Monday, 26 September 2016 15:25

Buyer's Guide AW16 TRUNK

Mats Klingberg, TRUNK founder

Begg & Co Kishorn cashmere scarf"I’ve been a big fan of Begg & Co and their washed Kishorn cashmere scarves for several seasons, now. The wash gives them a nice and fluffy finish which nicely adds some texture to any outfit. The Kishorns generally come in lots of nice solid colours, only, so I was very pleased when I came across this Kishorn woven in a khaki/camel block medley pattern”.

Left - Begg & Co - Kishorn Scarf Khaki Block Medley - £270

"The Gigi keeps going from strength to strength and it’s always a joy to visit their showroom to discover what they’ve created for next season. We’ve got lots of nice things from them this season, but I particularly like this heavy knit cardigan jacket. Will look great with a Trunk Oxford shirt and a pair of chinos or jeans paired with a chukka boot from Alden or sneaker from Common Projects”.

Below - The Gigi - Chunky Knit Jude Jacket Green - £355

The Gigi Cardigan Menswear

Nanamica Cordura bag menswear"Our bag selection in Trunk LABS has this season seen the addition of this great bag from Nanamica, made in Japan, from an ultra-durable cotton Cordura fabric. The bag can be carried in three ways - as a backpack via the foldaway straps, as a briefcase by its side handle, or as a messenger bag. The bag has a main roll-top compartment, with large zip pockets on the front and back, each containing a system of handy dividers. A highly functional bag, it provides ample room and organisation for anything you might need to carry with you on a daily basis. What else do you need?”

Left - Nanamica - 3 Way Cordura Briefcase Khaki - £410

"A pair of Alden’s is the perfect match with any smart casual look, so works equally well with a pair of flannel trousers, chinos or jeans. I need a new pair of chukka boots, so am definitely getting a pair of these for myself this season”.

Below - Alden - Unlined Chukka Dark Brown Suede - £475

Alden Chukka boot Trunk Clothiers

WienerBlut perfume fragrance London Vienna"Most of the brands in Trunk I’ve discovered on trips near and far and when I went to Vienna, last year, I came across WienerBlut for the first time, a fragrance brand from Vienna created by the very talented Alexander Lauber. I think the bottles are beautiful and thankfully its content matches the outside. A subtle, slightly spicy fragrance, Ex Voto comprises key notes of pink pepper, nutmeg, santal and ambergris”.

WienerBlut - Ex Voto - £130

Wednesday, 21 September 2016 19:39

TheChicGeek Visits Burberry’s Makers House

burberry makers house soho gardenThere are two types of Britishness: urban London Britishness, which is too often clichéd and touristy, involving bowler hats, red telephone boxes and the like, and, then, there's the Britishness of the countryside, which comprises of green rolling hills, National Trust properties with colourful herbaceous borders all soundtracked by the theme of The Antiques Roadshow. 

Left - The not-so-secret garden at the entrance of Burberry's pop-up Makers House

The British countryside is basically a giant garden dotted with the history of people aiming to perfect their little corner of it and that's why we all love to be tourists in it, regardless of where we are from. 

Makers House Burberry menswearAnd, it is this Britishness that Burberry has mined for its latest show and show space, which has been opened to the general public for a week afterwards and is called Makers House.

Right - Makers are gonna make. The day I went it was bookbinding

Located in the old Foyles book store on Charing Cross Road, on the edge of Soho, Burberry has teamed up with British craft collective, The New Craftsmen, showcasing their hand-working skills, making everything from tassels to keys to scissors. There are different people displaying different skills, on each day, creating theatre in the bottom of the space.

burberry shearling makers houseJust to be clear, these people didn’t produce anything for the new Burberry collection, but it’s an illustration of the type of skills involved. I guess Burberry needed huge volumes and a long lead time if they were able to be the first brand to fully deliver their new ‘See Now, Buy Now’ concept worldwide, all at the same time, both offline and online.

Left - One of the standout pieces of the menswear show

Burberry fabric print V&AYou can buy their products in a small shop here, but I think Burberry missed a trick by not including a few of their own products. Maybe a few of the classic pieces.

