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Outfit of the day

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The Veuve Clicquot Masters Polo is very quickly becoming our favourite event on the Cape Town social calendar. Now in its 7th year running, it only seems to get better.

We’re not sure if it’s the giant balloons or the free flowing french champagne but we always have the best time. Now that I think of it its probably the champagne, I mean, I can drink that stuff all day son all DAY!! And so I did, literally. #YOLO

The day however, is not all about champagne – not that it would be a problem if it was – but its about celebrating the sport of kings and looking your best while doing it! Horses, fashion and champagne…just not necessarily in that order.

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Deciding what to wear to the Polo is always a little tricky. This years theme was ‘Clicquot Journey’ which basically celebrates the wanderlust that is the thrill of traveling the globe. I decided to take a little inspiration from the ever stylish Italians with a classic creme double breasted linen blazer from Casper Designer Wear and navy trousers from Fabiani.

February has been a scorcher so the linen blazer (combined with the cold champagne) went a long way to keeping me cool. My bright yellow pocket square from Heywood 1922 was a cheeky wink to the famous Veuve yellow label while the brightly colour plaid tie from bows n ties picked up on the pocket square and worked perfectly with the houndstooth pale blue shirt from Fabiani. In order to keep things more on the casual side I went with a pair of classic tan brogues from Spitz Shoes and matching belt from Paul Smith

Look, I didn’t win best dressed, (heck, I didn’t even get a nomination) but I loved this look and navy and creme are fast becoming my favourite colour combo for summer.BalloonDSCF6571DSCF6295DSCF6251DSCF6757DSCF6275

If you’ve never watched a live game of polo, then stick that on your bucket list, it remains one of the most impressive live sporting events i’ve ever seen. The symbiotic relationship between the player and the horse is incredible, I mean they might as well be centaurs. The big event of the day was of course the main match between Veuve Clicquot and Shimmy Beach with Shimmy Beach literally stealing the game in the last few minutes and taking it 7-5.

With the horses out the way the day very quickly turned back to fashion with a quick runway showing from Craig Port, Carducci Menswear and Gavin Rajah . Unfortunately, I wasn’t around to catch the best dressed nominees nor winners on the day – no it wasn’t sour grapes : ) Not being one for drinking and driving I had booked my ‘take me home’ service at a waaaaaay to responsible hour and missed out on all the fun at the end of the day.

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I did however manage to catch some great personal best dressed favourites on the day. My front runner was of course Elzaan who knocked it out the park with her sleeveless pleated dress from H&M, what a winner 🙂 I also loved my friend Lukas Nangolo’s bright and bold blazer pants combo, wish I could pull something like that off – keep an eye on this guy, I reckon he’s gonna be doing some big things! Lastly, and this a matter of being in the right place at the right time I managed to catch this awesome shot of Boity looking super elegant as usual and sending my twitter into a spin.

Ahhhh man, what a day. Cant wait for next year!

Okay. Stay Fancy.

 

 

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Last Saturday saw the  inaugural Sun Met celebrated with Mumm come to life with its decades of glamour theme in all its glory.

It was a perfect day for a little horse racing, a lot of champagne and some very fancy people. For those of you who caught my Decade Of Glamour inspiration post a couple of weeks ago you’ll know that this year was all about celebrating the best fashion from the last 8 decades. I decided I would go back to the 30’s, an era of gangsters, jazz and speakeasies dressed in the unofficial uniform of  prohibition, the pin stripe suit. I completed the look with a contrast waistcoat, pin collar shirt and paisley tie.

(Unfortunately this look was pieced together with some old pieces in my wardrobe so I have no links to share with you. The Sunglasses are by Ray Ban, the suit was by Stephen Cole at Stuttafords, the shirt by TM Lewin, the tie and pocket square by Paul Smith and the shoes by Zara)

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Now no gangster is complete without his Moll (look it up) and there was no broad more beautiful than mine on the day. Elzaan’s dress by Casper Bosman was absolutely incredible, she really stole the show!

