Friday, 30 December 2011

Lionel knows his onions at Stuarts

'Sale on, honey, good times never felt so good, sale on, sugar, good times never felt so good'.

That’s what Lionel Ritchie sang about and how right he was, there is a sale on and with the reductions on offer it means that the good times never felt so good.

Art imaging life I think they call it, well if you change the lyrics and if Mister R had visited the Stuarts sale that is.

Seriously though the discounts on offer are mouthwatering 50% in some cases, but that is not the best part of it, the fact that huge discounts are on offer on countless brands makes this a serious sale.

From Beats headphones by Dr. Dre with £40 off, to £100 off the fantastic Barbour Centaur wool jacket, to over £100 off the Chevignon Togs Unlimited in red and green, there’s even reductions on such classics as the Diadora Borg Elite in red.

As with everything in life there is one snag you are going to have to hurry up to ensure you get your size in whatever garments you are after, but hey just get online or the Tube pretty bloody quick is all.

Lionel, as I like to call him, was right 'good times never felt so good', it will definitely be a Happy New year in my wardrobe at least.

Friday, 23 December 2011

Hat'll do it for Xmas

IF you wanna get ahead, get a hat they say. Well as time is running out before Xmas I have picked out five hats to make this Christmas a top time.

First up the fabulously Hunter S Thompsonesque Barbour tartan green Hunter hat. This mother would have had the late great gun-totting journo god firing off a clip or two and it is something special.

Fur fronted with side ear flaps and those unusual ear pockets, not quite sure what they are supposed to hold, but this hat is premier class. Check out the rest of this range, you will not be disappointed.

OK, let’s hit the street about for a Cockney wide boy hat; the Stetson Hatteras Newsboy leather cap. This is a proper bit of gear for the street wise chap, it may not keep your head as warm as the Barbour, but it does look excellent.

Get your bobble on with the Carhartt Deep Sea Cap, this hat has Steve Zizzu written all over it for film fans amongst you.

Simple delicious warm winter hat with the iconic Carharrt logo on the front.

Next up the YMC Fairisle navy bobble, this comfortable classic hat with stunning winter pattern on the front turn is, well, class.

And last, but not least and please note these are only my suggestions, there are plenty more besides, check out the Ma.Strum glacier grey beanie hat, which is as simple as it is classic. Superb quality with classic styling this is a perfect topper out.

The again what about the Penfield Providence navy cap, or the Dunderdon beanie or the Victorinox cap or the ….

See what I mean?

Get some socks appeal and sod your auntie

Alright so you usually hate your mum-in-law or your auntie, or dare I say it a careless mum who buys you some cheap end almonds (socks) for Christmas along with a packet of After Eights.

So one simple piece of Xmas advice from The Colonel, buy them yourself and throw hers in the bin.

There are plenty of ‘real’ socks around and what better way to bring s smile to your face then knowing you have made the right step towards the new year, see what I did there? New step, socks?

Anyway, starting off with the king of almonds, Burlington. I just love these socks, described simple as the ‘Bentley of socks’ by Stuarts and correctly too, these pure acrylic/polyamide socks, with retro styling and the cult button on the left leg come in diamond print classic, Preston in navy, blue or dark red and for those with a slightly larger pockets the ST Andrews cashmere, in blue or black which can boast to being the ‘original’ Burlington and boast a larger diamond cut print.

Simply stunning.

Or why not try the home indoor sock, which in many cases is know as an invisible and of course comes with a shorter leg and the classic diamond cut navy.

Happy Socks come in the most amazing array of patterns and are for the more outrageous among you. Designed in Sweden these socks are really a stand out product and will probably give that stinky old aunt a heart attack. Well at least you won’t have to put up with her rubbish present next year.

Superbly crafted on high precision Italian machines these socks come with the aim of providing comfort and durability.

Patterns include polka dot, half stripe orange, red stripe and need to be seen to be believed.

Heading for home shores the English made Pantherella socks are superb. Combining merino wool and nylon, the classic sock in grey with coloured toe and heel is stunning, but in fact the whole range is sublime. They of course offer cashmere socks, which are a cut above.

