Saturday, 27 September 2014

Autumn Reds

That Dapper Chap shows us todays look incorporating Autumnal reds.

While the evenings are getting noticeably cooler, the days are still somewhat warm. Even though we're right at the end of September Autumn hasn't quite made his way into our lives just yet. So, with that in mind I thought I'd wear this unlined red cotton blazer, as it will probably be the last time this year that I get to wear it.

To go with the autumnal red theme I chose a retro print shirt and a knitted tie, both adding interest and texture to the look. The boots are also burgundy and are a resent acquisition and one I am most pleased with.

You'll see under the boots I'm wearing some red and navy polkadot socks which continue the colour story with the blue of the jeans and the retro red and blue print of the shirt.


My accessories today were my Daniel Wellington watch with handmade burgundy leather strap, some burgundy and navy beads and my new favorite thing: my 'Dapper Chap' tie bar with was sent to me by instagrams greycardigan. I didn't take pictures of the watch and bracelets as I totally forgot! But I did get a picture of the tie bar.

Where's it all from?

Burgundy leather boots: Next

Red and navy polkadot socks: Corgi

Skinny fit jeans: Burton Menswear

Belt: Burton Menswear

Retro print shirt: Next

Burgundy knitted tie: Next

Unlined Cotton Blazer: Next

Tie Bar: Simple Hands

Sunglasses: Oscar Wylee

Vintage Style Bag: Next

Pocket Square: Primark

Lapel Pins: Home made


Thursday, 25 September 2014

Menswear In Birmingham Pt 2

That Dapper Chap takes us through one of the UK's finest cities on the hunt for menswear in the second part of this feature on menswear in Birmingham.

The magnificent Bull Ring shopping center in Birmingham City

A few weeks ago, and what feels like a lifetime, I visited Birmingham on a business trip and in the few hours that I had to spare I went on a hunt for menswear. In the first part of the saga which you'll find here, I took you around Zara, Next and Marks & Spencer among others. On this jaunt we'll take in Moss Bross, Topman and Selfridges

Moss Bros

The Moss store with a Billy Huxley window display in the Bull Ring centre

Upon entering Moss I was greeted by a well dressed and friendly chap who later introduced himself as 'Q'. After I introduced myself as a blogger we looked around the rails and tried on a few items. I was very impressed by the range of suits and blazers for sale and was immediately taken by a green three piece tartan suit with a horseshoe waistcoat.

The Moss green tartan suit £185 for three pieces

A closer look of the Moss green tartan suit

As well as suits and blazers they had an impressive stock of ties, bow ties, pocket squares and racks of shirts in all sizes, colours and patterns. 

Spoiled for choice. Just some of the ties and pocket squares for sale
An impressive range of shirts, something for everyone
The next item that caught my eye is this windowpane check blazer. Made in 30% viscose, 33% wool and 37% polyester its a great staple for any guy and an essential in your wardrobe for this season. Available in beige and grey you also have a colour choice and the other bonus is that there is also a matching waistcoat.

The Moss London windowpane blazer £129

Yours truly sporting the brown version

A close up of the slim fit grey check jacket

My new buddy Q wearing the grey version of the jacket

After leaving Moss Bros, exchanging business cards with the promise of featuring Q on the blog I made my way to Topman to see what they had on offer. 


From the outside the Topman store looks very impressive and I was excited to take a look around to see if the interior offered all that was promised by the exterior, like a gift, beautifully wrapped and enticing. I'm pleased to say that I wasn't disappointed.  

The impressive Topman store in Birmingham's Bull Ring shopping centre.

I dont know why, but I have a thing for mannequins, nothing weird or sexual but I think they look so cool when all dressed and lined up, and if there's a good instore stylist it really gives the shopper a chance to see the looks that they can buy in store and how they can put pieces together. It also gives the stylist a chance to try out some more radical and eye-catching styles which I like. Topman never disappoint here and I couldn't resist snapping a pic.

