Monday, 28 August 2017


A blazer is a great fill-in for any occasion and every man has at least one in his wardrobe. They are perfect for situations in which a suit is too formal and you want to have a little sprinkling of your personality and individuality.

You all know how much I adore colours and fortunately this James Harper blazer has arrived just in time for Spring/Summer with its vibrant colour. The blazer is the perfect transitional wardrobe piece moving seasons from Winter to Spring. It is time to hang up those winter coats, wave goodbye to winter and don a blazer in a bright colour. This colour is sure to catch more than a few eyes on the streets, and it’s flattering shape works with just about anything I can throw at it.

 I am super excited about this colourful blazer, and it’s refreshing style that within 3 days, I wore it 3 different ways! It is perfect for summer with its slim lapel, double vents and the spot print lining is super fun when unbuttoned. Men like to purchase pieces that ensure versatility and value for money and this blazer works just as well outside the office as it does inside.

Day 1 – Blazer and Jeans

This great blazer and a humble pair of jeans created a great combination. The cut of the bright coloured blazer paired with the casual style of jeans created a sharp and chic yet relaxed vibe. Obviously the simplest of my 3 days, 3 ways, this look is totally easy for any man to achieve. By pairing the blazer with a plain shirt you will make the look more casual (remember to unbutton your top button) and your trusty white canvas kicks will make this a failsafe style that you can repeatedly rely on. If you don’t feel like being neither casual or dressy but quite neutral , opt for a polo shirt. It is another failsafe item that every gent has in their wardrobe. The great thing about this look is it is so versatile and can take you from afternoon meetings to drinks and spontaneous dancing with friends. Throw on this blazer during the day and it will keep you looking sharp through to when happy hour starts and beyond.

Day 2- Blazer Short Combo

On day 2 the sun begun to poke out of the clouds and I paired the blazer with a pair of shorts, also by James Harper, a white tee and some simple white canvas shoes, perfect look for sunnie afternoons.I opted to have the koi fish embroidery added to the jacket to customise it and make it a little special. The embroidery pattern is custom made (lovely touch) and hand stitched to the blazer. Embroidery has popped up everywhere thanks to the big fashion houses embracing embellishments and embroidery. I adore it’s unique eclectic vibe and it is wonderful to see menswear is getting in on the trend. Obviously you do not need to opt for the embroidery and the great thing is if you do, you can always remove it so you will have the blazer for seasons to come.

Day 3- Blazer for work
By day 3 I was totally mad for this blazer! The great thing about a statement blazer is you really do not need to buy a whole new wardrobe to match it. Dress to impress at the office by combining the blazer with pieces in your existing corporate wardrobe. You will be surprised how this great colour matches what you gents would already have in your wardrobe, such as navy’s and grey. The trick is to make a statement without being too over-the-top and keeping your ensemble work-friendly. When in doubt start with a light or dark base and work from there to create outfit harmony. To create a polished look for work I combined the blazer with a plain shirt with minimal details and pair of suit pants, topping it off with a pocket square. The pocket square helps break up the solidity of the blazer. If you do not know how to wear a pocket square, please revert to WHAT’S IN YOUR POCKET.

Stand out in the crowd by styling the blazer with a pair of shorts, a navy shirt and some white kicks. Totally on-point for afternoons out with friends. You could always combine them with some brown suede shoes that would convert this to a classic look for a more formal occasion, such as the polo, or nine-to-five.

My friends at James Harper have kindly offered you 10% off at their online store by using the code GFASH10.

Whether you need a blazer for work or just a fancy occasion, I hope I have inspired you to think outside the grey, navy or black box.

Tuesday, 22 August 2017


Image: Anthony Caffery

Look out Canberra here I come! With great honour I have been invited to attend FASHFEST in Canberra this year and it thrills me that fashion, design and creativity in many forms will be on display in our nation’s capital.

I have been reading many an article online about FASHFEST and have been impressed by the effort, hours and commitment that has been poured into the program. From watching the models being selected, updates on Instagram or reading articles from Ink & Leathers (who I have come to rely on to be my Canberra survival guide) I am really impressed by what I have seen from our “Bush Capital” that is only an hour from Melbourne on plane.

In the lead up to FASHFEST, I have asked many people if they have been to Canberra and what they know about our country’s capital. Basically the answers are the same; War Memorial, Parliament House and a lake. On further prompting I ask if they knew about the 3-day fashion event that showcases the work of more than 40 designers. Insert blank faces here. They then want to know more about Canberra’s annual red-carpet event and what I am looking forward to as a Canberra virgin.

