Archive for the ‘features’ Category

Advertorial, features, Health & Fitness

Quality sports supplements at low prices

By shinychris on April 25th, 2012

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Pro-10 run regular special offers, through their weekly crazy prices email and also post recipes and general fitness information on their blog along with details of their expanding product set.

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features, Gallery, Shirts, top ten, Trends

ALOHA!: Ten almost-tasteful Hawaiian print shirts

By Gerald Lynch on April 18th, 2012

ASOS - Hawaiian Print Shirt - £25

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When the summer heat kicks up a wavy haze off the concrete city streets, we know it can be tough to resist the urge to laze around in just your lightest shirts and underwear.

Yet, we just can’t accept the return of the Hawaiian shirt, this summer’s slob-chic must-have. It’s like someone covered themselves in wallpaper paste, tore the pages out of a tattoo catalogue and rolled around in the scraps, off their nut on umbrella-wearing cocktails.

But who are we to judge the fashion gods? We’ve pooled together ten of our favourite offerings from the likes of ASOS and Ben Sherman, ranging from the blindingly garish to more subtle, understated prints if you’re feeling a little less daring but still want to be on-trend when the heatwave finally kicks in.

So grab your hula skirts and piña coladas and dive into the gallery above for our pick of this year’s best Hawaiian shirts.

While you’re at it, have a listen to our short 60′s summer playlist below. It’s sure to instil some sunshine-surfing spirit in you even if the clouds outside your window are stubbornly grey!


features, Gallery, Shoes

10 pairs of Brogues to put the Spring in your step

By Gerald Lynch on March 27th, 2012

Adamis (Mr B) from Aldo -£100

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Ah, a good old pair of Brogues; the work horse of mens’ wardrobes across the globe, they’re the one pair of shoes as comfortable in the boardroom as they are down the pub.

The little pock-marked shoe has come a long way from its humble beginnings as cross-country footwear in Scotland and Ireland (the little holes were intended as drainage run-offs when passing through wet terrain) and now everyone from Kurt Geiger to Dr Martens have a fair few pairs in their catalogues.

Whether you’re going for wingtips or semis, black, tan or multi-coloured offerings, we’ve pulled together our ten favourite pairs to put the Spring in your step this season.

Click through the gallery above to browse our picks!

features, Grooming, News

GOOD BEARD, BAD BEARD: Is facial hair sexy?

By Gerald Lynch on March 14th, 2012

Razors at the ready folks; a new scientific study claims to have proven that your chin chaff is about as attractive as draping a mangy cat over your face and then combing yesterday’s porridge through it.

OK, so that may be a tad extreme, but there’s a fair amount of research backing up the anti-beard brigade this time. Haven’t we spent the last few years following in the footsteps of bands like Kings of Leon and Fleet Foxes with a “back to nature” look? What else goes with the wardrobe full of plaid shirts and hunting accessories we’ve all been collecting for the last half a decade?

Without going too deep into the specifics of the Behavioural Ecology journal, which has re-ignited the debate, cultivating all that fur seems to have been for naught. The journal’s researchers asked 127 New Zealand females and 100 ladies of Polynesian decent from Samoa for their opinions on the facial hair of 10 men each from their own race (apparently the island of Samoa hasn’t been all that westernised over the years, and produces good subjects in terms of those who haven’t been too influenced by western media views on beauty). Though the Samoan test subjects were more forgiving, on the whole, the study showed that beards are out.

The conclusions drawn were, as you’d expect, a hodge-podge of evolutionary theory (there was mention of the importance of lions’ manes at one point!), finding that, on the whole, beards merely “augment perceptions of men’s age, social status, and aggressiveness, but not attractiveness”.

On the totally non-scientific filpside however, having a chat with my female friends suggested that the blokes used as bearded/non-bearded examples in the study weren’t exactly Brad Pitt to begin with, which may go some way towards explaining why so few found the guys attractive in the first place.

Which compelled us to do a short study of our own. Called “Good Beard, Bad Beard” we’ve pulled together a handful of celebrities who, for better or worse, have donned or dashed facial hair over the course of their careers.

Scroll down for our verdict on their beardy looks!

Zack Galifianakis - GOOD BEARD

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For some, beards are such an integral part of their character that getting rid of them just leads to weird, nigh-on creepy results. Take Hangover funnyman Zack Galifinakas, whose appeal lies in his off-beat sense of humour. Remove the beard and the rotund comedian starts to look just a little too respectable, and a little less relatable. And we all know that respectable isn’t funny.


