Sometimes the clothes, do not make the man

 

Clothes don’t make the man, but they can sure make him look more appealing

 

There are lots of rules and a lot of chat about what you should and shouldn’t wear, (and most of them should be heeded), but I find that a true sense of style comes from a lot of self confidence.

I’m talking about the sense of self that comes from inside, and permeates through your skin.

Gucci, Prada, Fendi or Sixborn,to name a few, aint worth a pinch unless you feel good about yourself before you put them on your body. See, it’s not what you wear, but how you wear it.

There are lots of label clad cowboys out there who make expensive clothes look like cheap knock-off’s. The thing is that these cowboys think that the labels they wear are making into a better person or a more desirable person.

Sorry boys, thats like thinking you can attract a soulmate by flashing your credit card!!

It just doesn’t work like that! Style comes from appreciation of self, and how best to adorn that self. It’s about mixing and matching designs and cuts until you find the things that make you feel like you’re representing who you really are.

It’s not about spending big to be more flashy, it’s more about spending smart and appreciating the craftmanship or design value in the clothes.

What you present on the outside, is really a reflection of what is going on inside

 

So the next time your about to go out on the town, look in the mirror and appreciate the person standing in front of you, and then feel what u would like to wear.

It will make a world of difference to the way you and others see you.

Before he speak his suit bespoke

Perfect Fit

Dressed smart like a London bloke. Before he speak his suit bespoke.’
Kanye West, American Boy.

The infinite wisdom of Kanye West does not end at who should have won the ‘Best Video’ category at the VMA’s.

He knows that slick suits – perfectly tailored to your frame – are rapidly becoming a male necessity.

Don’t believe Kanye? Then cop this. A highly scientific study conducted by my judgemental friends and I confirms: men are more attractive, more confident and stand taller in well-tailored suits.

So, how do you know what to look for when taking the plunge into custom made threads?

I’ve got three words for you: Cut. Is. King.

Transformers are so retro-cool-right-now, but your suit jacket shouldn’t make you look like one. Cross your arms over your chest (go on, give yourself a man hug) when trying your jacket. If you have just enough room to move comfortably, you’ve found a winner.

Here’s three more words to remember: baggy is bad. MC Hammer rocked the look in the 80’s but he that was just an embarrassing blip on the pop-culture radar. Besides, he’s broke now. But be careful – go too far the other way and you could be having your own David Bowie moment. And it’s not great for the manhood, man. Your trousers should fit comfortably in the waist and thighs. They should give you flattering but not revealing ‘shop frontage’. And, when it comes to length, remember what Jane Austen would say: ankles are unsightly.

If you love the pants get a second pair made. You won’t regret it.

Choose the best fabric you can afford. The higher the grade of fabric, the longer it will last and the better it will feel. Simple as that. Not sure what you like? Just give the fabrics a ‘rub test.’ Feels good? It probably is.

Choose an unconventional lining colour to make the suit your own. Grey with purple. Navy with orange. It will make you feel dangerous when people get a tantalising peek of your ‘inner lining demon’, you dirty dawg.

The shirt you choose is just as important as the suit. Nothing bought in plastic wrapping and stacked on shelf of sale items should touch your skin. Apply the same rules of fabric and cut to a shirt as you would a suit. But be playful. Choose a fabric that expresses your individual style. A well fitted shirt can shred kilos from your frame, define a waist and sharpen your shoulders. If you’re not sure what looks best – ask your experienced tailor.

So you’ve nailed the suit, shirt and tie. You’re feeling good about yourself, aren’t you? Walking taller? Strutting even? Well stop right there. Because nothing spoils a look like a peek of white sports socks or scuffed shoes. It’s all in the detail, darlings. Invest in a smart pair of dark socks, and give your shoes a spit and polish before click clacking your way down ol’ business town.

And finally, when it comes to neck ties, there is only one golden ‘do not wear under any circumstances’ rule. Novelty ties, I’m looking at you.

Custom made suits are timeless and are a forever reliable way of making a man look a million bucks. Go on, make Kanye proud.

Is Customer Service Dead?

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A client recently walked into a department store, money in hand ready to buy himself a suit. The purchase was to coincide with an event he was hosting to attract investors to his business venture. He was a little apprehensive because he was dreading the barrage of sales staff he thought he would be confronted with and he was sure they were going to lead him to the bigger man’s suiting (after all, he had put on a few kilograms since becoming a dad), or coerce him into a suit he didn’t want to buy. Admittedly he didn’t go in with the best mindset because as you know, what you think is often what you attract.

 

A curious thing happened that day to change his opinion of the shopping experience. He waited and waited and did not get served by a single soul. Not one person would attend to this man!

A one off incident or a common occurance? I too have been on the receiving end of bad or totally nonchalant service by people who are apparently paid to do just that…serve!

