I missed the simple joys of shooting with a Polaroid in life. My family never had a Polaroid camera so I never got the childhood thrill. I did however get myself a FujiFilm Instax camera a few years back and that was a treat. There’s something strangely calming about shooting with instant film.
A few seasons ago, you may remember that I decided to shoot street style photography using only an Instax camera. I wanted to get a real rawness to the images and get photographs that were different to what all the other photographers were doing, a fresh perspective on the season.
Last year I finally bit the bullet and purchased my very first Polaroid camera. Originally, my intentions were to buy the new OneStep 2 i-Type camera – a modern take on an old classic. However, me being me, I decided to buy the Taz Cam, a 1999 special addition camera in collaboration with Looney Tunes.
And of course, I bought some coloured framed film to go with it, because if you’ve got the world’s gaudiest Polaroid camera, sophistication and minimalism certainly isn’t something you think about.
Yes, it was some what of an expensive season of street style for me which is why I only documented a brief bunch of people, however, I had fun and I managed to meet some rather interesting folks. I hope you enjoyed them and who knows, maybe I’ll shoot some more polaroids in the not-so-distant future.
Let me know if you enjoyed the polaroids, if so, I will definitely start taking more. (I just wish they were cheaper!)
I’ve not been able to find many images from LFWM of my attire, next season I’ll make sure I take some myself so I can reference them better for the blog.
Day 2 was unbelievably cold, my feet were frozen and I could barely type on my phone as my fingers were going numb. Despite that however, I think I managed to style it out with some ‘northern charm’ and act like all was good.
My suitcase was filled to the brim (that bloody cape took up half the space) so I didn’t think to pack a coat (or even a jumper to wear under the suit). But hey, the show must go on.
You know me by now, if I’m going to be wearing a suit, you know that suit is going to be somewhat ‘standout’ whether that be the accessories or the pattern/colours, I can’t do plain… It’s a curse really.
This year I had also rather excitingly bought myself a backpack. I know how nerdy that sounds, but I haven’t had one for quite some time so it felt like a thrill. The last one I bought was a squiggle print Vivienne Westwood backpack from the Africa collection and, although I loved it very much, it was falling to bits.
My main requirement was to find a bag that I could wear with a suit and it still look smart and sleek. That’s when I decided to by myself a rather boxy backpack from Dr. Martens and I must say, I absolutely adore it! Good job Harold.
All in all, I’m quite happy with this look, I know I wouldn’t be able to wear it everywhere but the suit itself can be worn as separates as it’s striking enough on their own. I might wear the trousers to work tomorrow, I’ve inspired myself just writing this.
Shirt: Vivienne Westwood
Tie: Vivienne Westwood
Backpack: Dr. Martens
Pocket Square: YHIM
Glasses: Ray Ban
Now, here’s a brand you may not have heard of unless you live ‘daaayynn sarrrfff’. But fear not! I’m here to give you the rundown on a cool new emerging brand that’s not going to break the bank. We call it Oiboy.
The brainchild of two founders, George Langham and Dylan Hartigan, the South London duo use their hometown heritage as their main inspirations for the brand. Walking down the streets, you’re hounded by the same few shops and businesses abusing your eyeballs. Betting shops, skin care brands, off licences and markets all trying to sell you cheap shit that you don’t want or need.
As I say time and time again, fashion should be fun. And when it comes to good humour with clothing, Oiboy are serving it to you with full force.
We’ve all been minding our own business while walking down the street at some point in our lives when we’ve witnessed in a slogan tee that has actually made you laugh. I once saw a very militant lesbian walking down the road with a top that said “it’s a bitch being butch” and it genuinely made me laugh out loud to the point where I thought I might get assaulted.
Regardless, whatever the slogan was, it made you laugh and that’s exactly what Oiboy are doing. They’re making you laugh by spoofing some incredibly well known brands, from beers to betting shops, nothing is sacred once the pair get their hands on it!
