All posts by Menswear Style

The Button Fly

The Button Fly

Now I know what you are thinking, a fly barely qualifies to being a fashion essential. But they are critical fasteners (excuse the pun) when it comes to your hold on trousers. 

I have always favored the button fly, although I never gave the reason behind it any thought. I guess it always appealed to me because my signature style is usually retro and I love how this piece of history rides, well, on my crotch. 

The argument people tend to make is that zippers are a lot more convenient. Button Flies are quick, easy to use and do not add weight to your fly area.

They have been in existence since the 1800s and in all fairness they are stronger than zippers. They do not come undone even if your pants are tight, they allow for decent amount of stretch when you sit down and do not bite your privates when you close them in a hurry. 

Moreover, if your zipper develops a flaw (like losing a tooth) you are in a fix. You could risk a potential lawsuit for indecent exposure at the work place. No such stuff with your button fly. If you care about the environment, you will be glad to hear that button flies require less refined metal to make, less energy to manufacture and less time and energy to stitch into your pants. 

I also read somewhere that the only woman to perform a circumcision in the Bible was called Zipporah. That has got to be some kind of coincidence then.

So go on and enjoy a bit of that history just by putting on your pants!

Choosing a Winter Scarf

Choosing a Winter Scarf

Fashion for men has always been a difficult thing to master and even the simplest items can cause trouble. Take a scarf for example. It seems simple enough but you need to get the style right if you’re to look your best during colder weather. 

With all the designs and colours available nowadays, you don’t need to limit yourself to one scarf either and this means there is plenty of opportunity to match this functional accessory to different outfits. 

To make the best choice, there are a few tips which can help you select a scarf which makes a personal style statement while keeping you warm – and here’s our advice.

Choosing a Winter Scarf

Choose fabric carefully 

What kind of protection you need from the weather depends on where you live but our guess is that if you’re shopping for a scarf then you need warmth as well as good looks. 

The most popular choices of material for scarves are wool and cashmere as they keep the heat in but lighter fabrics are also quite successful against the chill. 

Thick cottons, silks, synthetic materials or a mix of these are common in mens clothing and men’s accessories, and it’s important you recognise the merits of each. 

Cashmere will have the softest touch but potentially the highest price tag, while wool will be hardier but potentially a little rougher to the touch. 

Cotton and synthetic materials are a good compromise while silk is another luxury, soft option which is better suited to milder climates.

Choosing a Winter Scarf

Proportions 

There are standard widths and lengths for winter scarves but that doesn’t mean you can’t shop around for something which suits your height and frame. 

If you are tall, you can get away with a long scarf worn loose or wrapped around your neck twice. This kind of look probably won’t flatter a smaller man who can nonetheless suit a short hanging scarf. 

How to tie your scarf 

You’ve taken care to select your scarf; now make sure you wear it properly!

There are scores of ways to tie a scarf which are very simple but make such a difference to your appearance. 

A Parisian knot, where you make a loop with a folded scarf which you pull its ends through is both smart and casual. 

A once-around-knot is a loosely tied look which works well on days which have a chill but aren’t freezing while for a more informal look you can loop your scarf around your neck loosely.

Choosing a Winter Scarf

Colour 

For a formal occasion an elegant scarf in dark colours will likely fit the bill whereas for outdoor activities or casual events you can go for something brighter. 

After our recent trip to Pitti Uomo 85, it was clear that bright and unique prints on oversized cotton or silk materials, draped over the shoulders is the new “in” trend.

Life is a Beautiful Sport

Life is a Beautiful Sport

Lacoste brings about a new era by reinstating its founding
values into the core of its marketing message. This new message was unveiled during the recent Paris Fashion Week at an exclusive event. 

Lacoste gathered up some of their favourite people from around the world to join them at their launch party. These individuals were bloggers, social media gurus, journalists, publication owners and photographers. The combined online influence  of the gang was quite huge to say the least!

Life is a Beautiful Sport

The chosen crew included Fashion Toast, Menswear Style, Daaamn, Andreas Wijk, La Petite Anglaise, Kate Loves Me, Mr. Boy, Yin & Yang, Fucking Young, Highsnobiety and others.

