Moustache Season is upon us as Movember kicks off tomorrow. So its time to man up and grow that cookie duster.
Every November, Movember is responsible for the sprouting of moustaches on thousands of men’s faces in the UK and around the world. The aim is simply to help raise money and awareness of men’s health, specifically prostate cancer and other cancers that affect men.
On Movember 1st, men will start the month off with a clean-shaven face and then for the rest of the month, Mo Bros will groom, trim and wax their moustaches becoming human billboards for men’s health. So what are you waiting for? Join your Mo Bro’s and sign up here.
If your based in London don’t forget to pop down to the Merc clothing store on Carnaby Street throughout November for a tash tidy
I absolutely love the latest collection from the British fashion house Alexander McQueen.
Overall they have created a minimal but elegant collection. A few of my favourite pieces include the beautiful Prince of Wales check suit, the Fair Isle Jacquard knit button-up, and a cashmere turtle neck featuring the McQueen skull on the front.
They also have a few more casual pieces such as the bomber jacket, the cashmere pony-print v-neck sweater and classic skull motif scarf.
Adidas have rolled out the much anticipated third installment of the popular David Beckham / Design by J. Bond collection for Fall/Winter 2011.
The collaboration between sport and style icon David Beckham and Undefeated founder James Bond has been widely celebrated in the past, and will yet again see a contemporary range of footwear, outerwear, and accessories.
Much of the inspiration has clearly been pulled from collegiate imagery and has a very traditional American sportswear feel to it. This is something we have seen a lot of in the last two seasons. The varsity jacket in particular seems to be making a comeback. What do you make of this trend – will you be rocking the look this Fall/Winter?
adidas Originals by Originals James Bond for David Beckham 2011 Fall/Winter
French ready-to-wear brand A.P.C. is easily one of my favourites. Founded in 1988 by Tunisian born Designer Jean Touitou, they continue to impress season after season with their beautiful high quality garments.
The fall collection is now available, but one piece that really stood for me, was this wonderful sartorial city jacket. Woven in the historical Harris Tweed, this jacket combines contemporary Parisian style with heritage fabrics.
What makes this jacket stand out, is the superb attention to detail. From the cream shearling collar and epaulettes to the customized zip/button front and four pockets. The jacket is a bit pricey at £485, but this is a classic look you will be able to wear season after season.
With the winter months getting ever closer, we know how tempting it is to slip into hibernation mode. Baggy clothes, comfort food and general avoidance of the outdoors… let’s admit it, we’ve all been there. And If like us you, work in an office tied to your desk all day, falling into this routine is not hard.
So to keep you motivated over the winter we will be doing a series of features of tips and products to keep you in top shape. To kick off the series, we spoke to nutritionist and author, Fiona Kirk to get the low down on how you can stay focused and energetic.
Her advice – get your vitamins, especially vitamin D.
Vitamin D has become one of the most researched and positively-publicised vitamins over the past few years and for good reason. It seems that hardly a week goes by without another study highlighting a new benefit. Most of us already know about its role in helping to form and maintain strong bones by aiding the absorption of calcium, but it appears that thi bone-strengthener may also be a brain-sharpener.
Fiona pointed us to one recent study which compared the cognitive performance of more than 3,000 men between the ages of 40 and 79 and found that the men with the highest levels of vitamin D showed the best cognitive function. In fact, the men with higher levels of vitamin D performed consistently better in a simple neuropsychological test that documents an individual’s attention and speed of information processing.
Vitamin D is primarily synthesised in the skin after exposure to sunshine. It was previously thought that as little as 5-10 minutes of sun exposure on arms, legs and face 3 times a week without sunscreen between 11am and 2pm during the spring, summer and autumn months should provide a light-skinned individual with adequate vitamin D and allow for storage of excess for use during the winter with minimal risk of skin damage. Those with dark
skin may require twice or three times the exposure. However, a recent survey in the UK indicates that more than half the adult population are deficient and in winter around 1 in 6 people show a severe deficiency. If the body cannot produce enough vitamin D because of insufficient sunlight exposure, we need to up our levels with D-rich foods but even then we may be short.