Of course, the Sun Met has always been as much about fashion as it has been about horses, so everyone really looked great on the day. The gents from I see a different you definitely put there awesome twist on some classic suiting while model /blogger Anesu Chogugudza and his girlfriend Abongwe deservedly picked up’Best Dressed Couple’ – I only say deservedly because Elzaan and I never entered : ) I was however incredibly flattered to find out his outfit had been inspired by 1920’s Decades of Glamour post.

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The rest of the day was literally spent rubbing shoulders with the who’s who of South African fashion culture over a glass or 10 of Mumm Champagne. There is literally nothing that beats a ice cold glass of bubbly on a hot summers day. No wait, drinking it dressed as a  1930’s gangster…that…that beats it!

We managed to catch a few races trackside but were always to slow to place a bet, good thing too I was all in for Captain America taking the Sun Met when it got snatched up by Whiskey Baron. What was I thinking right? Given my outfit Whiskey Baron would have been the obvious choice!

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In the end, the day was TOTE’s amazing (see what I did there) and we just wanted to thank Sun International for being such incredible hosts, we look forward to next year.

Okay. Stay fancy!

 

 

Look, I don’t need much of a reason to dress up, but a day at the Met is definitely one of the better reasons to suit up. The Met is one of Cape Towns most prestigious horse racing events and with this year marking its 155th running, its also one of its oldest. For those of you who don’t yet know, this year the Met has taken on new sponsors and will be officially known as the Sun Met celebrated with Mumm.

The day is really only about 2 things, horses and fashion. Well, three things if you add champagne. I don’t know many people who know much about horses, so our day is usually focused around Fashion, Champagne and picking the horse with the best name. This years fashion theme is ‘Decades of Glamour’ with a retrospective look at the last 80 years that defined todays fashion. For those of you who may need a little help, I’ve put together 3 looks from 3 of my favorite decades to give you some inspiration and get you going. I’ve partnered up with Markham and Fabiani in order to give  you looks to suit different budgets as well as items that are available right now.

Now, keep in mind, I’m not an historian, especially not one that specializes in the history of fashion. What I do have is Google and a ton of research, but even so, this is meant to be inspirational and not cold hard facts.

1920’s

Men in the 1920’s were arguably the best dressed men of all time, in fact most of the ‘rules’ regarding menswear can be traced back to the 1920’s. When we think 20’s, we all think Gatsby and Leonardo Di Caprio smashing a creme suit with a brown waistcoat and yellow tie. Truth be told, that wasn’t very far off. The colors were all very neutral allowing the details to pop and in a decade where details were everything you made sure you never had a stitch out of place. Men would rarely leave the house without a hat and you would be hard pressed to find someone not sporting a pair of wingtips on their feet.

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I decided I would go for something very neutral with bold patterns and accessories. The double breasted jacket with wide lapels is bang on 1920’s, paired with some simple light chinos and a popping pocket square. If you think the 1920’s is for you and like the look above, you can get it here:

Hat from Markham • Shirt from Fabiani • Bow tie from Markham • Pocket square from Fabiani• Blazer from Markham • Lapel flower from Markham • Trousers from Fabiani

 1940’s

The 1940’s were pretty much ruled by World War 2 and the great depression. This decade didn’t see much change in the mens fashion established in the 20’s and with all the war rationing going on suits became slimmer and military inspired. Pin striped suits really mark the decade as did suspenders (due to leather rations on belts) and your outfit was once again not complete without a hat, pair of two toned brogues and a sizable pants cuff. As the war came to an end everything became wider; pants, ties and especially choice!

