Friday, 29 May 2015

The Autumn Collection From Next

That Dapper Chap tells us what menswear we can expect to see from High Street Giant Next this Autumn.

Stepping off the tube in Westminster, Big Ben loomed over me as the Houses of Parliament soaked up the afternoon sun. It was a great afternoon for a press day and that was exactly what I was there for.  I made my way to Horse Guards Avenue where Next were hosting their Autumn 15 press day and showing off their new and exciting designs.

Stunning architecture along london's Horse Guards Avenue

Mannequins dressed and ready to show off 

The new season combines modern, forward thinking styles with traditional, hand crafted looks, blending echoes of the past with the future.  Autumn at Next sees a real focus on pattern, colour and silhouette. 'Return of the rudeboy' is the perfect demonstration of this, originally born in the 60's and revived in the 80's, this story sees the story of the 'rudeboy' re-invented to create a directional, contemporary and timeless style. The colour palette is predominantly monochrome but jewel tones highlight this otherwise hard edged story.

Monochrome tailoring from Next this Autumn

As far as tailoring is concerned the silhouette remains slim and skinny, with cropped trousers being an important update, taking the trend into a new season. The three piece suit is ever present but with waistcoats making more of a styling feature this season.  Key patterns include checks, Prince of Wales, dogtooth and gingham which can be seen on wool blend tailoring in shades of grey, worn with a brogue or loafer. Formal lightweight knits are updated with discrete geometric patterns, with a focus on premium yarns defining this smarter, more refined look.

Brogues & loafers still feature heavily in footwear
Contemporary knitwear with subtle geometric patterns

There is a strong emphasis on texture for the Autumn and this is reflected throughout the 'Engineered Artisan' story. This can be seen in the abundance when it comes to knitwear with everything from 3D knits, exaggerated ribs, prominent twills and chunky stitch to speckles, and neppy and twisted yarns. Denim remains key with washes in super dark and raw finishes.

Heavily textured blazers make a statement this Autumn

A closer look at the brown textured wool blazer

Beautifully chunky textured knits in Autumn colours

Enjoying a Mojito break on the sun terrace

Brogues are still very much on trend for the Autumn

Sumptuous knitwear ready for cooler weather

When it comes to outerwear both the Bomber and the Harrington jacket are here to stay for the Autumn but quilted and wadded waist length jackets are the new go-to style. The formal coat is rapidly becoming the biggest trend item for the season. Stand out pieces are the Epson double breasted overcoat and the single breasted mac, re-invented in a woolen fabric for Autumn.

The display of menswear at the Next Press day

Boots and bags, you can't live without either!

Bumping in to Nathan from

Accessories maketh the man

Brogues for days, but make sure you have funky socks to wear under them

every man needs a good leather belt

Belts and beanies, accessories for Autumn 2015

Now for the footnote, boots continue to dominate, as you'd expect, with classic designs given a modern twist. Materials are remixed to bring the timeless patterns such as the brogue and derby up to date. Mod influences take effect on formal shoes giving the straight laced image a complete overhaul. The overriding message when it comes to casual attire is hiker detailing and a more rugged persona. Padded collars, cleated soles, speed lacing and D-rings are finishing touches that update the original high top styles.

Beautiful autumnal tones in mustard, brown and reds await

Next offer a great range of footwear again this season

Catching up with the always inspiring Prince Cassius

Two tone brogues make your feet more fancy

Take a seat and contemplate the new Autumn range

Cable knit head wear in autumnal shades

well, why not!


Thursday, 28 May 2015

What I Wore Today - A Touch Of Pink

That Dapper Chap shares his daily look and today chooses to wear a hint of pink on this bright spring day

Do I take off my jacket? Do I keep it on?
Well, it was a beautiful spring day but as I type the British weather has predictably flipped from promises of warm summer sun to Autumnal style showers. Someone get me on a plane to somewhere with weather that I can rely on! Not only is it irritating for the "shall I take an umbrella?" moments but it can be so difficult to prepare what to wear in advance. I wanted to wear my new loafers the other day with a rolled up chino and no socks. On the morning it was clear that the wet weather and chilly winds had other ideas for me!  