So if you want to stay sharp and avoid winter lethargy try and get out of the office for a brisk walk at lunchtime and get plenty of D-rich foods into your day. This includes foods like canned salmon, sardines and mackerel, soya milk, yoghurt, cheese, cow’s milk, egg yolks, orange juice and cereals fortified with vitamin D.
Fiona even shared a meal plan with us designed to not only keep you on top of your game, but to help you avoid blood sugar peaks and troughs which are the enemy if you are looking to shed a few pounds and/or keep your waistline in check.
Breakfast: 2 scrambled eggs (add an extra yolk), a couple of slices of lean,
grilled bacon, grilled tomatoes and mushrooms, rye toast and a large glass of
D-fortified orange juice
Mid Morning Snack: tinned, mashed salmon on oatcakes and a latte made
with soya milk
Lunch: Bean or Lentil Soup and a big mixed salad with lots of colour topped
with a dollop of cottage cheese and mixed seeds or pine nuts
Mid Afternoon Snack: Couple of pieces of fresh fruit with a chunk of hard
Evening Meal: Very Quick Mackerel (bake a couple of smoked mackerel, skin
side down, in a medium hot oven until deliciously hot and smokey, about 4-
5 minutes) and serve with lots of roasted vegetables, drizzled with soy sauce
and sweet potato chips.
The latest offering from Converse, brings street style and the unique, eco-urban mark-making art form Yarn-Bombing together, to create the Knitted Cuff.
HOTTEA, is one of the many artist working in the medium across the US. He got into Yarn-Bombing after being shot by a taser gun and spending three days in jail for graffiti. By changing the medium he works in, he was able to continue augmenting his environment without damaging it…lowering his risk of being caught by councils and police.
HOTTEA as well as a number of other Yarn-Bombing artists’ joined up with Converse and Foot Locker to bring their unique artform to the campaign and Europe, using threads of yarn to artistically link every day street objects, giving the environment its very own version of the knitted cuff.
The shoe comes in a number of colourways including a knitted red, black and white woollen cuff with a grey canvas upper on a high top silhouette. It is also available is a series of plaid collars .
The Knitted Cuff by Converse is available now exclusively at Foot Locket for £54.99
Topman have just launched their latest concept store in Brandish’s very own neighbourhood – Shoreditch, London.
The store is set to function as a social and fashion destination for the local community. With its exposed brickwalls, it has a very NYC vibe to it and will feature a curated selection of key Topman pieces, seasonal project collaborations with a handful of branded items and limited edition artwork/books.
If your by Spitalfield Market make sure to check out the shop at 98 Commercial Street.
Terry Richardson, yeah the pervy guy behind American Apparel, recently released a double book, called “Mom & Dad.” To launch the book, the world acclaimed photographer Richardson, is exhibiting picture of his parents at the Colotte in Paris.
The exhibition is joined by a small pop-up store, which includes a selection of products such as t-shirts, G-shock and BabyG Casio watches. Despite what we may think of Richardson, these watches are pretty damn cool. The watches come in a brilliant red plaid, mimicking his trademark button-down shirts.
Mom & Dad is being held at Colette now through November 5 and you can purchase the time pieces online and in store today.
This is definitely exquisite ’tailoring with oomph’. Paul Costelloe says the inspiration for his spring/summer 2012 collection is comes from the 1962 Hollywood classic Whatever Happened to Baby Jane? That may very well be, but we can’t help to think of the dapper Mad Men and Michael Caine in 70′s film Get Carter.
Last week a good friend posted a video explaining the benefit of Vibram Five Finger shoes, made entirely by fans. At first I was hugely cynical, after all they do look completely ridiculous. However, my friend is a bit of a fitness fanatic and I figured he probably had some good reasons for converting to “barefoot running.” With this in mind I began to do a little research and discovered there might actually be something to this whole Barefoot thing. Below I have put together a guide on how to get started. Personally I plan on picking up a pair to try it out for myself, but we would love to hear if any of you give it a try too.
