Monday, 14 August 2017

MSFW - MY PICKS

image: courtesy of google


Soon you will hear the sound of designer high heels clicking along Swanston Street towards the town hall as the week-long Melbourne Spring Fashion Week fast approaches. Melbourne gents have caught on and here you can see guys strutting this season’s favourite trends a long side the women as the city embraces the arrival of Spring, and soon Summer.



Spring Fashion is the perfect opening to what becomes the social season with plenty of fashion and style on show for the looming racing carnival. People replace their sad angry winter tones, ditch the black, and replace with upbeat colours and prints. As Meryl so nicely said “Florals for Spring, groundbreaking”. There is usually an abundance of floral.

I love the atmosphere of a fashion festival. The streets are electric and the energy races through me like a kid in candy store. Some people enjoy formula one racing, I enjoy the fashion circuit.

Being the fashion capital of Australia, MSFW has a lot of expectations to live up to. Melbournites are proud of their style heritage and the “fashion capital” label. We expect a lot from the runway line ups, the settings as well as shopping experiences which must be a daunting task for organisers in creating a program to cater to so many peoples needs.
Of course the shows are a highlight of the festival in the beautiful Melbourne Town Hall building. This year I decided to mix up my ticket selection with some front row, some middle row and some on the balcony overlooking everything like a hawk circling its prey. Which shows am I looking forward to?

I always have an appreciation for the talent of up and coming designers and the Student Runway Collective is a highlight as students creativity is on display from across the state. There is such purity of creativity and freedom when it comes to design students and not necessarily the commercial aspect of their designs. Runway Garage Menswear is ditching the town hall for a carpark this year which will either be a highlight with it's urban flavour, or a waste of my $60 odd dollars. At least it is something different. I do hope to view some variety and not just head to plain suiting with a Fedora on top strutting down the runway. Jack London is always a sure bet for having something a little luxy and unique, fingers crossed.

There is some interesting exhibitions and offerings around town during the week-long event including the National Gallery of Victoria launching The House of Dior: Seventy Years of Haute Couture. The Imagined Fashion Masters MFW will be a highlight after attending their graduation show earlier this year and RMIT is showcasing its students in a free exhibition. 
The shopping precincts of Melbourne are once again on board and Emporium is transforming into an open-air runway showcasing Australian designers available for purchase within its complex. 

Melbourne has a large “influencer” contingent and I am looking forward to seeing if street style has advanced from what I saw at Virgin Australia Fashion Festival earlier this year and what I see on the gram. The gap between runway and footpath has significantly narrowed with brand sponsorship and a lack of originality for which street style was once known. I sincerely hope to see some originality of style on the footpath. I have heard some whispers that interstate is where the creativity is. Melbourne could you be losing your street cred?
Ethical and sustainability is huge everywhere at the moment including in the Fashion world. Melbourne Spring Fashion Week program attends to this nicely with the addition of a showcase from recycled materials as well discussions on the very subject.

Tickets and program are available online https://mfw.melbourne.vic.gov.au/

Get ready Melbourne, the footpaths are about to be crowded with photographers, bloggers fashionista’s, “influencers” and those just wanting to enjoy the fashion lifestyle for a night or two. Then there will be me, gorging on all the wonderful activity. Be sure to check back in a few weeks with my post- Melbourne Spring Fashion Week wrap up.

Let the outfit selection process begin!







Tuesday, 8 August 2017

BE BRAVE. BE BRAZEN. BE BOLD

Love black? Constantly look like you’re attending a funeral? Black is a classic colour, especially when combined with its contrasting friend White. Whilst I appreciate that black is flattering, slimming, timeless and classic, I believe our world at the moment really needs colour. In a depressing world of terror, fear and uncertainty and terrible headlines, why would you not want to be free in your everyday life? Remember fashion and style is freedom. 


Not sure of how to overcome your reliance on black? Just like an addiction, the first step is realising you have a problem. Congratulations by reading this far, I think you have identified you have to the later, and committed to embracing some colour in your life.



