Monday, 25 June 2012

Milan Fashion Week: Salvatore Ferragamo SS 2013

Zesty yellows, corals, spearmint greens and cool blues reflected the colours of the sea at Salvatore Ferragamo’s Spring Summer 2013 show. A marked difference from the more reserved collections of the past, yesterday’s presentation was a candy-coloured feast for the eyes. Ultra-light knitwear, perfect for summer were paired with contrasting coloured oxford shirts and ties creating even more shades of brilliant colour. The rampant explosions of colour gave way to more subtle experimentation as seen in the hand-painted jackets towards the end. The closing look, a white hot double-breasted jacket with matching trousers was a welcome palette cleanser for such a vibrant spectacle. Each look was paired with sneakers in a variety of eye-popping colour combinations, another trend sweeping across the SS 2013 menswear collections. I really admire the expert way in which they injected impeccable Italian tailoring with such youthful vigour to produce a body of work that would make any budding fashionisto jealous, I certainly am!

Images via: HommeModel

Milan Fashion Week - Neil Barrett SS 2013

Neil Barrett’s Spring Summer 2013 collection embodied the athletic, manly man. Baseball jerseys,  slouchy sweatshirts, and baggy shorts gave the show a relaxed youthful feel. Barrett chose a palette of rich shades of indigo and purple, earthy browns and deep blacks.  The degraded pinstripe prints added texture and depth to suits and shirts. Highlights from the show included lush pony hair slip-ons and iridescent leather jackets, echoing the metallic trend that’s swept menswear collections for Summer 2013. Tailored trousers with satin stripes on the front rather than on the side breathed new life into classic tuxedo trousers. Barrett’s collection again proved that he’s got his finger on the pulse of the sports luxe trend.

Milan Fashion Week - Versace SS 2013

Donatella Versace described the SS 2013 Versace man as a "tough pugilist champion” who is part Rocky, part Elvis and part Mr. T”. From the start it was clear that the well-toned, muscled models would be the most exciting part of the show. Although to be fair it provided an excellent excuse to re-launch their new range of underwear and swimwear. It felt like someone had turned the camp-o-meter all the way up, models took to the runway with their gelled quiffs and decked in gold medallions and wrestling belts. Sleeveless double breasted jackets in metallic fabrics were toughened up with wide leg trousers. The psychedelic floral print jeans paired with Versace’s iconic key print on long t-shirts and parkas were a definite nod to the 90s. Some of the stronger pieces in the collection were the broderie anglaise (english embroidered) fitted sports jacket and the gladiator/sneaker hybrid shoes. Excess and indulgence are words that have always been associated with Versace and it’s newest collection was no exception.  

Sunday, 24 June 2012

Milan Fashion Week: Burberry Prorsum SS 2013

If there is one fashion house who truly understand the meaning of re-invention, it would have to be Burberry. Christopher Bailey’s Spring Summer collection, titled, Come Rain or Shine showed a step in a more glitzy direction for the 156 year old global brand. Rather than focussing on the heavy-weight parkas and trench coats they are known for, Bailey explored lightweight cabans in vibrant metallic silks. Suits were cut in dark seersucker fabrics with a silhouette slightly more relaxed than SS12. Micro-ikat and geometric diamond prints in washed-out hues appeared on bomber jackets and long-shirts paired with metallic skinny jeans. The metallic fabrics also found their way into the accessories too as seen in the leather iPad cases and summer carrier bags. Bi-colour bomber jackets in  vibrant satin and metallic leather tones ended the show on a high note. Bailey succeeded in presenting a collection that teetered expertly along the lines of taste without falling head first into vulgarity. 