Anyway, my typically British weather rant over I'll move on and tell you about this outfit. I've been wearing a lot of navy lately so I wanted to switch out and go for something a little more colourful. So, with spring flowers in mind I chose a look with pink accents.

The outfit layout, all ready to go

Today's wrist wear keeping it tonal
This pale pink shirt has a subtle pin stripe in it which add interest to an otherwise plain shirt. For some contrast and texture I added a knitted dark pink tie, again with a similar stripe which would run in the opposite direction. With a bolder stripe on the shirt this may not have worked but as it is a less obvious pattern I think I managed to pull it off.

A fully look at he entire outfit
The camel chinos add some neutrality, keeping it more conservative for the office but I had to have a pop of colour from the socks, again in a dark pink to compliment the tie and help bring the look together.  

A close up of todays footwear

Ready for what the day holds
The blazer is a dark burgundy colour, fully lined with patch pockets. I know that a lot of guys aren't a fan of patch pockets but I don't find them offensive and this isn't an overly formal look so I think it works here.

Accessories consisted of my usual bead bracelets and a pink lace wrist band along with a vintage tie clip, to stop my tie doing things that I didn't want it to. I also wore my beaded trouser chain which I'm becoming more and more a fan of. In addition I wore a pink flower lapel pin giving another nod to spring and a pink linen pocket square I was ready for the day. 

The pink flower lapel pin and a close up of the tie

Deep in thought pondering tomorrows look

The vintage tie pin stops the tie flying away

Heading in the right direction (for once)

A closer look at the beaded trouser chain

I was one told "always walk like you have somewhere to go" 

Burgundy tassel loafers stay with the colour accents

A look at today's watch and pocket square


Burgundy high shine loafers - Next
Burgundy Ribbed Socks - Uniqlo
Camel Coloured Chinos - Next
Pink Striped Shirt - Primark
Burgundy Striped Knitted Tie - Racing Green
Tie Clip - Vintage from Ebay
Burgundy Blazer - Racing Green
Pink Linen Pocket Square - Squared Pocket UK
Pink Flower Lapel Pin - Home Made
Beaded Trouser Chain - The Modern Gentleman
Brown Leather Briefcase - Rocha JohnRocha at Debenhams
Tan Leather Belt - Primark
Burgundy Leather Watch Strap - Bespoke by BWeiss Leather


Tuesday, 26 May 2015

Vintage Style Man Bags

That Dapper Chap answers a question about man bags, sent by a blog reader, and features some of his favorites available right now.

A couple of days ago I received an email from a blog reader asking me if I had done any product reviews on man bags, I won't go into detail about he asked, I'll let you read his email below:

Yours truly, never without a man bag

Hi Craig,

Greetings from across the pond. I love your style, enjoy reading your blog and your reviews. I recently returned from a trip to Europe and noticed everyone (ok well mostly everyone) had a manbag. I love man bags, have you reviewed any or are there any that fit in with your vintage style? I love that in your reviews you mention you are on a budget, as I've read several fashion blogs and always felt I needed to spend top dollar on everything (and they never mention themselves on a budget) and I have to live on one! . Keep up the great work and looking forward to reading more of your reviews!



Hi Chris, thank you for your email, while I haven't yet carried out any product reviews on any man bags, I am a fan. As our lives get busier and technology dictates our need to be available and interacting socially every minute of the day, we all need somewhere to keep our phones, laptop, iPad, MP3 player and our lunch (we still eat right? They haven't replaced food with technology I hope!)

My trusty John Rocha leather satchel
Yes, I am on a budget, just like the other 99% of 'real' blokes out there. I don't have illusions of grandeur and don't pretend to have a spare thousand pounds to throw at the latest louis Vuitton messenger bag. If I have a thousand pounds, trust me, it's going on a holiday. A holiday where I shall pack my stuff in a functional and sensibly priced bag that does what it needs to do but still looks the part!

You don't have to spend a huge amount of money to look good. This is something I've always been passionate about and something I hope I prove every day via my Instagram account.