Let’s start off with baby steps by introducing an accessory into your outfit that necessarily is not needed to complete the look. For example sunglasses! Grab yourself a brightly coloured pair of sunglasses. Obviously when you are strutting down the street in your funeral attire these will make the outfit pop and give you a seriously chic playful look. Once inside you can easily slip them off and resume your daily routine of timeless black. Options if you are not one to embrace colour on your face, other alternatives are a colourful hat, or a pair of gloves in a bright colour. Monochrome outfits are always classic and easily achieved. A savvy way to introduce colour and not spend a huge amount of money is through scarves, and jewellery. Think of a pop of colour against your funeral ensemble.

ways to not wear black
Coat: Van Heusen
Sweater: Connor Clothing

Scarf: Dotti

Jeans: Cotton On

Boots: no name


Now that you have graduated from orientation with colour, it is time to embrace the next step. Do not fear, you can still wear your classic black. No need to have strong withdrawals to black just yet. Next step is to incorporate a bag, a belt or a pair of shoes into your wardrobe in colour! Totes in bright colours or patterns, oversized bags in bold stripes or metallic, a pair of shoes in vibrant colours will emphasize your entire outfit. By mixing your existing wardrobe with new statement pieces will save you time and money shopping for a completely new wardrobe. Smart purchases make all the difference and a vibrant pair of shoes can make even the most basic ensemble look more stylish.
Shirt & Shorts: H&M

Deep breath my black loving friends. It is time to commit to a piece of clothing in a colour. There is nothing like a pop of colour to turn heads. For a sophisticated look and to not look like a total beginner, continue with what you have learnt with your monochromatic style of all black with a colourful shoe. A standout statement piece of clothing in your ensemble could be for instance, a jacket. Let the jacket take the colourful place of the shoes by revert to your black shoes and let the only colour be the statement jacket. 

Shirt: H&M


Shoes: Asos

Sunglasses: Kmart

The same can be applied for any piece of clothing, all black suit, red shirt or black on top with colour from the waist down. Below I have used pants to be the pop of colour.
How to be stylish with colour
Shirt: H&M

Shoes: Asos

Belt: Dsquared2


Sunglasses: Kmart

Congratulations! By now you have probably learnt that you can create combinations with colourful accessories that match or by introducing colourful footwear with a statement piece of clothing and discovered how to balance the colours. You have likely begun strutting down the street, smiling at people or have people smiling at you or complimenting you on your outfit. Well done!

I can hear some of you now, “but I wear grey” “I like navy”. If you are a fan of the previously mentioned colours of grey and navy, the same principles apply that you have just become educated with. An all navy outfit, grey or olive green can really stand the chic test with a pop of colour. Hot pink, yellow and red work beautifully with all the above mentioned exquisitely.
Men wearing colour
Shirt: Paul Smith
Shorts & Shoes:: Boohoo

Blazer:: Connor Clothing

Sunglasses: Oxford



Colour and confidence go hand in hand. Let your new admiration for colour flood into your closets and your life. Paint the world in colour, be brave, be brazened and be free.

Thursday, 3 August 2017

5 DAY CHALLENGE


Men are savvy shoppers in comparison to their female counterparts. Men tend to buy items that they know are timeless, easy mix and match pieces that are value for money, and a true investment. You know I enjoy my unusual prints and pieces that stand out, but I do like to be savvy in my purchasing and know that I will wear something more than once, and it was worth the money.

Last week a large black velvet bow tie met a fella in the Flinders Lane, Melbourne Jack London store. It was love at first sight. The feeling of beautiful black velvet and Pat Benetar singing passed through my mind. I have a major rule when shopping(there is always an exception to a rule, it normally involves leopard, sequin or fur) immediately I must be able to wear the item 3 different ways with items I already have.

 How to change your style
Day 1:

Shirt & bow tie: Jack London

Sunglasses: Gucci


This brings us to a stylist challenge. A stylist challenge is a fun and easy way to stretch your wardrobe to new limits, try new trends, and make old items look new again.  A stylist challenge will inspire you to re-style your existing items in fun and exciting new ways with new items. One of the great benefits of a challenge is rediscovering items that you forgot you had or have not showed much love to recently. No need to overhaul your entire wardrobe completely. 

This challenge is centred around a 5 Day, 5 outfits with my new oversized bow tie.

Day 2:
Blazer & bow tie: Jack London

Sunglasses: Arockonalens


Tweaking your ensemble with a bold colour can highlight the simplistic details and draw attention to a new item. For instance above, the yellow blazer draws attention via its cut and fit drawing your eye in. You then follow the shirt fastening up to the the bow tie. The bow tie in comparison to the brash yellow is simple, elegant but a complimentary piece to the ensemble. Other details of the outfit are actually the sunglasses from Melbourne designer Arockonalens. The details in the gold and the wide frames are balanced by the oversized bowtie, the velvet is complimented by the richness of the gold chain (textures are both luxy), the black and white pocket square is the same colours as the shirt and bow tie combo. 

Dressing is exactly like a painting, what draws your attention, navigates your eyes around the canvas. Everything is proportioned and balanced. Am I starting to sound like an art teacher?


