Wednesday, 23 April 2014

The Grey Style Project - a very English gentleman for St George's Day

Taken in Jermyn Street, London - quintessential English style.

Image © Carole Evans Photography and The Grey Style Project
For more on The Grey Style Project see here
And please follow the project on Tumblr.

Monday, 21 April 2014

The Grey Style Project - Grey Country Style

Here's a contribution from a reader. This image was taken by Laurence's seven year-old daughter. His jacket was a present from his wife from Harvie & Hudson and he was concerned he looked too 'country squire'. Whether or not that was the case, I think his daughter has great potential as a photographer and I like the country style (and no, I didn't ask if that is Laurence's house in the background).

If you'd like to join the project (as photographer or subject) to document style in older men, please get in touch or click here.

With thanks to Laurence and his daughter

Saturday, 19 April 2014

Cobalt blue and orange - putting sizzle into spring and summer

I've mentioned cobalt blue and orange before - but separately. Both have been seen more frequently over the last year or two. But how about putting the two colours together?

Deji George

Orange and bright blue work well together, as can be seen from the pocket square above from the interesting new brand, Deji George (about whom more here) . At opposite ends of the colour wheel, hot and cool, they positively crackle and pop when next to each other. Here's a selection to put sizzle into your spring and summer.

If you have any favourite orange/cobalt blue in your wardrobe or collection, let me know - I'm happy to do a follow-up post. Hmm... how about a bright blue blazer with orange chinos?


Lyle & Scott

British Boxers - OK, they're worn underneath, but why not go the whole hog?


Marks & Spencer

Marks & Spencer

Lyle & Scott

London Sock Co

Deji George pocket squares
Hackett lightweight mac

Monday, 14 April 2014

Fashion student Lizzie Atkins shows her National Tailoring and Design Award work

One of the greatest pleasures of writing a blog is being able to take an interest in emerging menswear design and retail talent. Regular readers will have seen my posts on new and young fashion entrepreneurs, but I haven't yet looked at the work of fashion students.  

Lizzie's design for a coat inspired by a military dispatch rider's jacket

I was intrigued when I heard about fashion student, Lizzie Atkins, who won the Bladen prize in the National Tailoring and Design Awards. 

Hundreds of students and recent graduates from across the country entered the competition; twenty were chosen as finalists and a final six won prizes from fashion companies in the UK. Lizzie, a student studying Fashion Design at the Arts University Bournemouth, won the Bladen award, a £500 cash prize.

Lizzie was kind enough to meet and show me her beautiful winning designs. She gave me much insight into how the best menswear is created. 

Here is part of our discussion - 

GF: Well done on winning a National Tailoring & Design award; how did this come about?

LA: Thank you! I am so excited to be part of the Savile Row National Tailoring awards and be selected as a winner for the Bladen award. I joined The Arts University Bournemouth with the intentions of graduating a womenswear designer, but after a spontaneous decision to try menswear, my interest in tailoring grew and became a passion and something I want to pursue as my career. The skill, craftsmanship and traditions are a few of the many things that draw me to this specialism.

GF: Tell me about the award.

LA: The competition is organised by The Savile Row Training Academy. My particular award was given by Bladen. I'm a final year student and the prize will help me fund the costs of a final collection. I visited the Bladen team at Wensum Tailoring in Norwich in March and was very excited to see the work which they do.

GF: Tell me about your winning entry.

LA: I designed two suits inspired by a World War II 1945 dispatch rider's coat using traditional simple tailored aesthetics. I found the coat at a car boot sale in the summer. Not knowing its story I was soon to discover through a bit of research that it was more than just the old rotting coat I paid £7 for. 

For those interested, the design process has been recorded in more detail here.

GF: What next for you? 

LA: I am creating my final collection, which is a collaboration between me and an artist (my father) David Atkins still incorporating traditional tailoring techniques and shapes. I have some interesting silhouettes developing so far and lots of colour! My father's work has always inspired me and the way I work so I'm very excited for this project. 

GF: What do you see yourself doing in the future?

LAAfter university I intend to move to London, improve my tailoring skills through in house training and continue working very hard to kick start my career in the menswear industry. In ten years time I would dream of having the admirable skills of a Savile Row tailor and applying these skills in a job were I can design with my own personal creative style. I will continue to work hard and take as many opportunities and experiences as possible. 

Some of Lizzie's designs for her final collection

With many thanks to Lizzie Atkins, whose final collection I hope to feature in a future post.

Saturday, 12 April 2014

The Grey Style Project - Savile Row 1

We visited Savile Row and the surrounding area earlier this week and had a very productive time. See also and follow The Grey Style Project on Tumblr. We'll be adding one or two images weekly.

All images © Carole Evans/Grey Fox 2014 - The Grey Style Project
Visit my sister, Carole Evans Photography, here.

For other Grey Style Project posts on this blog click here.

Thursday, 10 April 2014

L'Eroica Britannia - a vintage cycle ride comes to the UK

L'Eroica - a ride for heroic bikes and riders

For some years a wonderful cycle ride has taken place annually in Tuscany. L'Eroica allows cyclists to ditch the Lycra and carbon fibre and relive those glorious days when steel bikes and woollen cycling jerseys ruled. It's a ride I've long planned to do and I was delighted when it was announced that it would be coming to the UK. L'Eroica Britannia takes place on 22nd June as part of a weekend of events in England's beautiful Peak District. It takes place just a few weeks before the Tour de France starts in nearby Yorkshire - a great summer of cycling in England.

The image below was taken on the Tuscan ride and shows the real spirit of the event.

Image L'Eroica

L'Eroica literally translates from Italian as 'the Heroes' and harks back to the glory days of Coppi, Merckx and Simpson, reviving the essence and romance of cycling. The ride uses trails and tracks of the Peak District similar to the historic dusty white (or sticky gluey when wet) roads of Tuscany, the 'Strade Bianchi’. Riders can choose either a 30 mile, 55 mile or the 'wo/man of steel' 100 mile route. Bikes must be pre-1987 (with a few exceptions on the short ride) and vintage cycling clothing should be worn. I've registered, but I understand that the ride is nearly full, so act fast if you want to participate.

For more information and to register, visit the L'Eroica Britannia website.

The Peak District - scene of the first L'Eroica Britannia

Tuesday, 8 April 2014

Deji George - a new pocket square brand

The rise in popularity of pocket squares has been spectacular - most self-respecting menswear shops sell them - but it's rare to find designs which really stand out. Readers will know my love of the highly original and humorous Age of Reason squares and (I hope) will all have bought one of the limited edition Age of Reason/Grey Fox collaboration squares. 

Now another brand has caught my eye - Deji George. These squares blend sartorial and cultural influences to produce designs which are original and colourful - and have hand-stitched edges. I'm a fan.

Pocket squares available from Deji George