Archive for the ‘features’ Category

Celeb style, features, Gallery, music

Mick Jagger’s top 10 crimes against fashion (and there are some corkers)

By Stefano on November 26th, 2012

There was a point somewhere in the 1960s when The Rolling Stones were arguably the best dressed band on the planet. They mixed traditional Saville Row threads with flamboyant shirts, cravats and scarves better than anyone. They were the epitome of pop art cool. Check here for evidence.

But then the coolest of the lot of them, Brian, went swimming, Keef got strung out on heroin and Bill grew his hair out. And from a sartorial point of view things went downhill.

Never mind though because there was always Mick. Trouble is that somewhere around 1969 Mick’s style compass completely went AWOL. Probably about the time he wore that white dress in Hyde Park (sadly our pic agency doesn’t have that image!). Throughout the 70s and well into the 80s, he strutted across the stadiums of the world wearing an increasingly bizarre series of onstage costumes. Maybe that’s the point, they were different, daring and bit camp – just like Mick. Sadly like most of the Stones 80s output they looked pretty crap too.

So please don’t get me wrong I really love the Stones and always will, but I still take great pleasure in presenting you with Mick Jagger’s top ten crimes against fashion. Enjoy. I only wish that we could have shared this one with you too.

And if you want to read about some under rated Stones albums go here. Pics copyright PA

Ruffles

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Frankfurt concert hall, Germany, and to wow the locals Mick donned this little ruffly number in turquoise



Accessories, Cameras, features, Gadgets

21 of the best gadgets for under £200

By Stefano on November 23rd, 2012

We talked to the gadget experts at TechDigest and Shiny Shiny as well as a few of our techy chums on Facebook and Twitter and have puled together what we think is the ultimate list of gadgets for under £200. All are on sale in the UK at the moment.

There’s no phones included, but we have plenty of tablets, gadget, audio stuff and cameras. There are also a few very cheap stocking fillers too and the brilliant gloves that control your smartphone wirelessly.

Have fun looking through them

Stockists are underneath the images

Blue Yeti USB Microphone £129

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It has been around for a few years now, but if you ever need to record anything this stylish mic is the one to plump for. It is a great performer and very versatile with it. Works with Skype too.

Stockists

Blue Yeti 

Bluetooth Gloves

Canon Powershot

Crosley Hunter

Disgo

Ego

Fitbit One

Fujifilm

iHome

Ikon

Amazon Kindle

Lomo

NAPTC

Philips

Roku

Sony

Striiv

USB snake

Vyconic

X-Mi

Dr Dre Beats

 



features, Shirts

Want to earn more money and be more attractive to women? Then get a pink shirt

By Stefano on November 22nd, 2012

I must admit that I have never been too fond of pink shirts but this, just in from The Daily Mail ,could change all that.

According to research by Cotton USA Pink shirt – which surveyed 1500 shirt wearers –  those who favour pink, as opposed to the usual staples of blue and white, are likely to be more confident, get more admiring glances from female colleagues and earn an extra grand a year or so salary. Men who wear pink are also twice as likely to have a Master’s degree than those who favour white shirts, with one in ten pink shirt wearers having a PHD. They also apparently have a lower carbon footprint – though quite how they worked that out is beyond me.

Stephanie Thiers-Ratcliffe, International Marketing Manager for Cotton USA, says ‘Pink is a colour more men have been embracing recently and it’s encouraging that they are not afraid to experiment with brighter colours. We spend most of our days at work and it’s good for company standards, our own confidence and work ethic to remain smart, but that doesn’t mean you have to be boring.

Anyhow here are five pink shirts worth pondering over.

Thomas Pink Edric 170s imperial classic shirt £135

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Really smart work shirt from TP. Made from two-fold 170s fabric, a high yarn count which apparently results in a soft, silky fabric with a high luster. It has a semi-cutaway collar and double cuffs

Stockists

TM Lewin James & Longbourne Ralph Lauren Thomas Pink Bexhill



features, music, T-shirts, Polos & Shirts

The 12 most iconic rock and roll band t shirts of all time

By Stefano on November 22nd, 2012

There was a time when the only people who would wear band T shirts were metal heads still loyal to their ageing rocker heroes, Ned’s Atomic Dustbin fans, who a decade on hadn’t bought any other new items of clothes, and Teenage Fanclub fans who’d give them a quick iron and pop them on each time their favourite Glaswegians hit their local venue

Then a few years back rock T shirts suddenly became cool in an ironic way. The Kate Moss set started wearing Ramones shirts and pretty soon you couldn’t move in Top Shop for vintage rock band shirts and disco diva fifteen year olds desperate to snap them up.

