Store Info: WP, Rome
If you ask for shopping advice or read any of the numerous guides on Rome, your search will most likely be narrowed to Via Condotti and its surrounding area, where the amount of high end labels flagship stores is uncanny. Mind you, I’m not complaining…how could I when you run into Kiton, Prada, Brioni, Hermès, Cucinelli and more in a 300m radius?
However, after cruising those overwhelming luxury filled streets it was refreshing to come across a multi-brand shop where several personal favourites came together: Beams+, Barbour and Woolrich among others. WP suddenly felt like home: upon arrival you’re greeted by its super friendly staff members, ready to lend you hand while you lose yourself within the uniquely designed environment. On the right, an indoor tent solely devoted to Beams+ stood proud showcasing the Japanese brand latest offerings, while the opposite side hosted Barbour’s classics along with Steve McQueen’s limited edition, perfectly framed by a worn in leather sofa. Further in, Woolrich Bros. presented a wide array of garments and accessories, complemented by those of Reigning Champ, Smart Turnout and Brooks.
This eclectic mix of garments/design is what makes WP into a shopping experience of its own, bringing together top garments and a comfortable feeling of belonging to all its customers. If you’re ever in the Italian capital and want to get your hands on some great ready to wear alternatives while waiting for your bespoke suits, do yourself a favor and head over to WP.
WP Store, Rome
Salita San Sebastianello, near Piazza di Spagna
WIWT - Layering up: wool herringbone blazer by Gentleman, Eskdale vest by Barbour, snow wash denim shirt by Our Legacy, crewneck tee by Levi’s, slim fitting cargo pants by Uniqlo, argyle socks by Calzedonia and brogues by Henry James Shoes.
Styling: Miguel Vieira
Photos: Rita Lino
Store info: Lander Urquijo
If you’re a Tumblr habitué and enjoy cruising the endless pages of menswear content, you’ve most likely come across Lander Urquijo’s outstandingly styled mannequins. Presenting a distinct aesthetic, with strong roots in Spanish heritage and occasionally hinting at Italian, this Madrid based store has been causing quite a stir as of recently.
Their innovative approach to the masses, and specifically the target audience, has not only placed them on the radar of every menswear enthusiast, but is also setting a standard for stores across the globe. Instead of focusing solely on the core business of selling garments by means of an online store per se, they do so in a more personal way through their blog, providing customers and bloggers alike with their unique take on the universe that surrounds them. As such, they encourage you to develop a special connection to the brand and those behind it, being enticed to return to the blog on a daily basis; should a specific item grab your attention you need only contact them for purchase.
Although they carry such renowned brands as Barbour by To Ki To or Drakes, their in-house label is where the gold lies. Besides ready-to-wear options in the most varied, bold and often hard to find fabrics, they also offer two alternative bespoke suiting services: one sewn by machine and the other entirely handcrafted. Needless to say, a refined level of tailoring excellence is assured in every garment. It was this ever going quest for perfectionism and attention to detail, that recently earned them the prestigious “Dedal de Oro” award.
If you haven’t done so already, check their Tumblr and hit the follow button!
A glimpse of what to expect…
Renewing your outerwear
For all of you with Barbour jackets or any other waxed piece of outerwear, here’s a lesson on how to bring them back to their former waterproofed glory. My waxed parka has taking a serious beating this Winter, so I’ve been on the lookout for a tutorial such as this for a while now. To top it off, they’ve thrown a bulldog in the picture, love that dog…
As I’ve stressed several times before, one of the most interesting aspects of a look resides in the small details. Carefully mixing and blending them is a recipe for a perfect outfit, one that easily stands out in a crowd.
A great way to tweak an already great piece is adding elbow patches. Coming in a variety of colors, patterns and materials, they’re an easy and affordable way to add sophistication and visual interest to your attire. Although the blazer is probably the most common garment when it comes to this add on, you should broaden your horizons as to the full potential of these patches: sweaters, long sleeves, topcoats or cardigans all account for great alternatives.
Also, don’t be afraid to lively things up a bit by adding bold colors and textures, that’s what will add the extra flare you’re looking for. Going for different fabrics such as tweed or leather instead of being limited to the usual suede patches, is something to consider. Just bear in mind that if you opt for leather patches your items will only be washable through dry cleaning. The though part about the process is finding the right patches, applying them will be an easy and inexpensive task for your tailor or seamstress. If you want to take the easy route, just look for items which originally come with them. With their recent burst in popularity, you should have no problem finding a few suitable options.
One of the pieces I purchased a while ago is this heather grey v-neck wool/cashmere sweater by Annapurna 5+1. Besides the outstanding blended fabric, with a soft touch and slim fit, what really drew me to it were the houndstooth elbow patches. This look combines several interesting aspects: besides the layering, I love the contrast of the lighter tones of the shirt, sweater and plimsoles with the black jeans, and how the shades of green in the houndstooth perfectly complement the ones in the vest.
Charcoal heavy wool blazer by Rice, Green Eskdale vest by Barbour, heather grey v-neck cashmere/wool sweater by Annapurna 5+1, white dress shirt by Paul Smith, black slim fit jeans by H&M, white plimsoles (Musa trainer) by Paul Smith, glasses by Prada, camel scarf by Burberry and watch by Rolex.
Tokihito Yoshida for Barbour: SS 2011
Here are the latest pieces from the Tokihito Yoshida VS Barbour collaboration: these are some amazing limited edition items. Pre-order is available now from Number Six London.
Store Info: Barbour
As I’ve mentioned in a previous post, I’ve recently been to Santander, Spain on work. Fortunately, I had some free time to walk around town (which is amazing by the way) and take a look at the traditional city center and its commerce. There I was, portraying the tourist stereotype as much as possible: camera on one hand, map on the other, roaming the ridiculously immaculate and organized streets on the expectation of finding something worth of notice. Being a tourist oriented seaside city, I was expecting fine shops of sorts, but I wasn’t ready for a fully stocked Barbour boutique.
Located in Calle San José (a perpendicular street to the main seaside avenue), it’s impossible to miss this uniquely designed store, whose aesthetic fits the outerwear and hunting rooted label perfectly. The space resembles a rustic mountain lodge, marked by a predominant use of timber and embellished with taxidermic motifs and hunting related paintings. Arriving at the entrance you’re greeted by the brand’s slogan: ”The best British clothing for the worst British weather”: if you’ve ever been to England you know how much sense it makes.
The entire store is dedicated to the British brand, with items ranging from its iconic waxed jackets to much more exquisite and hard to find pieces such as ties, gloves or cufflinks - all of which reek with the quality Barbour has got us used to. Among some of my favourite items were some amazing plaid shirts in flannel and heavy cotton, an amazing toggle coat and some regimental ties (counting out the outstanding waxed jackets, of course).
For a Barbour enthusiast such as myself it’s easy to get carried away, so just hold on to that wallet.
The owner, Edmundo González, also runs “Golf” - another great store on the same street worth checking out. If you ever visit Santander stop by!