GEN T LEM A N
SPENCER TEN BRINK
ST Y LE
Copyright © 2015 Spencer ten Brink, Goebenstraße 16, 90431 Nuremberg, Germany W W W.GENTLEMAN.ST YLE Translation by Dr. Alexander Stern, Munich Proofreading by Peter W. Ward, Bryngwran, Anglesey Cover design and layout by Toni Beschorner, Servus Grafik, Berlin All Rights Reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopy, recording, or any other information storage and retrieval system, without prior permission in writing from the publisher. Printed by Druckhaus Köthen GmbH & Co. KG, 06366 Köthen, Germany Cover photo © Ede & Ravenscroft, London, Great Britain ISBN: 978-3-00-051543-9
FOREWORD 6 INTRODUCTION 8
DRESS ST YLE Suits
Small Accessories 166
Formal Shirts 32 Hats and Caps 174
Casual Shirts 48 Umbrellas 182 Ties
Bags and Suitcases 186
Pocket Squares 68 Formal Shoes 72 APPENDIX
Casual Shoes Glossary 88 196 Coats and Jackets 94 Index 201
Knitwear Picture Credits 102 207
Casual Trousers 112 Bibliography 208
Belts and Braces 118 Recommendations 209
Socks 124 Acknowledgements 209 Underwear 128 Nightwear 136
GROOMING Hair 140 Face, Beard and Nails 148 Perfume 160
· Emanuel Berg – represented in many capitals around the world · Van Laack – available all over Germany, expanding internationally ·B arba, Borelli and Finamore – three outstanding shirt brands from Naples, Italy, which are available from various retailers · Charvet – France, Paris · Swann & Oscar – France, Paris · Les dandys – France, Paris · Brooks Brothers – USA, also now available in Europe · Paul Stuart – USA, New York City, Chicago and Washington DC
STYLISH COMBINATIONS A white shirt is the best complement to a business suit. White matches all of the most popular suit colours of charcoal, grey, blue, or brown like no other colour. White has always been associated with purity and harmony, two key factors when it comes to integrating additional accessories such as neckties. No other colour comes close for
If you’re looking for something a little more individual,
the sheer number of matching options. Blue, red, green
striped shirts are a good option. They add some vari-
or yellow neckties and navy blue or charcoal suits are
ety to your plain coloured collection. The most popular
an excellent combination. White is also the only colour
combination by far is blue and white. Fine pink, red, or
that hides sweat stains under the armpits to some ex-
green stripes work really well, too. Be careful when it
tent. The darker the shirt, the more obtrusive the stain.
comes to the width of the stripes. Stripes that are too bold
Gentlemen who have a predisposition for heavy perspi-
(“butchered or candy striped”) can appear quite flashy
ration are therefore advised to opt for white. Blue shirts,
when worn by slender gentlemen. Thinner stripes
a strong contender for most popular shirt colour, are the
(“Bengal”) are more elegant and should be the preferred
next best choice.
choice. Of course, striped shirts provide fewer necktie options. A striped shirt and a plain coloured tie can be
The advantage of blue is that there’s less of a stark con-
matched in the following manner:
trast between necktie colour and shirt than with white.
STRIPE COLOUR SHIRT
Blue, red or green
ent in the case of a striped shirt, which can’t be worn
Blue or green
every week because business partners are more likely
Purple or orange (for dandies)
Moreover, colours such as white and blue are less visually intrusive without looking boring. This is differ-
to remember it. Cream coloured shirts are only rarely bought, which is unfortunate because they deserve
Things become more difficult if the tie has a pattern.
more attention. Cream coloured shirts exude natural
The pattern should reflect the colour of the shirt, but not
elegance and flatter the wearer’s complexion. Other
match the darker shade of the stripes.
less frequently worn variants are light pink, green or grey, colours which are ideal for brightening up your
An example: a pink-white shirt and a blue tie with white
wardrobe and can be a welcome change from the usual
dots matching the width of the white stripes on the shirt.
