As lockdown begins to lift and we start to look beyond loungewear, this month’s column felt like the right opportunity to provide some overdue inspiration from cool brands that have caught my eye on Instagram. The trio I’ve chosen will help you start looking forward to dressing up and feeling good.
BERG & BERG
Scandinavia has long been a hotbed for contemporary brands and has recently become known for up-and-coming tailoring labels. Berg & Berg is at the forefront of this movement and I’ve fallen in love with its aesthetics and ethos since I started following its journey on Instagram a few months ago. The smart-casual dress code has always been tricky to get right and it’s become even more of a challenge as casualwear has risen to dominate the menswear landscape. Berg & Berg offers clothes and accessories inspired by the rich heritage of timeless style but adapted to suit the modern man. I am a great believer that looking good should not be complicated. For a gent, it needs to be effortless, and the label’s ability to combine the classic elegance of yesteryear with contemporary functionality makes it a winner. Karin and Mathias Berg’s family-run business makes pieces with an understated Nordic cool – organic-cotton polos and rugby shirts are particular heroes.
During the winter months I’m always looking at Aussie Instagram accounts for a virtual dose of vitamin D. Recently, the Australian sun and outdoor HIIT sessions haven’t been the major pull; I’ve been distracted by a menswear brand called Informale that is changing the perception of Australian fashion. This artisan label is making its mark with a casual and modern approach to tailoring featuring classic cuts, fine finishing and unique details. The informality is refreshing, and Informale’s locally made wardrobe staples are built to keep for life. It makes pieces for the modern man seeking a stylish solution to a world growing more casual by the minute, but it believes in the old-school idea of buying less and buying better. Founder and creative director Steve Calder creates limited quantities of seasonal staples that will stand the test of time, build character with age, and continue to look fresh and relevant for years to come. In a world where sustainability is rightly at the forefront of all our minds, not only does the brand produce tight capsules that look on point, its fabrics come from natural fibres. Steve also makes sure it knows the origin, dying, weaving process of every fabric it chooses. Easy on the conscience, as well as the eye.
One of the biggest changes in menswear has been the evolution of shoes. Traditional rules such as ‘Don't wear brown in town’ feel antiquated in our new age of casual dressing. Sneakers are no longer pigeon-holed for the gym or casual weekends; they’ve evolved into objects of luxury that are more commonly seen on the red carpet or in the office. But the different shapes, styles and trends make it hard to know which ones to invest in. Even though I consider myself a man with his finger on the pulse of menswear, I’m not afraid to admit I have been in need of some trainer inspiration. As someone who has long relied on a classic brogue and loafer to chuck on with jeans, shorts and trousers, I wanted a sneaker that was classic in style and not too trend-led. After much browsing, the clouds parted and the Sweyd Instagram account appeared on my feed. Sweyd is a Stockholm-based footwear brand that puts versatility at the heart of what it does, drawing inspiration from vintage sport and military icons. Crafted in Florence and inspired by minimalist Scandinavian style, Sweyd runs an account that’s peppered with throwbacks to iconic Porsches and effortlessly stylish gents wearing sneakers with combinations of white trousers, field jackets and pleated trousers that make you want to elevate your sneaker game. If you are looking to purchase your first modern style, check out the runner AT-05 in beach cream.
There is a long, ongoing debate in menswear about whether the shirt and tie combination is dead. In my eyes, it never will be, but it’s true that the classic shirt cut has evolved. Whether the humble shirt and tie makes a return or not, there is no disputing the positive feeling putting on a fresh crisp shirt feels. Now’s a good time to ditch the classic but overused poplin shirt and upgrade to a long-sleeve camp collar shirt. Avoid garish prints and patterns. Opt for a block colour – navy is always a go-to or you can never go wrong with crisp white cotton-linen for summer evening drinks.
The recent relaunch of Florentine tailor Sartoria Vestrucci – renowned for producing impeccable handmade suits in flattering shapes and beautiful clothes – meant it felt only right to share and showcase the elegant, natural style of the brand's partner and ambassador, Tommaso Capozzoli. Tommaso undoubtedly has style. It is not loud – it’s unlikely to stand out in a sea of well-dressed Italian men – but it is subtle and personal. At a time when the future of bespoke and made-to-measure tailoring is in question, Tommaso reminds us of the beauty and power of premium tailoring.
Follow Tommaso Capozzoli on Instagram
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