Subcultures have always embraced the Fred Perry look; from the mods, skinheads and rudeboys to suede-heads and northern soul. The brand continues to be worn by early adopting trendsetters, boasting consistently innovative collaborations from Comme des Garçons and Raf Simons to & SON. Despite its high-end quality, Fred Perry has managed to keep hold of the working class hero image, ensuring longevity as the ‘everyman’ apparel. Whether a classic polo shirt or a plain Harrington jacket, Fred Perry will be part of the next subculture, the one after that, and the one after that. My Jamaican father first introduced me to Fred Perry in the early eighties, and I’m a true believer that every generation of man should have a piece of Fred in their wardrobe.
Known for their sweatshirts, shorts and T-shirts emblazoned with the unmissable logo, Franklin and Marshall have established themselves as a serious player in the sport versus fashion sector. This season features chunky knit cardigans, vintage checked shirts and brown chino style trousers that seem more Lake District than American college. Essential to any lad or lady seeking the casual but expensive look this fall, the collection has opened everyone’s eyes to Franklin and Marshall. I’m a huge fan of Franklin and Marshall and have been for some time. Their ability to mix North American culture in a European guise is quite unique, especially when there are so many brands that have tried and failed. Franklin and Marshall stands for more than high quality clothing; they sponsor the Verona Rugby team, have their own radio station available from their website, and continue to support the Don Bosco Foundation, an Italian charity which operates in Ethiopia, through their T-shirt “for Africa “ scheme. Franklin and Marshall is a true global success.
Over one hundred years old and yet more stylish and relevant than ever before, Barbour is the authentic brand providing the perfect British mix of eccentricity and simplicity. The thought of winter, a dodgy economy and X Factor means we need to get that stiff upper lip out. Barbour has now become so popular with the fellas, it can be seen just as much down the pub and at football matches as on fishing trips and country walks. The now-legendary wax jacket, chunky green cardigans with occasional suede elbows and the distinct shade of green, has a unique way of making you feel extremely well bred. Despite its recent popularity with a different generation, Barbour has not changed any of their original style ethics, keeping well in touch with their rich heritage and core family values. Barbour, once known for hunting, is now being hunted.
The brand better known for its surfwear and board shorts has developed into a relevant label for all seasons. Quiksilver has become a full lifestyle brand, opening itself up to all sorts of different markets. The big chunky check coats and sheepskin style jackets are a long way from the aquatic association that Quiksilver has, until recently, domineered. The influx of new styles have taken on a Del Boy feel, something many men can get on board with. Quiksilver have also developed their denim and their shirts are particularly impressive. They stay true to their roots with incredible beachwear, both stylish and technically advanced, but this newly established ability to adapt to everyday wear is something of a welcome surprise. Quiksilver just might have struck gold.
Created forty years ago, Kickers were hugely influential in re-defining the boot. They enjoyed their moment in the late eighties; I remember stomping around to Buffalo Stance in mine. The Kickers explosion continued into the nineties when the brand was heralded by icons of the Madchester scene; the Stone Roses and The Farm both huge fans. Kickers became part of clubwear ‘uniform’. Even before its club affiliation, rock royalty from Rodger Daltry to David Bowie donned the famous Kick Hi boot. The brand continues to produce exciting collaborations; i-D fashion director Simon Foxton designed the ‘Foxton’ boot in 2008. There’s also a new wave of celebrity Kickers fans including Mike Skinner, The Artic Monkeys, So Solid Crew and the Gallagher brothers. Kickers are finding their feet once again and re-establishing themselves as the boot of choice.
Styling Assistance Hazel Ong
Hair Nathalie Malbert using L’Oréal
Grooming Jo Frost using Sisley cosmetics
Photography Assistance Suzanne Beirne
Retouching India May and John Hempstead
Models Artur Olecki and Sandis at NEXT