blazers.
How To Wear: Moleskin
Men’s Moleskin Lookbook
Outside of fashion, moleskin has been used as part of German military camouflage kit (since replaced with a cheaper, more lightweight cotton-polyester blend), as most variants of the cloth are densely woven, and therefore windproof, as well as strongly resistant against abrasion.
Further benefits of moleskin include its softness and durability, appealing to everyone looking to keep warm in the colder months. One of the main drawbacks of the fabric is its lack of water resistance – as essentially it is just thick cotton – which isn’t always practical in this country.
Hopefully, I have made a case for moleskin to become the latest fabric to be added to the array of textures already in your wardrobe. The outfits and lookbook should prove its depth of versatility in pairing with many of the staple pieces you already own, but its unique, thicker composition brings a density to your attire and warmth to your person that is unparalleled.
Before we really begin, banish all beliefs that the style is limited to grandma’s hand-knitted novelty originals. In fact, the word ‘novelty’ should be dispensed with in its entirety. Over sized, over characterized in-your-festive-face knitwear is not what you’re aiming for here.
How To Wear: The Festive Jumper
Festive Jumper Lookbook
When selecting your festive knit this holiday season, think well proportioned patterns, variations of Fair Isle and the odd reindeer, snowman, tree or snowflake in proportion rather than detailed or overbearing. A dash of whimsicality is great and all part of the appeal; resemblances to a poorly dressed man-child, however, are not.
Saturday, 15 December 2012
With a more graphic approach to design, Givenchy releases its Pre-Fall 2013 collection. A strong emphasis on biker themes and fabrics has resulted in an experimental range with masculinity and strength at the foundation. Creative director Ricardo Tisci has kept a refined aesthetic running throughout, but has also set out to challenge the concept of layering and shape.
Wednesday, 12 December 2012
This is a look that has been on the catwalk in different guises for years, with brands like Bailey’s Burberry, Acne, Lanvin, the Kooples and E Tautz having prominently displayed the aesthetic throughout most of their recent collections, although with a varying style.
The Bohemian Icons: The collection of images below showcases some of the more well known characters that are said to have lead a bohemian lifestyle – Dylan Thomas, Oscar Wilde and Bob Dylan along with a photograph of 1920s bohemians by August Sander:
On The Catwalk
The catwalk images below were taken from Burberry, Acne and Lanvin AW12 fashion weeks and demonstrate the kind of aesthetic you can achieve with bohemian inspired pieces. Overall, it’s a very romantic look that includes a lot of layering, oversizing and autumnal materials and colours – all concepts that are seasonally appropriate.
The modern take on this bohemian look includes some rock ‘n’ roll stalwarts, like the leather or denim jacket, giving the look a much more masculine and contemporary edge.
Get The Look: Modern Bohemian
Leading By Example: The Kooples
The Kooples are one brand who continually manage to nail contemporary, bohemian inspired looks – whether it be through their slick advertising campaigns or superb lookbooks.
Below you will find a few recent outfits created by Parisian brand, all of which are the epitome of the aesthetic we are looking to achieve today:
Key Pieces: Knits & Outerwear
Think of Dylan Thomas’ chunky roll necks and woollen jumpers for that casual, lounging around the home look. Consider materials here; wool, cashmere, silk or on trend alpaca or mohair. Look for cosy, non-synthetic fabrics and keep the patterns relatively toned down to maintain an elegant feel without looking like you’re trying too hard.
A classic white shirt under an oversized jumper will always be a winning combination, and a blazer layered over the top would keep the look refined, whereas a denim or leather jacket will provide a harder, more youthful edge.
For those winter nights, think about finishing with a dark trench or peacoat – both would complement the finely crafted layers you have underneath.
Make sure you think about layers when compiling an outfit and how the colours of each piece work together as a whole. Whether each piece is a slightly different shade/texture or you go along the colour blocking route, just remember that to maintain this bohemian aesthetic you need to stay away from anything too bright or neon and look for tones that complement the garment’s natural materials.
Key Pieces: Trousers
For this modern take on the bohemian look, an on trend pair of olive or burnt orange corduroys will inject life into your outfit via both colour and texture.
The bohemian look is certainly experiencing a strong resurgence. Not just on the catwalks of the finest fashion houses, but also on the streets of London’s Brick Lane, Berlin’s Kreuzberg and Paris’ Latin Quarter.
Even if the overall aesthetic is not something you’d like to achieve, the bohemian look is full of key trend pieces that are suitable for AW12 and many seasons to come.
Items like chunky roll necks, woollen trousers, a navy peacoat and a good pair of Chelsea boots are flexible enough to fit into your existing wardrobe effortlessly – easily being dressed up or down, allowing you to develop your own take on dishevelled elegance.