Right - A print taken from the V&A archive and used in the collection and on the show seating

Alongside them is a pop-up branch of Thomas’, the Burberry café from Regent Street, which has to be one of the best of the big brand versions of this type of thing, offering seasonal British fare all served on British made tables and chairs, and in this case, leading onto a garden of white busts and classical plaster casts contrasted with lush green planting that welcomes you at the entrance.

burberry chic geek staircaseIt’s like Daylesford Organic has comes to Soho, hostas and all, in this mix of Virginia Woolf’s Orlando, Nancy Lancaster’s decorating skills, (she was the owner of Sibyl Colefax & John Fowler), and a celebration of the great and good of British history all lined up like a friendly who’s, who. I feel like we may have been given a glimpse of Christopher Bailey’s Yorkshire lifestyle. He has to spend all those millions somewhere after all. This is the fantasy perfection of British country living that we never seem to tire of and one which Burberry has used as inspiration before such as Charleston in Sussex or gardening at Sissinghurst.

Left - TheChicGeek on the poetry staircase doing his best Rapunzel impression!

burberry ruffUpstairs, where the catwalk show was, 83 mannequins show off the full collection of men’s and women’s wear, 250 pieces in total, where you can look at the details and touch the fabrics. Everything is available now, if you can afford it, and the collection was Bailey’s usual strong balance of wearability and fashion. Think artist-like relaxed shirts with ruffled collars and cuffs interplayed with brocade and cropped shearlings and slouchy trousers. I particularly like the orange/biscuit coloured shearling and 30s style printed pyjama shirts. The green carpet design was taken from a garden print from the V&A.

Right - The Tudors are back! Taking the ruff with the smooth

Burberry makers house sculptorBurberry took a risk on the ‘See Now, Buy Now’ concept, but I think they’ve pulled it off. Unlike other brands, this show season, who have made it a token gesture to gain attention and PR, this is full on and took some organisation. I guess many items had to be comprised or changed to fulfil the tight delivery dates, but it doesn't show. 

Left - Pieces of Michelangelo's David looking over his shoulder while a sculptor builds up his clay maquette 

Nancy Lancaster's bed burberry I like the way it’s been opened up to the public. You spend all that money on the show space, you may as well as justify it by making it customer facing, especially now they’re selling the items straight away. I can’t wait to see how they will top this in February.

Many other luxury brands will be watching this enviously and wondering whether they could or should do the same. 

Right - Nancy Lancaster's bed from her house, Ditchley Park

In a post-brexit world I think Burberry should take this whole concept on a world tour. Tokyo, Shanghai, and Mumbai would relish this little outpost of Britishness, pots plants and all. We have to remember there’s a big world outside of London.

Burberry Makers House Open Until 27th September 2016, 1 Manette Street, London, W1D 4AT

classical figures burberry makers house

How many of these great British figures can you name?

Thursday, 15 September 2016 16:32

ChicGeek Comment Does Style.com Stand A Chance?

style com thoughts ideas the chic geekSince its inception, e-commerce has been a difficult nut to crack. When it was growing fast and taking market share, from offline, it was easy to justify spending vast sums laying the foundations for something that you will reap the benefit of later on.

Today, the luxury market is contracting, so trying to grow, whether offline or online, is particular hard, at this moment in time, especially when you're not in control of the choice of products.

Luxury fashion was slow to get fully behind e-commerce and only now are the brands giving it the attention and respect it deserves. The reasons for the change being companies like Net-a-porter and matchesfashion.com having pioneered this area and shown the riches to be made and also being able to communicate with a future consumer and grow a direct database.

Publishing house, Condé Nast, has just launched its e-commerce offering in the form of style.com This has been coming for the past couple of years and has been put back and put back and then, it surprised me, two weeks ago, by appearing on my Twitter timeline. A reported £75 million has been spent - The Times - and with over 100 employees - The FT - this is a big commitment. 

There’s always room for something different/good or both, in any form of retail and the idea to combine trusted editorial with shopping is a good one, especially in a tastemaker environment like this. It makes sense.

Unfortunately, the launch site looks nothing different from a luxury site from 10 years ago. The choice is limited and being run on affiliates - which means they earn a commission on each sale - all the items are distributed from various sellers at different costs in different locations. It’s going to be a nightmare for Condé Nast to deal with returns. They want the money, but don’t want to get their hands dirty. Don't we all?!

The biggest surprise is, where is all the editorial? People have tried shoppable magazines before, they don’t work. That’s fine. But, use the budget and teams of Vogue and GQ and give me the best of the season’s images and shoots and if there’s only one shoppable product, then so be it. It’s the magic that people buy into. It’s the world that these magazines live in.