It is also possible to wear a striped shirt with a striped tie. 42
A popular combination in Italy: a blue-white striped shirt with blue tie and charcoal jacket
Summery and light: beige linen jacket with patch pockets and a white, Sea Island cotton shirt, coupled with rough-textured tie in navy blue
Sophisticated: light blue and white striped shirt, finely dotted tie under a brown-beige houndstooth jacket
Another summer combination: double-breasted linen jacket and checked linen shirt with knitted tie 43
Elegant masterpiece in rosegold by Gemellidapolso Christiano Barbulo
CUFFLINKS Cufflink wearers like to produce a certain effect. Cufflinks
company where cufflinks might be eyed with suspicion,
are a common sight among lawyers, bankers, manage-
coloured cuff knots are a universally accepted, popular,
ment consultants, tax advisors and upper management of
and cheap alternative. They can provide a playful splash
big firms, and make a certain elitist impression.
of colour on an otherwise monochrome outfit,
However, this can backfire when you turn
or match the tie. Itâ€™s absolutely fine to wear
up at the office fully suited and booted
bright colours such as yellow or red in
and realise that everyone else is wear-
combination with a navy blue suit.
ing regular shirts. You should be
Cuff knots are much lighter than
aware of your social status, the place,
metal cufflinks and are generally ac-
and the kind of people youâ€™ll be
cepted in the business world.
dealing with before donning French cuffs and cufflinks.
Simple cufflinks made from silver or gold create instant elegance. Both
The choice of cufflinks is endless. Cuff-
metals have a different effect. Gold is
links can indicate origin, hobbies, profes-
often worn at festive occasions; silver is
sion, or simply elegance, wealth, and power. In
more common for everyday use. It is consid-
the UK, wearing original cufflinks is positively received;
ered good taste to match the metal of the cufflinks to
in other countries such as Germany, it can too easily be
the watch for a harmonious overall look.
misconstrued as arrogant posturing. When you are in 46
Metal buttons, stylish alternative to knot and sphere shape
Art déco from 1925, spotted at Hancocks in London
Mediterranean style: Precious pieces made from coral
Classic oval shape fitted with precious gems
For aficionados – hand painted enamel
Alternative fastening mechanism: The double “stirrup”
Printed satin silk ties with random pattern
Two? Three? Twenty! If you think that ties with two or three colours are impossible to match with the rest of your outfit, you have not yet experienced the works of Silvio Fiorello from Sicily. He uses up to twenty colours in his satin silk creations. These ties are so exceptional that they are a statement in their own right, no matter what kind of suit you wear. Equipped with one of these works of art, the old saying rings true: “The tie enters the room before the rest of the person.“ Stripes If you walk down Whitehall, the London street leading through the heart of Her Majesty’s government, you will soon encounter a military person or public servant wearing a suit and a striped tie. Regimentals, as the ties are known in England, represent affiliation with a particular school, university or regiment of the British army. Every institution has its own pattern of stripe colours and thicknesses. The regimental ties can be worn outside of the UK without arousing curiosity. The advantage of these ties
Plain ties with modified white dots look great when worn with plain suits and a white or blue shirt
is that the stripes, which usually come in subtle colours, 58
Row of four classic patterns: Houndstooth, white dots, glen check, and pinpoint
look great with navy and medium grey suits. The striped
“Macclesfield“ and “Spitalsfield“ are terms used for geo-
ties with two or three colours that are sold cheaply in de-
metric patterns which have been designed and printed
partment stores have absolutely nothing in common with
or woven in English silk factories located in the towns
regimentals. It is best to steer clear of such cheap stripes –
of the same name. Nowadays, beautiful interpretations
partially due to the difficulty in matching them to the
of these patterns can be marvelled at in the Marinella
rest of the outfit. If you wish to develop beyond a basic
level of necktie sophistication, you should consign any remaining tie of this kind to the bin. And finally, a word about a key classic necktie design: Paisley and other patterns
the dotted tie. This pattern comes in two basic ver-
The first colourful drip pattern design, which origin-
sions: Printed or embroidered, the more appropriate of
ated in the Cashmere region of India, was conceived in
which depends on the suit and shirt fabric. Sir Wins-
the Scottish town of Paisley. The template for the design
ton Churchill was a major advocate of dotted bowties.
