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The men that inspire our style

The men that inspire our style

 

Some men we admire for their sport, some their activism, some their innovation and some their style. This Father’s Day we’re paying homage to the men we admire for the way they dress. Each of these men have left behind a legacy on the men’s fashion scene and for this, we are eternally grateful. Have a gander at our favourite men’s fashion icons…

 

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James Dean

 


Steve McQueen


The King of Cool wore everything with confidence. His casual looks oozed a nonchalant appeal, and smart outfits looked polished but - with the addition of his perennial Persol 714 sunglasses - also carefree. His style favourites included neutral chinos, bomber jackets and desert boots. Everything had a clean-lines feel - pared-back and unfussy. So what can we learn from the man? Invest in great basics. Make sure they fit well, keep colours neutral and mix and match for a wardrobe that always speaks of unassuming sophistication.


Style notes: Three-piece suits in greys and checks, double denim, turtlenecks and blazers and, of course, a killer pair of shades.

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James Dean

 


James Dean


The legendary Hollywood actor is forever remembered for his effortless cool and the power of a great white t-shirt. Paired with jeans, rugged boots and tortoiseshell shades, it’s a timeless look that’s remained cool ever since. The red Harrington jacket he wore in Rebel Without a Cause has become iconic in itself. To channel a piece of James Dean’s undeniable cool, pair a black roll-neck with dark trousers, or a plain tee with a leather biker jacket.


Style notes: White tee, rugged jacket, biker boots and thick-rimmed shades.

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Nick Wooster

 


Nick Wooster


On top of a stellar fashion career and too many collaborations to count, Nick Wooster is an undeniable style icon. With his instantly recognisable silver hair and groomed moustache, he’s become an Instagram and street style favourite. His signature style is a tailored, smart top half and casual bottoms. Think a blazer, shirt and tie with colour-popping chinos or relaxed, ankle-grazing trousers. In the same vein, he is known for his blazer and shorts combo. The result is a smart, playful and confident look. He’s not afraid of colour and pattern, and rarely does he step out without some rule-breaking but effective surprise in his looks.


Style notes: Shorts paired with suits, military accents, varsity jackets, pops of colour.

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David Beckham

 


David Beckham


David Beckham has remained a style icon for years. He has universal appeal – women swoon, men respect – and an innate ability to pull together an outfit with ease. For casual, he nails layering – shirts worn open over tees, jumper tied around the waist – and denim. His favourites include leather jackets, simple tees and of course, some kind of hat like a beanie or flat cap. His choices are classic but slightly undone. His shirt will be pulled out from the bottom of a jumper and he chooses distressed jeans and hard-working biker boots, which all give a rugged, masculine look.

For formal situations, he always pulls it out of the bag, sporting a suave, well-fitting suit. In a pioneering moment, his Royal Wedding get-up has got us all reaching for our morning suits and slim-fitting grey waistcoats.


Style notes: Hats, slim fit jeans, denim shirts and boots.

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Tinie Tempah

 


Tinie Tempah


Since he burst onto the music scene, Tinie has carved a reputation as one of the best-dressed men in the country. His great sense of taste means he always look perfect for the situation, pulling it off with effortless flair. He’s inspired us with his mix of Saville Row tailoring and streetwear, his statement patterns that don’t look OTT and his oversized, luxe coats. He doesn’t need to wear glasses but they’ve become his trademark. Ambassador for London Fashion Week Men’s and founder of his own label What We Wear, he’s got a strong fashion repertoire and consistently comes out with looks that stretch the boundaries of menswear. Tinie, great job.


Style notes: Blazers, great watches, eyewear and stellar trainers.

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Trending: Japanese interiors

Are Japanese interiors the new Scandi?

Step aside, Scandi purists - as it turns out, there’s more to minimalism than the design ethos that’s come to define the last decade. If – dare we say it – your whitewashed walls are starting to look a tad tired, some Japanese styling tips might be just the thing. Not convinced? Japandi is your favourite new portmanteau, championing the very best of both. Here’s why you’ll love it.

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Japanese Interior Trend Section 1 IMG

 


YOU LOVE:
A PARED-BACK PALETTE



You don’t have to be a serious Scandi devotee to know that bold colour doesn’t tend to make the cut. Although splashes of mustard, forest green and dusky pink often pop up in retro-tinged Scandi design, it’s largely an exercise in restraint, with a focus on fifty shades of grey (at the very least). Where colour is missing, warmth is layered in with hygge-friendly textures and rustic finishes.


There’s no denying grey as a new neutral – we love these chalky shades.

- Jakki Pay, Design Director Fashion & Home



Japanese style has far more in common with Scandi noir - the moodier cousin of white walls and bleached woods - championing richer, pigmented shades of charcoal grey, matte black and pale stone. Put down the high gloss paint - contemporary chalky finishes add a subtle warmth which will help to balance the simple colour scheme. If you’re up for a bit of an investment, concrete walls are top of our wish list.