Images via HommeModel

Saturday, 23 June 2012

Milan Fashion Week: Ermenegildo Zegna SS 2013

Sophisticated luxury with a dash of youthful eccentricity was at the heart of Ermenegildo Zegna’s Spring Summer 2013 collection. Known for their classic, traditional approach to Italian tailoring, however next summer sees them experimenting with rich, earthy tones of brown, tan, blue red and grey. Jackets were cut in sumptuous silks with matching trousers The banana tree provided the motif for micro-print suits and also appeared in larger forms on luxe silk shirts. Other highlights included perforated silk tops and leather jackets echoing the more youthful direction of the entire collection. Tasseled loafers and oversized tote bags were the perfect compliments for the runway looks. The Zegna design team put together a collection that truly reflected the modern Italian man and his wardrobe. There’s no doubt that men around the world will be falling over themselves when the collection comes out next year.

Friday, 22 June 2012

Burberry Prorsum Spring/Summer 2013 - LIVE STREAM

Catch Burberry Prorsum’s Spring/Summer 2013 Collection tomorrow live from the catwalk. The live stream starts at 4.30pm Milan Time (3.30pm UK Time). As with previous seasons past, Twitter followers will get a sneak peek at each look before it hits the runway. Make sure you’re following @Burberry to see the #Tweetwalk and get involved with the show and contribute to the live feed of tweets. Tomorrow’s hashtag is:

Hit the play button below to watch the show

Saturday, 16 June 2012

London Collections: Men - Oliver Spencer SS 2013

Russian Modernism and painter Ben Nicholson were the main inspirations behind Oliver Spencer’s Spring Summer collection for 2013. Spencer has been known for his skilful use of colour and this season was no exception. Vivid shades of blue, orange and red punctuated the grey backdrop of the Old Sorting Office. Spencer breathed new life into signature pieces like The Portland Jacket and the Fisher Jacket with new colour ways and fabric finishes. Aztec prints were expertly applied to jackets and shirts with co-ordinating shorts. Rolled up trouser legs lent a more relaxed silhouette to suiting. The board short was another fine addition to the Oliver Spencer line. Plush suede monk strap and derby  shoes provided the finishing touches to each look.

One of the best things about Oliver Spencer’s show yesterday was the casting, the models that walked the runway varied from fresh faced guys to silver foxes (including an appearance by TOPMAN DESIGN’s head designer Gordon Richardson). As a whole the collection depicted Oliver Spencer as a designer who caters for every man who favours quality and a rigorous attention to detail. It’s refreshing to see a designer who really knows his clientele and is brave enough to put forward a show that would appeal to that audience.

Special thanks to Oliver Spencer and Surgery PR for giving me the opportunity to experience such an exciting show.

Reggie Yates, Dermot O’Leary and David Gandy on the front row at Oliver Spencer

London Collections: Men - SIBLING SS 2013

Since their debut collection in 2008, SIBLING has succeeded in constantly pushing the boundaries of men’s knitwear with innovation and a healthy dose of English humour. Today’s presentation was inspired the youth culture of Brick Lane and the revolutions in Paris and the Arab world. Light-weight knits and cropped jogging shorts in white, pink and shimmering gold dominated the collection. Shrugs and cardigans were festooned with thousands of acrylic paillettes and layered over crisp white shirts or embroidered jumpers.  An urban variation on a Toile de Jouy in a rich blue hue. The extravagant 'pom-pom’ masks were the highlights of a truly spectacular show. It’s no wonder why SIBLING has become one of the most sought-after designer collections on the menswear calendar.

Images via: HommeModel

London Collections: Men - Lou Dalton SS 2013

The beauty of Lou Dalton’s Summer/Spring 2013 collection was it’s simplicity. That being said, every cut and stitch was precise and considered creating a look that was both wearable and functional. The muted colour palette of icy blues, crisp whites, beiges and navy only emphasised Dalton’s high level of craftsmanship. Accents of neon green and maroon complimented the refined silhouette of the Dalton man. The underlying ethos of tailored pieces juxtaposed with the sports-luxe aesthetic was cleverly employed throughout the collection. This is most evident in the mesh panelled jackets and the trainers paired with the well constructed trousers and slim fitted shorts. Dalton’s collection started the first London Collections: Men with a dignified bang, once again showing her passion and obsession for sophisticated menswear.