All it takes is a couple of rearranged letters, a slight tweak on a well known logo and you’ve got yourself a rather punderful brand. Not all British folk have a stiff upper lip, others are too busy with their tongue-in-cheek humour.
Adding to their take on ‘fast fashion’, Oiboy’s brilliantly named collection Stolen Goods is exactly what you’d expect. Their promotional short film features one of the youths of today coming out of a shop with quick haste – implying that he’s been shoplifting as he runs down the high street stripping off his clobber and throwing aside his garms.
If you haven’t had a gander at the collection properly, you may have missed one of their best features. The hats and some of the tops come with fake security tags, etched with the Oiboy logo. Not only is their collection a blatant piss take out of designers ripping ideas from other designers/companies, they’re now even mocking the fact that their designs are ‘stolen’.
The Oiboy mantra is that “talent borrows, genius steals” and nothing could be more true when you see their collection. Their stand at LFWM’s stand in the BFC’s Designer Showrooms was permanently busy with people fluttering by to cop a glare at what they were producing. These guys are definitely going to be one to watch.
I strongly recommend that you have a gander at their collection. It won’t break the bank… Just promise not to steal it!
This season was a strange one because it felt like I hadn’t stepped foot in London for years (despite heading to London fairly regularly). I don’t quite know what it was, it just felt… different. But alas, I was excited to be back and I was ready to see some shows.
Day 1 of LFWM and, as always, it’s fun to make an entrance. And so that’s exactly what I did. With some vintage flares, gold penises on my jacket and a huge fucking cape, I was on my merry way.
Now, I don’t know what particularly inspired me with the outfit, but I’ve been feeling a lot of love for of flares recently. Yes, you heard that right. Flares, the 60’s/70s trousers that look like something you’d see The Bee Gees in. I don’t know where my sudden fixation came from, but I just suddenly started buying them. I now own at least 5 pairs in different spans, fabrics and colours. They all look lovely with my cuban heels. Yes, I also love cuban heels. Maybe I was born in the wrong decade?
The cape, as you would probably expect, divided opinion. Though the attendees of LFWM appeared to be enjoying this oversized accessory, some folks on social media didn’t. A photograph of me heading to a show at 180 Strand appeared on the New York Times fashion segment’s Instagram account (@nytimesfashion) where they appeared to be enjoying my look. However, some of the commenters felt I bared some resemblance to Harry Potter or a Jedi. I’ve left some of the comments attached so you can get a feel for the vibe.
I’ve got pretty thick skin, obviously, or I wouldn’t be brave enough to wear half the shit that I do. These comments were relatively tame and did give me a good giggle. And that’s the point, fashion should be fun! It should be debated, discussed, humoured and enjoyed.
Cape: Vivienne Westwood
Blazer: Vivienne Westwood
Penis Chain: Vivienne Westwood
Tartan Flares: Vintage
Tie: Vivienne Westwood
Shirt: Calvin Klein
Glasses: Ollie Quinn
Cuban Heels: Asos
As usual, this post is a little delayed, but hey! Another season of London Fashion Week Men’s is over. And although the grandiose thrill of LFWM – formerly London Collections: Men – is slowly dying out, the sheer joy of seeing phenomenal clothes/accessories from incredible designers is still there.
Now, maybe I just sound like a bit of an old crank harping on about ‘the good old days’ but honestly, there’s a change to the menswear season in London and though I do welcome change, it’s not one that I’m particularly enjoying. Now, this season, the days were shortened from 4 to 3. So, I thought because the past few seasons have been dwindling a little with the business of the days after designers have pulled out, this for me meant that by removing a day, a jam-packed schedule would be back on the horizon… Sadly not, it felt as sparse as it did before but hey, it meant that my feet weren’t as sore from running around London.
