Displaying items by tag: Menswear

Thursday, 28 July 2022 13:46

Label To Know Castart

menswear sustainable welcome edition Castart Antwerp men's the chic geekAt the recent Welcome Edition trade show in East London, previewing the new SS23 men’s collections, I stumbled across the Belgian brand, Castart. Based in the fashion capital of Antwerp, Castart is a colourful and eclectic brand perfect for the chicest of geeks.

Launched in 2018, the name ‘Castart’ is French for ‘cheeky man’, because the cheeky man doesn’t tell the stories to others, he writes the stories himself, says the brand.

Castart’s materials are sourced from ethically responsible suppliers around the world. They work closely with manufacturers to constantly develop new, environmentally friendly production techniques. Despite their global outlook, they remain focused on crafting garments suited to individual tastes which give their clothing its timeless and distinguished charm.

TheChicGeek says, “For SS23, I want a pair of their striking Yves Klein blue combat trousers. A standout. Prices are around the £100 mark, and it has made me want to visit their home store in Antwerp.”

www.castartclothing.com

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menswear sustainable welcome edition Castart Antwerp men's the chic geek

Published in Labels To Know
Wednesday, 29 June 2022 15:56

#OOTD 128 What A Prick!

menswear blogger style fashion the chic geek cactus jacketmenswear blogger style fashion the chic geek cactus jacketFirst I'm a Fashion Wanker, and now I'm a prick? You probably know I'm obsessed with cacti - Have you seen my Fabulous Plants? - so, wearing a fabulous jacket embroidered with my green babies is a style statement to behold. Love it!

Here I've teamed it with a vintage H & C Bar cowboy shirt picked up for a snip on eBay and dark 'Leesures' chino. The look is finished with a Ed Hardy cap - remember thoses? It's back - and coloured knit trainers and argyle socks.

Credits - Cactus Jacket - Scotch & Soda, Cap - Ed Hardy, Cowboy Shirt - eBay, Trousers - Lee, Socks - Burlington, Trainers - Diadora

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menswear blogger style fashion the chic geek cactus jacket

menswear blogger style fashion the chic geek cactus jacket

 

menswear blogger style fashion the chic geek cactus jacket

menswear blogger style fashion the chic geek cactus jacket

Published in Outfit of the Day
Friday, 27 May 2022 16:49

ChicGeek Comment Stand By Your Brand

stand by your brand celebrity fashion david gandyWhat makes a celebrity brand a ‘celebrity brand’? Does the celebrity have to live and breathe the brand, or can they discreetly linger in the background as a footnote of its ownership and still expect it to be successful?

Irish actor, Jamie Dornan, recently announced the launch of his new menswear brand, Eleven Eleven, to his 3 million Instagram followers. Receiving over 420K likes, the post featured snapshots of Dornan wearing the new basics-focussed menswear label with text saying, "I hate shopping and want all men to dress like me. So my mate and I have created a timeless capsule wardrobe over at @thisiseleven_eleven.

"Have a look and buy yourself/boyfriend/husband/lover/ex/brother/stranger something that he’ll always look good in. #thisiseleveneleven #capsulewardrobe”.

The mate in question, and fellow owner, is Jolyon Bohling, who has a background of launching celebrity and influencer brands. A marketing professional with 25 years’ experience, Bohling is the founder of ‘Group Seventy One' which “create and support brands from inception through design and production and onto D2C channels”.

Left - David Gandy wearing his own Wellwear brand

The Eleven Eleven brand currently has 11K followers on Instagram, but the brand doesn’t feature Dornan’s image anywhere on its channels or website. It is worth noting that Dornan started his career as a fashion model, even making it to the heady heights of being a scantily clad Calvin Klein underwear model.

Eleven Eleven states on its website, “Our aim is to make men’s staple products that last, that are thought through in design and detailing, that can be worn alone or together, that can be dressed up or down.

“Eleven Eleven was born out of having to visit many different shops to pull together our wardrobe basics. It was born out of a need to provide strong, interchangeable, simple colour palettes without costing the earth.”

The brand currently offers polo shirts for £45, long sleeve polos for £50, T-shirts for £30, pique shirts for £52, slim fit shirts for £75, chinos for £75 and jumpers for £85.

Confusingly, there are at least two other brands with the Eleven Eleven name. One is called 11.11 / ELEVEN ELEVEN and is sold at matchesfashion.com and another is called eleven eleven fashion. With his background in modelling and, clearly, a huge fan base, is it a mis-step for Dornan to not feature heavily in his new brand’s imagery?