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I decided I would crossover war and post war with this military inspired double breasted suit and simple muted accessories. If you want to give the 1940’s a go you can get the following items here:

Hat by Markhams  Suit by Fabiani Tie by Fabiani Pocket Square by Fabiani

1960’s

When you think of the 60’s it’s generally filled with flower power, peace signs and bell bottoms right? Wrong! Well, not wrong actually, I mean bohemia was definitely a look back then but this was a decade where individual style really flourished.  Sub cultures started to adopt there own style and men started hanging up that ‘uniform’ they had been dragging around for 4 decades. Generally things got tighter and louder with patterns and colors everywhere. My personal favorite look from this decade was that of the “mods”, in fact most of what you find in stores today is mod inspired fashion. Clean lines, well tailored suits and a pair of Chelsea boots will get you a long way at achieving this look.

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I’ve definitely taken more of a Mod Persuasion to this look with a simple tailored one button suit but added my 60’s fun in the bright colors and polka dot shirt. If you wanna go 60’s you can get this outfit right here:

Suit by Markham • Shirt by Fabiani • Tie by Markham • Lapel pin by Markham • Pocket square by Fabiani

That’s it folks! If you’re on your way to this years Sun Met then I really hope this post has helped you. Remember, there is a difference between dressing to a theme and dressing up – your outfit should be inspired by the decade but be modern and glamorous. Your outfit should not mimic the decade and be true to every detail as if you’re going to a dress up party.

If you don’t yet have tickets then I hope this post has inspired you to get some, I hope to see you there!

Okay. Stay Fancy.

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Men really got the short end of the stick when it came to fashion.

Our options are really limited, you can just tell that by the size of the menswear section in any given department store – Yeah, I’m bitter about it. So, we just need to start doing more with what we got right?

We generally take a stab at getting our colour mix right, or the braver few take a chance at mixing patterns in order to create individuality within our outfits. But what if you’ve just not that loud bold colour pattern guy? Well, thats when texture become your greatest accessory. The right mix of textures can really elevate your look and give your outfit that understated boldness you usually rely on patterns for. It also gets you that “rich” look as my girlfriend calls it : )

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A simple textured suit and a bold textured tie helps create contrast and achieves that understated boldness I spoke of earlier. But one small step in the right direction can add a little flair to all that understated boldness. All you need is to bring a little texture to your shoe game.

I’m bringing a little cross hatched texture with these Arthur Jack Darrell derbies from Tread and Miller, they have some great brogueing detail on the toe cap which adds a little contrast by adding scale. A full brogue could do a great job of adding a lot of texture in a subtle way, or you could go all out and get a chunky weave and leave all the understated boldness behind!

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Never underestimate the power of your shoes to transform your outfit.

Okay. Stay Fancy.

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For those of us on the southern hemisphere summer has been coming in hot and fast, mostly hot though. We all love summer, sure, longer  days, shorter night the smell of sun tan lotion, drinks with tiny little umbrellas, its great. That is until you need to get your fancy on and break out into a sweat just thinking how you’ll break out into a sweat the moment you put your jacket on.

So I thought I would share a few tips and tricks in how to stay fancy this summer, whatever the occasion calls for. Lucky for us, summer is a little more relaxed (both in and out the boardroom) but that shouldn’t stop you from looking the part. Talking about looks, i’m about to give you the perfect summer look, and to add to that I’m gonna give you 2 ways to wear it. Kinda like a 1 look two ways thing – well, exactly like that to be honest.

When staying cool is the priority there really is only one big trick to keep in mind, all natural fabrics. Yep, breathability is everything and if you wanna look and stay cool all day, you’re gonna want to invest in some linen. Linen textiles are some of the oldest in the world—people have been wearing it for centuries, and for good reason. The natural fiber and light weave allow for maximum breathability. Mix that in with a little cotton and you’re good to go all day son all day! When it comes to colours, you’re either bright and bold or muted and toned down. Personally I like to keep the bright colours for my swim shorts, and keep my formal wear toned down with lots of white (White also helps hide those unstoppable sweat stains). Muted tones are also just easier to mix, a dusty pink will match well with a pale blue, where as it’s brighter counterparts will clash heavily. Well, that is unless you’re over 70 and playing golf in the tropics of course.