Life is a Beautiful Sport

So, we hopped on the Eurostar, checked into Hotel Fabric, got ready (with a key Lacoste staple of course), and partied like it was 2004 (that’s when MWS Craig was 19)! 

The event was one of the best we’ve been to. There was just so much to see and do, from live music/DJ’s to a wheat pasting demonstration which revealed billboard sized images of their latest collection. There was also a cool studio photography setup type thing which took awesome 360 photos.

Life is a Beautiful Sport

Admittedly we don’t know the technical name of this but you see our picture here – which is VERY cool! 

The next day, in a daze we went to the MAN show to check out some cool brands including Lacoste Live, Stutterheim, YMC and London Undercover.

Life is a Beautiful Sport

Our take on the new collection campaign titled “Life is a Beautiful Sport”, gives a great deal of motivation to those of us who find themselves far too busy with the work and life balance to take up a regular sport or actually make it to the gym which is costing you £70 per month. 

There’s no reason why you can’t take the stairs at work or jump over a few puddles in the street, whilst imagining something a little more dangerous and extreme in a Walter Mitty way.

Life is a Beautiful Sport

The press visuals and posters are Jacob Sutton’s creation; they poetically
portray men and women elegantly proceeding “above” the city and life’s tribulations. 

These urban and minimalist visuals represent the “Lacoste spirit” stripped
down to a simple metaphor, remaining sporty and relaxed when confronted with
challenges.

Roll On Roll Neck

Roll On Roll Neck

The classic Roll neck. Not a trend distinctly known for its ‘cool factor’, or even for being a trend, having received a large amount of criticism in the fashion world in the past. 

However, for the now, it is here to stay and adding a roll neck to your repertoire is an instant wardrobe update.

Whether it’s a big, thick chunky knit worn on its own, or a slightly thinner version worn underneath a blazer, the roll neck works every time.

Roll On Roll Neck

My favourite look is with a two-piece suit replacing the usual shirt and tie combo. This updated, modern version gives your suit a more casual look allowing you to wear it for a number of occasions. 

Alternatively a pair of jeans, a blazer and a chunky cream knit is a winning look for any occasion. If you want to be really crazy, you could even try layering a fine knit under a chunkier jumper, whatever works best for you.

Roll On Roll Neck

Having been seen on a number of runways and designer collections, editorials and all over the high street, the roll neck is a very accessible item for men of all ages. 

However… a couple of tips before you invest. Firstly, if you are going for a fine-knit version, make sure you get a good fit. There should be no gaping, but not too tight, as it can be very unflattering if you get it wrong.

Roll On Roll Neck

Secondly, please don’t go for a ‘quirky’ print or ‘out-there’ pattern. The roll neck is all about understated cool, so block colours are a must. 

Apart from that, you can’t really go too wrong!
Overall, the roll neck is an incredibly versatile piece of clothing which can be worn in a number of different ways to update your style this season. What do you think of the trend?

Radisson Blu Edwardian Bloomsbury Street

Radisson Blu Edwardian Bloomsbury Street

During this month’s London Collections we partnered with the Radisson Blu Edwardian as the ‘Official Blogger in Residence’. The hotel had a Vodafone charge point, GQ branding in the lobby, a MenswearStyle lounge, designer cocktails and they held a few key LC:M events onsite too. 

It felt like we were at the heart of men’s fashion week, from the many stylish people hanging at the cocktail bar to the fact that all three of the runway locations were just around the corner.

Radisson Blu Edwardian Bloomsbury Street

Bedroom 

Our room had everything you could possibly need – a neat workspace, big TV, a huge comfortable bed and massive bathroom big enough to run a yoga class. 

The interior is modern, stylish and immaculate. It’s the kind of place you’d easily imagine yourself living in and be proud of. A nice touch was the iPhone docking system on the alarm clock which came in handy for charging. If we had a penny for the number of times we’ve forgot our phone chargers on trips!