Jack London Bow tie
Day 3:
Sunglasses: Arockonalens
Blazer:Oxford

Shirt: James Harper

Pants: & bow tie: Jack London
Shoes:Moschino

On day 3 I remixed old pieces with new, which forced me to think outside of the box and dig into the back of my wardrobe. Old suit blazers or shoes became my favourites again and instantly revitalised my passion for why I purchased them in the first place. Here I have reversed the bold outerwear with the complimentary bold colour underneath to highlight the bow tie. A blazer in a lighter shade will also draw the eye to the bold colour and move the eye up and down the ensemble. The pant pattern  will then lead you down to the footwear. 


 5 day style challenge
Day 4:
Jacket: Roger David
Shirt: H&M
Sunglasses: Dangerfield Clothing
Bow Tie: Jack London
Gloves: Karl Lagerfeld


When the sun came up on day 4 I felt like I was back in full creative styling mode. As much as I adore a good shop and can come home with 20 completely different pieces that do not match each other, there is something about working a piece into your every day life in a creative way with pieces you already have. I enjoyed the rich textures and combining leather and velvet. Transition new pieces in with old and think of yourself as a walking piece of art that struts the streets.



Style challenge for him
Day 5:
Shirt: H&M
Pants & bow tie: Jack London
Sunglasses: Le Specs

As the sun set on day 5,  I felt like I knocked this stylist challenge out of the park by wearing my trusty ruby slippers ( I also have them in yellow) and red blazer. Both items were a favourite of mine and took my outfit from boring to bold, pay attention to the details and how you put things together. It was great to slip back into them and feel energized. The black bow tie on black shirt was all about textures and volume and somewhat softened the look.

A stylist challenge is a great way to prove that you don’t have to spend a heap of money or buy a whole new look to feel great. 

Give it a try and report back on how your challenge stretched your wardrobe to its limits.






Sunday, 30 July 2017

CULTURE CLUB

Melbourne has a strong love affair with the liquid black gold, creating a coffee culture that perfectly combines with it's underground street art scene. You could be easily escorted to sit on a milk crate to drink your grinned beans of choice, or you could be provided with a ridiculous deconstructed latte made in an Avocado (what will they think of next?)
Melbourne Street Art 2017
Coat: Boohoo
Sweater: Oxford
Jeans: Factorie
Shoes: Just Cavalli

Melbourne is one of the coffee and street art capitals of the world and for good reason. The great thing about the street art is that it is completely free, unlike the coffee. No long ques or obnoxious entry fees to view the offerings that decorate every second wall and lane way in the CBD and on the city fringe.
Melbourne Street Style Winter 2017
Blazer: Oxford
Shirt: James Harper
Pants: Boohoo
Sunglasses: Gucci
Shoes:Ted Baker

The street art contributes to a vibrant urban environment that continually changes on a day to day to basis making it always exciting to revisit. When days are filled with grey skies, there is no better way of embracing the short winter days than by sitting alfresco wrapped up in a large coats watching people go by, or sipping a hot coffee weaving your way through the city with your takeaway coffee looking at the hidden nooks and crannies that showcase some of the clever art work.
Street Art Melbourne
Coat: Oxford
Sweater: Gazman
Pants: Eredidelduca
Bag: Gucci
Shoes: Adidas

From Brunswick and Fitzroy to lane ways in the city, there is endless creative masterpieces on show. In a landscape that is forever changing it is the perfect back drop to capture on film.

Men's style guide Melbourne
Coat and pants: Boohoo
Polo: Hamaki-ho
Shoes: Adidas
Sunglasses:Kmart

Throw on a nice long warm coat and spend hours wandering through layers of spray painted works. You cannot take a wrong turn. Between the office buildings and multistory car parks hide some of the most details works hiding in plain view.

Oxford Dangerfield and Jack London 2017
Blazer: Oxford
Sunglasses: Kmart
Pants: Asos
Shoes: Ted Baker

Melbourne is a melting pot of multiculturalism with art, food, fashion and style. The great thing in Melbourne is you stumble across culture at each turn. Imagine heading off to the Movies and taking a short cut down a laneway, your immediately exposed to art and colour rather than drab office buildings and minimalism architecture, and don't get me started on the wonderful street performance artists that are on most corners. 
Sunglasses: Kmart
Sweater: Connor Clothing
Rollneck: Target
Pants: Manuel Ritz
Shoes: Moschino
Gloves: Dents

So what are you waiting for, grab a coffee and take a look at all this free art and culture ripe for the picking. 