This season I thought it was about time that I brought a camera with me. I mean, why not, it’s not like I have a degree in photography or anything 😬. A few seasons ago, I decided to take a quirky approach to shooting street style with a FujiFilm Instax camera. Like last time, I thought I’d go with the good old polaroid format rather than a DSLR and so that’s exactly what I did.
You may remember from my previous post that I bought myself a rather peculiar polaroid. I bought the Polaroid Taz Cam, a rare 1999 edition in collaboration with Looney Tunes. And with such a strange looking camera on my arm, I would be a bit of a dullard if I didn’t buy myself some swanky film to go with it. Of course, I bought myself the ‘Coloured Frames Edition‘ film And just look at how beautiful it is!
Anyway, I feel like I’ve rambled on long enough, I promise to try and be a bit more punctual with the other posts. I will have some more coming soon. I’m currently in the process of buying a house so I’ve been a bit preoccupied with blogging (but this year I aim to get into it more, so please bare with me).
But enough about the humdrum backstory of my personal life, on with the shows!
Nostalgia is a powerful thing. It takes you back to happiness of yesteryear and makes you think of the “good ol’ days” when life was simple and you didn’t have to worry about mortgages, debt and what Donald Trump is going to say next.
In fact, nostalgia is quintessentially ‘on trend’ at the moment. With brands such as Ellesse and Tommy Hilfiger making prominent comebacks in the fields of fashion, the remastered Crash Bandicoot trilogy storming its way onto the PlayStation 4 some 20 years after its original release and vinyl records reviving people’s love for music without feeling like you have to be a keen-eyed collector. 35mm cameras are proving to be popular with young folks again more so than the expensive digitals counterparts.
And 35mm isn’t the only format of camera that’s making a resurgence. Instant film cameras are kicking back to a time-gone-by. I’ve had a FujiFilm Instax camera for a while now and I absolutely love it. You may remember that I’ve done a series of street-style photography on Instax film while at London Fashion Week Men’s. But I’ve always wanted to shoot on actual square-format Polaroid film. But while Instax works out at around £1 a shot, Polaroid has always hit into the £2+ per shot.
But I have finally taken the plunge! After seeing the new OneStep 2 i-Type Polaroid advertised online, it brought back my childhood lust for the iconic camera of my youth. So I went online and purchased a camera… But not actually the new one that I had intended on buying. In fact, I actually bought a vintage camera from their website that hit me with a double serving of total nostalgic proportions… I bought the ‘Taz Cam‘.
Granted, it’s not a discreet and tasteful Polaroid camera, but why the hell would I want that?! By now I think you’re all aware of my love of all things a little bit quirky and this camera is the epitome of quirky!
This reclaimed vintage camera is nothing short of magical for pure Looney Tunes nostalgia. This camera was made as a limited run in 1999 to honour the iconic cartoon character. Though you can still pick them up on various websites such as eBay and Amazon, the Polaroid website has a very limited few that are available for purchase, most probably a higher price tag than buying from other second hand sellers but Polaroid gives all its stock tests and refurbishments to make sure every nook and cranny is working to perfection.
Inspired by the world’s most infamous Tasmanian Devil, the Polaroid 600 Taz Edition (affectionately known as the “Taz Cam”) is easily the most weird and wonderful camera Polaroid ever released. Produced for a short period in 1999, it turns the Polaroid 600 into Taz’s head, complete with teeth and tongue on the inside. If you’re the type of person that likes to stand out, it doesn’t get much better than this.
The exterior is sheer childhood heaven. When the camera opens you see the tongue and teeth printed around the lens. The shutter stands out with a bright yellow plastic button (that matches the yellow camera strap) and a beautiful big red rubber button at the end featuring concentric circles (much like the “That’s All Folks” circles from the Looney Tunes credit design.
If you’re wanting to reinvigorate your love for vintage photography and instant film cameras, a Polaroid will always give you that orgasmic sense of sheer joy. Pair that feeling with the Taz Cam and you’re ready to take on the world, one merry little step at a time!