London Collections: Men - Hackett London SS 2013

Hackett London’s Spring/Summer 2013 collection was truly a celebration of the English Gentleman. Against the backdrop of the Royal Opera House, the collection opened with three-piece suits in subtle pastel shades, inspired by the 1920s and The Great Gatsby.  The collection progressed to more casual, resort-inspired looks in bright, vibrant hues. One of my favourite looks was the white double-breasted jacket layered over a paisley print scarf and trousers. Brightly coloured or patterned espadrilles were paired with the casual looks. The show finale featured a troupe of twelve dashing models in impeccably tailored suits and bowler hats striding majestically along the catwalk. From pinstripes to tweeds and linens the collection boasted a rich variety of fabrics and cuts, once again proving that British luxury tailoring will always be a force to be reckoned with.

Image via: 

Images via: HommeModel

London Collections: Men - TOPMAN DESIGN SS 2013

Possibly one of the most obvious trends seen in the TOPMAN DESIGN SS 13 collection was the short suit. Graphic floral prints inspired by graffiti artist, Jean-Michel Basquiat were paired with suits made from classic Prince of Wales check fabric. Neoprene cycling shorts were worn under tailored shorts for a contemporary look and accessorised with fluoro beanies. As is custom with TOPMAN DESIGN collections, the attention to detail was brilliant, especially the perforated suede biker jackets and the cut-away boots worn with socks. Cropped football jerseys in block colours reflected the youthful, relaxed feel of the collection, probably not the easiest trend to pull off though. It will be interesting to see how the neon-saturated colour palette filters into the mass market next spring.

Images via: HommeModel

Thursday, 14 June 2012

London Collections: Men Playlist: Day 1

London Collections: Men starts today, with over 50 shows and presentations by the best designers from around the country. Prince Charles hosted a special reception to launch the 3 day-event which ends on Sunday. I’ve put together a 5-track playlist for each day to get me through the endless waiting and jumping from venue to venue.

Check out the full playlist on Spotify:

Seye - White Noise

Liquorice - Azealia Banks

Blood, Sweat & Tears - Paloma Faith

Love Lockdown - Kanye West

Kids - Sleigh Bells

TOPMAN Fall/Winter 2012 Look Book

TOPMAN’s Fall/Winter 2012 Look book has been released and it looks like a winner. I’m loving the moody, darker palette which really suits a British winter. It’s seems to share quite a few similarities with the TOPMAN DESIGN FW 2012 collection shown in February. Models, Jester and Jackson Rado were photographed by Laurence Ellis and styled by Harry Lambert and Stevie Westgarth. 

The collection boasts a variety of popular trends at the moment. There’s a real sense of proper, British style seen in the three-piece suit, it’s also clear that the Aztec/Tribal trend is going anywhere. I love that TOPMAN have given it a more modern twist. The choice of fabrics and colour palette are on-point and as usual, tailoring is impeccable.

If you’ve been following some of the stuff I post, you might have noticed that I LOVE bold, intricate prints. I literally gasped when I saw the orchid-print shirt below. It’s got the same sense of symmetry and florals that Riccardo Tisci so effortlessly used in his SS12 collection. I’ve been waiting for a great print like this and I definitely think TOPMAN’s take on this trend is a step in the right direction. My other top picks from this collection are the shearling lined peacoat and the baseball jacket and hat combo seen in the last picture.

What do you think of TOPMAN’s Autumn/Winter line-up?

BLEU06 Edit: Father’s Day Gift Guide

In my experience, shopping for my dad is almost as hard as shopping for myself. Sometimes it’s just easier to stick with the generic pair of socks or a novelty tie. This time round, let’s say no to crappy gifts, with that in mind, here are my top picks guaranteed to  put a smile on the faces of dads all around the world. 

