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I usually don’t do blog posts like this, you know, the kinda blog posts that tell stories about my adventures, but this one was too good not to share, so here goes.

A couple of weeks ago I received a very mysterious call from the guys at Smirnoff. They wanted to take me out for the night, “show me a good time” they said, “tick off some bucket list stuff”.

Naturally I told them I’m not a fan of doing awesome fun stuff, so please never to call again!

Ok, that’s not how it went at all, but the mysterious call part was totally true! I just said YES!!! Before they had even asked! And I’m kinda glad I did. Here’s why:

That little video gives you an idea about my crazy night with some amazing people, but here’s what really went down, and listen closely, cause you could find yourself on one of these trips.

They arrived at my apartment in an “explore the night” branded black cab, now bare in mind, I literally had no clue on what was going on, so I just went with it! When I jumped into the cab I was happy to see my friend Siv Ngesi (A fellow top 10 finalist in last years GQ best dressed) and Tecla Ciolfi or Texx from the famous music blog Texx and the city (I’d always wanted to meet her). We high fived in nervous anticipation and hit the road.

Our first stop was a bar called orphanage, where we had our own little corner with loads of snacks and loads of Smirnoff Double black with guarana. We tucked in. YUM!

Then another cab arrived, filled with even more friends for the night, Craig Stack from the lifestyle blog My City By Night, TV Personality Katlego Maboe from the expresso show and fellow fashion blogger Carlinn Meyer from superficial girls. Now it was a party.

We chatted and filled up on snacks, then hopped back in our Explore the night cabs, with no idea where we were going. Of course the video has given it away, but when we arrived at Cape Town international Execujet, we knew this night had just ramped up pretty hard, and all got lost in a flurry of high fives, fist bumps and girly screams, yes, all of us!

Now, bare in mind, even when we took off, we had no idea where we were headed, there was talk of Durban and Joburg, though I was holding thumbs for Barcelona – they have the best shoes there! Anyway, we landed in JHB and got straight into another Explore the night cab, still no idea where we were going!

Then Craig said “hold on!!” at which point we thought maybe he needed the toilet, turns out he didn’t…cause he continued with “Isn’t Armin van Buuren playing in Joburg tonight?” He was right, and thats exactly where we were headed! WOW!

We arrived at the Concert and were escorted through so many level of VIP I lost track of how many V’s we actually had in our area! The view of the show was epic, and I could describe it to you, but instead, I thought I would share some pics we all took on the night so you can get a little vibe of how everyone saw the experience!

Now, I’m more of a rock kid myself, but I was absolutely mesmerised by this guys stage show, it truly was the most epic thing I had ever seen.

As always, all good things must come to an end, so we headed back to our Explore the night cab, back to our private jet and back home to Cape Town. All grinning from ear to ear.

I eventually got into bed at 5:30am. What an epic night, thank you Smirnoff.

If you guys wanna find out how you could find yourself exploring the night with Smirnoff Double Black with Guarana, check it out here.

Okay. Stay Fancy.

 

So, I’ve been apprehensive about sharing this series of interviews I did recently with news 24, mostly because everything I say, you guys would already know from reading the blog, but also, because, well, I’m no public speaker. Sure I can match the hell out of my ties and pocket squares, but public speaking will never be my thing.

If however you wanna know a little more about how what my boyfriend wore started and why I do the things I do, or you just feel like a chuckle, then take a look below.

Okay. Stay fancy.

Whenever I feel like I need a fashion kick up the pants I go and find a little ABC of mens fashion for some inspiration. Always does the trick.

This one features ex style editor of Harpers & Queens Mr Peter York telling us why the suit was such a good invention. He makes a good point too you know.

“Fashion affects, absolutely everything” It’s true you know, it defines everything from entire decades to simple moments in time. Clever guy this Peter York.

Okay. Stay fancy.

 

 

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Who is this guy? And how did he change our pants?

This is 24-year old Bavarian immigrant, Levi Strauss, who landed in San Francisco in 1853 and opened up a wholesale dry goods business. That business changed forever – and so did our wardrobes – when he partnered with tailor Jacob Davis in 1873 on a patent for riveted pockets on work pants for Western pioneers. Creating the original and first ever blue jean – the iconic Levi’s® 501® – he couldn’t have dreamed of its impact on modern culture.

The 501® jean was the original, made for the working men of the West, born in 1873. But Levi Strauss &Co. knew that there were many kinds of working men, and in the 1880s unveiled this style, made with a pocket on the thigh for a folding ruler.

554On February 26, Levi Strauss would have turned 185 years old—and on the anniversary of his birthday I thought you might be interested in taking a little trip down memory lane through the Levis historic Archives. They span everything from the first store to world wars. When you think about it, surely this is one of the most iconic brands of our time?

So happy 185th birthday Mr Strauss, though you may not be around today you continue to live in all of our wardrobes old chap.

Ok. Stay fancy.