Since the 1960s athletes have been competing in races barefooted and, with the recent increasing wave of interest in barefoot running, many people have raced to purchase minimalist shoes and jumped, quite literally, feet first into the sport. The reason being that with natural, ‘shoeless’ running, the lateral edge of the human forefoot is the part which strikes the ground with the most force. Running in padded shoes typically alters this as more emphasis is placed on the heel and the area towards the back of the foot – which has been claimed to cause more stress on the heel, knees and hips. Therefore many athletes became interested in the sport to strengthen the foot and help improve speed.
Although not strictly a shoe-less sport, there are various ways of tackling barefoot running; some runners wear specially adapted socks, some opt for running moccasins (like outdoor bedroom slippers) and some use minimalist shoes that resemble ordinary running shoes but are constructed from very thin, unpadded materials and have a flat sole with minimal tread. It isn’t, however, as simple as changing your running shoes.
It’s Not ‘Ready, Steady, Go’….
Going from padded, structured running shoes to minimalistic ones is quite a physical change for
your feet and not one which should be presumed easy or natural. It is essential that you train the foot and leg muscles gradually to run in such minimalistic shoes to help reduce injuries and lessen metatarsal stress. Due to the design of barefoot running shoes it is actually recommended that you alternate; training in barefoot shoes whilst running in your specialised running shoes. As Daniel E. Lieberman*, professor of human evolutionary biology at Harvard University states, “If you’ve been a heel-striker all your life you have to transition slowly to build strength in your calf and foot muscles.”
Choosing Your Minimalist Shoes
The first consideration when choosing your first pair of minimalist running shoes is the thickness, or profile, of the sole and heel as you want your feet to immediately sense and communicate to your brain the type of terrain you are on, adapting to a natural running style. Avoid shoes which have a built up heel as these encourage you to over point your toes when running, which could lead to foot damage.
Secondly, think about the flexibility of the sole and check there is no arch support. Barefoot running is all about training your foot arch to naturally flatten so a stiff sole and arch support will only preventing the muscles from acting in this way. A good way to test this is by seeing if you can twist and bend the sole of the shoe with ease. Obviously it needs to protect the sole of your foot from the environment, but flexibility allows your foot to become more familiar with the ground.
Thirdly, remember that the lighter the shoe the better. If the shoes weight is distributed unevenly
(i.e. heavier at the toe or heel) it will cause a bias tendency in the way the foot moves with the shoe and go against its natural movement.
It is advisable to go for a mid-sole level to begin with. The Nike Free Run range has a helpful 10 point number scale which helps identify the thinness of the soles – for example models with a 3 in the name will be more flexible than those with a 10 (which is the thickness of an average running shoe), making the range a good starting point for first time minimalist shoe buyers. Alternatively, Saucony have the Kinvara or Mirage shoes which are also mid-point shoes.
For the more extreme, hardened barefoot runner, the Saucony Hattori shoe claims to be Saucony’s lightest general purpose running shoe ever, or try out the Vibram 5 Fingers shoe which was the first of its kind on the market and the shoe of choice for many barefoot runners. Sportsshoes.com has a large range of minimalist shoes and is a good place to compare models if you are unsure.
First Steps ‘Barefoot’
As is normal before any running, stretch your hamstrings and calf muscles. Lieberman also suggests that it is a good idea to massage the arches of your feet as this helps in the breaking down of scar tissue and healing.
To begin barefoot running, it is a good idea to try it first on a hard, smooth surface such as a tennis court or running track – rather than a bumpy street. Your feet will naturally adjust to moving on this surface by forefoot striking, rather than the heel striking we tend to do in padded running shoes.During your first barefoot run do not exceed more than a quarter of a mile as your foot muscles will tire more rapidly. Leave a ‘rest day’ between each training session and remember that training your feet to run in this way will take time so build up distances by no more that 10% each week. If at any point you experience pain, stop!