Accessories, features

Sharp & Dapper: Accessories for the self-respecting gentleman

By Laura on February 20th, 2012

I was recently introduced to Sharp & Dapper. Based in London, the company has revived a classic gentleman’s accessory and brought it into the 21st century.

The Shirt Companion, is designed to help any self-respecting gentleman to keep his shirt tucked in and his socks pulled up. The unique ‘suspenders for men’ eliminate the hassle of continuously having to tuck in a shirt, by simply attaching the four individual braces between your shirt & socks.

Established and handmade in London’s Notting Hill and with art direction from Aneel Kalsi of Wallpaper magazine, The Shirt Companion is also worn by barmen in top class London venues such as Milk & Honey. An accessory they can rely on for the right image and impression.

Tom Soden, (Group Bar Manager of Diageo) is amongst the many who have become strong advocates of the Shirt Companion, stating:
“I bought a pair of Shirt Companions just over four months ago and I can honestly say that I haven’t worked a day without them since. It seems funny but they have become as essential to my working day as a pair of cuff links or my watch. S&D lives up to their name, it makes you look sharp & dapper. In addition to me feeling confident and fresh, customers immediately see I am a professional, experienced bartender working for a world-class company.”

The Shirt Companion is available now from Sharp & Dapper and comes beautifully packaged in a set of four braces.

Brand Spotlight, features, Gifts

Valentine’s Day – Lingerie buying guide for men

By Laura on February 10th, 2012

Valentines day is next week, so we imagine many of you will running around this weekend trying to find the perfect gift.
To help you out we spoke to Soozie Jenkinson, Head of Lingerie Design at M&S, to find out her top five fail-safe tips to help you choose your lady the ideal lingerie gift for Valentine’s Day…

If she’s an elegant and sophisticated dresser, look for luxurious fabrics and detailing. If she likes to feel feminine and pretty go for lace and florals, and if she’s a bit of a fashionista then keep your eye out for on-trend prints and jewelled colours.

Don’t just guess! Raid her lingerie drawer, look for something she has bought recently and loves wearing, and write the size down. You won’t be in her good books for buying lingerie that’s too small, or too big, and she’s much more likely to wear it if it fits well and feels comfortable to wear.
The shape is really key because some women love wearing balcony bras, (a traditional style which gives maximum uplift and a fuller shape) whilst others love wearing plunge bras (a modern shape which lowers / dips in the centre and gives a great cleavage). Brazilian knickers are the knicker shape of the moment, but she might be a short or even a thong fan. Don’t feel overwhelmed – get clues from her existing collection to see what she feels suits her best.

Every girl loves luxurious lingerie so consider silk lingerie as her special gift. Silk lingerie will be on every woman’s wish list so treat her to something special because it feels extravagant and sensual to wear.

If you’re worried about getting her bra size wrong then consider nightwear or loungewear. Pyjama dressing and vintage glamour looks are so on trend right now you can’t fail but to get it right – and guarantee cosy winter nights in cuddling by the fire. Every woman loves pretty, cosy PJ’s.

Yes, red and black sets can be extremely sexy, but there’s so much more choice in lingerie and sleepwear today that you can really be sure to choose something that will be loved by you both and won’t end up hiding at the back of her draw.
If you are far too embarrassed to venture in to a lingerie department, don’t fret because lots of retailers offer products online with next day delivery. Choose wisely and you are sure to have a memorable Valentine’s Day!

features, Lifestyle

Is Your Partner Right For You? A Foolproof guide to relationship success

By Laura on February 10th, 2012

A friend of mine has been with his girlfriend for six years and I’ll be honest, she’s pretty hot. Problem is they argue constantly, and I’m not talking the casual bickering that most couples go through, I’m talking about weekly rows on an apocalyptic scale. Their relationship seems to have picked up a little recently but frankly that is because they stopped living together and simply don’t have the opportunity to fight as much. Poor logistics probably aren’t the basis of a solid relationship though and most of his friends have told him repeatedly over the past few years that he needs to give her the old heave ho. It’s likely that her friends have been saying the same thing but he insists that he loves her and can’t see himself with anyone else. So where did it all go wrong?