Trust me these socks are almost twice as mad design wise as Happy Socks and that is saying something. For the more outrageous among you, or just those who fancy something outstanding that’s hidden away.

Universal Works and Gabicci are also well worth looking into as well, but I must say the most unusual design I have seen are the Richard James dog tooth green and black socks, incredible.

I have only mentioned a few of the Burlington, Pantherella and well everyone mentioned labels, there are so many to choose from you really need to step out and get going with this one.

Happy Xmas.

Tuesday, 20 December 2011

Nike Killshot - Vintage Edition

Nike Killshot just got delivered today at Stuarts London. The vintage style is back in a second version of all leather with contrast swoosh, with gum soles and suede trim.

Nike Killshot Vintage NSW – The Nike Killshot boasts nearly 30 years of heritage, released in the late 70’s this understated classic was originally a racquetball and squash court shoe. With their low profile stance they are most definitely and understated classic brought back to life.

They turned from a simple sneaker for everyday use to a “killer” on the court, hence their name. These old school shoes flaunt aged materials and yellowed sole units to get and overall used look.

These vintage kicks are a timeless classic made to look like they are in fact nearly 30 years old.

The Killshot were famously worn on the courts of Wimbledon by John McEnroe back in the 80s when the leather versions were originally released and more modified for tennis use.

Due to go on-line at Stuarts London before Xmas. Available in store now at the Shepherds Bush London Store. 35-37 Uxbridge Road, London , W12 8LH , Tel : 0208 735 1801

Thursday, 15 December 2011

Get revved up on these

IF anything screams motorbike with a real touch of class to a classic look then the Motorbike black shirt jacket form the Barbour x Tokihito Yoshida range does.

The jacket maintains the classic motorbiking tradition of Barbour but with a twist, its silk finish and reduced pocket number is sublime. Zip front, stud buttons and one chest, side and two hand pockets give it a cleaner line than other jackets by Barbour.

It corduroy collar and tartan lining give it more of hunting outdoorsman feel.

Coming in flyweight wax finish, it is a very lightweight garment with four air vents it even comes with a hood, but you probably won’t be using that if you are out on your bike will you. The jacket also has a softer feel that others in the range and is perfect for the street.

Next up comes the Mount shirt, which comes in a waxed olive and has a feeling of the ultimate rain coat. Based on a similar style of finishes as the Motorbike shirt, with hidden pockets zip fastened, stud buttons and a waist adjustor.

The two zip front pocket, along with two bottom pockets, it also ha one back pocket and sports the tartan inner. Delicious just like the rest of the To Ki To collaboration range.

Almost makes me want to get my bike out … oh er missus.

Big in Japan and now England

Japanese designer Tokihiti Yoshida's may be a keen fly fisherman, well if only a novice, but I refer to the Spike Milliganview of the sport/past time, it is complete and utter madness.

Unlike the jackets that the fishing mad Jap has designed for Barbour as part of the To Ki To collaboration which is simply the greatest jacket I have seen this year and is known as theSpey Fishing jacket in black.

The multi-pocket four vented jacket, which boasts its own front chest fishnet is simply divine and surely far too good to be worn at some crappy fishing lake.

The navy jacket waxed lightweight jacket, which funnily enough is waterproof has the classic Barbour cut, dipped in at the waist with a five button zip fastened front and felt collars. This is like something from another planet, bells whistles and a few more things beside.

Good work me thinks and is part of seven jacket range that is pushing back boundaries.

For the other jackets see other blogs, I feel that something this good deserves its one blog.

So read on …

Grenson HR couldn't look no better

KID Creole sang I’m a wonderful thing baby and for shoe fans the new collaboration between the classic manufacturer Grenson and current ground-breaking clothes designer Heritage Research is exactly that, a trult wonderful thing.

The Burrows Cognac Long Wing brogue to use its full and snappy name is something to truly behold and reminds me of the type of shoes sported by Kid himself.

Using all its skills the famous 19th century Northamptonshire boot manufacturer has really gone to town with its HR tie up.

The full leather two-tone beige and brown shoe with suede sports a bespoke brogue pattern, calf leather uppers and waxed laces, this is the shoe to be or be seen in. Oh and did I forget to add that they have Goodyear welted soles? No, well they have.