It feels as though the editors aren’t playing ball and have washed their hands of it. It probably doesn't help that style.com is based in Camden and the magazines are over in Hanover Square.

After the delayed launch, the launch now feels rushed. I think they would have been better off keeping style.com as it was - runway reports and party pictures - to keep the traffic up and instead, now, they have to cannibalise digital advertising, which is hard to generate money from at the best of times, in order to push shoppers over to the site from the magazines' individual websites.

It launched with free shipping on orders over £350, very generous! Now, it’s free shipping and returns on all orders. Clearly taking some feedback. (Mr Porter had the same issue when it launched). It has only launched in the UK, atm, and there is nothing on there you can’t get anywhere else. It's interesting too that Condé Nast invested in FarFetch.com, another high-fashion portal, and is, now, technically a competitor. Maybe the two will merge?

I think style.com is too little, too late. They’ll spend the next 18 months finding out that this business model is particularly hard to make money from, while blowing millions and millions of pounds. They'll be lucky is they ever make a profit. This could be the Ocado of fashion! In hindsight, it would have been better to have had a chat with Natalie Massenet about 15 years ago.

lab series matte renewal lotion reviewThe latest addition to Lab Series’ MAX LS collection of products delivers anti-ageing power with a fresh, matte finish. Ideal for the man who is prone to shiny skin, this oil-free moisturiser delivers a hydrated, healthy finish without a greasy feeling left on the skin.  

Looking at the facts - men produce 3 micrograms of oil per cm2, while women only produce 0.7 micrograms per cm2.  Men also sweat more than women, up to 30%-40% percent more, which can exacerbate the shine and large pores. (This is also why we look better for longer!)

The patented Lab Series illumatte™ ingredient complex mattifies excess oil and helps control the production of oil over time so skin stays shine-free longer.  At the same time, it helps to increase surface skin cell renewal to help smooth texture and brighten tone, invigorating dull, tired-looking skin with a brighter appearance. 

TheChicGeek says, “‘Hydration without the shine’, is what is promised here, and, because the majority of men have oily skin it’s perfectly reasonable for guys to want to limit the shine while keeping their skin moisturised. 

Call me a contrarian, but I like to have a healthy glow, without the shine, which is often a fine line to tread before it becomes greasy and you want to starting wiping your polished-looking forehead.

This does have a mattifying/powdered effect. The product is light and goes on easily, and you don’t need much of it, plus the Lab Series MAX LS range features all their anti-aging ingredients as a standard, but, as always, I’d like to see an SPF. 

I consider my skin to be fairly standard when it comes to oil and this isn’t my main cause of breakouts. I find with these mattifying products that they often leaving you feeling a bit grey and flat. I think if your skin is very oily, you’ll probably want to cleanse and reapply this more than once a day, if you can.

At £48 for 50ml, this isn’t cheap, because you’re paying for all that anti-aging technology. On a side bar, I do feel like there’s been too many additions to Lab Series’ MAX LS range of products, recently, and it’s started to confuse the product and how each one differs from the others. This one, though, does have a USP if you want to minimise the shine”. 

Left - Lab Series - MAX LS Matte Renewal Lotion - 50ml - £48

victoria & albert revolution exhibition mr fishThis major exhibition at the V&A will explore the era-defining significance and impact of the late 1960s upon life today. From global civil rights, multiculturalism, environmentalism, consumerism, computing, communality to neoliberalist politics, the world we live in has been vitally influenced by five revolutionary years 1966 – 70. You Say You Want a Revolution? Records and Rebels 1966 – 70 will investigate the upheaval, the explosive sense of freedom, and the legal changes that took place resulting in a fundamental shift in the mindset of the Western world.

Left - Examples of 60s fashion including this striped suit by Mr Fish

Mick Jagger jumpsuit ossie clark exhibition the chic geek TheChicGeek says, “What a trip! We can never get enough of the sixties; a decade we look back at so fondly and one that defined modern Britain and revitalised London. The Victoria & Albert Museum certainly know where the money is these days: the baby-boomers who have all the time and leisure can reminisce here and let the memories come flooding back, or not depending on how hard they went for it during that decade.