 

 

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Japanese Interior Trend Section 2 IMG

 


YOU LOVE:
CLEAN, STRUCTURAL SHAPES



If there’s one key design ethos that underpins both Japanese and Scandinavian style, it’s a commitment to clean lines. Nordic interiors often nod to the balance of form and function, finding clever solutions to small spaces, making the most of simple natural materials and maximising limited light on the Northern Hemisphere’s shortest winter days. With such a penchant for the practical, simplicity is the name of the game.


Look out for super sleek, almost architectural lines. Airy loft apartment optional.

- Jakki Pay, Design Director Fashion & Home



Japanese design is still firmly no-fuss, although curvier shapes are more common – our Janna floor lamp has them in all the right places. Materials like marble, stone and glass are just as key, with darker, stained wood alongside pale beech and ash tones. When it comes to furniture, it’s worth taking it all down a notch - lower coffee tables, futons and low-slung chairs keep it feeling a little more casual and nod to Japan’s design heritage.


 

 

 

 

Japanese Interior Trend Section 3 IMG

 


YOU LOVE:
UNDERSTATED DETAILS



The truly Nordic home requires a practical dose of cosiness to cope with colder weather, and you can see this in textural details - the ubiquitous cream sheepskin rug has achieved a level of Scandi status not seen since ABBA. Beyond the iconic wide stripe, prints often nod to nature, with hand-drawn leaves and flowers influenced by classic '60s and '70s pattern. Ceramics are often gloriously artisanal, and anything that’s hand-crafted, hand-fired or hand-finished gets top marks.


It’s a beautiful balance of form and function – restful but with an industrial edge.

- Jakki Pay, Design Director Fashion & Home



Japanese interiors might be seriously sleek, but that’s not a byword for clinical – after all, the Japanese trend of ‘wabi sabi’ is a celebration of the beauty in imperfection. But forget the sheepskin rug – it’s all about hand-etched ceramics and delicately embellished fabrics that nod to traditional Japanese print and pattern. Get started with monochrome geo prints and simple linear designs – our Buda vase is just the ticket.


 

 

3 ways to use colour in winter

3 ways to use colour in winter

 

Between autumn’s russety reds and spring’s sorbet shades lies a bit of a colour conundrum. Suddenly all-white-everything feels stark - not summery - and those brilliantly bold tropical hues are (literally) all shades of wrong. So how to keep the colour whilst capturing the mood of the season - and without resigning yourself to picking up the paint or frantically swapping the cushions every three months? Here’s three ways to make colour work, all year round.

 

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Green velvet chair in living room

 


1. HIDDEN GEMS


The shades

In their modern iteration, these wonderfully rich, pigmented hues – think forest greens, petrol blues and glamorous clarets and aubergines – stormed straight to the top of every interiors trend round-up around 2016, and never left. Along with the decade-defining velvet sofa, they add a bit of punch and personality whilst still being moody enough to make sense for winter - the perfect alternative to summer’s bold prints.


The psychology

Going wall-to-wall with one of these jewel tones - and according to one of this year’s biggest trends, across the ceiling while you’re at it – is a shortcut to serious cosiness. The oft-quoted flipside is whether the room feels smaller as a result. And it makes sense. These hues have Victorian heritage - where rooms were often double height with big bay windows - and long pre-date the light and airy Scandi design DNA we’ve all since championed. There’s plenty of ways to tap into the trend, so it’s worth considering what works for your space.


The styling

If you’re prepared to add some drama – but not to invest in a new sofa – a statement armchair makes a more portable option, or a scatter of cushions in a variety of hues (pair bold with bold, we say) might be all you need to transform a tired old one. Pair with velvet to let these shades really shine - and tick off two winter trends - or bring to life with warm metallics like gold and bronze. And whilst we don’t believe in design rules, sticking to clean lines (à la all things art deco) is the easiest way to keep it under control.

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Plumen bare bulb twist pendant lights

 


2. EARTHY DELIGHTS


The shades

Encompassing hues of honey, rich clay and olive green, these saturated shades are a little like autumn’s rush of colour with the sound turned down. But make no mistake - this take on terracotta et al is a far cry from your pile of old plant pots lingering in the shed. These are warm, luxurious and ultimately contemporary colours that owe far more to Mediterranean villas and Moroccan riads than any failed gardening attempt.


The psychology

From clay-roofed cities to hip design hotels, these earthy – yet seriously luxe - tones are as traditional as they are on-trend. They’re at a bit of a colour crossroads, too. Sitting pretty in the sweet spot where vibrant, saturated colour meets pared back, organic hues, they’re the best of both worlds - so it’s no wonder they’ve triumphed both on the catwalk and off. If you’re looking to go au naturel for winter, there’s really no chicer way to do it.


The styling

The key to preventing warm, earthy tones from tipping into ‘rustic’ territory is keeping silhouettes contemporary and paying attention to subtle differences in similar shades – think rich and pinky-brown, rather than orange-tinged. Be wary of too much decoration and even the most delicately distressed finish, which will feel instantly retro (and in this case, we’re talking BC). Stick to solid colour, bold and blocky prints or a simple two-tone effect balanced with white or powdery pink.

