All posts by Men In This Town

JULES TOGNINI IN SURRY HILLSNothing is more attractive than you…

JULES TOGNINI IN SURRY HILLS

Nothing is more attractive than you being you. That’s why male grooming brand LYNX has partnered with fashion designer Felix Chan (formerly Vanishing Elephant) to create the Find Your Magic collection. The limited edition men’s accessories are inspired by its new Daily Fragrance range and three individuals who stand out for doing things differently. I’m excited to introduce these creatives with LYNX in a new series of profiles where we’ll get to chat with chef Nathan Sasi, tattoo artist Giorgia Mae and hairdresser Jules Tognini about their Find Your Magic Collection and find out what their magic is. First up…

Jules Tognini is one of Australia’s styling icons – having been Australian Male Hairdresser of the Year in 2013, 2014 and 2015. The definition of adventurous, Tognini started his career popping up hair salons throughout Costa Rica to raise travelling money as he explored South America. His love for hairdressing stems from the fact that it’s a job that makes people smile and feel good about themselves and that you get paid to have fun and be creative.

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WHAT DOES YOUR DAY TO DAY LOOK LIKE?

Everyday is a little bit different. We have two hair salons in Brisbane and I’m working there about three days a week, I’ve become more of a guest now. We have an education company called ‘Lil off the top’ where we provide tailored education for salons and their teams, so that has me out on the road a lot.

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HOW DID YOUR CAREER IN HAIR GET STARTED?

I kind of fell into it. My dad is a hairdresser, a really good one at that and I never really had to pay for a haircut in my life. I’ve never known what a shit haircut looked like because my dad would always make me look good. So about 10 years ago, I went on a bit of a travel adventure and when I looked into the rearview mirror of the hire car after a few months, I realised my hair was shit. It was the first time in my life that my hair was not on point. So I went to look for a hairdresser in Costa Rica and the translation was a bit of a laugh so I got a pair of scissors and cut my own hair. It looked better. My mates let me cut their hair as well and when we went out to the beach bars at night people would ask us about our hair and they would point to me and said I cut their hair. So I started cutting hair for beer money. I didn’t really know what I was doing but people were trusting me. Every time somebody would ask me, I would say ‘yeah, cost you a beer’, so the more hair I cut, the more beer I drank and the more creative I got. I left that trip and returned home broke but I had this really cool experience with cutting hair. I saw that it didn’t mean you had to put yourself in a box and you could literally cut hair anywhere. So to learn a bit more, I went to my dad’s salon and asked for a job; thankfully I got it. If anybody would have said ten years ago that I would become a hairdresser, I would have laughed at them. But here I am now.

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WHY DO YOU THINK LYNX APPROACHED YOU TO CREATE YOUR OWN ‘FIND YOUR MAGIC’ COLLECTION? 

I think every guy has their own little creative ingredient and they do their own thing. I think LYNX saw what I was doing with hair and thought I could bring some of that magic to this collection.

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WHAT WOULD YOU CONSIDER TO BE YOUR MAGIC?

I love people, I love people smiling and finding out what makes them tick. I think being a hairdresser you hear people’s stories and you learn that everyone has one to tell. So I think that side of my personality, having a good time and chatting would be one of them. Ripped jeans is another. Do you like my jeans? I’ve had them for years, they’ve had many repairs to the crotch. I don’t like to throw things out, I’m not a hoarder but when you have a really great piece and you wait long enough, it’ll come back into fashion. These are the first pair of jeans I ever got when I started hairdressing, I get them fixed maybe once a week now. I think it’s one of those things, when you’re getting paid $200 a week as an apprentice at 23, living with your parents, you can buy one really good pair of jeans and that’s it. I wore them every day for the first three years, they’re a pair of Nudies. So yeah, I guess stories would be my magic, telling them through fashion or while I’m giving a hair cut.

Jules wears the blue bandana, blunt tie and tie-dye socks from his Find Your Magic Collection, available exclusively at The MITT Mrkt. All proceeds from the Find Your Magic Collection will be made to LYNX’s charity partner, I-Manifest.

CHRISTOPHER SCHAERF IN SYDNEYIn collaboration with the Strand…

CHRISTOPHER SCHAERF IN SYDNEY

In collaboration with the Strand Arcade in celebrating Australian menswear with Music, Martinis and Muses, I’m excited to be hosting our third MITT Studio Talks this Thursday night at 6:30pm. I’ll be joined by some of the Strand Arcade’s brightest menswear designers and shopkeepers to talk about what the Australian man is looking for when it comes to fashion.

Ahead of Thursday’s event, I was lucky enough to meet with one half of the Strand Arcade’s newest residents, Christopher Schaerf of men’s footwear boutique, Double Monk.

WHEN DID YOU AND YOUR BROTHER NICK START DOUBLE MONK?

We opened our first store in Melbourne in December 2012, but it involved planning for well over a year. We made a few trips overseas and personally met with all the brands we wanted to stock. It was a bit difficult to get them all on board at first, most of the brands were operating at full capacity and weren’t looking for new customers, so we really had to sell ourselves. We ended up getting all of them in the end.

WHERE DID THE INSPIRATION IN OPENING YOUR OWN MEN’S FOOTWEAR BOUTIQUE COME FROM?

I think it came from our trips, experiencing retail in places like North America and Asia, we became fond of these brands we were discovering that just weren’t available locally. So we set out to create a new destination back home in Melbourne that didn’t really exist yet.