When people buy into celebrity brands they are buying into that person’s image and style. Is it a mistake not to front the campaign and promote the brand yourself and stand by it?

Launching any fashion brand is hard right now, not taking this huge advantage feels like an error.

Recent celebrity brands to run into trouble include Alexa Chung’s namesake brand, which was recently wound up with a loss of more than £11million, Liam Gallagher’s Pretty Green which was sold to JD Sports in April 2019 after entering administration with reported debts of £18million and David Beckham’s Kent & Curwen which ceased trading in Nov. 2021. David Beckham bought a stake in the brand in 2016 through his Seven Global company and had ended his partnership with Kent & Curwen previously in April 2020.

Gallagher was rarely pictured wearing his indie-inspired label while Chung’s was priced considerably higher than most of her fan base could afford. For Chung it was difficult for her to remain the girl to watch in her late 30s, especially when the social scene had been completely shut down during Covid.

One recent celebrity launch with the name firmly in front of the camera is David Gandy’s Wellwear, “a world-first concept bringing apparel and well-being together in a lifestyle brand that fuses fashion, function and feeling based on the scientific benefits of wearing soft, comfortable clothing.”

The model told TheIndustry.fashion, “I have never been someone to just put my name or face to something then walk away. I have to believe in something and be fully immersed in the process; my collaborations with M&S and Aspinal are examples of this.” he says. “Starting my own label is one of the last big things I wanted to achieve in the fashion industry, and one that I knew would be incredibly hard to do, so knowledge and timing had to be just right.”

Gandy stars in and fronts his brand’s imagery and social media alongside other models.

“For me, it is a little different as I have come from the modelling world. This is what people have come to know me for, and the Wellwear team believed it’s what people still wanted to see while we are building our audience.” says Gandy. “But I didn’t want the brand to solely be about me. I wanted to use our Wellwear platform to give other upcoming talent the opportunity to be the face of the brand, and grow with us as we do. I want Wellwear to inspire all ages and demographics. Eventually, my vision is for them to take over all the campaigns and Wellwear to become its own entity, rather than always be linked to me visually.” he says.

What does Gandy think about other celebrity brands minus their celebrity’s image?

“It’s each to their own as there is not a right or a wrong way.” he says. “You can look at many top designers with their own brands i.e. Tom Ford or Ralph Lauren.  Sometimes they put themselves in the campaign and creative, and sometimes they don’t.

“You can still be the spokesperson, face and founder of a brand without having to be in the creative visually. The one advantage of founding your own brand is that you can make those decisions. But, have to remember if you get those decisions wrong, there is no blaming anyone else, that’s the responsibility you have.” he says.

It can be difficult for celebrities to 100% commit to wearing their own labels when they have lucrative contracts with other brands, but, wearing other labels often confuses consumers and questions how much input they have in their own label and how much they actually own of it. It’s like when A instead of his own label. It sent the message that his eponymous menswear was inferior or not good enough. If you have your own label why would you not make something you wanted to wear?

Discreet celebrity can work. One successful brand which has the celebrity founders firmly in the background is the super expensive, The Row. Almost cult-like in status, The Row was established in 2006 by twins Ashley Olsen and Mary-Kate Olsen and has stuck to its format of ultra-luxe, minimal fashion. The twins keep a rarefied distance and a nun-like silence around their label.

Another is Totême. Founded in 2014 by Swedish fashion blogger, fashion journalist, Elin Kling. She stays firmly in the background and has created a buzz with a clear point of view and design DNA.

Victoria Beckham on the other hand has found it difficult. She has tried to stay aloof, but has struggled. She started with the wrong categories. She should have followed Tom Ford’s lead and opened with beauty and sunglasses. You need to produce something people can buy into. She has recently reduced her prices by almost 40% by switching to simpler silhouettes and fewer embellished fabrics. The brand launched in 2008 with many consecutive years of no profits.

Other recent discreet celeb. brands to launch include Coldplay’s Guy Berryman’s ‘Applied Art Forms’, but he has less of a public image to put into the brand.

The undisputed queens of self-promotion are the Kardashians. Kim Kardashian launched her Skims label in September 2019 and it sold out in minutes. She has tapped into the expertise of Frame founder, Jens Grede, who has also partnered with her sister, Khloe with Good American. Kim K is happy to front the campaign for her shapewear brand and her image is now synonymous with the Skims brand.