You’ll no doubt know people in similar situations and wonder why they stay together. Perhaps you’ve been dating recently and are wondering whether your new squeeze really is worth committing to. When it comes to relationships most people at some point have taken a moment to wonder whether the person on their arm is really right for them. Well ponder no more. My foolproof and frankly stupidly simple method will help you instantly get a grip on whether Mr Right is really Mr Wrong or whether you need to put a bit of distance between you and that perfect girl next door.

It’s a little system called the THREE Ls. Basically if you have all three Ls, your relationship will work. If you have less than Three, it’s doomed. Simple.

Number one; you need Lust. Fairly obvious but you need to fancy your partner. This is not normally an issue at the start of the relationship as typically what lead to you getting together was initially some form of mutual attraction. Add alcohol into the mix and hey presto you might have managed to pull that girl that was hitherto out of your league. Of course once she’s wiped last night mascara out of her eyes and seen that you are in fact a slightly overweight, balding man approaching middle age she is unlikely to stick around. Without Lust the relationship won’t get off the ground but for those lucky enough to have initial mutual attraction, Lust only becomes a problem further down the road.

The second L is ‘Like’. You have to actually like your partner. This normally comes after Lust. You fancy someone, you actually pull them and then spend a bit of time not drunk and wham, you either like them or you don’t. How many times have you heard a bloke say ‘she’s fit but really annoying!’?. These relationships usually have a shelf like of around 3 weeks, but if by some miracle you meet someone who you fancy and they fancy you, and you like them and they like you then wham, you’ve got a relationship. You’ve got ‘Lust’ and you’ve got ‘Like’ and that means you will probably give it a go and hey chances are it will work out ok for a while, maybe several years. But the third L is always the decisive factor eventually.

The third L is of course ‘Love’. After several years with someone you not only find attractive but get on really well with, the chances are you might fall in love. Bang. Scary times. But not as scary as when he or she doesn’t love you back. This can be a real relationship ender. You’re sat there one day thinking I lust after this girl, like her personality and frankly can’t see myself with anyone else. So you tell her you love here and she says she ‘likes you a lot’. It’s a cliché but also a classic example of misalignment of Three Ls. You love her but she only likes you. Bang. Relationship over.

So far it’s all quite simple but if this was the case then why do relationships go bad? One minute you’re all in lust with someone you really like who loves you back and next minute the relationship is just not working out. How is this possible when you had all Three Ls? Well you need to ask yourself if you still have them. Typically you start with Lust and Like then Love follows and yet we find ourselves in a situation, just like the friend mentioned at the beginning of this article, where we are in love with someone but can’t seem to make it work. The simple answer is to look again at the Three Ls. In the case mentioned, he Loves her. He Lusts after her but basically he hates her. Somewhere over the course of their relationship they just stopped liking each other but when people have had all Three Ls they find it hard to exit a relationship. In this case they need to really break up as they will only fuel each others anger. Worse though but potentially repairable is another example. A couple who once had the Three Ls are finding things tough. They look at their relationship and realize they still love each other deeply and still like each other but in this case the lust has gone. It’s easy to see why; a few pounds gained and a bit of hair lost all leads towards lethargy and a distinct lack of lust. This can sometimes be rectified with a gym membership, hair replacement or in drastic cases, cosmetic surgery but if you can’t get that missing L back then the relationship is doomed.

We’ve all been there in a relationship that’s on the rocks, wondering why it isn’t working but by applying the Three Ls you can quickly see where the cause of the trouble is. If the love is gone then chances are its over, but that will be obvious. If it’s that there is no lust then there’s a load of places you can go to try and sort that out but if you realize that actually you just don’t like you partner then maybe it’s time to call it a day. Try the Three Ls. It’s simple but I haven’t found a case yet where it doesn’t hold true, and you never know, it might just give you the confidence to start being true to yourself.

Guest post by @jamieoharvey

Accessories, bags, Brand Spotlight, features

The Leather Satchel Company

By Laura on January 1st, 2012

Satchels have been big this year and we don’t expect this trend to disapear anytime soon. While there are a lot of companies making satchels, we highly recommend The Leather Satchel Company.

The Leather Satchel Company make custom satchels for the same cost as many off the shelf competitors, meaning you get a one of a kind bag for a great price. On their website you can pick from an impressive array of colours and style combinations.

After placing my order for a classic chocolate brown leather satchel, I received an email from their workshop to discuss in depth what I was going to use the satchel for and to make sure it would suit my needs. In the end I opted for the 14″ with briefcase handle and strap for a degree of flexibility.