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Lets start with something formal, for those important meetings in summer. A simple off white linen blazer paired with some pale blue linen pants works perfectly. Bring those together with a bright white shirt and you have the perfect base for any look. In this case a pale grey tie with some darker polka dot detail is accentuated with a reverse polka dot pocket square and the outfit is finished off with a tan belt and leather brogues. Tan is a great Summer colour, it goes with that relaxed summer feeling I mentioned earlier as it never quite feels as formal as black or brown.

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Now we all know summer is a lot less about the boardroom and a lot more about the boardwalk (see what I did there). But how can you leave the office and head straight out to a sunset cocktail party without an entire outfit overhaul? Well, not much has to change to be honest, loose the tie, undo that top button and trade the pants in for some pale blue shorts. Boom. You’re ready for that beach party…or pool party, or any party close to a large body of water to be honest. If the occasion is more formal, like a daytime wedding, keep the brogues and the pocket square, if it’s more on the casual side, simply trade the brogues in for some white canvas sneakers. What’s the bag for I hear you ask? Well, where do you think I’m gonna put my pants and shoes guys? 🙂

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Both these outfits were put together head to toe from Trenery. If you like either look, you can shop them right here.
Okay. Stay fancy…and cool.

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I havent forgotten about you guys. Promise.

Life has just been a little chaotic later and I’m struggling to find a moment to sit down and share some gentlemanly thoughts with you. Dont give up on us, there’s lots in the pipeline and things are about to get super duper dapper!

In the meantime, here’s some dapper dexterity.

Okay. Stay fancy!

Full-length-(looking-back)Summer sucks.

Okay, that seems a bit harsh, but it’s next to impossible to appear dapper in summer, I sometimes think you can achieve smart casual at best. You wanna know why that is? Layering. Yep, layering can really help push your outfit to another level, but you can really only get away with it in winter.

As with all things, the art to layering is in the details. There is of course a wrong and right way to do it. So, with the help of this outfit I picked up at Trenery I’m gonna try help you get it right as we start heading into the middle of winter here in the Southern Hemisphere.

I speak about ‘the art of contrast’ in pattern maxing a fair amount with my Fancy Friday posts, and layering falls under the same rule – as do most rules in mens fashion. For your layers to work, they need to stand apart from each other, and this is where the contrast comes in. Make sure that if you’re layering in solid colours (like I am in this outfit) that you keep within the same tonal range to avoid looking like a christmas tree. A misplaced pop of colour when layering can draw all the attention to one item and make the layering appear less like layering and more like you just couldn’t work out what to wear so you just wore everything you had.

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Layering is not just about looking good though (or great in some cases) but it’s also the most practical way to dress for our climate. It’s cold outside, then it’s warm in the car but then cold in the parking lot and warm in the office again and it goes on like that all day for a couple of months. Cape town can be even trickier with a freezing cold morning and a summers afternoon in one day. Layering helps you adjust to the climate without having to dress down completely. The simplest and most practical thing for this is knitwear, not only does it add warmth, but if you choose smartly, it can add texture and colour to your outfit too.

As always, you want to avoid synthetic fabrics, they will literally give you no breathing room between the hot and cold spots so where you can stick to wool during winter. The outfit above features both a Brushed Merino wool Trenery blazer and a Merino Wool Trenery V-Neck, not only did they add great texture, but they had me feeling like I was walking around in my duvet the whole day – yeah, it’s that cosy.

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If you like the look above and want to recreate any or all of it, everything is available at Trenery both online and in store.

Modern Brushed Texured Blazer

Merino Wool V-Neck Knit

Classic Custom Twill Shirt

Modern Washed Chino

Terrier Pocket Square

Martin tie

Tyler Leather Brogue

Okay. Stay Fancy.