Now, if you’re wanting another fun little treat to go with your new cartoon camera, I would definitely recommend getting the Colour 600 Film ‘Colour Frames Edition‘ to give an extra burst of vibrancy to your images.
You can also buy black & white film with the coloured frames from the Polaroid Originals website.
Now go forth and spread the joy and have fun snapping some old school images on the quirkiest/craziest/silliest camera in town!
Every year H&M teams up with a global fashion house to design a high street marketed collaboration. This year is no exception. We’ve seen some incredible designers and fashion houses collaborate over the years. Including; Versace, Maison Margiela, Balmain, Kenzo and Anna Dello Russo to name but a few. And now we’re only 1 week away!
This year, H&M paired with contemporary fashion house ERDEM and people are already going crazy for it! Erdem Moralioglu is the 17th fashion designer to collaborate with H&M. And the high street brand’s creative advisor, calls him “a poetic addition” to an already stellar lineup of fashion giants.
The collection is nostalgic yet modern, structured yet rebellious, feminine and powerful. It’s gloriously floral and I’m totally invested. What makes this collaboration so exciting is that it’s such a step in the other direction from the previous few designers; Kenzo, Balmain and Alexander Wang.
This collaboration saw designer, Erdem Moralioglu design his first ever menswear line. Staying true to his brand, Moralioglu’s garments are a beautiful fusion between both genders.
“Once I’d finished fitting a Harris Tweed suit, I’d take it off the boy and put it on the girl and it just looked amazing. So then came the Harris Tweed suit for women — it’s one of my favourites.”
Erdem’s aim was to create a collection that can be mixed and matched with each piece, giving the wearer their own sense of individuality and ownership of their wardrobe.
“It’s a collection of pieces that have a permanence about them, which is almost the antithesis of this idea of what fast fashion is.”
One of the most beautifully fascinating parts of the collaboration has to be the campaign film “The Secret Life of Flowers” which was directed by Baz Luhrmann who famously created the visual beauty of Moulin Rouge and Romeo & Juliet which starred Leonardo Di Caprio.
I honestly have to say, I think this is one of the most stunning contemporary fashion films I have seen for such a long time. The colours are sensational, the story is whimsical and the regalia stands alone in the busy visuals.
I couldn’t help but find myself falling into a romantic dreamscape while watching the campaign film. And that’s the best way to describe the collection, romantic! Frilled shirts, gushy gowns and floral patterns rife in every design.
If you’re wanting to check out what’s on offer, have a gander at the price list below and all that is available in the menswear range of the highly anticipated Erdem x H&M collaboration.
I’m definitely getting myself the silk shirt and trouser co-ords as well as a few other bits and bobs… If only my budget could stretch a little further. What are your favourite items? Get thinking and put some pennies aside, you only have 1 more week to wait for the collaboration to go live!
I first learnt about the pocket square brand, YHIM, about a year ago when I discovered the brand in the London Fashion Week Men’s accessories showroom while galavanting around town. I have however, known the founder and pocket square designer, Sophia Wu, for quite a few years now.
We first met at one of my first ever seasons of London Collections: Men (now LFWM) when I was approached to do a mini interview about the impact of a pocket square to a suit. We bonded over the interview where sadly, I had forgot to wear a pocket square as I left the house so I proceeded to do my interview with a Costa napkin masquerading as a gentlemen’s top pocket decoration. Never fear, a makeshift pocket square is always near!
Below is a video of my ‘In Conversation’ interview regarding the YHIM brand and what inspires my attire. It was great to be able to sit down with Sophia and talk about our inspirations and ambitions. In the interview, I talk about my fashion icons, why I appreciate eccentric male dressers and my love for YHIM’s pocket squares. Go on, have a gander, and I apologise if none of you can get past my mucky northern accent.
These two images both use the same pocket square. The beauty of the design is that you can get 8 different looks from one single product. This way you have variety without an overflowing accessories drawer.