Besides the above mentioned, I am looking forward to visiting the National Gallery of Australia which has over 160,000 pieces of art as well as wondering around the old parliament buildings. I have a thing for architecture and exploring a city on foot. But let’s get serious, Parliament House is similar to a day care centre, so let’s move on to what is really important…………!
Image: Jack Mohr

I feel so inspired at a fashion show, from seeing someone’s creativity come to life, if it be hair and make-up, styling, modelling and or of course the clothes. The runway is electric with energy, the synergy of all the creative teams coming together in such a dynamic way, and I binge feed on it as it ignites desires and lust for what I see on the runway. 

The 3 fabulous days of fashion, music and entertainment that are planned will be hosted at National Convention Centre Canberra. I have googled this venue and it looks amazing! What a stage for a runway! Glamorous parties will be will be hosted at QT Canberra where the style elite can be found mingling and partying after the runway lights dim for the evening.
Stay tuned in the coming weeks for live updates on instagram and future articles covering the 3-day festivities but for now onto the highlights from the released program

I do adore a good Haute Couture design after styling many a bride over the years. Like myself, this is the first time De Challie Haute Couture has been involved in FASHFEST and by looking at their website and social media, De Challie Haute Couture promises some spectacular visuals with their voluminous and detailed designs.
Haute Couture Canberra
Image: De Challie Haute Couture

BT (Braddon Tailors) is an Australian design house that uses some of the best fabrics from around the world for their made to measure garments. The silhouettes on their website look very classic and will be a welcomed feast for my eyes leading into summer.  
Braddon Tailors on the runway
Image: Samantha Taylor

Ethical and sustainability is definitely covered in the program with a line-up of designers including Melanie Child who has a focus on upcycling and sustainable fabric choices. This is her third year which indicates to me that she is clearly a force that can create superb garments out of waste or unwanted materials.

The Salvos Stores will also be on display offering their take on upcycling and recycling. I used to work for the Salvos Stores many years ago and will be interested to see how far they have come.
Image: Michael Greves

The Darwin Aboriginal Art Fair Foundation and Magpie Goose will display Indigenous textiles and design, Magpie Goose prints are designed and printed in four remote Aboriginal communities across the Top End.

Obviously some big names in Australian fashion are also involved including Alex Perry, Camilla and Misha Collection to name a few, presented by Momento Dezigns, a stunning shop with amazing labels that has been operating in Canberra for decades. It will be exciting to see what they present so soon after Melbourne Spring Fashion Week.

It goes without saying that one of my highlights is always seeing the next generation of designers. The students from the Canberra Institute of Technology will be showcasing two collections this year. I am always excited to see the talent on display with students, their wild creativity with a side of edginess is so refreshing and I cannot wait to see what the students have been creating in Canberra.

Out of the 3 days on offer it is hard to say which night I am looking forward to the most. Honestly, I think all 3 nights and 6 shows offer the crowd so much variety and diversity. Tickets start from $49 which is quite reasonable and there are VIP and Platinum ‘experiences’ which include guided backstage tours. 

First impressions are always an opportunity to shine bright and I think this will be Canberra’s way of blinding me! It maybe best to pack some new sunnies!

Tickets are on sale now at:

Tuesday, 15 August 2017


image: courtesy of google

Soon you will hear the sound of designer high heels clicking along Swanston Street towards the town hall as the week-long Melbourne Spring Fashion Week fast approaches. Melbourne gents have caught on and here you can see guys strutting this season’s favourite trends a long side the women as the city embraces the arrival of Spring, and soon Summer.

Spring Fashion is the perfect opening to what becomes the social season with plenty of fashion and style on show for the looming racing carnival. People replace their sad angry winter tones, ditch the black, and replace with upbeat colours and prints. As Meryl so nicely said “Florals for Spring, groundbreaking”. There is usually an abundance of floral.

I love the atmosphere of a fashion festival. The streets are electric and the energy races through me like a kid in candy store. Some people enjoy formula one racing, I enjoy the fashion circuit.

Being the fashion capital of Australia, MSFW has a lot of expectations to live up to. Melbournites are proud of their style heritage and the “fashion capital” label. We expect a lot from the runway line ups, the settings as well as shopping experiences which must be a daunting task for organisers in creating a program to cater to so many peoples needs.

Of course the shows are a highlight of the festival in the beautiful Melbourne Town Hall building. This year I decided to mix up my ticket selection with some front row, some middle row and some on the balcony overlooking everything like a hawk circling its prey. Which shows am I looking forward to?

