Im African, and Im damn proud of it.

Why do I say African and not just South African, I mean the Germans and Spanish don’t refer to themselves a Europeans so why do we refer to ourselves as Africans? Well, quite simply put, this is a harsh continent, it ain’t for the faint of heart, opportunities here are few and when one of us makes it, we all feel proud!

Thats why Im so proud of this guy.

tumblr_nnau36B7cZ1sjp2lpo1_1280He calls himself Loux The Vintage Guru – so, no I didn’t make it up – and this auditor by day tailor by night is a man who believes the world has a lot to learn from Africa when it comes to fashion. I couldn’t agree more Loux.

But here, watch this and see what Im talking about.

I happen to stumble upon that clip in my Facebook feed, and it brought a massive smile to my face! A weird sense of pride in Loux for going beyond his circumstances, or better yet, embracing his circumstances to put his mark on the world. See, clothing markets through out Africa are not meant to be vintage and cool, but rather the disregarded gear that no one else wants so you really need to have a sense of style if you’re gonna build a wardrobe out of that pile lying on the dusty floor.

Seems like Loux isn’t short of style.

Once again proof, thats it has nothing to do with how much you spend on your wardrobe or what fancy name is sewn into the inside of your jacket. When your clothes fit you properly and you wear them with confidence great things happen.

Okay. Stay fancy.

winI love giving stuff away, it makes me happy.

You guys read my blog, I think thats really cool of you, so do the guys at James McCabe, so much so, that they’ve asked me to help them give you a watch. Unfortunately, there is only one, so you’re gonna have to fight amongst yourselves for it. Well, not really fight! Just a simple entry will do.

The prize! Any James McCabe watch from the Heritage range.

So, what do you need to do to enter?

As always it’s simple, a 2 step process really!

Step 1 – You need to be following James McCabe Watches on Instagram – I mean really it’s a no brainer, they have a great feed!

Step 2 – You simply need to tag someone else under the post on my Instagram, that looks like this:

WIN-FB-watchBoom! You’ve entered.

Now, I always like to give you a better chance at winning, kinda like a little extra credit for a little extra work, so here’s a way you can gain another 2 entries.

Twitter – Simply tweet a pic of which James McCabe watch you wish to win from there Heritage Range with “I’de like to win this @McCabeWatches please @whatmybfwore”

Facebook – Go find the pic that I posted of the watch (looks like the one on Instagram) and simply share it – shares are tricky to track on FB because of privacy settings so leave me a comment either here or on FB to let me know you’ve entered.

Okay, so thats it, all in all, you have 3 entries if you do all of the above. Impressive.

Here are the T&C’s:

• Competition opens 11 May 2015

• Competition open to anyone anywhere in the world

• All entry requirements bust be completed to be eligible for winning, if your name is drawn and you fail to meet the entry requirements, we will redraw.

• Competition closes on 15 May 2015

• A winner will be drawn via http://www.random.org and contacted on 18 May 2015

• Your prize will be shipped to you.

Good luck everyone. Someone has to win, might as well be you right?

Okay. Stay Fancy.

Final See the pop?

It’s a little piece of fashion advice featured in a previous dapper dexterity post (hmm, haven’t done one of those for a while) it reads a little something like this “To achieve the nonchalance which is absolutely necessary for a man, one article at least must not match” in this case, it was the tie clip and belt.

The whole thing was feeling very monochromatic…which to be fair was what I was going for, but then I remembered the above dapper dexterity and thought I would get the tie clip and belt to maybe pick up on one of the smaller details of my outfit – the hand of the watch. Take a look

watchtie-clipTo be fair, there was a touch of blue in the tie too and thats what inspired the idea.

The tricky part was seeing if the 2 micro houndstooth patterns (Tie and blazer) would clash or harmonise? The rule of thumb is to always vary the size of your patterns or at least the colour, I was doing neither and even though the colours were close, they weren’t exact. My trick was pulling out the darkness of the tie using details like a darker pocket square and a darker lapel pin.

I’ve never done a double lapel pin before, not even sure I’m allowed to! either way, it’s quite a vibe, I was happy with it.

lapelFull-length-tiepocket-squareshoesIf you like any or all of the above, here is where it’s all from:

Sunglasses by Ray Ban

Blazer by Topman  – get similar here

Shirt by TM Lewin (available at Edgars)

Tie from Dashing And Co (use DASH10 for 10% discount at checkout)

Tie clip and skull lapel by Suited Man

Grey lapel flower from Chanman

Pocket square from Dashing And Co (use DASH10 for 10% discount at checkout)

Belt from Ted Baker (available at Stuttafords)

Pants by Ben Sherman – get similar here

Shoes by Zara – get similar here

Watch by James McCabe watches  – Look out for a give away of one of these watches next week

Okay. Stay fancy

TitleI stumbled on to Boschendal a couple of weeks a go on Instagram. Someone I follow had re posted something from someone they follow and hey presto! “wow, where is that? I thought, looks super rad” turns out it was Boschendal.

