29 Jan 2014

A bold driving suit

The late 1910s driving suit and fur coat is quite too bold for my taste... And yet intriguing.
The suit has plus four trousers.
I instantly came to think of Toad of Toad Hall, from "The Wind in the Willows" (first published in 1908)

Adrian Hughes host of the Danish TV show "Mode Quiz'en" (The Fashion Quiz) dressed for driving

Illustration from The Wind in the Willows. Toad in his driving attire
A suitable car: Dodge automobile 1919. Photo from Lelystad, The Netherlands

28 Jan 2014

A vintage Eton College Pop society waist coat

Recently I won a beautiful bespoke vintage 1920s (presumably) waist coat at an ebay auction. The waist coat origins from the Pop society at Eton College; the most prestigious club at Eton. Whereas the common school boys wear black waist coats members of the society are to wear any colourful waist coat they desire. The Popper's attire consist of a black (braided) tailcoat, a white shirt with a starched wing collar, a white bowtie and houndstooth check spongebag trousers. And an exquisite waist coat.

My waist coat was quite dirty, needed little repair and was missing two Mother Of Pearl detachable buttons. But it was mine for a wee sum of £6. I handwashed the garment, made a little repair, and added two new MOP buttons. And now I have a really lovely vest!
I do not intend to dress like a Popper in public - the pictures below are for display only - but the waist coat looks great with my chalk striped vintage navy suit. And will prove an excellent match for a couple of my summer suits. Topped of with spectator shoes and a Panama hat. Brilliant.

Dressed as a Popper. In my vintage 1930s Morning coat from Barker's, London. The bow tie is a selftie white Marcella cotton bowtie from Darcy Clothing. Usually worn with my evening tails.

The other day I came across a rather interesting newspaper article on the topic of the Eton pop society: A very exclusive club called pop. Written by a Bill Coles who attended Eton College from 1978 to 1982.

Vintage wool houndstooth check trousers and black Oxfords from Magnanni

Blue and cream stripes. White cotton lining and back. Detachable Mother Of Pearl buttons 
Handsewn button holes. Incredible state for age
Beautiful MOP buttons

HRH Prince William in his Pop Society attire

19 Jan 2014

Travel umbrella from Il Marchesato

Il Marchesato is a small Italian family business focusing on quality materials and craftmanship started in 1978. They made this beautiful dark brown travel umbrella of mine.
It is possible to disassemble the umbrella removing handle and peak - hence the predicate "travel".
I am very happy with this umbrella which can be used as an everyday umbrella, too - despite my first worries about the capacity of the joinings; it is a lot tension the torque of a canopy placed at the end of a 67 cm shaft in windy weather puts on the joinings.

Il Marchesato - made with love & passion
Horn peak and quality joinings
The umbrella has a steam bent Malacca handle, horn peak, and beech shaft. The ribs are of fibreglass and the cover/canopy is of the best quality polyester. The lenght is 93,5 cm assembled and 67 cm disassembled. Diameter of canopy is approx. 108 cm.
I purchased the umbrella from Grunwald True Style here in Denmark.

Disassembled the umbrella fits neatly in my suitcase

Fibreglass ribs
The true advantage of this travel umbrella has revealed itself travelling by aeroplane to the United Kingdom on several occasions. The airport security in the UK is somewhat stricter from what I experience in other European countries; they insist on all articles fitting into the small plastic trays at the airport security. And disassembling the umbrella in front of the security staff to make it fit really gives it up for appreciative remarks.

Airport security at it's best :-)
Me and my Il Marchesato in front of Kensington Palace, London

15 Jan 2014

Pocket watch and military style leather watch strap

I quite enjoy wearing my antique pocket watch in the breast pocket - the subtle ticking next to my heart is very reassuring.
The pocket watch is an American Waltham Massey clockwork in a British made (hallmarked) silver casing from 1902.
The brown leather strap secures the watch and comes in handy when picking up the watch. The leather strap is bought at Ebay - it is new/contemporary and not of the best quality I'm afraid.
I have not yet found the perfect silver chain and fob for wearing the pocket watch with a waist coat - e.g. with my dinner suit. But one fine day I will, I am sure.