Among some of the many other options to customize your bag include adding deeper gussets to allow you to slide in ‘more books’ in your satchel and Backpack Straps, perfect for cyclists.

All satchels are hand-crafted in Britain from top quality, natural heavy leather by artisan leather-smiths. This standard design features a long adjustable shoulder strap and is stitched using a colour matched blend of cotton and nylon for extra durability. The straps and fasteners are then finished with silver buckles and finally the satchel is riveted for completeness. All satchels come with a 30-day money-back guarantee and a 5-year craftsmanship guarantee.

Here is a peak inside my satchel.

Brand Spotlight, Celeb style, Collaborations, features, Lifestyle & Gadgets, Trends

Spencer Hart collaborate with Samsung

By Laura on January 1st, 2012

A few weeks ago we were invited to one of our favourite Savile Row tailors, Spencer Hart, to learn about their recent collaboration with Samsung.

The collaboration involves integrating mobile technology into the traditional craft of Savile Row design and lifestyle tailoring. To be perfectly honest I was a bit skeptical at first, but as soon as I saw how the tailors were able to use the Samsung Galaxy Note, all doubts disappeared.

The Samsung Galaxy Note features the S Pen – and advanced pen-input technology combined with a full touch 5.3” HD Super AMOLED screen for sketching, editing documents or annotating images. Spencer Hart founder Nick Hart is using this technology to complement the traditional tools of tailoring for measuring up clients and showcasing different fabrics, fits and designs.

We had a chance to speak to Nick Hart about the collaboration. He explained how it is changing the way they work stating: “In our world we spend time with our clients to make sure everything is perfect and there’s a huge amount of detail we need to record to create clothing that’s tailor-made to them. When you work with high profile people things need to be done quickly and you’ve got to be flexible – using this new technology will make us more efficient as a business and allow more time for creativity.

“And of course it’s not just for work. I travel a lot and I’m always looking for new ideas. The Galaxy Note means I can capture inspiration while on the move, through images, memos and sketches, and share them instantly with colleagues, suppliers and even clients!”

The Samsung Galaxy Note devices is now being used in store at the Spencer Hart flagship at 62/64 Brook Street, London.

Brand Spotlight, Clothing, features, knitwear

Introducing: Common Sons Knitwear

By Laura on December 31st, 2011


Here at Brandish, we are always on the look out for new up and coming designers. One that recently caught our attention was Common Sons. Their inaugural AW/11 collection, carried by both selfridges and ASOS, and is best described as British made knitwear for the modern gent. They draw inspiration from traditional sherman knits, while bringing giving it a contemporary twist and a little humor.

All the knitwear is made in the UK, in family run factories and printed with organic dyes. Knits range from £65-95 and are available here

Clothing, features

How to iron a shirt

By Laura on December 31st, 2011

From the classroom to the boardroom, the humble shirt has been your go-to garment for years and now gentlemen, the time has come to show it a little respect. So raise it forth from the depths of your wardrobe, free it from that sad wire hanger, and get ready to stand proud in a shirt fit for the finest of modern men.

As with any good relationship; look after your shirt and it will look after you. Think about it; George Clooney, Bradley Cooper, David Gandy – all perfectly turned out at any given occasion, and all with beautiful women on their arms. The obvious conclusion? Women love a well ironed shirt.

“But what about me?!” we hear you cry, fumbling to pull close your jacket over that crumpled excuse for an outfit. Well fear not, for we’ve teamed with Philips to bring you some top ironing tips… and no hanging your shirt in the shower “to steam it’ is not on the list!

Philips recently released the Man Iron to help those of us who are a bit more domestically challenged. This near-indestructible, sports-car inspired iron packs 2400W, a scratchproof soleplate and advanced steam technology, which should be enough to meet the requirements of any modern man. So for perfect shirts every time follow these five tips:

1) Cotton on to quality:
To look your best you need to wear your best. Choose a cotton shirt and avoid easy-iron fabrics – they are made with plastic so don’t look as fresh.

2) Heat it up:
Chose the right setting for your iron. For cotton shirts, chose a high heat and use steam to power out any stubborn creases. When it comes to removing folds, steam is the dream. The new Philips Man Iron delivers 100g punch of steam to bulldoze through even the toughest creases, leaving you to spend your time looking wholesomely debonair.

3) Get hot under the collar:
Start with the double thickness areas; the collar and the cuffs and iron from the centre
outwards. As the toughest parts, they’ll keep their shape and won’t crease while you work on the rest of the shirt. An iron with a slimmer tip will make it easier to ironing collars, cuffs and other harder-to-reach parts of the shirt.