God I love these shoes.

But as with Christmas the joy doesn’t end there, there are two other shoes in the range, making this a hat-trick to remember.

Next out of the blocks comes the navy version of the Burrows shoe, which is the same shoe, only in a delicious navy blue colouring.

The Bowller tan shoe finishes off the range and is a shoe that smacks of Americana all over.

In keeping with the labels love of everything Stateside and comes in a bespoke bowling inspired pattern.

Full waxed calf leather uppers, English winter rubber soles, again Goodyear welted they are an absolute delight.

And are a stand out part of a standout collection and are available at limited stockists.

As the Kid said; ‘Take a look at me, you know I couldn’t look no better. Girl I’m at my peak and that’s a fact, that’s a fact.”

And so are these shoes, and that’s a fact.

Hawaiian Shirts - 2012 Summers - Next Big Trend - Are you Brave Enough?



Hawaiian shirts have a long history in the 50th State. There have been numerous stories, fictions, as well as the odd half-truths perpetuated about the origins of the Hawaiian Shirt, more popularly known as the Aloha Shirt in Hawaii.

The probable precursor to the modern Hawaiian Shirt was the Palaka Shirt and the Kimono-cloth shirt. The Palaka is a short sleeved shirt with bright geometric line patterns that were widely worn by plantation workers. It has a plaid design, and resembles a checkerboard. Also popular during that time were short-sleeved shirts sewn by Japanese housekeepers and made out of leftover Kimono cloth, designed for Japanese boys and men.

Many attribute the invention of the Aloha Shirt to Ellery Chun, owner of a Dry Goods store in Honolulu who sold the tropical print fashions in the 1930s. However what we now know is that the Hawaiian Shirt had already been in circulation for numerous years, although Mr. Chun had a major role in the Hawaiian Shirt’s proliferation. In an attempt to build business during the Depression, Chun expanded the scope of the store to appeal to a wider audience beyond the Chinese community it primarily served. He and his sister Ethel Chun Lum, began selling bright print short sleeve shirts made out of the leftover material from Japanese Kimonos.

Some of the original Hawaiian prints sold by Chun included designs with Palm Trees, Hula Girls, and Pineapples. One of his tailors would make about 3 or 4 dozen at a time. Local Hawaii residents, and Waikiki beachboys and surfers quickly noticed the shirts and began buying them in ever-increasing numbers. Over time, tourists, Hollywood movie stars, and other rich and famous visitors to Hawaii also began noticing the bright, casual, easy to wear styles, and began bringing styles home to the U.S. mainland.

The popularity of the Aloha shirt boomed in the United States after World War II as major celebrities sported the Hawaiian wear. President Harry S. Truman wore Aloha shirts regularly during his tenure in the White House and in retirement. The cover of Life Magazine, dated December 10, 1951, featured a beaming President Harry Truman wearing a Hawaiian shirt for a story entitled The President of the United States. John Wayne and Duke Kahanamoku endorsed major designer labels.

Bing Crosby, Randy Newman and Jay-Z entertained while wearing them. To name but a few.

Elvis Presley wore a Shaheen-designed red aloha shirt featured on the album cover for the Blue Hawaii soundtrack in 1961.

After World War II, many servicemen and servicewomen returned to the United States from Asia and the Pacific islands with aloha shirts that had been made in Hawaii since the 1930s. Tourists began flocking to Hawaii in the 1950s as faster airplanes allowed for easier travel. By the 1950′s, the Hawaiian Shirt had blazed into prominence. In August 1959 Hawaii became the 50th State of the U.S.A., bringing the new Aloha State even more attention, and most significantly, even more tourists!Aloha shirts have also become a highly sought after collector’s item. They have a loyal following, with vintage Hawaiian shirts sometimes being sold for thousands of dollars. The most sought after Aloha shirts from the 1930s through the 1950s are the large percentage of Aloha shirts from that period made of rayon, since that fabric is the most comfortable to wear in warm weather. Today the Hawaiian shirt remains a firm favourite with fans of Tiki Lifestyle and should be worn loud and proud. Todays generation of stars are happy to sport these Hawaiian shirts, whether in film or casual.


