SS13 Wardrobe Planning: Getting my arse into fashionable gear

Spring/Summer (love my inability to mention a season singularly) is fast approaching and I’ve barely packed away my mittens, let alone decided how I’m going to look! Best get cracking.
So, I’ve not got a blinking clue what “trends” I’m to expect this season because I’ve yet to go to a retail presentation and I wasn’t concentrating last fashion week! Therefore, I’ve decided I’m negating such things and concentrating on these looks I’ve discovered all by my self.
Boy Soldier

Named after that easy ever-so slightly hard-looking yoof vibe, epitomised by TOPMAN and Alex Mattsson at London Collections: Man last year. You know the one, Shoreditch Poet meets body-glitter and knuckle duster. 
In lay man’s terms? I need a silky bomber, Doc Martens, creepers and some cycling shorts to wear under my cut-off slacks. Easy peasy.

 photo TOPMANSS131_zpsae367307.jpg photo TOPMANSS13_zpsd4bd29e8.jpg
 photo AlexMattssonSS131_zps0e8ff991.jpg photo AlexMattssonSS13_zpsb94135cd.jpg 
Alex Mattsson
Minimalistic is difficult for me. I’m a big fan of accessories and I’ve even given myself a rather kooky New Years Resolution to buy MORE men’s jewellery. Hmmm. Still, the statements made by minimal embellishment throughout Richard Nicoll and Nicole Farhi’s shows at last year’s London Collections: Men might turn me over to the lighter side.
   photo RichardNicollSS132_zps720b2dc2.jpg  photo RichardNiccolSS133_zpsacd43e50.jpg
Richard Nicoll
 photo NicoleFarhi1_zpsb5666716.jpg  photo NicoleFarhi_zpscec75320.jpg 
Nicole Farhi
Graduated Shades
Who knew multi coloured cardis and shirts were so the right thing to do this season? A step away from the above but nonetheless an option for brightening my wardrobe this season

Jonathan Saunders
The Arm
I’ve always loved a vest. I’ve been wearing dress shirts with the sleeves cut off for years and I’m loving that James Long and J W Anderson is seeing it my way for SS13. Arms are a skinny guy’s best asset, easily toned, never offensive and always a little bit sexy.
   photo JamesLongSS13_zpsc95f3888.jpg photo JamesLongS131_zpsdb287b60.jpg
James Long
 photo JWAndersonSS13_zps42d1b846.jpg  photo 167759_zpse6ca7240.jpg 

J W Anderson 

What will you be wearing this season? @jordanjmcdowell


London Collections: Men: The (Belated) Verdict: A Series of Colons

One question I have been asking myself, since the concept was announced, why is it called London Collections: Men? Why isn’t it just London Men’s Fashion Week? WHY, I ASK!

One thing you might be asking is, why am I so late blogging about it? Well, dear reader, I live in the Republic of Manchester and LC:M, as the name so blaitently expresses, is a Londoner’s gig and I’ve been a little out-of-touch despite the rather incredible effort from the BFC to boost the newbie event’s presense via Social. Also, I’ve been totes busy detoxing from Christmas, so there.

My thoughts after two season? Good on ya Dylan Jones for giving menswear and kick up the arse and all without making it a big scary fashiony circus. Even those fence face masks were rugged, masculine and got even the most boyish of non-fashiony man talking. Woop!

Thought I’d do the true Blogger thing and pull together my mood-board of must-haves for reference to in later outfits post etc. Et Voila.

 photo AlexanderMcQueenAW13_zps1e551f39.jpg photo AlexanderMcQueenAW132_zps3fc8e95b.jpg   photo JWAndersonAw13_zps7a713499.jpg photo JWAndersonAW131_zps7072ad5f.jpg   photo JamesLongAw13_zps21f7924b.jpg photo JamesLongAW131_zps563daf58.jpg    photo JonathanSaunders_zps0e0fe5b3.jpg photo JonathanSaundersAW13_zpscda8ddfa.jpg    photo JWAnderson_zps924db1a0.jpg photo MAN_zpsc9cbacc9.jpg photo MrStart_zps15d63d6c.jpg photo MrStartAW131_zps5a37262f.jpg photo MrStartsAW13_zps9be44b04.jpg   photo NicoleFarhiAW13_zps64968ead.jpg photo RichardNicollAW13_zps3cc53a3b.jpg photo RichardNicollAW131_zpse50e177f.jpg
 photo TOPMAN_zpsda8fd6e3.jpg  photo ChristopherKanes_zpsb0cbba23.jpg

Alexander McQueen, Alexander McQueen, J W Anderson, J W Anderson, James Long, James Long, Jonathan Saunders, Jonathan Saunders, J W Anderson, MAN, Mr Start, Mr Start, Mr Start, Nicole Farhi, Richard Nicoll, Richard Nicoll, TOPMAN Design, Christopher Kane.