existed in Asia for thousands of years before the East
He was particularly fond of slightly disproportionally
India Company brought it back to the British Isles. Scot-
large white or ecru-coloured dots on dark blue. In Japan
tish merchants developed the original design and intro-
it also appears that gentlemen cannot get enough of dot-
duced a wide variety of colour combinations, which is
ted ties. There are three safe investments that any fan of
how the pattern became known as Paisley in Europe.
elegant neckties can make: dark blue, Bordeaux and bottle green, each with either white or ecru-coloured dots
Prince of Wales check has already been discussed in the
with a diameter of between two and four millimetres.
context of suits. Ties such as these can be a refreshing op-
Printed dots are preferable – although they might be a
tion when worn with white or blue shirts and plain suits.
little more expensive, they look far more elegant. 59
HAIR “Sooner or later everyone needs a haircut.” “The man who wasn’t there”, Ethan Coen / Joel Coen, 2001
arber shops have noticed that customers are
Extolling the virtues of fine cars, elegant clothes and
becoming more demanding when it comes to
other men’s toys, delivered with polite reserve and
their haircuts and hairstyles. The era of mini-
wit whilst receiving a perfect haircut and impeccable
malistic, low-maintenance looks is far from
service, is what you can expect from a gentleman’s
over, but these looks have been joined by smooth, old-
barber shop. Naturally, female hairdressers cannot be
school gentleman styles.
expected to be equally versed, or even interested, in traditional men’s subject matters. In this case, plenty
The hairstyle is the domain of the hairdresser. Yet more
of alternative subjects spring to mind, from discuss-
than a few gents have a very ambivalent relationship with
ing the weather, relationships, holidays, gastronomy
their hairdresser, despite the fact that each session can be
to astrology. Regardless of whether you deal with a
quite enjoyable. Particularly if the barber shop sits right in
male or female hairdresser, what ultimately counts is
the centre of London, in and around Piccadilly. When you
the result of their work, a result which you have to feel
spend time in a place like this, you are immediately aware
comfortable with for the next few weeks. Albeit slight-
of the vast difference in treatment between a gentleman
ly exaggerated, the above account is intended to draw
barber and a run-of-the-mill, local hairdresser. A gentle-
attention to an essential activity in a gentleman’s styl-
man barber is equally skilled in handling a pair of scissors
ing and grooming routine: Getting a haircut is a ser-
as he is in the art of conducting polite conversation – if
ious matter. A slick haircut can significantly improve
the customer so desires. Should the subject be broached,
your self-confidence. Trusting dilettantes and demotiv-
the gentleman barber will direct you to the best quality
ated amateurs with your hair can do serious damage
bespoke shirt maker, or casually discuss the virtues of exot-
to your style. Repeated disappointments can lead to a
ic cars. If the customer shows an interest in such stories,
deep-seated scepticism toward the hairdressing pro-
the barber might share the story of how he acquired his
fession in general. Prudent customers should therefore
vintage Ferrari or restored his VW beetle. This sort of chat
take the initiative and voice their displeasure immedi-
is in no way unusual.
ately if the result and the service aren’t up to scratch. 141
BAGS AND SUITCASES “Then the dams burst, and healthy, well-built middle management representatives guided their wheeled suitcases along the moving walkways like old ladies walking their overweight sausage dogs.“ Martin Suter, “Business Class“
efore the advent of the personal computer, it
describe them as follows: black nylon, uninspired
was perfectly normal to carry around busi-
workmanship, padding on the inside, sewn-on manu-
ness-related and private paper files in an at-
facturer’s logo, cheaply mass-produced in China for
taché case or briefcase. Even now, these storage
the global army of professional nomads. A world apart
options identify the carrier to the man on the street as
from fine threads, welted calf-skin shoes and exclusive
somebody with a respectable job. Members of the Brit-
cuff links. Bags such as this will completely disrupt the
ish government, for instance, carry so called “red boxes”
overall appearance. Professional people like to set a
made by London company Barrow & Gale. An outcry re-
good example and invest in a stylish black or brown bag
verberated through the British tabloid press when Prime
or briefcase made from saddle leather after completing
Minister David Cameron left his red box apparently un-
their studies. Folios, courier cases, briefcases and pilot
attended for a few minutes in his train compartment on
suitcases come into question for gentlemen.