Right - The moves like Jagger! Ossie Clark's velvet jumpsuit for Mick Jagger

beatles sergeant pepper lonely heart suits V&ATuning in and dropping out was for the wealthy, but we won’t let that spoil a good story. What makes this exhibition is the headphones and the soundtrack. Much like the Bowie exhibition before it, it allows you to be fully immersed and get lost in the sights and sounds of the decade.

Left - Two of the Beatles suits from the Sgt Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band album cover

woodstock fashion v&a museumThere’s nothing here that is particularly new, but it’s so well put together it’s a bit like watching a favourite film: you know what is going to happen but you still love it. From Carnaby Street to Vietnam to Black Power to Woodstock and finally Lennon’s Imagine, the exhibition looks at the idea of challenging the establishment and looking for alternative ways of thinking and living, many of which still resonate today.

Right - The Woodstock area features fake grass, bean bags and costumes and footage from the 1960s most famous festivals

John Lennon Imagine jacketThere is plenty of menswear here too. From Mr Fish to Ossie Clark’s jumpsuit for Mick Jagger and Jimi Hendrix’s festival costumes.

I can’t recommend this exhibition enough. I think it was the longest time I’ve ever spent in a V&A exhibition. There is so much to look at and read, plus the headphones really allow you to zone out and tune in!”

Left - The jacket John Lennon wore in the Imagine video

#RecordsandRebels

Tuesday, 06 September 2016 10:01

Hot List The Rainbow Cardigan

rainbow jumper cardigan pradaPrada was once one of the coolest brands. Twice a year, I’d eagerly await each Milan show for that sophisticated yet intellectual take on beautiful men’s clothes. They’d always be something new and clever, which sometimes took a couple of months to sink in, and defined this intelligent type of dressing.

Unfortunately, not everything lasts and this has disappeared from the label which hasn’t been updating as quickly as they used to. It’s like Miuccia has left the building, but then maybe that’s what happens when you become a fashion billionaire?

Anyway, they’ve realised that in order to slow their drop in sales they need to get online and they’ve just gone on to MRPORTER.COM. This cardigan is a standout for all it’s ‘children’s-tv-presenter-rainbow-realness’. It’s something a crazed aunt would knit for you as a child and something that would quickly become your favourite and return to year-after-year. It's hand-knitted in Italy from Shetland wool and is basically a smile in a cardigan.

Left & Below - Prada - Intarsia Shetland Wool Cardigan - £1130

shetland jumper prada the chic geek cardigan mr porter

Monday, 05 September 2016 15:21

Label To Know Instrmnt

label to know men's watch Instrmnt‘Minimal’ men’s watches have continued their rise in popularity over the last few years with many brands offering different styles at price points to suit nearly all budgets. Simplicity and design are the key to the male modernists who fill their Instagram accounts with Brutalist concrete and tiled floors.

It’s difficult to find a perfectly balanced minimal watch, some are either too simple or not elegant enough. I think two young Glaswegian guys, Pete Sunderland and Ross Baynham, who met while studying at Glasgow Caledonian University, have found the perfect solution.

Their company, Instrmnt, make the best minimal watches I’ve seen. They have just the right amount of design, detail and movement. They also have the feel of a good quality watch, that gets better the more you use it, at a price that, while not cheap, is definitely something we can all afford. 

You get to assemble the watch yourself - perfect for all those watch geeks - see below. The calf leather straps are crafted in the valleys of the Bavarian Forest, Germany and Instrmnt has their own store located on Glasgow’s Parnie street in the city's Trongate area selling other niche labels alongside their watches.

Left & Below - Instrmnt - 01-C - £180

watch to buy minimal instrmnt

Instrument has their own store located on Glasgow’s Parnie street in the city's Trongate areaLeft - Instrmnt has their own store located on Glasgow’s Parnie street in the city's Trongate area

 

the chic geek aveda grooming station“Doc, doc, doc, doc, Dr. Geek, Won’t you help me, Dr. Geek?!”

This is your opportunity to meet TheChicGeek at Aveda’s pop-up Grooming Station in Fitzrovia, London and discuss any style dilemmas you may have while receiving a complementary haircut from Aveda’s wizards of hair.

Whether you are thinking about a new season wardrobe shift, are stuck in a style rut and need some inspiration, or have a special occasion coming up and are at a loss for what to wear - book in for a free, 30 minute style consultation with Dr Chic Geek at Aveda’s Grooming Station for men, 6 Mortimer Street, Fitzrovia.   