Things then got way out of hand and in parts of north London your pre school child wasn’t properly dressed without a Pistols or Clash T shirt.

One only feels sorry for those earnest aging rockers whose enquiries about Sonic Youth records to youngsters sporting the Goo t shirt were met by blank stares.

Nevertheless the band T shirt is back and is likely to remain a staple for both kids looking for cool designs and adults wanting to broadcast their musical taste.

So the other day we began arguing in the office about which is the most iconic band T short of all time. A couple of Flat Whites and bit of Facebook research later and we had a list of contenders.

Surveying the list it becomes obvious that band T shirts fall into one of four categories.

1 The classic band logo - This is the band’s whose ident is captured in one little graphic device. The band’s brand if you will and the illustration that appears on their drumkit, behind them at gigs and obviously on their merch. Band logos have included some of the finest and most iconic pop art emblems of the recent decades and not too surprisingly our list is dominated by them.

2 The classic album cover - Oddly there aren’t as many of these in the list as you might think. In fact if you peruse any list of the great albums of all time you’ll find that many near the top like The Beatles albums for example, have not been widely replicated on T shirts. The ones that work well tend to have designs that are either black and white or two basic colours. So Joy Division’s Unknown Pleasures looks great on your chest, whereas Ziggy Stardust less so. I think The Smiths may have got lucky here. Morrissey famously designed most of their single and album covers or rather appropriated them from 60s films. For reasons of taste (or maybe even budget) they were almost always two colour affairs that look great as T shirts.

3 A logo taken from an album cover – This works occasionally. Think The Stone Roses whose debut album sleeve was covered in lemons – the exact same fruit that became the motif for their most iconic T shirt.

4 Something utterly off the wall that the band ends up championing – see number two.

Anyhow, here then is our list of the ten most iconic rock and roll T shirts of all time. It was close but sadly Ned’s Atomic Dustbin didn’t quite make the cut.

12 Sonic Youth

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As worn by hipsters across the planet. One wonders how many of them are on nodding terms with the album from which the print is taken - Goo. The image is a Raymond Pettibon illustration based on a paparazzi photo of Maureen Hindley and her first husband David Smith, witnesses in the case of the "Moors Murders" serial killers Ian Brady and Myra Hindley, driving to the trial in 1966.

Stockists

Sonic Youth Goo  AC/DC Motorhead Stone Roses The Who Nirvana Joy Division Inspiral Carpets Ramones Smiths Beatles Stones 



features, Gadgets

The 8 retro gadgets that you actually might want to own – Crosley, Fujifilm, Timex and more

By Stefano on November 20th, 2012

A few years ago retro gadgets seemed like quite a fun idea. Oh how we chuckled when we saw that iPhone case made to resemble a 1970s Motorola brick. And yep I loved all those games consoles styled like ones I had a few decades ago yet stacked out with contemporary processors and graphics cards.

Somewhere along the line though it all went a little too crazy. Now every gadgets site has a bonkers array of iPhone cases designed to look like ancient devices and music players that take their style cues from a few decades ago. And sad to say that an awful lot of what is being produced is, whisper it, not that great.

So finding 10 retro gadgets that are actually quite stylish as well as being rather useful too proved to be quite a tough task,. In the end we gave yup at 8, so if you do know of any others we can use to pad out the list let us know in the comments.

Links to the various products are included under the pics.

Crosley Collegiate £160

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Crosley is a brand that definitely gets it in that it excels at producing high quality design-led reproductions of classic electronics products. This, the Collegiate, is a small-ish Dansette style record player that has an aluminium grill speaker a leather handle and USB connectivity. It plays singles, albums and 10inch discs. It is available in several colours and you can buy one in the UK from Urban Outfitters

Links

Crosley record player

Fujifilm XF1

Ikon Jukebox

Spectrum bag

Vyconic clock

Philips Radio

Timex 80

Padintosh



features, music

The Unmissables – the top ten debut albums of 2012

By Stefano on November 20th, 2012

It is almost the end of the year so time to start compiling those best of 2012 lists, and to kick things off we thought we ‘d take a look at the best debut albums.

There has been an explosion of  great new guitar bands this year. From Alabama Shakes in the States through to Sweden’s bizarrely monikered Goat, the new breed are playing intelligent, tough but catchy pop songs, often rooted in the past but given a very contemporary spin by mixing and matching musical genres and trends.

Here then is our top ten. In no particular order. They are all available on Spotify. And you can hear a selection of the tracks on our playlist under the image.

Any we have missed?