I think I’m going to go as far as I can with channelling my inner James Long without loosing my wish to be a minimalistic Prince a la Richard Nicoll, for AW13. I’m going to continue to focus on plain and simple pieces that evoke quality and longevity, whilst tapping into this broad shouldered, narrow waisted silhouette. Hey, I may even don a garden fence and a strapless boob-tube too. 


Manchester Fashion Network’s Making It In Marketing 2013

Are you looking to work in Fashion Marketing? Are you in Manchester or can you get to Manchester for 11:00 on 28.2.13? Well then, this blog post may be of interest.

I have been asked to sit upon a panel alongside some other Marketing folk to discuss our jobs, how we got them and how you can get similar ones!

I will be chatting about my work with Manchester Fashion Network as their former Editorial Manager, my work as a freelance journalist, I will also chat about this very blog and, of course, about my current role as Communications Manager at Black White Denim.

But it’s not all about me, oh no, Kate Astall of Cube3 and Antony Eden of will also be there too!

DATE: Thursday 28th February 2013


TIME: 11:00 – 11:45am

TICKETS: Book Here

Manchester Fashion Network’s Careers Day is in association with Drapers Jobs

Best Practice: Hissy fits and SEO

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Anywho, my work colleagues seemed uninterested and slightly pissed that I had disrupted their discussion of the Zara SALE, and I did inevitably hear/read the phrase, not once, but several more times that week and every day since and so here we are, passive aggressive town. 

But wait, I’m not going to get all bloggy on your bad self. I’m not going to post vague political cartoon illustrations in an attempt to make my piece all Newsnightesque and Broadsheet witty. No, its a Sunday evening and I’ve got scented candles burning. I’ve had time to reflect, relax and re-type. 
 photo i-climb-all-this-way_zps54e7a7c6.gif  

OK, just one.

Before we get stuck in, the phrase best practiceis one many will have heard and said for varying different reasons both in professional and perhaps even personal situations: “Dear, pop the milk in the refrigerator door, it’s best practice… Oh, I always make my own pastry, it’s best practice.” 

However, the context of the phrase I refer to here is the context in which best practice is used to describe mechanisms, systems and protocol within the e-commerce industry. This, in turn, spans two paradigms, A) how Google wants the internet to look, or rather, how SEO professionals think Google wants the internet to look, and B) What techies think will make clicking ‘add to basket’ easier and more likely (perhaps without even having to click!). 

Now, I’m not a radical, I understand money makes the web go round and I understand Google owns the internet, my beef isn’t with all that top level stuff, it’s with the fact that creativity might be stunted and suppressed in favour of SEO/e-com best practice, resulting in a mediocre web-scape that just looks like a cheap version of Amazon.

Don’t get me wrong. I adore Amazon. Just like I adore my local ASDA WalMart Supercentre and Tesco Extra, but sometimes I want to pop to the corner shop and pay double for some organic ‘happy cow’ milk and I want the experience to reflect my choice to go all indie. Sometimes I want to wander around the eclectic independent stores of a city centre and forego the flashy chain-stores. Sometimes, I just want my internet to look a little different.
 photo supercentre_zps82e8128e.jpg 

Rootin’ Tootin’ ASDA WalMart SuperDooperHugeCentre PLUS 24/7 .com

 photo TheCornerShop_zps96e4b077.jpg  

Ye Olde Corner Shop . com

Now. Back to the scented candles. I did want to just type furiously about the importance of art in all that we do and strive to achieve as human beings and how commerce is without a soul if it is without creativity. But, the hypnotic scents of my Ocean Blossom candle have calmed me some-what and instead I believe the future is a balancing act. To achieve inner-peace/e-commerce harmony, we need to strike a balance between allowing websites to be searchable and easily navigable and allowing room to make a statement, excite people and make our mark on the market. 