the way to York. Later, he supposedly even left it wide open on his hotel bed. Images of both incidents were
leaked to the local press, who heavily criticised the care-
Folios are quite rare in business. Executives who have
less handling of potential state secrets. The well-worn,
opted for this storage option tend to have a developed
red box attained an unwanted moment of fame. Maybe
sense of style. To put it simply: These people are gener-
the PM kept his packed lunch in his briefcase, along with
ally extremely well presented. It does make a difference
a few newspapers and e-mail printouts. If this were the
if you carry a notepad to
case he would be in good company, because many men
a business meeting in a
use their briefcase precisely in this way.
folio: It just looks more organised.
BUSINESS BAGS AND CASES
mally feature a zipper or
The modern businessman carries his entire office in his
a metal clasp, preventing
laptop: It can act as a mobile phone, send and receive
e-mails, exchange data, conduct research or control
falling out. They are also
projects. To protect this precious piece of technology,
excellent for storing writ-
it needs a safe home. Laptop manufacturers usually
ing implements, business
provide a matching bag. A critical assessment would
cards and calendars. 187
ACCESSORIES (small) Non-essential add-ons to clothes. To be
BR ACES (American English: suspenders) Alternative trouser fas-
used sparingly, because fashion trends fade quickly. When used
tening method to belts, side fasteners and elastic waistbands.
in the right way, accessories are an excellent tool for expressing
Rubber bands with clips are also commonly called braces. Au-
individuality and mood.
thentic braces, however, are non-elastic and are buttoned to the
AR AN (jumper) Originally a hand-knitted fisherman’s jumper
trousers. Fashion aficionados have their trousers made specifi-
made from unscoured wool. Characteristically, Aran jumpers
cally to be worn with braces; these trousers have a characteristic
come in special knitting patterns with a type of code for identify-
ing members of an Irish clan.
BR ANNOCK DEVICE Device patented by US company Bran-
BACK YOKE Piece of fabric on the upper back of a shirt, beneath
nock to measure width and length of foot as well as length of
the collar, connecting the sleeves and the back of the shirt. If the
arch of the foot.
yoke has two parts, it is known as a split yoke. The split yoke is
BRIEFCASE Modern and stylish alternative to the attaché case.
used to reduce wastage resulting from patterned fabrics.
Ideally made from robust saddle leather, in which case it should
BEARD ST YLES Beards are currently fashionable, and even the
last for your entire professional life.
red carpets are adorned with stars sporting facial hair. Clean-
BROGUING Patterns of holes (usually with two different diam-
shaven looks are still de rigeur in the business world, at least
eters), punched along seams of the upper leather of a shoe for
in Northern Europe. There’s an overabundance of beard styles,
decorative purposes. Depending on the extent of broguing, shoes
limited only by human creativity.
are referred to as semi-brogue or full brogue.
BESPOKE Adjective applied to a piece of clothing commissioned
CANVAS (in a suit) Layers of material generally made from can-
and made to a customer’s individual specification.
vas, fusible interlining or canvas interwoven with horsehair to
BESPOKE SHOE Shoe made according to customer specifica-
provide shape and insulation for the suit jacket or coat.
tions and preference. This usually requires a wooden last on
CASHMERE WOOL obtained from the cashmere goat is con-
which the shoe is hand-made. Some shoe makers initially make
sidered one of the finest, softest and warmest animal fibres.
a trial shoe in order to understand the idiosyncrasies of the cus-
COAT Used synonymously with “suit jacket” by English tailors.
tomer’s feet, although the majority of them forego this step. Be-
COT TON R AW textile material obtained from the cotton plant.
spoke shoes cost significantly more than mass-produced shoes.