YOU RECENTLY OPENED YOUR SECOND SHOP IN SYDNEY’S STRAND ARCADE, WAS EXPANSION ALWAYS THE PLAN?

We always wanted to expand to Sydney. We thought that Melbourne and Sydney were the two markets that would make a good foundation for Double Monk. In the first few years, we already had a solid customer base that would fly in from Sydney, so it was a good indication that there were potential customers and fans of the products we were representing. Being in the Strand Arcade was also a perfect fit for us, being off the ground level, it made it more of a destination like our shop in Melbourne. It’s a beautiful heritage building and we’re amongst other incredible brands like P. Johnson Tailors and Mister Mister, which all compliment each other.

WHERE DID YOUR INTEREST IN FASHION AND FOOTWEAR COME FROM?

Growing up, I was always in jeans and a t-shirt, even studying law in University, I lived in Birkenstocks and denim. But I think it began to evolve when I started doing internships and clerkships, having to wear a shirt and tie, I had to invest in my first suit and a good pair of shoes. I still remember having to save up all my pennies and I got my first made-to-measure shirt made by a tailor in Melbourne. Same happened with footwear, got started with wearing some bad made in China shoes that were really uncomfortable, so I looked to invest in something better. You find these brands that have been making shoes for over 100 years and you really notice the difference. If anything, it’s all about the comfort. 

ANY OF THOSE ITEMS STILL LIVING IN YOUR CLOSET?

I have a pair of John Lobb shoes that I bought over 10 years ago and still wear them regularly. My shoe collection has definitely expanded over the last few years but you always have your favourites you go back to.

LASTLY, IS THERE A PIECE OFF ADVICE YOU’VE BE GIVEN IN LIFE THAT HAS STUCK WITH YOU?

In terms of menswear, it’s about dressing for yourself. Being comfortable and confident is one of the most important things. 

Come hear more voices from the Strand Arcade (412-414 George St, Sydney) this Thursday at our third MITT Studio Talks, starting at 6:30pm. 

meninthistown: CHRISTOPHER SCHAERF IN SYDNEY In collaboration…

meninthistown:

CHRISTOPHER SCHAERF IN SYDNEY

In collaboration with the Strand Arcade in celebrating Australian menswear with Music, Martinis and Muses, I’m excited to be hosting our third MITT Studio Talks this Thursday night at 6:30pm. I’ll be joined by some of the Strand Arcade’s brightest menswear designers and shopkeepers to talk about what the Australian man is looking for when it comes to fashion.

Ahead of Thursday’s event, I was lucky enough to meet with one half of the Strand Arcade’s newest residents, Christopher Schaerf of men’s footwear boutique, Double Monk.

When did you and your brother Nick start Double Monk?
We opened our first store in Melbourne in December 2012, but it involved planning for well over a year. We made a few trips overseas and personally met with all the brands we wanted to stock. It was a bit difficult to get them all on board at first, most of the brands were operating at full capacity and weren’t looking for new customers, so we really had to sell ourselves. We ended up getting all of them in the end.

Where did the inspiration in opening your own men’s footwear boutique come from?
I think it came from our trips, experiencing retail in places like North America and Asia, we became fond of these brands we were discovering that just weren’t available locally. So we set out to create a new destination back home in Melbourne that didn’t really exist yet.

You recently opened your second shop in Sydney’s Strand Arcade, was expansion always the plan?
We always wanted to expand to Sydney. We thought that Melbourne and Sydney were the two markets that would make a good foundation for Double Monk. In the first few years, we already had a solid customer base that would fly in from Sydney, so it was a good indication that there were potential customers and fans of the products we were representing. Being in the Strand Arcade was also a perfect fit for us, being off the ground level, it made it more of a destination like our shop in Melbourne. It’s a beautiful heritage building and we’re amongst other incredible brands like P. Johnson Tailors and Mister Mister, which all compliment each other.

Where did your interest in fashion and footwear come from?
Growing up, I was always in jeans and a t-shirt, even studying law in University, I lived in Birkenstocks and denim. But I think it began to evolve when I started doing internships and clerkships, having to wear a shirt and tie, I had to invest in my first suit and a good pair of shoes. I still remember having to save up all my pennies and I got my first made-to-measure shirt made by a tailor in Melbourne. Same happened with footwear, got started with wearing some bad made in China shoes that were really uncomfortable, so I looked to invest in something better. You find these brands that have been making shoes for over 100 years and you really notice the difference. If anything, it’s all about the comfort. 

Any of those items still living in your closet?
I have a pair of John Lobb shoes that I bought over 10 years ago and still wear them regularly. My shoe collection has definitely expanded over the last few years but you always have your favourites you go back to.

Lastly, is there a piece off advice you’ve be given in life that has stuck with you?
In terms of menswear, it’s about dressing for yourself. Being comfortable and confident is one of the most important things. 

Come hear more voices from the Strand Arcade (412-414 George St, Sydney) this Thursday at our third MITT Studio Talks, starting at 6:30pm. 

OLD FASHIONED WEEK ‘TRUE MAKER’S’ EVENTMaker’s Mark hosted an…

OLD FASHIONED WEEK ‘TRUE MAKER’S’ EVENT

Maker’s Mark hosted an intimate True Maker’s workshop and conversation with career handcrafters; artist Anthony Lister and surfboard shaper Simon Anderson last night. The Wild Rover in Surry Hills made for the perfect setting for what was an inspiring and fun night, where the two iconic Aussies shared their hand crafted stories with the crowd – all over an Old Fashioned.