I always have an appreciation for the talent of up and coming designers and the Student Runway Collective is a highlight as students creativity is on display from across the state. There is such purity of creativity and freedom when it comes to design students and not necessarily the commercial aspect of their designs. Runway Garage Menswear is ditching the town hall for a carpark this year which will either be a highlight with it's urban flavour, or a waste of my $60 odd dollars. At least it is something different. I do hope to view some variety and not just head to plain suiting with a Fedora on top strutting down the runway. Jack London is always a sure bet for having something a little luxy and unique, fingers crossed.

There is some interesting exhibitions and offerings around town during the week-long event including the National Gallery of Victoria launching The House of Dior: Seventy Years of Haute Couture. The Imagined Fashion Masters MFW will be a highlight after attending their graduation show earlier this year and RMIT is showcasing its students in a free exhibition. 
The shopping precincts of Melbourne are once again on board and Emporium is transforming into an open-air runway showcasing Australian designers available for purchase within its complex. 

Melbourne has a large “influencer” contingent and I am looking forward to seeing if street style has advanced from what I saw at Virgin Australia Fashion Festival earlier this year and what I see on the gram. The gap between runway and footpath has significantly narrowed with brand sponsorship and a lack of originality for which street style was once known. I sincerely hope to see some originality of style on the footpath. I have heard some whispers that interstate is where the creativity is. Melbourne could you be losing your street cred?
Ethical and sustainability is huge everywhere at the moment including in the Fashion world. Melbourne Spring Fashion Week program attends to this nicely with the addition of a showcase from recycled materials as well discussions on the very subject.

Tickets and program are available online

Get ready Melbourne, the footpaths are about to be crowded with photographers, bloggers fashionista’s, “influencers” and those just wanting to enjoy the fashion lifestyle for a night or two. Then there will be me, gorging on all the wonderful activity. Be sure to check back in a few weeks with my post- Melbourne Spring Fashion Week wrap up.

Let the outfit selection process begin!

Tuesday, 8 August 2017


Love black? Constantly look like you’re attending a funeral? Black is a classic colour, especially when combined with its contrasting friend White. Whilst I appreciate that black is flattering, slimming, timeless and classic, I believe our world at the moment really needs colour. In a depressing world of terror, fear and uncertainty and terrible headlines, why would you not want to be free in your everyday life? Remember fashion and style is freedom. 

Not sure of how to overcome your reliance on black? Just like an addiction, the first step is realising you have a problem. Congratulations by reading this far, I think you have identified you have to the later, and committed to embracing some colour in your life.

Let’s start off with baby steps by introducing an accessory into your outfit that necessarily is not needed to complete the look. For example sunglasses! Grab yourself a brightly coloured pair of sunglasses. Obviously when you are strutting down the street in your funeral attire these will make the outfit pop and give you a seriously chic playful look. Once inside you can easily slip them off and resume your daily routine of timeless black. Options if you are not one to embrace colour on your face, other alternatives are a colourful hat, or a pair of gloves in a bright colour. Monochrome outfits are always classic and easily achieved. A savvy way to introduce colour and not spend a huge amount of money is through scarves, and jewellery. Think of a pop of colour against your funeral ensemble.

ways to not wear black
Coat: Van Heusen
Sweater: Connor Clothing

Scarf: Dotti

Jeans: Cotton On

Boots: no name

Now that you have graduated from orientation with colour, it is time to embrace the next step. Do not fear, you can still wear your classic black. No need to have strong withdrawals to black just yet. Next step is to incorporate a bag, a belt or a pair of shoes into your wardrobe in colour! Totes in bright colours or patterns, oversized bags in bold stripes or metallic, a pair of shoes in vibrant colours will emphasize your entire outfit. By mixing your existing wardrobe with new statement pieces will save you time and money shopping for a completely new wardrobe. Smart purchases make all the difference and a vibrant pair of shoes can make even the most basic ensemble look more stylish.
Shirt & Shorts: H&M

Deep breath my black loving friends. It is time to commit to a piece of clothing in a colour. There is nothing like a pop of colour to turn heads. For a sophisticated look and to not look like a total beginner, continue with what you have learnt with your monochromatic style of all black with a colourful shoe. A standout statement piece of clothing in your ensemble could be for instance, a jacket. Let the jacket take the colourful place of the shoes by revert to your black shoes and let the only colour be the statement jacket. 

Shirt: H&M

Shoes: Asos

Sunglasses: Kmart

The same can be applied for any piece of clothing, all black suit, red shirt or black on top with colour from the waist down. Below I have used pants to be the pop of colour.
How to be stylish with colour
Shirt: H&M

Shoes: Asos

Belt: Dsquared2

Sunglasses: Kmart

Congratulations! By now you have probably learnt that you can create combinations with colourful accessories that match or by introducing colourful footwear with a statement piece of clothing and discovered how to balance the colours. You have likely begun strutting down the street, smiling at people or have people smiling at you or complimenting you on your outfit. Well done!

