Linked Mr. Hart on Wednesday while he was ensconced in his own imagined-become-real ‘Cathedral of Cool’, The Spencer Hart flagship shop. It’s a place that all style merchants should visit. There will be something of interest for any man worthy of that title. I can’t think of another shop like it for men. Like Nick, I was wearing brown too, but entirely the wrong season. It was double hot, and Hart had it just right, damn him. Chic and light, chocolate brown and black, oh yes. I’ll let him talk you through the style stance/sermon. Amen Daddy-O.
MR. HARTS STANCE
(click, if you will, on the names for links)
-Oliver Goldsmith ‘Glyn’ sunglasses– Which I don’t think are a collaboration, although though there is a collection of OG Spencer Hart in the vaunted vault downstairs. Which I must point out is pretty spectacular.
–Patek Philipe Aquanaut. Forgot to ask about watch, didn’t I, despite that fact that it’s one of my favourite sporty modern watches going. See GQs October watch special if ya don’t believe I rate it. Dynamic shape, clever rounded octagonal design with polished and brushed steel finish to case, updated Seventies sports watch style, not too big. Oh, it’s simply smashing.
-Lord knows where to get an image of the shoes. Will ask in the morning.
The rest is pure undiluted Spencer Hart, but you spotted that.
Stubbs on the 55 back to change out of knitwear and a three piece…
After yesterday’s Shout To The Top euphoric epiphany that triggered while writing about Oliver Spencer’s show music, spent day driving round doing stuff in town, sun out, top down, T.S.C. blaring. All day. The rediscovery and the sun made me very high, like the beginning of Spring. Frankly am ready to go again, like the Summer was in fact a good dress rehearsal. The public seemed pleased by the slow base line of Long Hot’ as it played over and over. There’s something brilliant about it. Also revisited Cafe Blue , and Introducing The Style Council EP.
This video was controversial at the time as Paul takes his top off. Controversially, it turns out is not the beginning of Spring. Today could be another mental one though. Go mental. Recommended listening: more TSC, burn it up while we can. Recommended dress code: spazzalato prada loafers, tight white jeans and little blazer. Oh, too late. That was the look of the Summer. Maybe this is more transitional?
By the time I was making way home throw a darkening Hackney, moods had changed. The Paris Match, this time sung by Paul from Cafe Blue, seemed to sum it up. As Paul says, ‘I’m only sad in a natural way, I enjoy sometimesfeeling this way..’. Tracey Thorn sings the version below. There’s a little photo montage to go with. Plenty of old shots of the boys. Tres chic
Today’s style advice: Imagine your last few Summer looks for ages (cause they are), then, like Mick, push the boat out. After this brief heat wave, dress for Paris Match, not Long Hot Summer. Long term leads to less disappointment. Simply insert belted lightweight trench where applicable. Pass my Gitanes? I can feel another episode coming on..
TS out in it.
P.S. Mick Talbot of TCS, formally of The Merton Parkas, went to the same school as my Dad. Fact.
One week old catwalk reports. That’s what they built the internet for, no? You lot don’t really give a monkey’s about being instantly informed, surely. What difference does it make? You can’t buy this stuff for ages. Just when is SS12 planned for release anyway? December I expect. Shorts, in the bleak midwinter. Whatever next? A Japan revival perhaps. See end of post. Really you should.
Tony Lewis, me and my assistant, Joan.
Regardless of time paralax, went to E.Tautz at the Savoy at about lunchtime (a week ago). Patrick Grant, whom am sure you know, does things in the old fashioned manner of a walk through with live, posh commentary. And a live cellist. I like the format, but I don’t suppose it would work if everyone did it. Only he does, and does it well, so it’s good. He told a story this time too. Couldn’t actually see the inspiration in the collection myself, but the tale is a quaint one. See video if you fancy it. Some live ‘salon’ action at the end. Brace yourselves.
Enjoyed colour balance of E.Tautz, the lighter fabrics. (Some were missing from his Paris showing. Curious. The furnishing like fabrics with slubs in them in natural colours. Think they are absolutely the way forward. Shall enquire further, but believe is problem with some supplier or other. (Probably died or starved or something). Also digging the cut of the DB’s. Light weight parkas, executed well are always going to excite proper outerwear fans. The big knits with T emblazoned upon it are of interest too.