Par Example look at the website for downtown LA based culty fashion brand, Free City.

Free City is a cult-brand based on the ideals of the Woodstock generation. Championing free spirits and free speech the brand, and the name, come from the commune Freetown Christiania in Denmark, a “free city” within Copenhagen. Now, a brand with a history and statement as rich and as interesting as Free City needs a website that best reflects this, their www. needs to be a “free city” within the web world. 

 photo Screenshot2013-01-20at181416_zps6f86c369.png

Free City’s website is a kaleidoscope of colour, as are the brand’s garments. Our device screen transforms from a restrictive platform to multifaceted canvas, scroll any which way you want for content, movement and flashy loveliness. 

Before you get excited, I understand this website is a little more creative than it is practical and whilst I’m not one to dowse creativity, I wouldn’t really know where to begin if I wanted to purchase from this site.

Whilst we can’t all prance around the internet with daisy chains in our hair, it would also be wrong to line up next to ASOS and copy their wireframes. Why? because how boring would that be? What would the internet become, the new media for human evolution or as plain and straight-forward as your till receipt? 

My conclusion? Best practise is all well and good when coupled with creative and exciting communication. Why follow suit when all your doing is diluting good work done by someone else? Understand the basic principles of SEO and e-com, understand that the customer needs to be able to make informed choices with ease, but also understand that the internet is our biggest and most amazing blank canvas and to forget that is to forget why we all got interested in it in the first place.


The Fashion Rambler SALE: Zoe Karssen, Acne, FCUK French Connection, Unconditional and more from £2.00!

I’ve cleared out my wardrobe and thought I might see if I can make a pretty penny.

Have a gander and what’s on offer by clicking on Shopping in the above tabs menu or have a looksee at some picks below. More to be added shortly.



‘Desire Lust and Sin’ Tee
Zoe Karssen 
£10.00 or Auction (+£2.50 P&P)
Striped Vest
Acne Studios
Medium (Oversized)
£10.00 or Auction (+£2.50 P&P)
Unconditional London
£3.00 or Auction (+£2.50 P&P)
Jack & Jones    
£5.00 or Auction (+£2.50 P&P)

Hat ‘n Scarf Set
FCUK French Connection
One Size
£3.00 or Auction (+£2.50 P&P)
Christmas Jumper
POP Boutique
Extra Small
£5.00 or Auction (+£2.50 P&P)


BAGGED: A post of purchases including TK Maxx, Underground Creepers and Muji

Since we’re all skint and depressed that Christmas is over, let’s have a wee haul post, shall we?

First up, my AW12 Sale purchase. Yes, purchase. Not purchaseS, just singular because I’m poor and that’s that.


They’re some rather snazzy and totally outrageous Creepers from Underground at Office. I bought them at the Trafford Centre branch, which means that the staff have to travel and age to collect items from the stock-room, located in some 3rd dimension. But, nevertheless, I got my Creepers in the end and for the bargain price of £48.00!


I was looking for a pair of shoes/boots that would work with both daytime and night-time outfits, at work and out with friends. I think these do that. They’re directional enough to make a statement out drinking but they’re still essentially black leather shoe boots and so they work well with my minimalistic monotone classic look for work (well, that’s what I call it.)


They mark my first foray into the world of Creepers and looking down at them makes me want to sing ‘”Jeepers Creepers, where’d ya get those peepers?’ + they make me at least an inch and a half taller!

Next up is a purchase not technically made by myself, but by the in-laws! It’s my Christmas present from them and I am in love with it. It’s from Muji, a brand was introduced to by Selfridges and one I have come to adore for their sheer brilliance when it comes to simplicity made stylish.

This is a watch, made from plastic with a white round face and black numbers on it. That is pretty much all I need from a watch to be honest.

If a child was going to draw a wrist watch, this is what they would draw.

Next, a bargain from Pop Boutique in Manchester’s Northern Quarter, one of my favourite boutiques in the city’s indie district because: A) it’s really cool and makes 60s vintage fashion look beautiful and B) you can always find a right bargain!


Take, for example, these holdalls. They’re tartan, with faux-leather handles and metallic embellishment. They’re big enough for a weekend away and they count as on-board luggage for planes.


And they were £5 each.

Finally here is a gorgeous sweater that the boyf picked up in the Clearance sale at TK Maxx. It was £10 and I bloody love it, gutted I didn’t get there first.