Now, I had known about Boschendal wines of course, it’s been around since 1685 making it one of South Africa’s oldest farms, but I had never heard of anyone staying there, or even going out to lunch (For my international readers, lunching on wine farms is what we do on weekends in Cape Town).

The reason I discovered is that Boschendal has only just launched their accommodation at the end of last year and just recently opened a deli and restaurant. Elzaan and I are always on the look out for well priced escapes that are close to town , we also love to cook, se generally prefer self catering, Boschendal had all 3, so we took advantage of the long weekend and booked ourselves in. road-to-boschenaalfull-lengthE-stoepkitchenvanityheadboardpool-areaAs is most of the wine region you are just surrounded by mountains, it’s a little overwhelming at times and you end up not knowing what view you should be awed by, so it’s best to rotate regularly.

We stayed in the orchard cottages situated about 2km’s away from the main farm, these cottages were the original labourers houses that have been converted into perfect little homes away from home complete with a braai (BBQ) area and stoep (porch). No detail has been spared, and I mean NONE! Every little thing goes perfectly with everything else, from the throw pillow on the couch to the blinds in the kitchen, it has a perfectly modern country chic feeling about it. They also haven’t cheaped out on anything, the pots and kettle on the stove are al Le Creuset, as are the ceramic dishes, there’s a nice little LCD TV up against the wall with a fair amount of satellite channels and free wi-fi that actually works and is reasonably fast. Needless to say, we weren’t disappointed.

The disappointment unfortunately came in the details of our stay a little further on, once we eventually got settled in. fireplacekettlestoepsconeslying-in-bedWe arrived on the same day they were hosting the Red Bull wings for life run, now to be fair, they had warned us about road closures, but we were unaware that the race would end at Boschendal and that they would be hosting the “after party” . We arrived early in the hopes of checking in and leaving before the road closures but our rooms weren’t ready, and they suggested we came back at 5 when the race was over, so we left our bags and perishables with them and hit Stellenbosch about 25min away.

The accommodation as described above, is beautiful, I mean the pictures tell that story I hope, but unfortunately there were a few things that left us thinking “well, that wasn’t very well thought through”. Here they are.

Firstly, I wouldn’t call the cottages self catering, they’re more semi-self catering. There is only 2 of everything, literally 2 knifes, 2 forks, 2 plates etc. I guess that seems normal for a place that accommodates 2, but of course not ideal in real life when you’re preparing food. Now of course I don’t expect that they have a food processor and sous vide machine on hand, but I’m on mini vacation, I don’t want to have to wash up everything immediately just so I can use it again.

One of the things we were most looking forward to was the fireplace, both inside the accommodation and outside for cooking, and although they supply you with two baskets filled with wood, it’s not very practically thought out to actually make a fire. The wood is all in massive logs, making starting a fire difficult without tinder to get it going, it also makes it impossible to braai as the logs are too big and take too long to burn out into charcoal. On top of this they provide no fire making tools, so no pokers or tongs to turn logs and keep that fire going. It’s a small thing, but annoying at the time.

We were unfortunately also riddled with bad luck. When we set out to have a shower on monday morning before heading out for a meeting we realised we had no hot water, we called reception (you need to use your own phone as there are no phones in the room) who said that they would send maintenance over. We took an ice cold shower and left for the day – not ideal on a chilly autumn morning. When we got back that evening we seemed to have hot water again, but no one had called to report back on the problem.

The next morning, same thing, well, first no electricity before I left for a morning run, followed by no hot water again. At this point the housekeeping manager let us use another unit to shower and bath. Ahhhh….warm and clean! We were also granted a late checkout so we decided to lie around on the couch for a while and head down to the restaurant for a late lunch before we left. The restaurant was closed so we grabbed a bite and a glass of Boschendal wine at the deli. We decided to start with a butternut and bacon soup which was outstanding and follow it up with a duck risotto and gnocchi with spicy beef sausage and pulled short rib, neither of which left much of an impression. The setting, of course, was beautiful. manor-houseDeliLook, don’t get me wrong, I know stuff goes wrong, it’s life and it happens. When it happens to me at home, I take it on the chin, but when I’m paying to have an experience better than the one I have at home, I kinda feel cheated when it isn’t.

In saying that, I’ll still recommend the place,maybe we just had some bad luck the cottages are great and if there is a group of you, you can pretty much take over the whole place. I’m sure things like hot water, are just teething issues and in time they will iron out all the details like cutlery, fire places etc. They are new and possibly still trying to find their feet.   I’ll definitely like to try the other bigger, fancier cottages at a later stage with some friends and maybe even come back to try the werf restaurant. If you have been or are planning on going, please levae me a comment, I would love to hear about your experience.

Okay. Stay fancy.

walking-sidebag-medium-shotWinter is coming!

Yesssss!

I for one am incredibly happy about that. It means wool, it means tweed and it means layering without dying from heat.

So, as my first official winter Fancy Friday, I dusted off my woollen pants and built an outfit around them. Black and blue is one of my favourite combinations (I think I’ve said this before, or was it black and grey? Black and grey is also excellent!) The trick with black, is making it seem like you’re not going to a funeral. A black suit is even tricky for day time use, unless you are actually going to a funeral, so it’s best to break it up a little with something lighter up top.