As well as the length of the fibres, the colour, fineness, consist-
BL ACK TIE Evening wear consisting of dinner jacket, black bow-
ency, brilliance, pureness, pliability and softness are the main
tie or necktie, black Oxford shoes or opera pumps. The addition
quality indicators for the material. Cotton is categorised accord-
of a cummerbund depends on the type of dinner jacket worn.
ing to length or origin:
Single-breasted jackets which are closed at all times can do with-
• Short-staple < 26 millimetres, e.g. desi cotton from India and Pakistan
out one. The jacket and trousers are usually black or midnight
• Medium-staple 26 – 29 millimetres, e.g. from China, the USA
blue. For summer outdoor events a ivory coloured jacket can be
worn with black trousers. BL AKE SEWN A shoe design where the insole, the upper lea-
• Long-staple 30 – 38 millimetres, e.g. giza 83 from Egypt
ther and the outsole are directly sewn together. One of the
• E xtra-long-staple cotton > 38 millimetres, e.g. pima from Peru,
characteristics is a seam that is visible inside the shoe, provided
pima S7 from the USA, giza 45 and giza 70 from Egypt, and
it has not been covered by a shoe insert
Xinjiang cotton from China.
BLUCHER (type of shoe) The Blucher is a variant of the Derby
CHRONOMETER WATCH Time piece which has been tested
shoe. Its main difference is that the lacing system is not part
and certified by an independent body such as the Swiss Observa-
of the vamp but made from two pieces of leather which have
torium Contrôle officiel suisse des chronomètres or the Wempe
been stitched onto the vamp. No distinction is made between
Chronometerwerke Glashütte i/SA observatory in accordance
the Blucher and the Derby in the USA: Open lacing shoes are all
with an internationally recognized standard. Not to be confused
referred to as Blucher.
with a chronograph!
BOATER (canotier in French) Roughly woven straw hat with a
COMB The demise of the comb has coincided with the demise of
black or coloured hatband.
the side parting haircut. No other tool comes close to achieving
BOW TIE Rarely used alternative to the necktie. Only mandatory
an exact parting in an efficient manner.
when the dress code stipulates White Tie. 196
PICTURE CREDITS r=right, l=left, m=middle, t=top, b=bottom Avirex, Milan, Italy: 51 r.t., r.b., 115
Longmire, London, Great Britain: 47 r.m., l.b., r.b.
Bentleys, London, Great Britain: 192 r.m, r.b., 195 l.t., r.t.
magicinfoto / Shutterstock.com: 29
Carrington Hull Associates Ltd. (Drake’s), London,
Lovely Lapels, Lawndale, CA, USA: 170 l.t.
Great Britain: 35 t., 42, 43, 50, 52, 56 r., 57 l.b., 58, 102, 109,
Marco Ognissanti / Cravattificio Fiorello Srl, Enna, Italy: 66
111, 120 l.b., 169 r.t.
Mark William Penny / Shutterstock.com: 171 r.m.
Cédric Villani, Paris, France: 67 l.b.
Mati Ventrillon, Fair Isle, Great Britain: 106
Cesare Attolini S.p.A., Naples, Italy: 12, 21, 48, 104, 140
Mayser GmbH & Co. KG, Lindenberg, Germany: 174, 181 l.b.
Chester Barrie Ltd. / Neville McCarthy Associates, London,
naten / Shutterstock.com: 28 l.b.
Great Britain: 44, 68
M.C. Hersey & Sons Ltd., Great Britain: 170 l.b.
Clarks / Portas, London, Great Britain: 92 l.b.
Oliver Brown / Bloxham PR, London, Great Britain: 31 l.m., m.t.,
Cotonificio Albini S.p.A., Albino, Italy: 40
r.t., 99 r.t., 100 r.b.
Crombie Ltd., London, Great Britain: 94, 97 l.t., r.t., l.b., 100 r.t.,
Oppermann London Ltd.: 190, 191, 192 l.b.
179 r.m., r.b.
Ormonde Jayne Ltd. / Up Public Relations, London,
Danilo Moroni / Cravattificio Fiorello Srl, Enna, Italy: 55, 57 r.b.
Great Britain: 160
David W Hughes / Shutterstock.com: 181 l.t.
Pickett Ltd., London, Great Britain: 118, 120 l.t., r.t., r.b., 187,
Ede & Ravenscroft Ltd. / Village, London, Great Britain:
30 m.m., r.t., m.b., 31 m.b., r.b., 67 r.b.
Puma SE / Yamaoka International Public Relations GmbH,
Everett Collection / Shutterstock.com: 147 r.t.
Germany: 90 r.t.
Faber Castell AG, Stein, Germany: 173
Rimowa GmbH / V Communication GmbH, Germany: 195 r.b.