This next one is pre-Fall, whatever that means in real terms.
This fella keeps doing his thing (clickmans), unswayed by fashion week, and keeps making an impact with his upbeat, quick paced, cleverly cast shows. He throws all manner of bods down the runway together. His stuff is all sort of washed and wearable right off the show. Nothing starchy about Spencer, really good Brit-bloke styling for really stylish, tactile, totally wearable, fastening fans. Don’t stop. Shout To The Top by The Style Council (click for instant uplift) lifting one up no end too. Take it away boys.
So, all buzzing and that from The Style Council, the sunshine and a glass of Sancerre on the corner of Seven Dials, went to Mr. Start down St. Martin’s Hotel with Elgar from i-D. Philip Start’s suiting is good (clickage). Men, take heed. Well affordable, at about £550-£750 these suits are worth considering on a few levels. Right? OK. Here’s a short video, not riveting, but atmospheric maybe. Note, one of the models looks a bit like David Silvian. Who? The singer out of the group Japan of course, you big joker.
Got me thinking that Japan’s look around the time of Tin Drum, could be looking dead right for now. I was desperately trying to look like David Silvian when at school in about 1983-5. Why would you do that with such limited natural resources I do not know. Adolescence eh? I used to have to go home at lunchtime and re-blow dry my hair. It was a massive production. Preposterous. Mum wouldn’t let me go properly high-lit blonde, so had to make do with Lo-lites. Rubbish. I still resent that Mum as it goes. Spent all my time trying to wear a Mac buttoned up over my uniform and a non-school shirt buttoned up to top with no-tie. Thought that was very David. Cool? Very doubtfully.
Loving the bins David. They prescription, or do you just wear them in the paddy-field to look more edgy? Wanna hear what this sounded like? For Visions of China (click it). I used to take it all so seriously. How was this ever gonna impress girls? Getting down to the sound right though. Play that fretless bass Mick Kahn, play it.
Alright lads, what’s happened? Someone had your table away? Can I take your drinks orders at least? One more instalment of LFW Mens left, in which we go to Claridges then do some running in the dark.
Like a butlering version of Jason Bourne, I woke with a tie mission firmly implanted in head. The time has come. Fabric ties must be identified and acquired. Particularly woollen, textured numbers. Having been enlightened to Alexander Olch (click) by that bloke from Mr. Porter, discovered that am keen on the English wool (click),
Also rather keen on Drake’s too (clickage), a British brand. Their cashmere ones are the way forward (click).
And a grey one. Stupid people think they’re boring, cool people think they’re stylish.
Then there’s Drake’s 7cm guys (click it). Also cool. OK, not knitted but still nice.
Gonna hunt down a couple more brand options and call it a successful mission, then perhaps the inexplicable head pains will end. Meanwhile, think these best with non-white shirts, pinks, blues, maybe herringbones, greys, textured Oxfords button downs too. The next poser is what pocket square to go with these chaps? Back with some findings when I find them. Unlikely to be sourced on Hackney Downs, but that is where am heading. Am strangely drawn there now…
Seven Saturdays ago on Radio 3 Jeffery Smith played Edith and The Kingpin performed by Herbie Hanncock and sung by Tina Turner (click). And so it began. It’s a Joni Mitchell song, of course, so the chords sounded familiar, haunting yet still distantly exotic. Blew mind instantly. Instant bliss. I know jazz isn’t considered cool. Don’t give a monkey’s. This transported me somewhere I wanted to be. Wanted to stay it turned out.
Acquired it immediately and was soon on my plane to New York listening to it. As the increasingly distant London kicked off into rioting I dissolved into Herbie’s arrangement of Joni’s song, realising that she is in fact not just a genius writer, but a genius jazz writer. Many of you already know that it’s from an award winning album from 2007 called River : The Joni Letters, don’t you (click)? Regardless finding the album waiting for me when I returned to London, I started to fall for the whole thing.
Track after track. Corinne Bailey Rae doing River. Norah Jones singing Court and Spark. Cannot stop playing it. Know heading for overkill oblivion, but what’s the point in restraint when something feels this right? Tragic, but for now I remain suspended in gentle ecstasy. Cushioned in luxurious tones and poetry. For now, it goes on. It’s becoming significant in other ways.