I can hear some of you now, “but I wear grey” “I like navy”. If you are a fan of the previously mentioned colours of grey and navy, the same principles apply that you have just become educated with. An all navy outfit, grey or olive green can really stand the chic test with a pop of colour. Hot pink, yellow and red work beautifully with all the above mentioned exquisitely.
Men wearing colour
Shirt: Paul Smith
Shorts & Shoes:: Boohoo

Blazer:: Connor Clothing

Sunglasses: Oxford

Colour and confidence go hand in hand. Let your new admiration for colour flood into your closets and your life. Paint the world in colour, be brave, be brazened and be free.

Friday, 4 August 2017


Men are savvy shoppers in comparison to their female counterparts. Men tend to buy items that they know are timeless, easy mix and match pieces that are value for money, and a true investment. You know I enjoy my unusual prints and pieces that stand out, but I do like to be savvy in my purchasing and know that I will wear something more than once, and it was worth the money.

Last week a large black velvet bow tie met a fella in the Flinders Lane, Melbourne Jack London store. It was love at first sight. The feeling of beautiful black velvet and Pat Benetar singing passed through my mind. I have a major rule when shopping(there is always an exception to a rule, it normally involves leopard, sequin or fur) immediately I must be able to wear the item 3 different ways with items I already have.

 How to change your style
Day 1:

Shirt & bow tie: Jack London

Sunglasses: Gucci

This brings us to a stylist challenge. A stylist challenge is a fun and easy way to stretch your wardrobe to new limits, try new trends, and make old items look new again.  A stylist challenge will inspire you to re-style your existing items in fun and exciting new ways with new items. One of the great benefits of a challenge is rediscovering items that you forgot you had or have not showed much love to recently. No need to overhaul your entire wardrobe completely. 

This challenge is centred around a 5 Day, 5 outfits with my new oversized bow tie.

Day 2:
Blazer & bow tie: Jack London

Sunglasses: Arockonalens

Tweaking your ensemble with a bold colour can highlight the simplistic details and draw attention to a new item. For instance above, the yellow blazer draws attention via its cut and fit drawing your eye in. You then follow the shirt fastening up to the the bow tie. The bow tie in comparison to the brash yellow is simple, elegant but a complimentary piece to the ensemble. Other details of the outfit are actually the sunglasses from Melbourne designer Arockonalens. The details in the gold and the wide frames are balanced by the oversized bowtie, the velvet is complimented by the richness of the gold chain (textures are both luxy), the black and white pocket square is the same colours as the shirt and bow tie combo. 

Dressing is exactly like a painting, what draws your attention, navigates your eyes around the canvas. Everything is proportioned and balanced. Am I starting to sound like an art teacher?

Jack London Bow tie
Day 3:
Sunglasses: Arockonalens

Shirt: James Harper

Pants: & bow tie: Jack London

On day 3 I remixed old pieces with new, which forced me to think outside of the box and dig into the back of my wardrobe. Old suit blazers or shoes became my favourites again and instantly revitalised my passion for why I purchased them in the first place. Here I have reversed the bold outerwear with the complimentary bold colour underneath to highlight the bow tie. A blazer in a lighter shade will also draw the eye to the bold colour and move the eye up and down the ensemble. The pant pattern  will then lead you down to the footwear. 

 5 day style challenge
Day 4:
Jacket: Roger David
Shirt: H&M
Sunglasses: Dangerfield Clothing
Bow Tie: Jack London
Gloves: Karl Lagerfeld

When the sun came up on day 4 I felt like I was back in full creative styling mode. As much as I adore a good shop and can come home with 20 completely different pieces that do not match each other, there is something about working a piece into your every day life in a creative way with pieces you already have. I enjoyed the rich textures and combining leather and velvet. Transition new pieces in with old and think of yourself as a walking piece of art that struts the streets.

Style challenge for him
Day 5:
Shirt: H&M
Pants & bow tie: Jack London
Sunglasses: Le Specs

As the sun set on day 5,  I felt like I knocked this stylist challenge out of the park by wearing my trusty ruby slippers ( I also have them in yellow) and red blazer. Both items were a favourite of mine and took my outfit from boring to bold, pay attention to the details and how you put things together. It was great to slip back into them and feel energized. The black bow tie on black shirt was all about textures and volume and somewhat softened the look.

A stylist challenge is a great way to prove that you don’t have to spend a heap of money or buy a whole new look to feel great. 

Give it a try and report back on how your challenge stretched your wardrobe to its limits.