They went down a storm last season, and for those who missed out, our Canadian friends Reigning Champ are back with their superior sweats and jersey basics. We have long and short sleeve t-shirt options as well as hoodies and the classic crew in a lighter weight for summer. Colourwise we won't stray from the grey marl, though we are loving a new washed olive. All we can say is don't hesitate.
Founded in 1860 by Thomas A White, Sunspel remains a supremely British brand. Still made, to exacting standards, in Long Eaton, Nottinghamshire, this is the home of iconic, luxury jersey. Spring sees the welcome return of both the Riviera polo (popularised by another supremely British brand, James Bond/Daniel Craig) and the striped T. And we are introducing a bit of silliness and whimsy in the form of the dog t and boxer short, inspired by Bill, canine resident of the factory in the 30s.
Introducing Brooklyn We Go Hard. A French label founded in 2010 by super cool duo David Obadia and Nelson Hassan, self styled 'les plus New Yorkais des Parisiens'. They talk of 'exploring the urban culture of the world' through their collections and in SS13 we think they started out in France and ended up in South America with a stopover in Africa. We've got interesting textured shirts, embroidered tabs on the t-shirting and a lightweight tapered pant with a woven waistband. Might sound exotic but we promise you it's most wearable.
Summer down in menswear is all pared down and washed out. With the exception of Anderson that is. Our favourite woven belt is back in some great new colourways alongside a new triple striped heavy canvas number.The perfect flash of colour and detail when paired with summer chinos and shirts.
Grenson have our summer leather requirements all covered. As classic as it comes, we introduce Declan, a super smooth chelsea boot in brown suede. All time favourite brogue Archie makes a welcome comeback, a re-worked traditional with its hefty yet lightweight double leather sole. Then there's our champion boot Fred, finished this time in antelope leather from Charles Stead's Yorkshire tannery.
Staples for the legs this season from Edwin. The ED47 in three washes plus the favourite tapered ED55 in a lovely 10oz summer weight selvedge, representing fantastic value for a pair of Edwins. And if you're after a slim fit trouser for summer then the ED55 chino in navy or khaki is spot on perfect.
It's all washed out from Woolrich this seaon. Just the way we like summer to be. Washed chinos in three colours. Shirting in super soft Japanese Banshu-oi fabrics, the stuff from which kimonos are usually made. And on into jersey with sweats and T's all subdued and faded. Outerwear remains a highlight with the lightweight mountain parka the perfect British summer accompniment, and the water and windproof shield suiting a more technical requirement.
We're taking a road trip into the sun-drenched midwest with Levi's Made & Crafted this season. The boys and the girls are both on board, and we long to look like them, effortlessly cool in their beatifully crafted threads.
Colour, texture and pattern is the order of their free-wheeling days. As long as it's a touch sun bleached, saturated, washed and worn. Striped maxis, tie dye vests, candy pink denim, floaty silk shirts and washed cotton chinos for the girls. And the guys are sporting heavy patterned tees and colourful button downs with their faded denim. Standing side by side, hitching a ride, we have to say they look the picture of a perfect summer's day.
When it comes to Universal Works we've come to expect nothing less, nothing too much. And that's why we love it. SS13 is, as ever, beautifully straightforward. More form and fit than fashion. And "more Torquay than St Tropez" according to the brand's founder David Keyte. His father the inspiration; a working guy finally making enough money for a summer holiday and feeling like a tycoon being able to buy a new outfit.
There's a short and skegness polo for deckchair days; a zip up biker jacket for breezy strolls along the promenade; the bright blue Brighton shirt's cheery anchor print for some seaside fun. And at the end of the holiday, the Drayton jacket and Aston pant are perfect understated dapper for a slap-up fish supper on the English Riviera.
We can always rely on Folk for a playful detail or blast of colour. It's still there this season, just a little more subtle and restrained than we might expect. The pinky red t-shirt is washed out, not fluro. The classic shirt has stitch detailing on the pocket - in a colour that matches rather than clashes. The sweater is classic navy stripes for summer, while the tapered chinos feature simple folds of fabric in just the right places. Even the trim on the grown-up Howard jacket is ultra subdued. Yes, safe to say we approve of the new down low Folk.