Always something valuable to learn form the’se ABC of mens fashion posts. In this one Co founder of Anthem (a store that sources beautifully crafted, exclusive products from all over the world to provide a unique experience for discerning menswear shoppers) drops a bit of a bomb…take a look/listen.

“Clothes are nothing without the person who wears them” I love that thought, because it doesn’t matter how fancy or how expensive your label, it’s the confidence of the man inside the outfit that makes it work!

Okay. Stay fancy.

Yes yes, I know it’s been a while since I posted one of these guys, but Alex Bilmes, editor of Esquire give us an interesting take on fashion versus Style, well worth the watch.

“Do you look good? That’s much more important than are you fashionable or are you stylish. Do you look good, do you feel good?” – I love that and couldn’t agree more

Okay. Stay fancy.

GQ_BestDressed-2013-COVERYou guys have no idea how long I’ve been waiting to break this news to you.

A couple of months ago I recieved a call from GQ South Africa’s Creative Fashion Director and GQ Style Editor Arthur Malan-Murison, telling me I had been selected as 1 of the 50 finalists in this year’s GQ Best Dressed Men competition. You can imagine my reaction – ” I’m telling EVERYONE!”

Unfortunately, it was all to be kept quite hush ’til the November issue launched where they revealed the top 10. In the meantime we would be shot for the magazine in the event that we made it through.

This past Monday I was flown up to Johannesburg to attend the launch of the November issue and reveal of the top 10. Gulp. Not only did I make the top 10, but I placed number 2. Wow!

Take a look at a little behind the scenes action from the shoot featuring the top 10.

And of course, here are the results (all photography by Richard Keppel-Smith):

No-1-Abey-MokgwatsaneAt number 1 – Abey Mokgwatsane – CEO of Ogilvy

No-2-Sergio-InesAt number 2 – Yours truly

No-3-Lungile-RaduAt number 3 – Lungile Radu – Actor, Producer & Director

No-4-Brr-RodgersAt number 4 – Brr Rodgers – Producer & Model

No-5-Lunga-ShabalalaAt number 5 – Lunga Shabalala – TV Presenter

No-6-Mayihlome-TshweteAt number 6 – Mayihlome Tshwete – Spokesperson for Public Enterprise Minister Malusi Gigaba

No-7-Nicholas-ChristowitzAt number 7 – Nicholas Christowitz – Graphic designer and co-owner of Father coffee

No-8-Khuli-ChanaAt number 8 – Khuli Chana – Musician

No-9---Van-Lee-JohnsonAt number 9 – Van-Lee Johnson – Brand Manager at Markham

No-10-Siv-NgesiAt number 10 – Siv Ngesi – Comedian

 

We all got asked a couple of questions that appeared in the magazine, so I thought I would share my interview with you guys.

Have you always been a fashion guy? Yeah. I worked for Edgars when I was at school, so I was exposed to fashion at an early age and it became imperative to me to dress well.

What’s the most important thing a man should have in his wardrobe? Leather shoes. Essential. A pair of formal, classic shoes is the cornerstone of any man’s wardrobe.

The most important trend to follow is…Ignoring all the trends and developing your own unique look.

If you could leave one thing for your son to inherit, what would it be? I stole a rich brown leather belt out of my father’s cupboard when I was in my early teens. He’d bought the belt when he came to South Africa in the ’70s and it would be nice to see it span three generations – or more.

Which trend best sums up your style and why? Dapper Dandy. It resonates with me – I feel great in formal, beautifully cut clothing and accessories. Blazers, ties, bow ties, pocket squares and lapel flowers – all of it. Sartorial details excite me.

The biggest mistake men make when it comes to fashion is…They tend to buy clothes that simply don’t fit them properly. Bigger is not always better.

You’re a man who knows his accessories – what’s your advice on that extra touch? When wearing accessories, know where to stop. Although having said that, I don’t always follow my own advice, the lapel flower is my current favourite.

If you were a piece of clothing, what would you be? A pair of wingtip brogues. Without a doubt. They are complex and filled with detail.

You’re quite the collector of fashion aren’t you? I’m always collecting items. Does it have to be just one? I have two full tie racks and am still adding to them. Name it, I collect it.

What is your go-to fragrance? Commes des Garcons. I find it unique and often get complements when wearing it.

What’s your take on the big-beard trend? Absolutely love it. It makes me very jealous that I cannot grow a beard at 35.

Here are some interview bites from the other contestants, but if you want the details you’re gonna need to get your hands on the November issue of GQ.

These gents are all stand up guys with incredible style and every one of them could have nabbed the number 1 spot, either way, I feel honoured to be placed amongst them.

Where to from you here? No seriously!? This was as big as I could dream this blog would take me, “started at the bottom now we’re here” kinda big. It’s all a bit crazy.

Either way, I’ll keep trying to bring you menswear inspiration and education as often as I can.

Okay. Stay fancy.

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