Radisson Blu Edwardian Bloomsbury Street

Restaurant 

The Steak and Lobster restaurant certainly makes for a fast decision when choosing from the menu. The waiter we had was great too, he gave us a friendly and patient lesson in dissecting a Lobster the proper way – handy since we didn’t have a clue where to start! 

Also, if you’re like us and judge a hotel by its breakfast offering, you’ll love this one!

Radisson Blu Edwardian Bloomsbury Street

MenswearStyle Lounge 

Fashion weeks can be pretty exhausting and if you’re seeing shows back to back there comes a point where being somewhere, warm, quiet with a comfy sofa becomes your sweetest dream. 

HQ for Menswear Style during LC:M was the Radisson Blu Edwardian on Bloomsbury Street, just around the corner from the British Museum. Having a desk, umpteen power sockets, wifi and an unlimited supply of tea was heaven. 

So often, writing is a solitary occupation and it was great for us all to come together for an afternoon tea to chat, debate the shows that we had seen, get to know one another and form a stronger bond as creative people. 

Having the afternoon tea party for the writers really made the team feel at home and so they felt really comfortable popping in and using the suite as their base where they could recover, work and talk with their fellow writers and photographers.

Winter Holiday Style

Winter Holiday Style

These days, not only are women interested in fashion, but it has increasingly become important to men also. If you’re jetting off on a winter holiday, you’ll need the ultimate wardrobe update to impress. 

Here you’ll find the top tips for staying stylish this winter season. 

Layer up – make sure you pack vests, along with slim-fitting sweaters and hoodies. This will provide you with warmth against the cold weather; slim layering is also key this winter, so keep your look fitted and snug. 

Invest in top brand sportswear  – modern sportswear collections are perfect for winter holidays. Make sure you invest in top quality brands, such as the Armani EA7 range. 

There is even a specialised skiwear section in the Armani range, with protective fabric clothing and a great choice of ski jackets. 

Giorgio Armani is one of the leading names in the fashion industry so if you want to stay stylish on the slopes, kit yourself out with this top collection.

Winter Holiday Style

Never mix and match your look – one of the biggest mistakes men make on their winter holidays is mixing and matching their style. For example, wearing a ski jacket with khaki trousers is not a good look. 

If you’re wearing sportswear, make sure your entire look is created with sportswear. Don’t combine it with your standard clothing. 

Don’t wear Ugg boots – traditional Ugg boots are designed to be unisex. However, no self-respecting man should ever be seen out in them. 

It doesn’t create a good look on most women, never mind men.

As comfortable and warm as they can be, you’re best off sticking to men’s snow boots if you really want to keep your feet warm, not to mention waterproof. 

Looking good on your winter holiday isn’t rocket science. It’s all about choosing the best quality brands that provide you with the best fit. Armani is just one example. You can get inspiration online by looking at pictures from their current season catwalk.

The Cravat Comeback

The Cravat Comeback

Until recently, the word ‘Cravat’ carried the label of antiquarianism and gentry, with notions of a 19th century period drama, or perhaps the stereotypical image of an aristocratic gentleman, past his prime, fashioned with a smoking jacket and a monocle. 

Cravat Club, an online store specialising in cravats is attempting to bring it back into fashion with a trendier and fresher image through its slightly off-the-wall photo shoots with a profoundly bearded and tattooed male model, while shaking off its outdated undertones. 

Cravat Club’s image appeals to the newly established target market to gentlemen in their mid-20s to 40s (though still popular with the older gentlemen too), and subsequently sees the demand growing as men become more fashion-conscious.

The Cravat Comeback

One particular feature of the brands products is the ‘Stay Put Cravat’. Their jacquard woven silk cravats are layered with rich colours and are a heavier-weighted silk, which unlike most silk cravats, require minimal re-adjusting, hence the naming “Stay Put Cravat”

This means the cravat can be tied less restrictively around the neck as opposed to conventional cravats, to allow for maximum style and comfort. 