If you're looking for a bag with a vintage or heritage look a satchel is great. Used by school children the world over you'll see images of children being evacuated during the war with their satchel in tow. 

A great vintage look, maybe loose the wellington boots if you want to recreate this
look for yourself!

Originating in Roman times the Satchel has made a welcome return and I now own a few, one being an original old school satchel which I bought via Ebay complete with the owners name and childish scribbled on the inside.

My battered vintage school satchel

The bag needs to not only look good but it must be functional and offer some versatility. Choosing one with a shoulder strap and a grab handle means that you can wear it across your body for extra safety or when you're carrying other things, and the grab handle allows you to do just that and 'grab' the thing when you need to dash off the tube after almost missing your stop (yes, I have done that)

You'll need pockets too to keep things organised, so bare all this in mind when you're choosing. It has to work for you.

So, all that said I have picked out a few of my favourite satchels and man bags that are currently available and keeping that budget in mind I've kept them all around or under £200.

Me with my black leather satchel

The ASOS Black Faux Leather Satchel

Starting at the very lowest price range I think this contrast satchel in black & brown faux leather looks the part.

Also available in brown, it's a bargain at just £25.00. Buy yours HERE

Leather-look fabric
Distressed finish
Two tone design
Fold over front 
Pin buckle strap
Removable, adjustable strap
Grab handle
Zipped inner pocket

70% Polyurethane, 30% Polyvinylchloride
H: 25.5cm/10" W: 37cm/15" D: 13cm/5"

The Next Brown Satchel

Next up and a little further up the budget price range we have another faux leather example from Next. It's very traditional in design and will fit a vintage style perfectly. It even has a small panel to write your name if you get lost! At just £40 you can buy yours HERE

Buckle fastening
Removable strap
Front pocket
Inside zip pocket for small items
100% polyurethane.
Lining 100% polyester.

25 x 39.5 x 14 cm.

The Next Leather Briefcase

So, moving slightly up the scale we now have a genuine leather example. Again from Next, it's from their Signature range. This tan leather briefcase is good value at £125 and can be found HERE

Adjustable and removable shoulder strap
Designed with two main compartments
Stationary section
Front pocket. 

Tan Leather

36 x 46 x 8 cm approx.

The Ted Baker KANTOO Bag

This is the most expensive bag I've featured but I love it so much I would consider paying the £215 price tag.

From its tonal leather down to its buckle detailing, this smart satchel with a coloured tag and geometric print lining is a style to hold in high regard this season. Get yours HERE

Two-tone leather
Top handle
Shoulder strap
Buckle detailing
Printed lining
Internal and external zip pockets
Contrast luggage tag
Ted Baker branded

Shell: 100% Bovine Leather
Lining: 100% Polyester

H29.2cm x W38.1cm x D9cm

The River Island Blue Satchel

Back down the price scale I really like this blue faux leather bag from River Island. A steal at £35.00, it's a really styling addition to your armoury. Available HERE it looks like it cost ten times more than it does.

Leather-look outer
Matte, textured finish
Flap top with pin buckle straps
Front pouch pocket
Grab handle
Adjustable cross body strap
Internal zip pocket

100% Polyurethane

H: 28cm/11" W: 35cm/14"

The River Island Brown Satchel

Next up we have the River Island brown satchel, again, not leather but it has a great heritage feel. get yours HERE for a snip at £35.00

Textured, leather-look outer
Flap top opening
Twin pin buckle straps
Front pouch pocket
Adjustable shoulder strap
Internal zip pocket
Do not wash
100% Polyurethane

The Hammond & Co Briefcase

Last but not least, I am in love with this Hammond & Co satchel by Patrick Grant. This designer brown leather clasp briefcase is available at Debenhams for £155 HERE

One internal popper pocket
Three internal pouches
One internal zip pocket
Grab handle
Clasp fastening

Outer: 100% leather
Lining: 100% polyester

HWD: 28 x 38 x 7cm

So, Chris, thanks once again for your question. I hope I've inspired you to go and buy that man bag. If you do decide to go ahead and purchase one, drop me a line and let me know. Also don't be shy, post a picture to Instagram and #thatdapperchap and @that_dapper_chap so I can see it!