As usual I have added a few photos from Jeeves&Wooster where Bertie Wooster wears his pocket watch in a brown leather strap.

Is it tea time, yet?
The military style leather watch strap
Watch and leather strap

A beautiful golden clockwork

Mr. Wooster and his friend "Tuppy" Glossop


12 Jan 2014

A rainy Sunday with Fedora and later a Fair Isle knit

On a rainy Sunday - one of those grey-not-so-cold-but-moisty-with-slight-rain Sundays - I would dress in a country suit and a Fedora and go for a long walk in the country side. On such a Sunday I might not wear a tie, but a cravat instead.
The Fedora and the country suit are perfect for a rainy Sunday. Here I am wearing a Tattersall check shirt and a navy Paisley cravat.

Then when returning to the house after a long walk I would hang the suit jacket and waistcoat to dry* and slip into my comfortable and warm "Fair Isle" knit sweater vest and enjoy a nice cuppa tea by the fireplace.

A nice cuppa by the fireplace
My knit vest is not actually from Fair Isle but it is Scottish, though. Fair Isle is a remote island situated between Orkney and Shetland to the north of Scotland. Fairisle knitting gained a considerable popularity when the Prince of Wales (later to become Edward VIII and then Duke of Windsor) wore Fair Isle sweaters in public in 1921.

The Prince of Wales in Fair Isle knit.
My lambswool "Fair Isle" knit from Darcy Clothing
My navy Paisley silk cravat from Swagger& Swoon. the colours and pattern are very versatile for use with various shirts, odd jackets and suits on informal occasions.

*Regarding the damp suit jacket please consider the advice from Mrs. Beeton's excellent 1861 book on household management: 
"Before he (i.e. the valet) hangs damp clothing by the fire, he rubs the cloth with a sponge until the smoothness of the nap is restored. If the clothes are allowed to dry before brushing, then later brushing might not remove the roughness."

7 Jan 2014

Pocket square and grenadine tie

Today arrived the beautiful pocket square and the lovely black grenadine tie I got on sale at Exquisite Trimmings. Marvellous! Let's dwell on the lovely structures and colours for a moment...

Medallion print pocket square 70% wool/30% silk from Drake's London. Handrolled in Italy.

Lovely structure on this fine weave grenadine tie. Made in Italy for Exquisite Trimmings.

5 Jan 2014

A walk in the countryside - and Tricker's boots

My wife and I enjoyed a rather splendid walk in the countryside on New Year's day. The weather and the surroundings were lovely. When the sun broke through the clouds at one point we were compelled to taking a few photos.

Vintage bespoke shooting suit made in Eton, 1970. Vintage grey waist coat. Striped shirt with detachable double round collar. Bond flat cap from Pakeman, Catto & Carter.
The military style pocket watch strap and the pocket watch I will divulge more about in a future post...
Shooting socks and Tricker's boots. Socks are from Shootingsocks.co.uk
A couple of ducks enjoying a very warm winter
As I knew the terrain would offer muddy trails I decided to wear my newest acquisition in foot wear: a pair of beauteous boots in dark brown leather with rubber soles from Tricker's in Northampton, England. 
The boot is a full brogue wingtip in a combination of dark brown calf and grain leathers. It has a Dainite rubber sole. I acquired the boots from Herring Shoes in England - an online store where you can find many reasonably priced good quality shoes and boots. 
It is my first pair of Dainite soled boots and they seem a bit stiff at first but when used as intended in the countryside in muddy or slippery terrain they really come to their right.

Dainite British made rubber soles
Tricker's Steeple boots made in Northampton, England.
I have collected a few photos to show how boots and breeks can be used together

From the movie The shooting Party
Downton Abbey shooting party

Lord Grantham wearing boots and leather gaiters

Leather gaiters at Ebay.co.uk
from Orvis.com