This Jungle Bird shirt was made famous by Tom Selleck, in the 1980′s. A Hawaiian detective in the television series, Magnum P.I. The Original Magnum P.I. red Jungle Bird shirt was presented to the Smithsonian National Museum of American History on Wednesday morning, June 22, 1988. The Jungle Bird shirt, two blue Detroit Tiger baseball caps and the gold naval insignia ring worn by Tom Selleck now reside in the Smithsonian’s collection of American Entertainment memorabilia. Paradise Found, the Honolulu clothing company, makers of this shirt, have sold more than 225,000 Jungle Bird shirts since 1981. And where’s Magnum now? I know where he is. He went to being a Navy seal. If they do a movie, they should do it when he gets out of the Navy and tries to back to his life in Hawaii.

The collection from S/S 2011 which had its roots firmly and unashamedly in the Hawaiian trend. The shirts didn’t just feature traditional Hawaiian hibiscus prints, they also featured full-on Hawaiian scenes; with palm trees, beaches, surfers, sun umbrellas and crashing waves in more muted, pastel shades of green, pink and beige. The collection also included an adventurous floral print blazer and trouser suit, and for the more cautious of you out there, simple checked shirts with Hawaiian print lining peeking out of the rolled-up sleeves.

Hawaiian shirts coming to Stuarts Of London in end June, July.

Ma Strum - Massimo Osti Archive - Buy Online

Ma Strum: Massimo Osti Archive

Ma.Strum: Inspired by the archive of legendary Italian designer Massimo Osti

Ma Strum is an exciting label featuring unique, high quality, functional clothing. The collection derives from the collaboration of two renowned designers, and Donrad Duncan. Inspired by the archive of legendary Italian designer Massimo Osti the creator of Stone Island and CP Company.

Donrad was previously vice president and executive creative director for Victorinox/Swiss Army, where he developed the concept and design foundation for the apparel line, building on the company’s recognition for performance, durability and ingenuity. Previous to his eight years with Victorinox, Donrad spent ten years as head designer of menswear divisions at two internationally recognized apparel brands.

Donrad’s artistic sensibilities were passed on to him from his family of artisans, tailors and furniture builders. Donrad studied fashion design at Parson’s School of Design in New York. He has served as art specialization critic at the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York, and appeared in numerous international publications Ma. Strum’s jackets won many admirers in the past thanks to their use of high-tech fabrics and design. Those principles are extended to the latest autumn/winter collection Innovation, functionality and timeless aesthetics have distinguished the work of Massimo Osti, whose research in textiles and form revolutionized sportswear, leaving an unmistakable mark in the fashion world.

So take the popular, trendy menswear designer brand of Ma Strum that specialises in offering timeless fashion, merging uniform styles with casual wear to create a look that is as stylish as it is practical, with innovative fabric technology that works with the elements rather than against them.

The vision behind the brand was to create classic, functional products with a timeless appeal. Pushing the boundaries of manufacturing this inspiring collection incorporates new innovative fabrics and technology together with original designs to create ‘wearable technology’ Innovation, functionality and timeless aesthetics have distinguished the work of Massimo Osti, whose research in textiles and form revolutionized sportswear, leaving an unmistakable mark in the fashion world.

The Ma. Strum collection is inspired by these same principles, using innovative high-tech fabrics and technology to create products providing function, comfort and style. These designer clothes are made from the finest materials, often with additional extras such as lightweight waterproofing, concealed hoods and luminous MA Strum badges. All items come of course with the coveted Ma. Strum logo. A short collection from Ma. Strum collection for Autumn/Winter 2011. The technical outwear company is part of that fashion forward technical “pack” that is doing its best to pull us out of the heritage trend. Sure is working from our standpoint.

Ma. Strum A/W 2011 Fashion Preview at Stuarts of London:

Ma.Strum MA1077 NC-1 Coat

Ma.Strum Officer 2 Harrier Field Jacket MA1085 Orange

Ma.Strum Wool Cardigan MA5027 Navy Shawl Neck

Ma.Strum Ma1084 Merchant White Jacket

‘Whether it is apparel, a timepiece, or a vehicle, I have the same expectations – I look for functionality, value and comfort. People want to look and feel good.” Massimo Osti