4) Sleeve-sy does it:
Iron the sleeves next, as they can hang loose when you move onto the body – again preventing creases. Once they’re done, flip the shirt over and iron the back but be careful to avoid the buttons as they can leave button prints on the back of the shirt. Finish with the front of the shirt making sure that every last crease is out.

5) Hang and admire:
Like a fine piece of art, your shirt deserves to be hung properly. Ditch the wire hangers and find a sturdy wooden hanger. Not only will your shirts hang better on them and keep their shape for longer, but your wardrobe will look like that of a true gent. Win win.

Accessories, bags, features

The Courier Ruc Case by J. Panther Luggage Co.

By Laura on December 30th, 2011

The Courier Ruc Case by J. Panther Luggage Co. from J. Panther Luggage Co. on Vimeo.

J. Panther Luggage Co. launched just over a year ago after 2 years of intensive development. Now they are well established in the luggage market and have quite a loyal following. Their products are designed and tested in NYC then handcrafted and finished by New England artisans who’ve been making upscale luggage for generations.

The Courier Ruc Case is their first new product since launching, and we love it! Drawing upon the versatility of their Ruc Tote and the more sporty features of the deluxe Perfect Weekender, this is the perfect work-oriented bag. What stuck us most is that its been designed to withstand the roughest treatment en route to the office, yet it is still bound to leave a good impression once there, unlike the many more sporty cycle bags available.

The Courier Ruc Case has been hand-built from water-resistant Horween leather and has a unique highly functional three-way carry system. The leather handles of the classic briefcase are augmented by two further options. Twin straps to the rear provide simple yet efficient ruck-style carry, with the third option of a shoulder strap. The bag opens up fully in a book-like style and will fit most laptops. In addition it has a variety of compartments and pockets that will accommodate tools ranging from iPads and tablets down to pens and business cards.

The Courier Ruc Case retails for $990 USD and is available here.

Brand Spotlight, features

Infographic: 2011’s biggest menswear trends

By Laura on December 23rd, 2011

Charles Tyrwhitt, men’s shirts specialists, have created this amazing infographic timeline to showcase some of the most iconic looks from the past year.

The timeline draws focuses on events such as film releases, television shows and key cultural happenings, to show just how they have influenced the way UK men have dressed over the past 12 months.

Important style landmarks include the centenary of Harris Tweed and the release of the film Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, which both inspired classic cuts and heritage fabrics. 300 years of Royal Ascot makes an appearance for showcasing the best in morning dress year after year, and of course, Mad Men also features for inspiring 1960s style clothing over several seasons and for main man, Don Draper’s penchant for a sharp wool suit.

Accessories, Brand Spotlight, features

Making of the Herring Shoes Oak Bark belt

By Laura on December 23rd, 2011

There is always something wonderful about listening to master craftsmen discussing their trade. The passion towards their craft is often contagious and gives us a new appreciation for familiar objects.

One video that recently caught my attention was the making of the Herring Shoes Oak Bark belts in the Tanner Bates factory. The video walks us through how this beautiful belt is made. John Hagger’s attention to detail and sourcing local materials is inspiring. Using the same leather often used by harness and bridle makers, the belt features a solid brass hand made buckle hammer riveted and is hand-stitched with Irish linen thread.


Brand Spotlight, Clothing, features

Threadless sells $300,000 t-shirt to raise money for UNICEF

By Laura on November 30th, 2011

With the worst humanitarian crisis in the world currently unfolding in the Horn of Africa, Threadless, BBH New York and the U.S. Fund for UNICEF have partnered to launch GOOD SHIRTS: a unique clothing line with 100 percent of the donations going to the U.S. Fund for UNICEF to support relief efforts in the famine and drought-affected region.

We love the idea behind the Good Shirts collection, as each shirt represents aid items urgently needed in the Horn of Africa and is available at the cost of those items. So if you make a donation of $18.57, the exact cost of three insecticide treated mosquito nets, you will receive a t-shirt featuring a foiled mosquito. One generous individual donated $300,000, the cost for UNICEF to transport aid from Copenhagen to Nairobi, and in return received a shirt featuring a cargo plane. Its a simple yet effective way of creating awareness of the humanitarian crisis currently unfolding in Africa.

Shirts are currently available on Threadless here.

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