Alabama Shakes - Boys& Girls

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Everyone's new favourite purveyors of Americana, The Alabama Shakes southern fried soul is one of the most exciting sounds of 2012 and in I Found You they might just have released its most perfect single



features, knitwear

So you want cheap Cashmere – here are six brands with jumpers for less than £100

By Stefano on November 19th, 2012

Until about five years ago Cashmere jumpers were the preserve of ladies who lunch, golfers and tourists looking to take home something suitably pricey and Scottish (which they had invariably bought on London’s Regent Street !?). But then something very odd happened. Stores like Uniqlo and M&S began to sell Cashmere knitwear at prices that mere mortals could afford and soon pretty much everyone was clamouring to own at least one Cashmere jumper.

The reason why Cashmere wins out is that in knitwear soft wool rules, and it doesn’t come much more luxurious or gentle on the skin that cashmere. And the reason why it used to be so pricey is that it comes from Cashmere goats and it takes two or three goats to produce a jumper’s worth of material. Also processing the fibre into yarn isn’t easy or cheap.

What has happened in the last few years is that the centre of the Cashmere universe has shifted from Mongolia and Turkey to China which has emerged as the world’s top producer – hence prices have fallen. There are still some environmental issues about Cashemere production but you are probably reading this to score a cheapish jumper for Christmas so lets not go too far into them now.

Here’s the list of links of the jumpers we have covered, now hit the gallery to see the pics.

Uniqlo
French Connection
Gap
Zara
Boden
M&S

Boden roll neck £74.25

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In the sale if you are quick - was originally £100. They also have a V-neck at the same price. The Cheapest we can find for now...



Cycling, features, How to

What to look for when buying a vintage or used racing bicycle – video

By Stefano on November 19th, 2012

So you you have set your heart set on the type of bike that Eddy Merckx used to spin around the Alps on in the 70s. Well you clearly have taste. There’s no denying that older racing bikes from the 60s through to the 90s have a tad more style than lot of today’s racers and consequently they have become much sought after.

The trick thouguh is to make sure that the bike you buy is vintage gold rather than a crock that will fall to bits within weeks of you buying it.

We asked Phil from Love Bikes London to take us through what you should look for when buying a vintage racer.

His top tips are

1 Make sure you don’t buy a nicked bike
2 A little rust and wear and tear is ok, but you need to check to see if the bike has suffered any serious damage
3 The most important part of the frame. If that ok you can rebuild much of the rest of the bike,. If that’s gone move on
4 20-30 year old wheels are fine. But if they look a little worn probably best to replace them
5 If you are not too hot on cycle upkeep make sure you are friends with someone who is like, off the top of my head Lovebikes London.



features, Grooming

MOVEMBER: Getting a Mo Bro shave at the Gillette “The Best A Mo Can Get” barbershop

By Gerald Lynch on November 16th, 2012

16 days into Movember 2012, and taches up and down the land are starting to look like Basil Brush’s tail. Mo maintenance ain’t easy but, for a prostate cancer bashing worthy cause, men up and down the land are persevering, battling through the bedtime rebukes of their partners and the back-of-the-bus jibes from school kids.

Thankfully, Gillette have spotted that a few of us might need a hand keeping our facial fluff looking respectable, and have opened up their “The Best A Mo Can Get” pop-up babershop at 10 Newburgh Street, just off of London’s uber-trendy Carnaby Street. Offering free trims for all Mo Bros that pass through its doors, Brandish took our most hairily-blessed Mo Bro Perrie down to have his impressive lip-wear touched up.

With pro barbers on hand to offer tips and tricks for the best Mo maintenance,  as well as complimentary drinks and luxury hot towel shaving experiences, Perrie’s mouser went from droopy to Dali-worthy in minutes.

With the shop decked out like a 1940s members club, complete with leather furnishings and games rooms, the barbers used Gillette’s Fusion ProGlider Styler, a 3-in-1 styling tool “based on performance driven design”, to get the job done.

Offering a precision edging blade, it let the team trim the loose waves of Perrie’s lip locks, with an ergonomic grip that prevents the line from slipping when perfecting the “Craig David Chin Strap”. Sporting blades said to be thinner than a surgeon’s scalpel,  the Fusion ProGlider Styler gives the closest shave this side of a cut-throat, according to Gillette’s expert grooming team.

Blasting out choice cuts from Curtis Mayfield’s Superfly album while the bantering barbers slashed away at errant stubble, The Best A Mo Can Get barbershop has real attitude, and is definitely worth a visit from any Mo Bros struggling to keep their facial manes in check.