Featureflash / Shutterstock.com: 146 l.t., r.t., r.b., 147 l.b.,
Rob Wyatt, Milton Keynes, Great Britain: 24 l.o, m.t., l.b., m.b.,
157 r.t., m.b., 171 l.t.
r.b., 60, 69, 71, 86 r.b., 87 r.t., 119, 123, 126, 153, 168
Foster & Son Ltd., London, Great Britain: 30 l.b., r.b., 72, 73,
Rosenberg Manufaktur, Berlin, Germany: 36
74 l.t., r.t., l.b., 75 – 77, 79, 81 – 84, 86 r.t., 87 l.t.
Shutterstock.com: 28 r.t., 90 l.t., 108, 144 l.m., l.b., 155, 156,
Fox Umbrellas Ltd., Croydon, Great Britain: 183 – 185
158, 176 t., 177, 178 r., 179 r.b., 180
Fritz Hiltl Hosenfabrik GmbH & Co. / Tim Hartmann Commu-
s_bukley / Shutterstock.com: 146 l.b., 147 r.b., 157 l.t., m.t.
nications, Düsseldorf, Germany: 88, 91, 96, 112, 114, 117
Spencer ten Brink, Milton Keynes, Great Britain: 6, 17, 20, 23,
G Ettinger Ltd., London, Great Britain: 121 t., 188 t., 189, 193,
24 r.t., m.m., r.m., 25, 26, 35 l.b., 37, 38, 41, 46 m.b., 56 l., 62 – 65,
78, 80 r.t., 143, 163, 165, 167 r.b., 171 t., l.m., l.b., 180 r.m.
Gallo S.p.A., Desenzano del Garda, Italy: 124, 127
Sperry Top-Sider / Wolverine World Wide Inc., USA: 92 l.m.,
George Cleverly & Co. Ltd., London, Great Britain:
74 r.m., 80 l.t.
Suitsupply B.V., Amsterdam, The Netherlands: 14 r.t., r.b., 18,
Gemellidapolso Christiano Barbulo, Naples, Italy: 46,
47 l.t., l.m.
Swims AS, Oslo, Norwegen: 85
Glengarriff Handcraft Centre Ltd. (Aran Sweater Market),
The Nautical Company Ltd., Hampshire: 107 b., 110
Inis Mór, Irland: 107 t.
The Merchant Fox / Up Public Relations, London,
Hancocks & Co. Ltd., London, Great Britain: 47 r.t.
Great Britain: 59, 70, 86, 99 l.t., 121 l.b., 136, 139, 144 l.t., 154,
Helga Esteb / Shutterstock.com: 147 l.t., 157 l.b., r.b.
172 l.m., 176 l.b., 186, 194
Holland & Sherry Ltd., Peebles, Great Britain: 16, 32, 100 l.b.
Trigema, Burladingen, Germany: 24 l.m., 130 r.t.
Honri Hats, Cirencester, Great Britain: 181 r.t.
Truefitt & Hill Ltd., London, Great Britain: 148, 151, 152
J C Cordings & Co. Ltd., London, Great Britain: 97 r.b., 98, 116,
Vacheron Constantin, Genf, Switzerland: 166 m., 167, r.m.
WP Lavori in Corso Srl, Milan, Italy: 99 r.b., 101 r.b.
Jeager-LeCoultre, Le Sentier, Switzerland: 167 r.t.
Zimmerli Textil AG, Aarburg, Switzerland: 128, 130 l.m., l.b.,
John Smedley Ltd., Lea Bridge, Great Britain: 51 l.t., 105
131 – 135, 138
La Portegna / Trace Publicity, London, Great Britain: 93 r.t.
Zwilling Beauty Group GmbH, Solingen, Germany: 159
Lock & Co. Hatters, London, Great Britain: 178 l.t., 179 l.t., l.m. 207
GENTLEMAN STYLE is a “how-to” guide for discerning gentlemen with a keen interest in complementing their appearance and personality with sha...
Published on Dec 3, 2015
GENTLEMAN STYLE is a “how-to” guide for discerning gentlemen with a keen interest in complementing their appearance and personality with sha...