For the dad who enjoys the finer things, satisfy his expensive taste with one of these beauties...
Aesop State of Matter Body Kit - Mr Porter
Moleskine Plain Softcover Notebook Moleskine
Assouline Fine Wines: The Best Vintages Since 1900 by Michel Dovaz - Mr Porter
Lanvin Bowtie Cufflinks - Matches
Balvenie Single Malt Whisky Sampler -  Selfridges
Tom Ford Grey Vetiver - Selfridges

Fanatic about new technology and always one step ahead of the game...
Apple TV - Apple
Pantone Universal iPhone Case - Selfridges
Alexander McQueen Leather iPad Case - Mr Porter
Braun BN0035 Stainless Steel Chronograph watch - Mr Porter
Kiehl’s Midnight Recovery Concentrate - House of Fraser
Bose SoundDock Digital Music System - John Lewis

For the city-slicker dads constantly on the go...
The Sartorialist by Scott Schumann - Amazon
Persol Polarised Rectangular-Frame Sunglasses - Mr Porter
Turnbull & Asser Contrast Edge Silk Pocket Square - Mr Porter
Nicole Farhi Airforce Blue Treated Linen Blazer - My Wardrobe
Hardy Amies Micro-diamond Navy Trousers - Matches Fashion
Grenson Ollie Snuff Tan Shoes - Coggles

A treasure trove for the dads seeking the perfect summer getaway... 
Comme Des Garçons AZ-1034 White T-Shirt - Coggles
MIANSAI Silver Hook on Burgundy Bracelet - MIANSAI
L.G.R. Luanda Sunglasses - Matches Fashion
YMC Navy Slip Ons - YMC
Orlebar Brown Setter Shorts - Mr Porter
Marc By Marc Jacobs Standard Supply Aviator Holdall - Mr Porter

Wednesday, 13 June 2012

ShortList's London Collections Limited Edition Covers

ShortList is probably the only free weekly publications I enjoy reading on the tube. Britain’s biggest men’s lifestyle magazine has released 3 limited edition covers for it’s London Collections: Men Style Special Issue. Topman Design, Liam Gallagher and Oliver Spencer were drafted in to design these limited edition covers which are available from today. So far I’ve managed to get images of the covers designed by Topman and Liam Gallagher, look out for the last one soon!

Images via: ShortList Magazine

Tuesday, 12 June 2012

IT’S OFFICIAL!! - H&M x Maison Martin Margiela Fall/Winter 2012 Collection

Marni, Lanvin , Versace, Jimmy Choo. H&M have been collaborating with big names for their  Autumn/Winter collections for a couple years now and this year is no different. Today H&M announced that MAISON MARTIN MARGIELA will be creating this year’s AW 2012 collection for Men and Women. MAISON MARTIN MARGIELA is known for their timeless and conceptual approach to style. The Maison believes in the absolute importance of the collaborative nature of its team rather than the individual, where its ideals are founded in the desire for concept and creativity.

Here’s what H&M’s creative advisor, Margaret von Bosch had to say about this new collaboration:
“MAISON MARTIN MARGIELA is one of the most important and influential fashion houses of the past three decades. I am so excited by this collaboration which will give fashion lovers around the world the chance to wear special pieces by MAISON MARTIN MARGIELA. This collaboration will be a great and memorable fashion moment“
 MAISON MARTIN MARGIELA released a statement too:
“We are very happy to present MAISON MARTIN MARGIELA pieces with H&M, offering a new interpretation of our vision. The democracy of our fashion has always been at the centre of our creativity, and the collaboration with H&M allows us to push this instinct further. We will bring together the contrasting universes of the two houses in ways that will surprise all.”
Some fashion purists might disagree with H&M’s ‘celebrity’ collections but I think it’s great that the general public get to experience both high and low forms of fashion. I loved that the Marni collection from earlier this year still managed to embody the unique sense of style that has made Marni so iconic. I’m quite confident that both labels will create a tasteful collection that will probably sell out fast! I’m definitely gonna start saving up.

The H&M x MAISON MARTIN MARGIELA collection launches online and instore on 15th November 2012.

The Team

Shapes and Volumes

Process of Tailoring

Images via H&M