Melbourne Style and the City
Socks: Ted Baker
Pants & Shoes: Asos
Sweater: Jack London
Coat:  Oxford
Sunglasses: Dangerfield



Monday, 24 July 2017

THE GLOVES ARE ON


 Baby it's getting cold outside, and gloves are the answer to keeping your hands and fingers toasty warm. Gloves have been around for centuries and have been worn by some of the most influential men and women. There are so many types of gloves in the world that to write about each one of them would take me forever to write, here I will focus on the ones I believe are necessity for any fashionista!

STYLISH MEN OF MELBOURNE

Jacket: Roger David
Shirt: H&M
Bow tie: Jack London
Sunglasses: Dangerfield
Gloves: Karl Lagerfeld

A pair of Winter gloves should protect your hands and keep them warm, dry and functional in the nastiest of winter weather whilst looking awesome! Some gloves are practical, like a full arm length leather opera glove or ski gloves, but not practical when it comes to using touchscreen phones, retrieving money from ones wallet or picking up small items. As always, and I stress this in every post, purchase for purpose. 

 I am not a huge fan of hand sewn gloves where they have been stitched on the outside. They tend to be more bulky with the top stitch, thicker fabrics and not as form fitting. As much as I appreciate the craftmanship involved in creating a pair, for me they look very chunky on my hands and make me feel like I should apply for a job as Mickey Mouse at Disneyland. 



For the more style conscious read on!


A driving glove is the perfect balance between personal style and fashion and will keep your hands warm. Think Jason Statham in The Transporter, Ryan Gosling in Driver. Bad boys wear the badass gloves. Fun fact, driving gloves were Originally developed for drivers of Formula One due to the cool air and wooden steering wheels!


KARL LAGERFELD GLOVES

Gloves: Dents
Coat and sweater: Oxford
Sunglasses: Le Specs
Shirt: H&M
Ear Muffs: Alannah Hill

A new entry into this accessory scene is the touchscreen glove, combining technology and fashion together for everyday use. Typically I find these are of a hideous design and look like a mitten or something my cat would enjoy hours tirelessly playing with. I am not a huge fan of these, but my cat maybe?

MENS WINTER OUTFITS 2017

Shirt: H&M
Waistcoat: Connor Clothing
Pants & bow tie: Jack London
Shoes: Oxford
Sunglasses: Dangerfield
Gloves: Karl Lagerfeld

I do however enjoy the finger-less gloves which keeps your hands warm but allows you to utilise your fingers. The biggest influencer of this style is of course Uncle Karl (Karl Lagerfeld to those who do not know him). On screen style icons such as Chanel Oberlin from Scream Queens also wore these religiously. The great thing about this style is the practicality and the wide range of styles that are available, prints, fabrics and embellishments. 

JACK LONDON ROCK LOOKS

Gloves: Karl Lagerfeld
Coat: Oxford
Waistcoat and shirt: Connor Clothing
Sunglasses: Dangerfield

Full gloves for colder days or strolls will protect in the battle against winter. Gloves in elegant fabrics, leathers and suede's, knits (Missoni do a wonderful zig zag print) and so on will make your ensemble pop! 

STREET STYLE MELBOURNE


Sunglasses: Gucci
Sweater & Bag: Ted Baker
Scarf: Oxford
Shoes: H&M
Gloves: Dents

Gloves can easily transform your outfit from drab and boring to chic and stylish, especially if the color pops or is a complimentary colour to the rest of your outfit. Again if you are a fan of monochrome looks, this is where gloves would be uniquely used to make your outfit stand out. You are only limited by your creativity and your style.

Sunday, 9 July 2017

TRAINING WHEELS

MENS TRAINER AND SUIT COMBO


What I adore about the wonderful world of fashion is there are no rules anymore. With summer clearly over in Melbourne, I like to dwell in the past and resurrect one of the looks I enjoyed from last Summer. Of course I am talking about the Suit-Trainer ensemble. One of my favourite and easiest looks too style. This is by no means a Jerry Seinfield denim and trainers story!

Thanks to the big fashion houses leading the way with remaking the trainer and branding them to within an inch of their life via bright colours, signature monograms, embellishments, there has never been a better time to dress down a suit and still remain stylish.
I am not one to confirm to a uniform at work but still want to achieve chic, clean and classy looks that are required when working within the sector I do. 

MELBOURNE STREET STYLE SUIT WITH TRAINERS

Whatever your budget maybe, you can achieve this look. You will find similar no name shoes at some of the biggest variety stores across the country for next to nicks! Of course your trusty kicks that you wear to the gym or from your recent marathon will not help you achieve pulling off this modern look. 

