At 1.90 meters and blessed with truly movie-star-like good looks, Patrick Grant is a towering testament to the current importance of men’s style. His achievements of the last decade exemplify the renaissance of classic menswear. Creative Director for tailor Norton & Sons, a once flagging stalwart of Savile Row that he acquired and began resuscitating in 2005, Grant also relaunched and directs two other heritage brands that he discovered in the Norton & Sons portfolio. E. Tautz & Sons is a ready-to-wear label that riffs on traditional sartorialism, incorporating contemporary dandyism and references to Grant’s youth. Tautz brought him the Menswear Designer award at the British Fashion Awards in 2010. The other line, Hammond & Co makes stylish suiting in top fabrics available to those on a tighter budget via British clothing retailer Debenhams. I got to meet him the other day in Shanghai and we discussed his latest book on stylish men and drinking whiskey.
He was in Shanghai for a party Chivas Regal was throwing to celebrate the Chivas Made for Gentleman series designed by Grant.
Here is what he told me:
“Style is much more than just what people wear. A lot of the people we celebrate today are men that have no substance behind them. They are beautifully groomed, and beautifully polished but behind the eyes there is nothing – it’s a sort of empty vessel.”
You’ve been listening to Mp3 out of big headphones for too long or just playing them off the speakers on your laptop in some hotel room not even gracious enough to prove speakers. You might have good taste in music, but sound quality is what really matters. The overabundance of choice can also produce a certain fatigue and taking for granted of the music. Much like food too much growth hormone, there is something unnatural about the music we listen to these days.
I guarantee that one is not really allowed to beg for sponsors in this business of blogging. Then again, Stylites – as a blog at least – isn’t really a business. So let me make this plea: Aperol sponsor our parties!
On the heels of the last shirt post, here is more proof of the ever-evolving resonance of Louis Vuitton in China. One almost knew that Papa Smurf would meet the monogram.
Here’s a piece in which I advise Beijing residents on where to get the right men’s items that appeared a while back. Of course the best option remains abroad.
The last year or more has seen an avalanche of articles predicting the demise of the logo and the growth of less flashy but more individualized style in China. See CNBC “Logo fatigue? Chinese now want understated luxury”, “Chinese Luxury Shopping Trends 2014: No Logos And Less Money Driven By Anti-Corruption Measures” from International Business Times, and “How Fashion Brands Adjust to China’s New Niche Style” at the Jing Daily.
If you’re not capable of doing it, you probably aren’t stylish enough to live in Beijing.
Obviously this is all more wishful thinking than anything to do with reality. This summer has not been the very worst, but I am still quite desperate for it to end, probably because I want to get a tweedy suit in this sort of brown and mix it with a patterned shirt. Very nice!
The style of this old man in Luoyang might blow away anything that has appeared on stylites – or perhaps anything on any street style blog in the world. He’s a sort of modern day Jiang Ziya, who was a sort of proto-Zhuge Liang that helped build the Zhou Dynasty.
One good thing about being in Beijing for so long is that I can really watch people change and form relationships with the people I photograph. Cecaa is one of the more stylish people in the city. Here he is four-and-a-half years.
This is four months old, but I still want to put up these photos. I have a few extremely good excuses for the delay and the relative lack of activity on Stylites. Those who know me, know what I mean.
Anyway, in the next few posts will be some of my photos from the second Beijing Vintage Ride, which occurred back in late March. I have been thinking about bicycling a lot recently, because it is one of my ambitions to make hotels in Beijing more bike friendly by convincing them to put racks in prominent locations out front. I am hoping to start with the Four Seasons Hotel Beijing.
Here’s more from the China Daily.
Home of Beijing’s fashion set, Cicada Ultralounge in North Village of Sanlitun is now the exclusive point in town to pick up a copy of The HUB x Blender magazine. Get your copy there.
click to see a pic of the mag
SHORTS ALERT! Principle M Talk Nights Hosted Jirah for a lecture on good posture (nothing worst than a dapper man with a slouchy back, right?). Yet this event consolidated the fact that wearing bermuda shorts ( well above the knee) with either sandals, loafers or classic lace ups and socks is perfectly fine. Beijing has been brutally hot these past days and giving one’s legs a bit of a breeze does make a difference. Justin, Co-founder of Principle M is taking the heat head on with an ultra loose woven wool summer Capri Blazer jacket. I also noted and very much liked, 宋涛‘s white look, he managed a very clever heat beating way to wear an ultra light chiffon blazed jacket and white jersey low neck T-shirt.
Starry (left), Chef of Chi restaurant on 五道营胡同 trained as a fashion designer at Trent University in the UK, which probably goes a long way to explain his hipster looks ( Ben Sherman Tee Shirt and NB trainers) Yet it is his floppy black straw hat which caught my eye; I put a few kuais on this trends becoming big this summer. OuyiHui (right) is a photographer who happens to use the same cultish street camera Ricoh GR as your humble servant writing these words just acquired yesterday to give you better images to browse over. ENJOY