John Lewis

I am doing some work experience at the John Lewis head offices.

I work with the buyers most of the time which is a lot of sorting out samples and initial production, from pre-production, and production clothes, peeling off old stickers off folders so they can be re-used, filing, putting clothes away in the stockroom, clearing out drawers, making sure the John Lewis clothes are on John Lewis hangers and Collection clothes are on collection hangers etc....The things we do for experience!
At least everyone is lovely and the offices are extremely festive at the moment with decorations and chocolates everywhere!
On my way in to the offices aswell there have been samples of buckfizz, champagne, mulled wine, mince pies and I got a handful of perfume samples too! A good start to the day.

Highlight so far: Doing research for the designers on WGSN... since third year my uni hasnt renewed their subscription so I have had no access to it....this way I have the industry access and I spent hours looking at the menswear trends and stories for AW11..

Some photos of the showroom

I have just finished my second weeks work where I was busy researching moods and trends for SS11. I also was able to do a lot of printing out for my own research which was very helpful for my next project. Really lovely people in the design studio, so I had a nice time up there researching.
I also had a little meeting with Peter Ruis, the buying director of John Lewis who is also one of the 10 mentors for GFW.
Unfortunately I have no photos from the studio.

All packed up and ready to go!

I have just finished my evaluation for my Major Project Preparation and now I am all packed up and ready for hand in at 10am tomorrow!

Final Designs

I chose 6 final outfits out of my designs that I would further into the realisation of the outfits, by making them.
I used swatches of fabric, pen and collage to create them, then I manipulated them on photoshop.

Final Front Cover

Here are a few of the front cover designs I experimented with. I adapted the lightness/darkness of the picture, and the lightness/darkness of the background, different fonts and borders.

I decided to use this one as my final front cover.

Facial Hair Chart

Here's something for all the men to set their minds to! Get growing boys..

I think this would look nice if i developed it into a screen print, maybe for some t-shirts?
But at the moment it is going to be my front cover, after a bit more work into it.
I found the chart of facial hair online and I recreated them and took out all the details to their faces as I wanted to just show the beards and moustaches.
They each have a different name and I will be titling my projects from now on accordingly.
I'm thinking about calling this project after the one with the least facial hair as it is my first project in menswear, and as I progress, each project title will be named after the beard that has a little more hair.


I made an appointment with MoDiP (Museum of Design in Plastics) to see the menswear collection. There was not a huge range of clothes, but what was there, was nice! Most of the clothes were from the 70's and all of it was made with beautiful fabric and attention to detail.


I love this model but I still don't know his name...


I am always on the lookout for interesting clippings from the newspaper supplements and the fashion magazines that come with newspapers. They are always a good read and a very good place to look for menswear articles and fashion.

An article that caught my eye recently from 'The Times Magazine' (October 17 2009) that inspired me to put a different haristyle/moustache on all my designs!
The article is all about moustaches featuring all different shapes and sizes.

"In Novemeber, when the men's health initiative Movember ( encourages men to grow moustaches in aid of the Prostate Cancer charity"

I think this is a great cause and for all those men who secretly wanted to grow a moustache but don't have the guts, it's a pefect opputunity!

"The moustache is a way for men to beat their chests and bellow a declaration of masculinity. Pathetic, really, but at least it's an explanation".

Another article from the same 'The Times magazine' was an article celebrating the mens magazine "Fantastic Man". It is hard to find a decent men's magazine with interesting articles and good fashion for real men but I count this magazine as a really good read along with 'Esquire', another one of my favourites.

On October 11, Matt Rudd wrote an article for the Sunday Times re-livong his week of wearing catwalk clothes in the real world, when he's normally a dedicated follower of Marks andSpencer. He wanted to see the reaction from people on the streets when he wore garments such as "a strange green leather coat with a fur neck, some woollen tights and a cardigan" courtesy of Alexander McQueen.

He came to the conclusion that he almost found it a shame that men have to dress so conformist when women can go around in any number of styles and nobody bats an eyelid to them.

Though he wasn't comfortable in what he was wearing because of the negative response from everyone "I walked past the first pub to what can only be described as heckling, and the second to a chorus of 'W***er'" and "Bloody hell, mate, look at the state of you" I think the streets are not quite ready for every-day wearing catwalk clothes!

Whilst rumaging through my envelopes of clippings, I came across another one about second hand and vintage clothing, and jumble sales. I read to the end of the page, then noticed to my shock that Rumble in The Jumble had a mention! (Bottom right hand corner)
This is an event held once a month at Sixty Million Postcards where me and the 'Dressing Room' Ladies have had our own stall there selling old bric a brac, vintage clothing and a tombola.

Look closely! Under the Bournemouth section...

Here are some photos from the event where I had my own stall with a couple of my friends.

Question time!

I circulated a questionnare around uni a few weeks ago to get the general idea of fabric ideas, fastening, price etc.

I came to the conclusion (bearing in mind that only students so far have filled these out) that:

the average they would spend on a jacket is somewhere between £50 and £90

The quality of the fabric is very important (on a scale of 1-5- 5 being most important and 1 being least, the majority answered 4s and 5s)

All of the men who answered the questionnaire would be willing to experiment with their style of jacket.

The majority didn't want their outerwear to be of the same style as their trousers.

On a scale of 1-5 (5 being most important, 1 being least) the majority answered 3s when asked how significant the pattern of the lining was to them.

The majority favoured a button up fastening on a jacket.

Details in garments as well as the fit and comfort of the clothing seem to be particularly essential.

The most popular fabric for a jacket out of: Tweed, Wool, Cotton suiting, Linen, leather
was Tweed with cotton and wool being close seconds.

And the most name mentioned most when asked who their style icon was, was: Steve McQueen and James Dean. Some of my favourites from their answers were Cary Grant, Buddy Holly, and Ewan McGreggor.

This brings me to the end of my questionnaire

£ Cravats for sale £

My first two cravats have gone on sale at Beau Vintage for £8 each. (The two on the far left). They fit in really well in the shop as they are made out of vintage garments/materials. The polka dot one originated as a skirt.
I'd like to make a reversible one and I want to use velvet so it will keep a man warm in the cold!

I love these shoes. I would wear all of them if they fit me! I think boys shoes on girls is a good look with a pair of tight jeans/ skirt and tights.

A couple of lovely satchels and a paisley scarf.


Following my live feedback from Emelyn Brown at Stitch Menswear, and from Glen Kitson, a graduate from AUCB, I have looked at the following designers:

Daniel Allesandrini

FOLK. Menswear

Oliver Spencer

and blogs such as:

which have all been a great help so big thank you's to them!

I especially liked this recent blog ( November 23rd 2009) from secretforts blog which features Oliver Spencer's lookbook, which coincidently was one of the designers that Emelyn had told me to look at.
I love menswear accessories and think they are really what brings an outfit together. A simple accessory like a cravat can totally re-invent an otherwise boring outfit.

and this from November 4 2009 from mistercrew blog. I like this because of the lovely gilet the man is wearing. It is really similar to one the Bret wears from Flight of the Conchords except the colours are opposite (bret is on the left of the picture below). He has lots of lovely jumpers and shirts too.
This picture has a really good use of colour. The contrasting colours in the gilet are so similar to the contrasting colours of the horse which makes the horse really involved in this shoot.

I really like the Folk.menswear label and have been in their brick lane shop before to check it out.
I am loving their chunky knitwear and if I had lots of money I would definitely be buying some of my christmas presents there!