HOW TO WEAR SUIT WITH TRAINERS

As always you know I am a dress for purpose person. It is always important to consider the occasion you’ll be sporting this look for, or any look for that matter. I like to wear this look to work or out for dinner with friends. It's chic and simple to achieve and is super comfortable.
For my friends out there who love to wear lots of black (there are many of you ) using statement trainers in a bright colour against a monochromatic ensemble works particularly well. Furthermore for a casual look  chinos and an untucked shirt with trainers is a perfect casual look. Other options are  

ADIDAS SUPERSTARS WITH SUITS

You do not need to stick to a white trainer! Embrace a print or strong colour, and remember if they are white, look after them. No one enjoys a white shoe that is not clean!
Personally I like to stick to a slim fit suit and pair with trainers that pop or in contrasting colours. 

The biggest question I am asked is should I wear socks with a suit or go sockless? Honestly, I hate socks being shown unless it is completely intentional and they are a focus point for your ensemble. The second question then is "Don't your shoes stink?".
It is like people have never heard of sockettes!

What do you think of this style?

Suit: BrigginsShirt: Bell & BarnettShoes: Adidas


Wednesday, 5 July 2017

WHAT'S IN YOUR POCKET?


A pocket square adds life to an outfit, offering sophistication and elegance. There are so many options these days with pocket squares. Pocket squares range in price from inexpensive to expensive. Truth be known if you are smart and thrifty you will head to your local vintage store and pick up some scarves and cut them to shape. In this post I aim to inspire you to think differently about this elegant tradition and how you can style them in different ways. Add a little extra polish to your outfit with the ultimate stylish accessory.

MELBOURNE STREET STYLE SCENE 2017

Blazer: Oxford
Shirt: Siviglia 
Bow tie & Pocket Square: James Harper
Pants: Boohoo
Shoes: Ted Baker
Socks: Paul Smith
Sunglasses: Oxford
Watch: Roamer

Uh oh!


Firstly, we need to cover off on what not to do with a pocket square. My personal opinion is a pocket square should not be the same fabric and print as a tie. This is a beginners mistake and appears lazy, unflattering and somewhat boring. This makes me scream. The same as men who walk around with a suit placard on a coat or jacket sealed shut. Get me the unpicker immediately!


BOW TO WEAR A TIE AND POCKET SQUARE

What colour should it be?

A pocket square should in fact compliment the colours of your ensemble. You can balance out an outfit to tie in a key item to your outfit (i.e. shoes). The main colour a pocket square should match( if your outfit is perfectly colour balanced), is the shirt. It does not need to be the exact same colour, it could be lighter, darker, a different print, or only a complimentary colour within the pocket square.


DAPPER MENS STYLE


Tie & pocket square: Bows n Ties

Shirt & sunglasses: Oxford
Shoes: Ted Baker
Socks: Paul Smith
Watch: Roamer





How do I fold it?

The pocket square can be displayed in many ways. From "The Fold", "One Tip Up", "Triple point" to "The pocket stuff". All these are personal preference. Two of my favourites are the triple point and the pocket stuff. There are many editorials online with how to fold. 


 BEST DRESSED MEN AUSTRALIA




Shirt, bow tie & pocket square: James Harper
Pants: Asos
Sunglasses: Oxford

Contrast

If you are wearing a full matching suit, break up the style by adding a contrasting pocket square, for instance, blue suit, throw a red pocket square in to add some freshness and variety. Remember that these are an amazing little accessory that pack a punch and can update an outfit and give you some edge. What better way to compliment your sharp looking suit than with a pocket square.

Upsize me


Double up! It is becoming more "trendy" (detest that word) to wear two pocket squares in the one pocket. Unsure of how to wear two pocket squares? I suggest you start with a base colour and then a contrasting print. With the right outfit this look is magnificent. Choose wisely! Obviously begin with patterns and colours in your wardrobe to introduce yourself to the double up. 


BEST DRESSED LIST AUSTRALIA


Pants: Department 5

Shirt: vintage find 
Shoes:Adidas
Sunglasses: Gucci
Jacket: Boohoo

Experiment


Experiment with different styles and see what feels comfortable with you. This is an accessory that gives an outfit life or makes it fall short of being stylish. Best of all this accessory will not wear out, become out of date or cost you hefty amounts of money. 


 MENS FASHION TIPS 2017


Sunglasses: Gucci

Tie & pocket square: Bows n Ties
Shirt: Oxford
Pants: Manuel Ritz

One great way to make a statement with your pocket square is to team it with a lapel pin. There are so many options these days for lapel accessories, from brooches, flowers, feathers and so much more. As always I encourage you to think outside the box and experiment with different styles and colours.