Gillette will be doing their part to fight prostate cancer during the Movember campaign in other ways too, aiming to donate £100,000 to the cause through sales of their Movember stamped products.

Gillette’s The Best A Mo Can Get barbershop is open to all members of the public, with a special late-night opening planned for November 22nd. There will also be a number of events including intimate DJ sets, cocktail nights and whiskey tasting sessions across the month. Check www.facebook.com/GilletteUK for more details.

 



features, Footwear, Jeans & Trousers, knitwear, Trends

Trend alert – 60s mod monochrome black and white shirts, trousers and more

By Stefano on November 16th, 2012

Adams Black and White Dogstooth Trousers £85

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Made from Pure Wools, Mohair Wool and Polyester Blends, these have a straight slightly narrower leg 16.5 inch bottoms. Adams of London

One of the likely big trends in women’s wear for next is year monochrome black and white.  Think Bridget Riley, op art, stripes of varying lengths, maybe a bit of dogs tooth too.

Apparently stripey op art style dresses by the likes of Marc Jac0bs are predicted  to drip on down to the High St. 

Chances are that the mod monochrome look will also have an influence on menswear too, which is good news for the heritage brands who t are always selling 60 influenced clothes. Here are few items that are likely to be (coughs) bang on trend next year.



features, knitwear

7 Classic Christmas jumpers – stylish men’s knitwear you can wear all winter long

By Stefano on November 14th, 2012

Ben Sherman Intarsia £60

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Subtle grey and black Merino jumper Ben Sherman

There is a bit of trend in comedy jumpers this season. You only need to check out River Island’s selection to see how prevalent they are. If you want knitwear that doesn’t have to be teamed up with paper hats and plastic cracker jewelry that you can wear all winter long then check out this lot.

These are our favourites of the season. All classic jumpers. All very stylish and a little more conservative than our last selection.



Clothing, features, Gallery, knitwear, top ten

10 Men’s Trophy Jumpers to warm your winter wardrobe

By Gerald Lynch on October 24th, 2012

Bit chilly out, isn’t it? If you’re still running about in flip-flops and short sleeves then a) You’re mental and b) take a look at the calendar, it’s the middle of October!

Global warming may be jumbling up the seasons like a misguided game of drunken Twister, but winter’s definitely kicking in now. If the change in weather has caught you by surprise, have no fear! We’ve put together a round up of our favourite trophy jumpers for the season, meaning you’ll be able to make a statement with your knitwear while saving the pennies keeping the immersion heater switched off.

Scroll down to check out our picks!

Shades of Grey Jumper with Fairisle Print - £150

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Not quite 50 shades with this Shades of Grey jumper, but if you're into Fairisle prints with a blue hue, this is a luxurious bit of knitwear. Available from ASOS for £150.

And if you want something classic and stylish try this jumper selection.



Clothing, Coats & Jackets, features, Gallery

Alexander McQueen autumn-winter 2012 menswear collection

By Elisabeth Edvardsen on October 24th, 2012

Words like ‘dapper’, ‘gentleman’ and ‘tailored’ spring to mind when looking at the Alexander McQueen Autumn/Winter 2012 collection. But then there is also ‘avant-garde’ and ‘unique’. Either way, the collection oozes of Britishness with a twist, perfect for the modern gentleman.

Which look is your favourite?

Alexander McQueen AW12

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features

Apple announces new 7.9 inch iPad Mini – starting at £269

By shinychris on October 23rd, 2012

iPad-Mini-01.pngIt’s here! Rumoured for pretty much as long as the iPad itself has existed, Apple have finally lifted the covers off the iPad Mini. And guess what? It’s smaller, lighter, and offering all the usual iOS apps and goodies that we’ve come to expect from Apple’s full size slates!

Looking much like an oversized iPod Touch, it fits comfortably in one hand at 7.9 inches diagonally across, but at 7.2mm thick is a quarter thicker than the newly announced fourth generation iPad. It still manages to be 53% lighter than the new iPad 4th gen though, at 0.68lbs.iPad-Mini-02.pngAvailable in black or white (with a silver back on the white version and built from aluminium), it has a resolution of 1,024×768, the same as the iPad 2. With a thinner bezel, it’s more squat in shape than previous versions, but offering 35% more display area over the likes of the Google Nexus 7.

Under the hood you’ll find a dual-core A5 processor, the same as previously found in the iPad 2, and there is also a FaceTime HD camera and 5-megapixel iSight camera on the back with 1080p recording.iPad-Mini-03.pngThe Lightning connection introduced with the iPhone 5 is used for charging and connecting to a computer for iTunes transfers, while LTE 4G wireless joins dual-band 802.11a/b/g/n Wi-Fi.