Due to the focus on footwear padding and support in today’s shoes our feet have adapted to these luxuries as ‘the norm’, making barefoot running almost an unnatural, new feeling for us. Our feet have evolved to run in specialist shoes, so it will take time for them to adjust to minimalist running and they will be in discomfort to begin with. Sore, tired muscles are normal, but bone, joint, or soft-tissue pain is a signal of injury and if any of these occur, stop running immediately and see your chiropodist.
It is important that you continue to wear your padded running shoes when running long distance
or partaking in any race whilst you train your feet to run barefoot. Only when you feel 100%
comfortable running barefoot and experience no discomfort at all can you start to run in minimalist shoes more often.
Running shoe specialist Saucony highlight that minimalism is isn’t an end, it’s actually a means – and many footwear retailers agree. Brett Bannister, MD of Sportsshoes.com, believes that, “Minimalist shoes can be built into your training regime to help strengthen your feet and leg muscles, but you still need to pick the right shoes and be careful to make the transition slowly.”
Minimalist shoes are very much an excellent training aid which can be incorporated into your
running routine to great effect, but not the be-all and end-all of your running routine. Going back to basics with barefoot running is an exhilarating experience and definitely one you should embrace – just remember to play it safe!
A few weeks ago the guys over at Woodzee got in touch to tell us all about their beautiful handcrafted wood sunglasses.
We have seen a few wooden frames around recently and love the concept, but for the most part they have been vastly over priced. Woodzee, on the other hand have managed to maintain a high degree of quality, while at the same time making their glasses incredibly affordable, starting at just $85.
The 100% wood shades currently come in two different styles, Aviators and Wayfarers. Each pair is hand-made with either original bamboo, stained bamboo, Zebra wood, or Pear wood, making no one pair identical. To top it off, for those eco-conscious Woodzee will plant a tree for every pair of sunglasses sold.
We might be heading into winter, but I absolutely love these glasses and plan on picking up a pair next pay day.
Woodzee ship internationally and all styles are available for purchase here.
Its no secret that we are big fans of ASOS here at Brandish, and we can’t wait to see what they will be rolling out for their Fall/Winter 2011 collection.
To launch the collection they have created a brilliant new interactive website called ASOS Urban Tour, exploring street trends in London, Paris, Berlin, LA, and New York. The Paris video (above) follows an in-line skating crew taking the viewer on a city tour, while showing off some key pieces from the collection.
ASOS consistently demonstrate a fantastic understanding of the current fashion landscape and trends, which once again is reflected in their diverse seasonal offering. Anyways make sure to check out the rest of the campaign here.
Supreme is at it again this time partnering up with Levi’s on their new capsule collection for Fall/Winter 2011.
The collection features a number of standard staples from the American denim giant, including Levi’s 505 Zip-Fly Jean, a Chambray Work Shirt, a Trucker Jacket in leather and suede, a Denim Down Vest and Denim Bell Hat. Although I love the collection, I can’t help but feel that most of it does not look that different from the regular Levi’s collection. Hopefully prices will not be over inflated just because the pieces have a Supreme label slapped in them.
The collection is being assembled in the US and expected to hit stores Sept 15th, Japan on the 17th and the new London store on the 22nd.
The utilitarian look is set to be big this fall. Both practical and stylish this look is perfect for damp fall weather. Michigan based brand, Wolverine, have been making wonderful rugged boats since 1883, combining tradition with modern style. This season, the Wolverine No. 1883 collection, is comprised of eleven new styles all with an emphasis on fine craftsmanship, heritage and distinctive designs.
My favourite has to be the Wolverine Mayall boot which features a butter-soft full-grain leather upper, plaid woven print lining, fold down functionality for extra versatility, and rubber grips to prevent you sliding around the sidewalk.
The Mayall boot is available here for $225 USD or £142 GBP