LFWM Diary: Day 1

Technically it’s Day 0 as it’s the day before the shows.

I’m usually busy preparing to exhibit at Pitti Uomo which has been my excuse for missing London Fashion Week Men’s (also when it was London Collections Men). I should have made more of an effort before now as my thing is menswear because (a) I am a man and (b) it’s easier than womenswear and I’m naturally lazy. I also don’t get out that much because (a) I live in suburbia and (b) childcare, but here I am putting in a special guest appearance. You’re welcome.

This post could be titled ‘Friends’ (not the show) as everything I did today relates to the word I’ll now be overusing in every sentence. It all started last week when my old friend Masa calls me out of the blue and asks if I’m going to the Globe-Trotter party next week (today). I haven’t received an invitation I tell him as I’ve apparently dropped off their xmas card list but I’d like to see him so let me invite myself. I get in touch with my friends Pippa & Charlotte at the brand but they don’t know anything about it until further investigation reveals that it is a collaboration with BEAST (men’s grooming products for vain people like me). So now it’s a date, I just have to fill my day up with things to do. As it’s Pitti next week I need to get my looks on so I head over to see my new friend Kipps at Kestin Hare (also a good friend, I told you this would get repetitive quick) for a trim as I have a ton of hair. We talk about the perfect t-shirt while he works his magic (go see him, he’s amazing) then it’s up the road to see my friends Steve and Graeme at Sane Communications. Sane is arguably one of the best agencies in London, representing the likes of Nanamica, Our Legacy, Maison Kitsune and more. Both these fine upstanding gentlemen are two of the busiest guys I know, running a successful PR business plus their own brands and other projects. Graeme is casting for his Tourne de Transmission show tomorrow and appears surprisingly chill although Steve assures me he’s screwing internally. TDT has evolved since the label started around the same time as Hancock and it’s inspiring to see one of your friends killing the game. There’s Prince of Wales check outerwear in oversized silhouettes featuring emergency orange webbing straps and super wide/too long chinos paired with Yves Klein blue hiking sandals. I’m interested to know what the soundtrack to the show will be as Graeme’s background/love is music. I guess Paul Simon but it’s actually classical. We hug, I congratulate him and go catch-up with Steve who’s launching a new brand Polari based on the secret language spoken by the gay community in Soho during the late 1950s – early 1960s. It’s sportswear with an Italian cycling graphic feel. Steve’s one of the most cerebral human beings I know and can talk for England, so he tells me everything as we discuss the meaning of life.

Next up is a Google Maps mission to find Southwark Delivery Office who have somehow lost all my FITE and STORMGARD samples. An hour later they are miraculously found and I head around the corner to an old Victorian school house where my photographer friend Rory has his studio so we I can get product shots together for both websites. Rory’s rowing (solo) from the North Sea to Big Ben in memory of his mother for Cancer Research so we talk training for a bit then it’s back onto Google to find my way into Covent Garden.

My friend Max is a lot like me (tall, dark, handsome) and our work projects will start crossing over very soon as our skill sets compliment each other well. He’s just made a Masonic wall hanging (insert fire emoji here) for the Palace NY store, embroidered by a 200-year old British company that also manufactures for Gucci and Prada (more on this sometime in the near future). Today he’s at Cambridge Satchel with his dog Louis and gifts me a beautiful caramel leather bag with my initials. We head out to Old Compton Street for a glass or two of something and plot the future for an hour before he realises he’s late for a massage.

I head over to Beast who are showcasing the new Original Red Globe-Trotter series. There are basically  two suitcase lines in the collection, Centenary that most people know with leather straps and corners; then Original sans straps and vulcanised fibreboard corners. The latter is hands down my favourite, for it’s simple, clean aesthetic and usually colours are extremely limited to the range and historically the company haven’t released a new Original colour so it’s kind of a big deal. A quick chat with the owner whose name will remain a secret as he’s a little shy, then inside for more drinks with more friends before finally calling it a day.  I’ve been up since 4am worrying about lost samples so I need all the beauty sleep I can get before showing my face tomorrow.

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