I wanted to carry the textures across this outfit too and you’ll see below that the tie is very textured, while the jacket has a very textured print giving the appearance of texture. That preppy tie can also come across very formal and boring if it’s not paired properly with a shirt, a white shirt may of just been too boring, while the small check in this shirt helped bring it all together I thought. You decide.

pocket-squaremedium-close-uplapel-flowerbagshoesThe details (you know how I love my details) always need to be considered, they’re the elements that will finish your statement – whatever that is. I was going for the “I mean business” look / statement so decided to keep the pocket square and lapel flower in the exact same tonal range as the tie, mostly so that they never pop out and make a louder noise than anything else. This wouldn’t have been a mistake though, something bright and colourful would have made this look a lot less serious. Though, you can tell by my face, i’m all about serious :)

The final touch was the shoes. I was already sporting a shiny leather briefcase, so even though I should of matched leathers and gone for some shiny black shoes ( i had a pair of classic black wingtips on moments before I left the house) I thought I would let the shoes bring in some fun – don’t tell my face -and let them match up with all the blue action happening up top.

Finally, (and I know you’ll agree with me on this) how beautiful is that briefcase? Simple and understated, unlike my outfit. NOW, if you live in Cape Town and think it’s time to treat yourself to a long weekend bag of sorts Calvin Klein at the V&A Waterfront is offering R500 off any bag in store from the 24th – 27th of April. Yeah, thats it, that simple, the leather briefcases are really incredible and if you don’t find something for you, the offer is on ladies bags too, so, maybe do something nice for your other half.

Those of you looking for details on the above outfit:

Sunglasses by RayBan

Blazer from Topman

Shirt by T.M Lewin (available at Edgars)

Tie from Friday Tie Day 

Lapel flower from River Island

Pocket square from Heywood

Briefcase from Calvin Klein

Watch from MVMT

Pants from Ben Sherman (Available locally at Stuttafords)

Shoes from Aldo (Available at Edgars)

Okay. Stay fancy.

Walking---Mastermedium-close-upThe folks over at G-Star RAW asked me a simple question (well, they’re asking everyone to be fair).

Do you wear your jeans tight or wide?

I decided to answer them with this outfit! Keeping it dapper and keeping it tight!

sittingjumpingI was lucky enough to meet up with Shubhankar Ray – G-Star Raws Global Brand Director for a little chat during this years Design Indaba and he is one hell of an interesting man. Anyone who goes from a science lab to the fashion industry is bound to be interesting though I guess.

We chatted about the success of G-Star Raw in South Africa at the moment, something that he attributes to being able to meet the desire for such an aspirational brand by entering the local market with an accessible price point. I couldn’t agree more. No point creating desire for a brand if you never give your consumer a chance to satisfy that desire, and for those of you who keep a close eye on price tags as I do…you would have noticed that G-Star Raw has now dropped from around R4000 a pair of jeans to under R2000 a pair of jeans. Pretty useful that! (They also now have an online store, where you pay what you see, no tax, no duties. FINALLY!)

We also got chatting about their current #TightOrWIde advertising campaign. Now, I say campaign, but really it feels more like research to me, because quite simply it wants to see what the world is wearing, tight or wide!

standing-backstanding---croppedSo far it seems tight is in the lead more so for the gents than for the ladies, but you can see the continued results on the campaign page.

My chat with Shubhankar though revealed that he believes we should start buying into wide pretty soon, the “tight” trend is no longer a trend, it’s been around for over 10 years and is now simply an option. Shubhankar believes when this happens we are always bound to see a shift the other way, so moving toward a looser fitting silhouette, he even went as far as saying he might be investing in a pair of bootleg jeans soon in preparation for yet another 70’s revival. I do hope he is wrong.

walking-awaytie-close-upboots

For those who want the details on the outfit, here they are:

Beanie and Blazer from Topman

Sunglasses by Ray Ban

Shirt by Ben Sherman – available at Stuttafords

Tie from Friday Tie Day

Pocket square by WeekendCasual

Jeans by G-Star RAW

Shoes by Ted Baker – available at Stuttafords

Okay. Stay fancy.

At last count I had over 20 jeans. Not very acurate I know, but I’m terrible at math.

They’re all in various stages of disrepair (some bought that way) and all in a variety of washes and fits from a plethora of brands.

Recently though, I received my first pair of ‘raw” denim – a pair of G-Star Raw jeans you may have seen me wearing on my Instagram lately – now, raw denim (or dry denim) is denim that has not been washed after dying and is left in a solid un destressed state (SPOILER ALERT for below video)

The only problem for me was…well, how do I keep it like this?

Apparently (according to the salesmen at all high end denim retailers) you should never wash your jeans! Ever! The fabric softener ruins them…blah blah, etc etc.

Fine, but also GROSS!

So I turned to the internet and found this:

I mean, who’s going to argue with Mr Porter right?

Okay. Stay fancy.

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