Gentlemen’s accessories have permeated the market particularly in recent years, with the bow tie and pocket square becoming increasingly popular. It seems men in the UK are becoming more interested in looking good while displaying a touch of individuality through accessorising, and now cravats are on the cards to be the next big trend, with the positive notes of bearing comfort and style at the same time.

The Cravat Comeback

One movement which appears to be growing ferociously is the ‘Dapper Gentleman’, where a renaissance of the well-dressed modern gent has arrived on the scene. 

These dandy gentlemen’s wardrobes are filled with fine quality tailored suits, tweeds, boutonnières, pocket watches, and carefully thought out coloured socks to match each outfit, and they approach their way of dressing more as a lifestyle or full-time hobby. 

Cravats are the perfect accessory to complete an outfit for the sartorial chap, and as every woman knows, a well-dressed man is certain to stand out from the crowd and turn heads at social events. 

Cravat Club’s Day Cravats are 100% silk and all of their products are made in England, which is a fundamental factor of the company, giving it a quintessentially British image, appealing to not only to British people, but to the ‘Anglophiles’ across the world.

Religion Spring Summer 2014

Religion Spring Summer 2014

Taking its signature dark and deconstructed aesthetic from their winter collection, SS14 sees Religion fuse together modern tailoring with classic sportswear influences to create their tradition of a layered silhouette. 

As well as zipper details and nylon fabrics to compliment leather which Religion is renowned for, print plays a strong role in the collection.

Religion Spring Summer 2014

Religion’s variety doesn’t stop at just print and leather, with the inclusion of oversized tie-dye prints also.
Religion’s relaxed tailoring sees the brand create a nylon blazer with a bomber jacket style front zip inserts for a textured look. The summer look sees printed shorts and matching shirts create a modern summer combo, while sweats and joggers have a washed out animal print.

Religion Spring Summer 2014

Religion’s variety doesn’t stop at just print and leather, with the inclusion of oversized tie-dye prints also. 

Religion’s relaxed tailoring sees the brand create a nylon blazer with a bomber jacket style front zip inserts for a textured look. 

The summer look sees printed shorts and matching shirts create a modern summer combo, while sweats and joggers have a washed out animal print.

Religion Spring Summer 2014

SS14 sees Religion offer a strong range of footwear to complement its clothes. 

The shoes main focus is leather animal print with it being paired with leather and suede of grey, black and white. 

Also available are rubber boat shoes and sandals to offer a bolder alternative when sneakers fail to compliment your SS14 attire.

Interview with Matthew JA Payne

Interview with Matthew JA Payne

At the tender age of twenty, self-taught Fashion Photographer Matthew JA Payne, has already shot the likes of Kanye West and Cara Delevingne. 

After building up a solid portolio, and relationships in both London and Paris, I wanted to know what got him started and how he’s managed to achieve so much, in such a short space of time. 

What got you started in photography and was this something you always wanted to do? 

“I’ve always been interested in Art, but photography seemed to be a growing interest of mine. During school I would always incorporate pieces into my work along with sketches and paintings, however after getting refused from college and being unable to study photography, I dropped out and focused on what I love doing.”

Interview with Matthew JA Payne

Let’s talk Paris Fashion Week and Kanye West… how did that come about? 

“After spending some time building up my portfolio and relationships in London, I landed a job at West Brands. I was working with Kanye West for a total of five months in London and Paris, he was creating his A/W 12 collection which was ready to debut during Paris Fashion Week. I then had the opportunity to work alongside editors Rushka Bergman and Christine Cenetenera as well as other amazing artists and top models.” 

That sound’s super exciting, is it always this fun? Describe your typical day. 

“Wake up, answer emails. Plan on the go and become inspired by anything and everything!” 

In a toss up between education VS experience what do you think is more important? 

“I believe experience is the most important skill, of course education is a bonus however if you have an eye or passion for something, you can make it work.”

Interview with Matthew JA Payne

How important is confidence in this field? 

“Confidence plays a big role in my job, the way you present yourself on and off set is very important.” 

So how many people usually make up a team on one of your shoots? 