Over in the UK, Trinny Woodall’s almost religious promotion of beauty brand ‘Trinny London’ has railroaded it into people’s consciousness. Starring in her campaigns, her almost QVC-like self-promotion has made a gross profit of £27.4million in the year to March 2021, a massive increase on the previous year's £8.5million. She understands the competitive nature of the beauty business and also the need to swear by your products.

Today, you need to be gratuitous in your promotion. American almost. British politeness won’t cut it. People need to be continually reminded you have a brand, you stand by your brand and you love your brand. You wouldn’t wear or use anything else. Without buying it, you are missing out, that should be the message, loud and proud.

Having a celebrity front a brand is a huge advantage. Them not wearing it or fronting the brand seems like a huge opportunity wasted, especially given the increased competitiveness of social media and direct to consumer selling.

It is rather difficult to sell a brand that you have backed if you are never seen in it. People want to know why and see it as a negative. Celebrities have to get involved. If you don’t wear the product, the signal is you don’t like it and why the hell would somebody else buy it?

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Published in Comment
Wednesday, 23 March 2022 14:18

Get The Look The Power Of The Dog

menswear get the look Power of the dog cowboy western peter gordon kodi smit mcphee

Set on a ranch in Montana in the 1920s, The Power of the Dog is a new Western film by director Jane Campion following two vastly differently brothers: Phil Burbank (Benedict Cumberbatch) and George Burbank (Jesse Plemons).

menswear get the look Power of the dog cowboy western peter gordon kodi smit mcpheePhil develops an unlikely friendship with his brother’s stepson, Peter Gordon (Kodi Smit-McPhee). While the film has East of Eden vibes, it's no Brokeback Mountain and Cumberbatch isn't convincing as a menacing and bullying character. The menswear get the look Power of the dog cowboy western peter gordon kodi smit mcpheemountainous backdrop of Montana is stunning though.

Right - Bollman Hats - 100% Wool Felt Cattleman Cowboy Hat (Large, Grey Silverbelly)- £86

Stylistically, it's Smit-McPhee who steals the film in a puritan type of western wear. His natural cotton shirt and raw denim on his willowy frame makes a memorable look. It has something of Raf Simons' Americana when he did his short lived label for Calvin Klein.

This simple look is easily replicated. Look for raw selvedge denim, an off-white/cream/natural shirt and light felt cowboy hat. Just add any dramatic landscape.

menswear get the look Power of the dog cowboy western peter gordon kodi smit mcpheeRight - Lee - 101 Rider In Dry - £160

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menswear get the look Power of the dog cowboy western peter gordon kodi smit mcphee

 

Published in Men

menswear Victoria & Albert Museum review V&A Fashioning Masculinities The Art of MenswearHoping to take the toxicity out of masculinity and give a fresh lens onto the world of menswear is the Victoria & Albert Museum’s latest show, Fashioning Masculinities: The Art of Menswear.

Unbelievably, it is the first major V&A exhibition to celebrate ‘the power, artistry and diversity of masculine attire and appearance'. Presenting around 100 looks and 100 artworks, displayed thematically across three galleries, it features the extravagance of the European courts, to the subtle elegance of bespoke tailoring, to the vitality of today’s international fashion scene, all fashioned and refashioned over the centuries. Contemporary looks by established designers and rising stars sit alongside historical treasures from the V&A’s collections and landmark loans: classical sculptures, Renaissance paintings, iconic photographs, and powerful film and performance.

Left - 'Undressed' room welcomes you to the exhibition

Gender is like night and day or light and dark, it changes all the time. It is pretty much established that men can wear pink nowadays. Even Niccolò Machiavelli recorded a quip by Cosimo the Elder “in his Istorie back in 1526 that 'two yards of pink cloth can make a gentleman’”.

This is such a big subject that it is hard to focus. What are you supposed to take away?

With an exhibition like Dior, for example, the subject line is already established and the curators simply have to flesh it out and select the best examples. This is a subject that could go in any direction.

There is plenty of decoration here, it could do with focusing on a few key characters or historical influencers. There is a portrait and suit of Edward VIII's, and, Cecil Beaton’s fancy dress bunny outfit, that could easily have an exhibition on their own. The exhibition could have been called ‘Influencers in Menswear’ or ‘Menswear in Art’ and had more detail. It’s usually the people that make clothes more interesting.

Masculine energy, good or bad, is missing. The first room ‘Undressed’ feels confused and flat and doesn’t really inject anything sexual into the proceedings. There is no desire here and little objectification. It the difference between male beauty and masculinity. One is much easier to visualise than the other.