Dr Chic Geek is on-hand to host bespoke styling consultations for men, introducing wardrobe staple ideas, featuring a curated rail from House of Fraser menswear brands, new colour palettes to consider for the autumn, as well as hair, skin and fragrance regime and product advice, with hero brands including: Aveda Men, Clinique For Men, Lab Series and Aramis and Designer Fragrances.   

Complimentary appointments are available between 11am and 7pm, Thursday 8th September, each appointment includes a voucher for a free Aveda Men Master Barber haircut, valid at The Grooming Station until 30th September 2016. To pre-book your appointment email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., or pop in on the day and try your luck!

What are you waiting for?! #DrChicGeek will see you now...

aveda the chic geek dr geek

Wednesday, 31 August 2016 09:37

Buyer's Guide AW16 MATCHESFASHION.COM

Damien Paul, Head of Menswear, MATCHESFASHION.COM

grey trainers Y3 adidas "This unique and ground-breaking collaboration between Yohji Yamamoto and adidas has now been running for over a decade, and the product continues to resonate well for our customers. My favourite style for this autumn is the 'Qasa' high top trainer – the detail is minimal and subtle and these will work well with a cropped trouser and sweatshirt".

Y3 - Qasa High-Top Trainers - £260 Buy Now 

jacket OAMC AW16 matchesfashion.com"OAMC stands for Over All Master Cloth and is new to MATCHESFASHION.COM this season. The collection encompasses the sweet spot between contemporary and sportswear influence and is lifted by a refined finish and attention to detail. I like this navy sweatshirt as it is has a slim silhouette which can work well when worn with smarter trousers, and it is elevated with a detachable feather charm".

OAMC - Feather Charm Crew Neck Sweatshirt - £225 Buy Now 

 

 

 

 

  

malle weekend bag the chic geek"Another new label for us, Malle is London based and began with the intention of creating superior, British made motorcycle luggage. The collection has now evolved and this pannier shoulder bag is absolutely functional, and is very masculine. In oiled canvas with black bridle leather trim I like that the roll-top closure allows you to expand the size of the bag as you require".

Malle - 'Jack' Cotton Canvas Pannier Shoulder Bag - £430 Buy Now

trousers marni navy pleated"Italian design house Marni often deals in unexpected proportions and off-kilter silhouettes, which I personally love. These trousers are more refined, and whilst they are cropped, they have a classic, straight cut, with a single pleat at the front. In navy wool-twill they are what I call and investment purchase as they will work both on and off-duty, and will add elegance even to low key weekend dressing".

Marni - Single Pleat Wool-Twill Trousers - £505 Buy Now

"Exclusive to MATCHESFASHION.COM Raey has very subtle, cool handwriting – the sort of pieces that slot into any man’s wardrobe and become firm favourites… I like this oversized bomber for autumn as it nods to sportswear but is in Prince of Wales check, one of the most traditional fabrications in English heritage".

Raey - 1970s Zip Through Houndstooth Checked Jacket £495 Buy Now

prince of wales checked jacket raey

Tuesday, 30 August 2016 09:32

#OOTD 88 Olympic Geek 5/5

the chic geek blogger olympic gamesIt's over :( The Rio 2016 Olympic Games is finished and it's time to hit the showers. Post-gymwear requires a simple yet stylish approach to sportswear. Comfort is key and rehydration a priority as you venture home and flop into bed. 

Put those aching muscles into loose tracksuit bottoms with sandals and sports socks and go home to eat your own body weight of food. You deserve it! 

Credits - Tracksuit Bottoms - Duck & Cover, Rucksack - Herschel, Watch - Storm, Sandals - Birkenstock from ASOS, Blue Rain Jacket - Huez, White Olympic Team GB Top - adidas from JD Sports, Socks - adidas from ASOS, Fragrance - ‘Uomo’ by Salvatore Ferragamo, Moisturising Shave Gel - The Real Shaving Co., Superdefense Night - Clinique, Water - SmartWater

More images & video below

Shot by Robin Forster on Olympus PEN

Get involved #Olympichicgeek

See OLYMPIC GEEK 1

OLYMPIC GEEK 2

OLYMPIC GEEK 3

OLYMPIC GEEK 4

gym kit geek sportswear the chic geekwatch storm menswear style the chic geekback pack blue herschel rucksacksandals socks birkenstocks blue the chic geek ootdcycle wear style huez the chic geekolympic rings flatlay blogger men's the chic geek