Some dapperly dressed mannequins in the Topman store

After looking around I found a pair of trousers in a navy and grey check, in a wool mix, they're perfect for autumn and can easily be dressed up for the office with shirt, tie and blazer or would look just as cool with a roll neck sweater and a pair of Chucks.

I really liked the fact that the store had a good changing area with an additional area just outside the changing cubicles with seating, great lighting and large mirrors so you can assess your attire with a friend (or strangers as I did!)

Wearing the wool check trousers in the 'attire assessment area'

A close up of the fabric of the check trousers.

My heart almost skipped a beat when my eyes landed on these green and navy tartan trousers. I've been after some for a while and after my visit to Moss I was determined to buy a pair. I had previously bought some from Topman online but they were so tight that they were offensive, I couldn't bend and it was questionable whether I'd be able to Father Children again after a days wear!

These ones however fitted very well. they're a slim fit and I'm looking to wear them in the coming weeks, so watch this space. Needless to say I bought them!

The green tartan trousers £35.0

As a fan of a pattern and a sharp suit I thought I'd combine the two and try on this patterned suit. Verdict: I didn't hate it. I dont think it fitted well, I dont think its 'me' and on top of that both the lady behind me and her Son hated it. What are your thoughts?

So Topman done, green tartan trousers bagged and that 'i've just purchased greatness' feeling inside I strode away from the checkout to look for more goodies.

Inside the Topman store in Birmingham's Bull Ring Center

After Topman I ventured off to Boss. Classic tailoring from a Master. There were many pieces that I loved, cashmere sweaters and other luxuriously displayed items with luxurious price tags to match, all beyond my meagre means. Aspirational items. One day...

I would have happily snapped away but eagre shop staff were at every turn and I didn't think they would take kindly to me taking pictures, and I didn't fancy being thrown out and causing a scene, so I browsed like I was a regular who couldn't find anything that I didn't already have, and I left.

Sleek and classy: The beautiful exterior of the Boss store

Taking time to reflect on the Boss range of menswear

Mannequins exquisitely dressed at the entrance to the Boss store

After visiting Boss, I decided to break for coffee before making my way to the pinnacle of menswear: an enormous mecca for anyone wanting a real experience in menswear. Selfridges. I thought I'd died and gone to heaven!

Inside the Bull Ring Center

The famous Bull at the entrance to the Bull Ring, guarding the Hollister store

The quirky entrance to the Hollister store

The iconic shape and design of the Bull Ring peers out from behind Mango and Boss

Selfridges Menswear 

Selfridges, not shy in telling customers what they're selling

The store is very impressive and stocks a huge range of items from all of your favorite brands and designers. Kors, Armani, Paul Smith, Kurt Geiger, John Smedley (who I love) Ted Baker and many many more. If you can't find something you like here, you must be dead, or worse, alive but without style!

Masses of menswear: Michael Kors and Armani side by side

Diesel offering a huge range of jeans and casual attire

Beautiful bright sweaters in Autumn colours by John Smedley

Suited and booted. My love of Mannequins rears its head again!

Kurt Geiger offers a hundred different styles.
Prince Charming will go to the ball

I wanted to take these paul Smith leather boots home with me

Classic Grenson Brogues. A must have for any dapper fellow

Another great leather boot by Ted Baker and perfect for Autumn

A rainbow of loafers offered up by Tod's

A beautiful textured leather loafer by our friend Gucci

Yes, I wanted everything in the Paul Smith section

I fell in love with this quirky print shirt by Paul Smith

Ted Baker, British fashion at its best
And so ends my fashion foray around the streets and byways of Birmingham. If you ever get the opportunity to visit, please let me know how you get on. Take a good pair of walking shoes and a wallet stuffed with as much cash as possible. Also make sure you work those biceps before you come as you'll need all the strength you can muster to carry all of your purchases.