Where the exhibition did get stronger was with the portraiture. Historical portraits mixed with doublets, gloves and the most fantastic Grinling Gibbons carved cravat once owned by Horace Walpole. The rest of the exhibition was a kind of greatest hits, but with a few B-sides and modern remixes thrown in.

Sponsored by Gucci there is an expectation of an over-the-top wowness from the Italian brand which is missing here. The V&A should have been Guccified and made over like Oscar Wilde’s velvet lined panic room, but it just feels a little flat.

menswear Victoria & Albert Museum review V&A Fashioning Masculinities The Art of MenswearThese blockbuster exhibitions need to feel like the best retail, just with the world’s finest objects, where you are seduced and bounced along the show.

Right - A billiard table houses the rainbow of men's pieces both contemporary & historical

Ironically, the room with the most masculine energy was the final room which houses Billy Porter’s, Harry Styles’ and Bimini’s dresses with a black glossy floor and film projection. It felt contemporary, confident and uplifting while spilling the beans that Anna Wintour made the final decision to add a tailored jacket to Harry's American Vogue cover look. Now, that is fashioning masculinity.

Open until 6th November 2022

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More images below

menswear Victoria & Albert Museum review V&A Fashioning Masculinities The Art of Menswear

menswear Victoria & Albert Museum review V&A Fashioning Masculinities The Art of Menswear

menswear Victoria & Albert Museum review V&A Fashioning Masculinities The Art of Menswear

menswear Victoria & Albert Museum review V&A Fashioning Masculinities The Art of Menswear

menswear Victoria & Albert Museum review V&A Fashioning Masculinities The Art of Menswear

 

menswear Victoria & Albert Museum review V&A Fashioning Masculinities The Art of Menswear

menswear Victoria & Albert Museum review V&A Fashioning Masculinities The Art of Menswear

menswear Victoria & Albert Museum review V&A Fashioning Masculinities The Art of Menswear

 

menswear Victoria & Albert Museum review V&A Fashioning Masculinities The Art of Menswear

Published in Men

men's jil sander colour block knit harvey nichols

There's a bit of a buzz around the Jil Sander label at the moment. The label has had more comebacks than Cher, so I usually reserve judgement until I actually see it in a store. Now under the umbrella of Diesel's Only The Brave fashion conglomerate since 2021 (They usually ruin most brands FYI), this jumper was in Harvey Nichols and I liked the strict nautical feeling that makes this feel like something from the '90s and, as such, timeless.

A simple, oversized knit will bold blocks of colour, it reminds me of what Raf Simons did at Calvin Klein not so long ago and feels clean yet designed. There's a movement towards simpler and cleaner styles of fashion, so team this with a plain trousers and simple leather shoes or trainers.

Left & Below - Jil Sander - Colour-blocked cotton-blend jumper - £900

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men's jil sander colour block knit harvey nichols

Published in Men

Orlebar Brown patterned men's trousers Menswear blue Packard SS22Sun, sea and style, the tropical trouser is timeless for any gentleman's holiday season. Made famous by Lillian Pulitzer Rousseau, better known as Lilly Pulitzer, an American socialite and designer, the brightly coloured and highly patterned trouser baton was picked up by Tom Ford who often produces them in his summer and loungewear collections.

Orlebar Brown patterned men's trousers Menswear blue Packard SS22It's all about confidence. Orlebar Brown has really run with the colour and print lately and the whole brand is stronger for it. These Packard trousers also come with a matching hat and neckerchief. They've styled it correctly - right - just ditch the flip-flops and add a sandal. Stick to a plain, solid top - white, blue or black linen would work and sun hat.

Just add white sand, SPF and a palm tree.

Left & Below - Orlebar Brown - Packard - Blues Island Life Drawcord Trousers - £295

Below - Vintage Lilly Pulitzer Adverts

Buy TheChicGeek's latest book FashionWankers - HERE

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Vintage lilly Pulitzer patterned men's trousers Menswear blue Packard SS22

Vintage lilly Pulitzer patterned men's trousers Menswear blue Packard SS22

Published in Men
Wednesday, 26 January 2022 10:02

Menswear Trend Contemporary Blue Boy

Blue Boy Gainsborough fashion ASOS DESIGN Menswear blue silk satin SS22Do you know what there isn’t enough of in men’s fashion? Blue satin!

Returning after 100 years, Thomas Gainsborough’s 1770  ‘The Blue Boy’ takes pride of place at London's National Gallery. This is the first time the painting has been loaned by The Huntington in California. It is a once-in-a-century opportunity to see this iconic work in the UK. 