Not only do you not have to worry about which pocket square to pick (as they’re all-in-one), but you also have a colour palette that transitions from day to night time if you’re wanting a bolder look for dinner plans.
The YHIM pocket squares are unique in design with 4 patterns on each side, and a tasteful colour palette running throughout each piece.
One side uses more muted tones and colours with pops of eccentric and bright colours. The other side is a more flamboyant and bold print to add a fun ‘party’ element to the otherwise sophisticated design.
During the interview, Sophia kindly gifted me with one of her stunning pocket squares. I also had the privilege of being able to choose which coloured design I would like.
I opted for the bold fuchsia pink and golden yellow design with navy blue as the base colour. I chose this design for the bright and vivid colour scheme as I like to make a statement with my suits.
I felt these colours worked for their brightness but also that the more neutral side would work when I wear a jazzier suit.
The website currently features 8 colour schemes. Some brighter than others, and some for a gentleman who just wants to add a minor touch of flair to their attire.
If you want to check out some of the folding techniques, may I suggest you check out this digital copy of the nifty booklet that comes with every pocket square. It’s well worth a look if you’re wanting to experiment with different shapes and styles. Sophia has created this gorgeous little booklet that gives you a multitude of different ways you can shape your pocket squares and a simple step-by-step with visuals to guarantee that you’re going to look as sharp on the pin wherever you may be.
YHIM started as a real passion project for Sophia. When I first met her, she was interviewing men on the subject of pocket squares in order to create a book that praises the dandyism of such a simple menswear accessory. Sophia created a Kickstarter page to raise money to create her book. And as a donation gift to those who pledged a certain amount of money, she designed a pocket square as a thank you. These pocket squares then became popular and she has since taken a little donation gift and turned it into a much-loved menswear accessory brand. And my word am I glad she did!
Also, you may have also recently spotted Sophia take her brand on Dragon’s Den. Though she didn’t end up leaving with an offer, what she did leave with was excellent exposure and a great showcase of her beautiful products.
To celebrate their feature on Dragons’ Den, there is a special offer of 10% off. Visit the website YHIM.CO.UK to enter your email address to claim the coupon code.
For information regarding these amazing pocket squares, I recommend you browse their website: https://yhim.co.uk
And remember, Be Confident, Be Bold, Be Unique, Be YOU!
Granted, it’s not the most eloquent interview I have ever given but in my defence, it was far more humid than my outfit suggests and I had just arrived to LFWM 2 minutes before I was hunted down for this interview.
Watch the interviews to see Robin James hunt down some of his fun finds at London Fashion Week Men’s. Robin is a men’s style, grooming and lifestyle blogger and YouTuber. He’s definitely worth a watch so have a gander at his channel and get inspired by his videos. https://www.youtube.com/ManForHimself
Day 2 was a hectic one! My word it was warm outside. When I checked the weather reports before packing my bags for London it predicted rain and coolish temperatures… After packing a small case and arriving in London the temperatures soared immensely and I became quite the overheated beast.
I have to say a big thank you to Laird Hatters for lending me this beauty of a panama hat which definitely kept my head cool in the heatwave and added a sophisticated dabble of dandy to my already quite ostentatious take on a traditional suit.
I definitely feel like I bare some resemblance to The Man From Del Monte, I think it’s the panama hat and waistcoat. I tried to give this devilish dandy attire a spruce of cool with a pair of cuban heels. Genuinely, one of the best purchases I ever made! If you want to get a pair of these ASOS Cuban Heels I would recommend. (I’ve provided a link). In fact, I would go as far as saying that they are probably the best high-street priced shoes I have ever bought. Genuinely £55 and they are phenomenal! I am debating buying a second pair in advance for when these ones eventually start to fade out.
Waistcoat: Jean Paul Gaultier – Vintage
Cuban Heels: Asos
Hat: Laird Hatters
Glasses: Bailey Nelson