London Collections:Men Show Review Autumn/Winter 2014 Pt I

London has well and truly established itself as a destination on the menswear calendar as a Fashion & Style capital. So as that international Fashion circus of journalists, retail buyers, celebs and, well yours truly, all conjugate in major cities in the name of observing the trends and future wares of some of the biggest & most talented fashion brands in the world, Clothes-Make-the-Man brings you all the best reviews, titbits & opinions over the coming weeks. Enough of this, first up on the London Schedule is the exhibition as I, rather out of character, arrived early. So I took myself off to have a look around, which in the past have proven to be a greater source of inspiration than many of the show, this season was no exception. With the likes of a Common People, Lyle & Scott and Universal works all offering GREAT Collections for Autumn including collaborations with Jonathan Saunders and the aforementioned Universal Works for Lyle & Scott, all managing, very well, I hasten to add, to produce very creative collection all the while managing to be highly commercial.
An example if Jonathan Saunders for Lyle & Scott

An example if Jonathan Saunders for Lyle & Scott

Onto the shows for me, my lad and first up is TOPMAN. You never quite know what to expect from TOPMAN Design  and this season was no exception, the show can be summed up in three words Mature, Desirable but above all Wearable. With a very muted colour palette of Black, Navy, pale blue and flashes of Russian Red. If those guys over at TOPMAN HQ are planning on targeting an older the customer, they won’t have a problem enticing him. Plus with the dulcet tones of John Copper  Clarke and the downpour of rain in the finale, it brought me right back home to my Northern roots.


Next on my hit list is Gieves & Hawkes and the subject of yesterday’s textual Conversation, Mr Jason Basmajian, who just so happens to be the house’s new Creative Director, making waves in all the right places. Jason, informed us his profile that he was going to offer us an, “Elegant,textural, tailored, rich, Savile Row revisited, British twist”. Which quite simply summed up the collection.
Gieves & Hawkes

Gieves & Hawkes

Now, talk about ends of the spectrum and what is becoming a real USP for LC:M is how it manages to go from the tradition and finesse of Savile Row to young designers offering the height of creative inspiration. One in question being the wonderful Richard Nicoll, who from season to season just seems to be getting stronger and stronger when it comes to his Menswear. Only four seasons in and Nicoll’s presented to us, what can only be described as a riot of Colour. If I had to fit it into a tweet, I’d say, A modern interpretation of the urban man’s wardrobe.
Richard Nicolls

Richard Nicolls

Last, but by no means least of today’s round up, is Christopher Raeburn, who was one of a number of Designers who picked up on the Polar Explorer vibe in their collection, it was a seriously cool show which Mr Raeburn laid on. You were left thinking, did he know something about the weather for next season that we didn’t which was rather apt as we read about our freezing American cousins who were experiencing record low temperatures.
Christopher Reaburn

Christopher Raeburn

Jason Basmajian for Gieves & Hawkes

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As you all know each season during LC:M we select a leading designer from the London Schedule who has caught our eye and impressed us. This season is no exception and he’s a relative new comer to what can only be classed as one of the oldest & most respected names that grace Savile Row, with what has to be THE most envious of postal addresses, 1 Savile Row.
Jason Basmajian, confidently took over the reins of Gieves & Hawkes mid last year. He has over two decades’ experience which includes Director of Menswear at Calvin Klein and Donna Karan in New York. Additional to this he became Creative Director of ST Dupont in Paris. Subsequently he joined Brioni as Artistic Director. Whilst at Brioni he spearheaded the company’s modernisation and consolidation as one of the leading global luxury brands.
As for Gieves & Hawkes, it was created in the 20th century from the amalgamation of two long-established private tailoring firms founded in the 18th century – Gieves (founded 1785) and Hawkes (founded 1771). Currently the holder of three Royal Warrants, yes that’s THREE,  as suppliers to HM The Queen, HRH Prince Philip the Duke of Edinburgh and HRH Prince Charles the Prince of Wales.
For Spring of this year Gieves & Hawkes departs Savile Row well attired for a long summer holiday with stops planned in Amalfi, Nairobi, Barbados and Shanghai before returning to London. The spirit of the collection is inspired by the traditions of bespoke but it is contemporary in its fresh mix of sartorial, military and sportswear styling. Anyway, that’s quite enough of the history and onto the main feature;

If you could have invented anything what would it be ?

Concorde – I love to travel fast

If you had one day to live what would be your biggest regret ?

My only regret would be having only 1 day

What would be the one piece of clothing you would rescue from your home in the event of a fire ?

I would save nothing – it would be fun to start over

What inspires you ?

Authenticity, creativity, intelligence, passion inspire in people inspire me

If you could only wear one brand/Designer for the rest of your life who would it be ?