“The size of a team always depends on what the shoot is for, if it’s a test shoot or an editorial, it can start of as a simple 5 person shoot up to a 15 person shoot.” 

How much would you say living in a capital city/creative hub like London has helped you? 

“London is an amazing city full of creatives, however I know great artists based outside of London. Take time out to visit the city, create relationships and keep an ongoing interest in your work.”  

You’ve worked with the likes of Cassie Ventura, Joan Smalls, and Karlie Kloss – if you could shoot anyone who would it be? 

“This is always such a hard question to answer, but no doubt. Lana Del Rey.”

Interview with Matthew JA Payne

You’re self-taught, do you have any tips for those wanting to educate themselves, and stay motivated? 

“No matter what you want to do or study in the future you can never get enough experience. Motivation is key. You’ll grow to learn that you can’t let negative criticism get you down. Don’t be afraid to make mistakes, just focus on what you love doing.” 

How important do you think self-promotion and social media is in this day and age? 

“Self-promotion is key and I personally have discovered a lot of new talents via the internet. On the go, phone in hand, checking up on the latest industry news. Social events and online portfolios also help boost a profile for yourself.” 

What’s next in your fashion diary, LC:M has just finished, were you there? 

“I’ve got a lot of fashion editorials coming up in the New Year, more reality work and I plan to push my portfolio to all new levels. Regarding LC:M, Of course! I was there supporting Ada x Nik all the way!”

Sartorial Savvy

Sartorial Savvy

They say that great personal style is not something that can be taught or learned; you either have it or you don’t. 

To a degree there may be a slither of truth in that, but I’m a firm believer that as long as you follow a few simple rules you can ensure that you will at least have a good foundation to work from. 

With that foundation in place you should then be able build a respectable ensemble without breaking out in to a cold sweat and/or hurling your wardrobe down the stairs in a fit of rage.

Sartorial Savvy

Never fasten the bottom button of your blazer/suit jacket – this will improve your silhouette, drawing it in around the midriff and out towards the waist. Remember to do the same with your waistcoat. 

Brown shoes, brown belt. Black shoes, black belt – with your browns make sure they don’t completely match, but incorporate a similar shade to pull your look together without being too ‘matchy.’ 

Wear a belt, or wear braces – please don’t wear both. Unless you’re in McFly. If you are – I know where you live. In the words of Liam Neeson – I will find you…

Sartorial Savvy

Your blazer or suit jacket sleeve – should be short enough to show some shirt cuff – about half an inch. But not too short or otherwise you’ll start looking like an ageing interior designer. 

Don’t wear a belt with a full suit – it’s fine with a smart casual combo, however the premise of the suit is that it should glide over the contours of your body perfectly and fit like a glove. So you shouldn’t need a belt. Find yourself a tailor and spend that extra £20 belt fund on a couple of much needed adjustments. 

Black shirt with a white tie – please don’t. Please. Unless you’re going to the Prom. In the seventies. Which you’re not. 

Make sure the proportions of your outfit are balanced – ff you’re wearing a skinny tie stick with a skinny lapel, preferably a notch lapel. Wide blade tie – a wide lapel. A wide lapel works with a notch but a peak lapel is great for those of a dandier ilk. Simples!

Sartorial Savvy

When wearing a tie – the tip should just reach your belt line. I know it was super cool at high school to have a stumpy 6-inch appendage around your neck; but those days are over. 

When it comes to shoes – not too pointy, you’ll end up looking like a tragic punk-rock hangover. A simple round toe is the most flattering, like a Derby or an Oxford. It’s always worth spending a little more on your shoes too; there is nothing worse than a cheap pair of shoes! They don’t tend to age well and you’ll end up replacing them much more frequently. If the wallet won’t allow it try trawling the vintage stores and outlets for a bargain. 

Match your metals – much like your leathers your metals should marry, so make sure you team that silver watch with silver cufflinks and so on. You get the picture! But don’t go overboard with the metal wear – Mr T was famous for his style yes, but not for the right reasons. 

I hope that you’ve found these tips useful. Now go tackle that formidable wardrobe.