Battery life remains impressive at 10 hours average use from a single charge.

iOS 6 is the operating system of choice, giving access to some 700,000 apps (and 275,000 iPad-specific ones) and iTunes movie and music content. No word yet on whether apps will have to be optimised for the new smaller display, but it seems apps should scale down without too many problems.iPad-Mini-04.pngThe iPad Mini will also launch with a new version of iBooks that features continuos scrolling (more like a long web page) rather than flipping through individual pages. There’s also improved sharing options, letting you tweet or ad statuses to Facebook by highlighting book passages.

“iPad mini is every inch an iPad. With its gorgeous 7.9-inch display, iPad mini features the same number of pixels as the original iPad and iPad 2, so you can run more than 275,000 apps designed specifically for iPad,” said Philip Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing.

“iPad mini is as thin as a pencil and as light as a pad of paper, yet packs a fast A5 chip, FaceTime HD and 5 megapixel iSight cameras and ultrafast wireless―all while delivering up to 10 hours of battery life.”iPad-Mini-07.pngA new range of Smart Covers for the iPad Mini were also revealed, priced at £35, dropping the metal hinge and coming in pink, green, blue, light gray and red shades.

In the UK, iPad Mini Wi-Fi will sell for £269 for the 16GB model, £349 for the 32GB model and £429 for the 64GB model. Pop £100 onto the end of each of those prices if you want a version with a 4G connection.iPad-Mini-06.pngIn America, the iPad Mini is starting at $329 for the 16GB Wi-Fi only model, a 32GB iPad Mini is $429, with the 64GB version available for $519. If you’re after LTE connectivity, add $130 to the price of each model.

Wi-Fi only models will launch on November 2nd. Models with a cellular connection will land two weeks later. Pre-orders kick off on October 26th.

So what do you think? Will you be picking up an iPad Mini? Or does the Google Nexus 7 and Amazon Kindle Fire HD Android tablets still hold sway over your 7-inch loving heart? Let us know in the comments below!

See gallery below for more iPad Mini images – ALL IMAGES: PRESS ASSOCIATION

Apple iPad Mini Launch - Prices start at £269

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The iPad mini, at left, is shown next to the 4th generation iPad in San Jose, Calif., Tuesday, Oct. 23, 2012. The device has a screen that's about two-thirds the size of the full-size model, and Apple says it will cost $329 and up. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)

Via Tech Digest



Accessories, Denim, features, Jeans & Trousers, News

Levi’s go green with WasteLess S/S13 jeans collection

By Gerald Lynch on October 18th, 2012

Green is the new black over at Levi’s, who’ve just revealed the WasteLess jeans range for Spring/Summer 2013. Revealed at a slick launch bash at London’s Farmiloe Building in Farringdon, Brandish went down for a sneak peak at the new eco-freindly denims.

Each pair of Levi’s WasteLess jeans is made from a minimum of 20% post-consumer recycled content, roughly 12 to 20 ounces per pair. The bulk of this will be made from recycled plastic bottles, be they clear, green or brown. Turn the jean’s inside out and the inner shade reveals what sort of bottles went into making your slacks.

“From the beginning, we have designed our products with purpose and intent. By adding value to waste, we hope to change the way people think about recycling, ultimately incentivizing them to do more of it,” said James Curleigh, global president of the Levi’s brand.

“This collection proves that you don’t have to sacrifice quality, comfort or style to give an end a new beginning.”

Indeed, the jeans look to be as comfortable as any Levi’s pair before them, feeling as soft to the touch as any traditional denim weave we’ve laid our hands on before.

Levi’s expect to put some 3.5 million recycled bottles into the WasteLess range next year, which will include 511 Skinny jeans, a new modern-looking  504 Straight Fit jean, and the Trucker jackets.

“With this collection, we’re doing our own small part by taking waste and making something new from it,” added Curleigh.

“We don’t just want to reduce our impact on the environment, we want to leave it better than we found it. We are committed to making products in ways that are good for people and better for our planet.”

The event also showcased other elements of Levi’s Spring/Summer 2013 range. Coloured denims continue to be on trend, with both bold and soft pastel washes (inspired by India’s spice markets) set to feature heavily.

In terms of the mens range beyond jeans, canvas boots and rucksacks in muted earth tones look set to feature heavily:

While a range of bright primary coloured parka jackets also looked particularly good:

A forthcoming partnership with Liberty’s of London was also revealed, with Levi creating a short range using one of the top British store’s iconic prints as we speak.

Scroll down for some more shots from the Levi’s launch event.

Levi's SS13 Collection

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