Honestly, it would be a combination of my own work from ST Dupont, Brioni, and Gieves and Hawkes

Who is your style icon ?

My style icons are anyone who are not afraid to express themselves through their own individual style. I see them everyday all around me were ever I go

Tell us something no one else knows ?

I would love to be a professional chef in another life

What piece of style advise do you live by ?

Be yourself and dress by your own codes- don’t try too hard

What piece of clothing would you relegate to Room 101 ?

The track suit to room 101 !

How did you get into the industry, what was your big break ?

An internship at Giorgio Armani

In your words, describe the collection ?

Elegant, textural, tailored, rich, Savile row revisited, British twist

If you could give your teenage self advice, what would it be ?

Don’t rush growing up- enjoy the moment

Gieves & Hawkes Spring 2014

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Detox me up in 2014

Screen Shot 2014-01-05 at 15.32.04If the answer to any one or more of the following questions is YES then I’m sure, like me, the thought of de-toxing has, at least, flashed across your mind over the last week or so;

1) I don’t want to see another Tin of Quality Street, Roses, Celebrations, Ferrero Rochers or so much as a selection box for the next 11 months ? Yes / No
2) I crave vegetables, that doesn’t count Brussels Sprouts, Roasted Parsnips or at least 4 different types of potatoes all on the same oversized plate ? Yes / No
3) If I see a Turkey based meal between now and 24th December 2014, including, Turkey Stir-fry, Curry, pie or fajitas I shall commit Hari-kari on a Quality Street Toffee Finger ? Yes / No

Yes, after the over-excesses of the last month or so, if you’re feeling anything remotely like myself, your skin feels terrible, your hair feels crap and your generally feeling like a something you would scrap off the bottom of your shoe. We at Clothes Make the Man have sourced some products and advice which should put you on the road to recovery or at least start to make you feel slightly more human.

We asked the experts at Vitaman for some advice “Do you have any new year tips after the excesses of the Yuletide ?”

  • To counter the excesses of Yuletide, a bath in Epsom salts is a quick and easy detox. Add a cup of Epsom salts (available from all good Pharmacies) with a few drops of rosemary or grapefruit essential oil and soak for half an hour.
  • To get your circulation going after relentless parties, a work out in the gym will do wonders. It increases circulation and oxygenates the blood and skin. It is especially good the morning after the night before – it’s a great hangover cure.
  • Refresh your skin- We tend to drink a little too much during the party season which dehydrates your skin. To combat this, use a facial masque to deep cleanse the skin and draw out toxins leaving your skin fresh and revitalised.
  • To start a post-Christmas detox, scrub your skin. It removes dead skin cells, get the blood flowing and stimulates the lymphatic system to detox. You can use a body bush or grab a tub of VitaMan’s Salt Scrub. Massage it into the skin in vigorous movements working towards the heart.

The VitaMan Sea Salt Body Scrub also works to eliminate the build-up of dead skin cells, daily grime and dirt. Excellent for dry, rough skin, ingrown hairs. It quickly exfoliates, helps eliminate blackheads and acne and leaves you feeling refreshed and invigorated with smooth, clean, younger looking skin. Ingredients include Aloe Vera Gel.Australia Sea Salt – coastal sea salt – a natural, gentle exfoliatant perfect for removing dead skin cells, Macadamia Nut Oil ,Patchouli and Almond Oil and Cinnamon Extract – used to treat skin infection whilst imparting a warm, spicy aroma

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If your January calendar now rammed full of rigorous gym sessions (and avoiding the pub)? It’s not just our bodies which need a swift detox your hair has taken a right ole hammering this yule. The Naked Detox 2 in 1 Shampoo & Conditioner is infused with peppermint and sorrel leaf to get rid of pollutants and other product build-up, leaving hair feeling fresh, clean and ready for the year ahead.

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Blink – If you’re feeling dry eyed and not very bushy tailed after the New Year Abbott Blink Eye drops will rescue and protect tired, dry eyes and soothe them at night for a more restful night’s sleep.


Lastly, Clarins MEN Fatigue Fighter is a light, cream-gel which gives an instant energising boost to tired, stressed looking skin. As soon as it’s applied, skin looks fresher, healthier, firmer, even rested. For all skin types as a pick-me-up after a late night or heavy week at work. Use on its own or over Moisture Balm or Gel. Whenever your skin needs that extra boost.

“Over the festive period, late nights and an excess amount of alcohol will cause skin to become dehydrated, making it look dull and lacking in vitality.  Start the New Year by drinking plenty of water and stick to a time efficient skin care routine- it takes less than a minute per day and will keep those dehydration lines at bay in 2014”

Marie Mckeever – Clarins Head of Treatment Development

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Merry Christmas from all at Clothes Make the Man to you & Thank you

A Special Christmas story from MR BENN thanks to