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Pink sofa with dark wood furniture

 


3. CHALKY PASTELS


The shades

Candy hues have had a contemporary update, and it works just as well for winter as it does spring and beyond. Pinks are the star of the show – and the star of many a recent red carpet snap – alongside sage greens and paler, grey-tinged denim blues. An ice cream colour palette this is not – the shade reference is far more stonewashed than sickly, more powdery than Palm Springs. Hailed as the new neutrals, it looks like this newly grown-up group of shades is here to stay. Yes please.


The psychology

Whilst we’re not quite ready to end our love affair with the fifty shades of grey that have dominated the last decade, these soothing hues make a good argument – they’re just as restful, but far less likely to feel stark or subdued. Yes, this makes the bedroom an obvious decorating destination, but consider pastels to add some calm - and colour - to hectic, high-traffic areas like your kitchen, too.


The styling

It’s worth considering contrast, whether that means adding some edge with geometric prints or anchoring powdery shades with a splash of something stronger. A dusky pink – which is a little too feminine for some - is made thoroughly modern with a navy or forest green, while textural details like tassels and fringing make a subtler statement paired with paler shades. Beware layering pastel hue upon pastel hue, however, or you’ll feel like you’ve been unwittingly cast in a Wes Anderson film.

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How to create a home spa

How to create a home spa

 

We love the whole spa experience (who doesn’t?) but know that sometimes schedules - and post-Christmas bank account balances – scupper plans for the real thing. So we say put the hibernation on hold and boost your bathroom game instead. From towel tips to the best mood-setting scents, here’s how to make a spa of any space.

 

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Fringed towel hanging in bathroom

 


The set up


Streamline your space

Nothing will take the shine off the spa experience like clutter. Beyond the boring pedal bin, our top tip is free standing shelves and towel hooks - they’re a clever way to make the most of vertical space when it’s a bit of a tight squeeze. Fill wire baskets with your favourite bathroom bits and banish the less pretty lotions and potions to woven options.


Add some greenery

With their mood-boosting benefits and air-purifying properties, plants are perfect for the bathroom. Low-lit and humid, it can feel more than a tad tropical - so look for plants that thrive in a suitably steamy space. Whilst their names don’t conjure up images of tranquillity, spider and snake plants are easy to look after and like things a little moist, as do elegant orchids and peace lilies.


Reach for the robe

Investing in a luxe robe is one of the easiest ways to elevate even the most mundane weekday evening. Traditionally white and tied at the waist, treat yourself to a towelling number with a shawl collar - and dig out those complimentary hotel slippers from the back of the wardrobe, too. After changing, take a few minutes to relax or meditate with a herbal tea in hand.

 

Stack of white and grey towels on stool

 


The towels


Select your style

A stack of fluffy white towels might be synonymous with the spa, but there’s no one-size-fits-all when it comes to luxurious linens. Look to contrast borders and jacquard prints to add some detail, or try mixing and matching muted tonal shades. It's worth paying attention to the technical bits, too - look out for GSM, which defines the weight and thickness of a towel.


Preserve the plump

How do spas keep their towels so soft? Not all towels are born equal, so if this is a priority, look for combed cotton or options with ‘zero twist’ yarns, which are renowned for that soft and fluffy feel. Go easy on the fabric conditioner, avoid crowding the washing machine and drying on radiators, too - all contribute to that dreaded stiffness. And the jury's out on the tennis ball in the tumble dryer trick...


Try essentials oils

The easiest way to upgrade a DIY facial? A little aromatherapy. Add a few drops of your favourite essential oil to hot water, soak your flannel and wring out until damp, then use to remove excess product between applications. The right scent is super relaxing and helps to open up your pores - lavender, eucalyptus, rose, neroli and clary sage are all spa favourites for good reason.

 

Row of lit white candles

 


The mood-setters


Dim the lights

Don’t despair over dark evenings, as they offer the opportunity to control the ultimate mood-setter - good lighting. If you can’t dim the main source (and bathroom lighting tends to be anything but relaxing) consider the sensory appeal of candlelight instead. For a long-term investment, spotlights will focus bright light away from the bath and towards high-use areas such as sinks and mirrors.


Add some fragrance

‘Saving’ that candle you got as a Christmas gift? Now’s the time to put it to good use - no special occasion neccessary. Forget layering here, as the added factor of perfumed products means one special scent is all you need - so choose wisely. If sturdy surfaces are lacking and flames are a safety concern, a good quality diffuser makes a fuss-free alternative.


Hit play

If your evening bath is the only spot of silence you get all day, then we understand the temptation to make it a music-free zone, but it’s worth trying out a few genres first. What relaxes each of us is so personal, and might be unexpected – anything from rain sounds to reggae. Consider creating a playlist of soothing tunes so you won’t feel tempted to interrupt your bath to dry your hands and skip a song.



The spa starts here