Taking our inspiration from this fine young man, look for light silk satin pieces in sky blue shades to take you from day to night in the warmer summer months.

National Gallery - Until 15 May 2022

Blue Boy Gainsborough fashion Tom Ford MR PORTER Menswear blue silk satin SS22Left - ASOS DESIGN - Regular Satin Shirt with Shawl Neck in Blue - £28.00

Below - TOM FORD - Velvet-Trimmed Stretch-Silk Satin Pyjama Trousers - £580 from MR PORTER

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Blue Boy Gainsborough fashion ASOS DESIGN Menswear blue silk satin SS22

 

Published in Men
Monday, 24 January 2022 15:42

Menswear Trend Bold Argyle

Burberry Menswear argyle print SS22

They say diamonds are a girl’s best friend, but where does that leave argyle? This classic Scottish diamond pattern beloved of golfers is seeing a style renaissance. This bold and often colour print is great way for men to add both colour and pattern to their spring wardrobes. 

The argyle pattern derives from the tartan of Clan Campbell of Argyll in western Scotland. The 11th Duke of Argyll was recently played by Paul Bettany as a volatile aristocrat in the BBC drama, A Very British Scandal. He was even seen unhappily seen advertising argyle socks to pay the castle bills.

Here are TheChicGeek's handpicked argyle pieces of the season with a smattering of vintage inspiration:

vintage socks Menswear argyle print SS22Left - Burberry - Monogram Motif Argyle Intarsia Wool Cashmere Cardigan - £890

Right - Argyle looking 1950s innocent in a cardigan

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Marni Mr Porter Menswear argyle print SS22Left - Marni - Argyle Mohair-Blend Sweater - £730 from MRPORTER.COM

Beams Plus Mr Porter Menswear argyle print SS22Left - Beams Plus - Argyle Cotton-Jacquard Polo Shirt - £125 from MRPORTER.COM

Below - Burlington - Manchester Men Socks - £15

Burlington socks matchesfashion Menswear argyle print SS22

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

GANT Menswear argyle print SS22Left - GANT - Argyle V-Neck Sweater - £135

Gucci matchesfashion Menswear argyle print SS22Left - GUCCI - GG-Argyle Cotton Sleeveless Sweater - £600 from Matchesfashion.com

Below - ASOS DESIGN - Knitted Argyle Tank with Floral Pattern - £25

ASOS DESIGN Menswear argyle print SS22

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Duke of windsor socks Menswear argyle print SS22Left -  Duke of Windsor sporting argyle socks

Below - Argyle colour combinations are limitless

Duke of windsor socks Menswear argyle print SS22

Buy TheChicGeek's latest book FashionWankers - HERE

Check out TheChicGeek's new shop of fabulous plants & books - Give me Penis Cactus! 

Published in Men
Tuesday, 30 November 2021 14:11

Palace Collaborates With Kappa

kappa palace collection menswearPalace and Kappa unveil a new collaborative collection: the first time the two brands have worked together.

The Palace Kappa collaboration is a celebration of timeless Italian street style and 1990s British football culture. Kappa invited the Palace design team to explore the Kappa archive in Turin. The extensive collection houses jerseys worn by iconic players, sportswear re-appropriated by Britpop stars, and the hundreds of different Home and Away kits worn by Kappa sponsored teams over the past 30 years.

The Palace design team focused on archival garments that they fondly remember wearing as streetwear ready-mades in the 1990s. Jerseys represented local affiliations, but over time the colour ways evolved beyond strict team allegiances.

kappa palace collection menswearThe Kappa Palace collaboration includes a '90’s fit' crinkle effect long jacket in technical nylon with the Maxi Kappa logo on the shoulders and Palace’s reworked 'banda'' on the sleeves. Another stand out item is the iconic Kappa 222 Banda tracksuit in polytricot, reinterpreted with a playful new Palace Kappa logo. T-shirts with Raglan sleeves are inspired by iconic soccer jerseys in blue, yellow, pink, and black, and a soccer boot bag with the Kappa and Palace logos in rubber round out the collection.

The Kappa® Palace collection is available at Palace stores in London, NYC, LA and Tokyo ; DSM - London and LA Online at palaceskateboards.com

Buy TheChicGeek's latest book FashionWankers - HERE

Check out TheChicGeek's new shop of fabulous plants & books - Give me Penis Cactus!

Published in News
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