 

I get it: with the advent of online shopping we have stumbled upon a new phase of retail ,a new frontier, but have we let the whole notion of providing a service in exchange for goods go down the drain? Has the click and pay revolution of online retailing heralded the death of the true shopping experience, where customer needs were tended to and products were found according to the individual?

Customer service is in my opinion the most important differentiator to set the retail stores apart from the online store. If only retailers harnessed this resource and used it to provide the ultimate shopping experience we rarely get to experience in todays malls.

 

Maybe their loss is my gain!

 

As a bespoke label our greatest asset is the ability to go over and beyond what the customer can expect in a retail experience. We are almost obliged to give the customer what shops often can’t provide. At Sixborn, we help people achieve their goals of looking great through tailor made clothing and styling tips, which makes me, as Creative Director feel amazing and hopefully it will make them feel that way too.

 

So if you want to experience some of that old-school customer service and enjoy the shopping experience that you are missing, contact Sixborn for truly personalised and unique service, tailor made for you!

 

Everyone’s Crazy For a Sharp Dressed Man

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If you’re not born brilliant or you don’t have the ability to solve mathematical equations that prove the existence of extra dimensions in space, then the chances are you were born (like me), average.

Being average in no way should limit you, some of the most successful humans have recognised their shortcomings and risen to the top of their game in spite of it. What sets them apart is their above average passion to be successful and prosperous.

In order to tap into this prosperity I have been researching ways to set myself apart. To feel as though I have the power, when to the average person nothing about me has really changed.

I’ve taken to reading books by people claiming to have the solutions to my Mr Average status. These professionals have been telling me that if I set my intentions, then the success will come to me. If I set my mind on it , then by sheer force of will success will be guaranteed.

The more I read about this phenomenon the more interested that I become. Are they really saying that the way to success, wealth and or happiness is within me?

Surely this theory is too easy?

Napolean Hill from his book Dress for Success- the Psychology of Good Clothes expressed this exact notion, that there is a close connection between clothes and success. Clinical Psychologist Dr Jennifer Baumgartner explains ‘when you dress in a certain way, it helps shift your internal self’.

In essence both of these authors have come to the conclusion that the way that we dress can impact positively on ourselves and the way that others perceive us.

Next time you are called into a board meeting, check out who you are checking out. Chances are it is the guy or the girl who is impeccably dressed and groomed. The impression they make on you will be remembered long after the meeting is finished.

They are no better than you , but they learnt that to set themselves apart they had to dress the part. They backed themselves in, and made you believe in them, they way that they believed in themselves.

Do a little experiment with yourself (don’t get awkward), when you are preparing for your next meeting, rock out your best suit, visit the pletheroa of hipster barber/ hair salons in your area and dress like your the CEO of some big Corporation. Corporation YOU. I bet on my Grandmothers boots that people will start taking notice as soon as you walk in and will be wondering who the “new” guy is! This kind of attention will help you get your foot in the door and set a whole new agenda for yourself.

People appreciate the effort and will think of you in a more positive way which is perfect if you are in line for a promotion or a pay rise!

So remember if you weren’t born brilliant you can dress for success and give yourself an upper hand….because as they say everyone IS crazy for a sharp dressed man.

 

Sixborn love the guys at  Tie The Knot. Amazing Ties. An amazing reason to buy amazing ties. Check them out:

tietheknot

From Jay Z to Mad Men: Rock it out in Tailor Made Suits

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These days it seems that everyone is wearing a suit. Turn on the T.V and what do you see? Suits! Walk around the CBD at 5 pm, again suits! Turn on the radio they’re even singing about suits!

Donning a suit is so hot right now. It seems that the Mad Men phenomena has really turned the concept of men’s fashion on its ears. What was considered old, stuffy and antiquated, like the Octomum’s contraception cupboard, has suddenly, apparently and without reason, become cool.

Justin Timberlake, Jay Z, P Diddy or Puffy  (whatever his current name incarnation) have taken to wearing a dapper two-piece superfine like the proverbial ducks to water. It’s as if they have traded in their rock star passport for a more gentrified life.  Not that I’m complaining, being a suit designer and all!

These rock ‘n roll “friends” have helped catapult the status of the suit to a “must have” item in every man’s wardrobe and along the way have given a bit of street cred to their personal tailors. Personal tailors?  Well yes, any self-respecting A-listers wouldn’t be caught dead sporting some ‘off the rack’ suit. They are enlisting the help of a tailor and experiencing the benefit of having a suit that is tailor made to fit perfectly to their body.

Having a suit that is tailor bespoke has more to do with empowering than it has to do with expenditure. A good tailor made suit can cost you upwards of $800, but the return on that investment is immeasurable. I have  worked with men on the cusp of landing that big opportunity. In order to set themselves apart they took a leap of faith and sought out the services of a qualified tailor. They empowered themselves to be the best they could be and this investment paid off.

Let’s not get carried away, a tailor can’t raise people from the dead. He isn’t a miracle worker. What he is though is someone who can take what’s there and highlight the best parts. With a bespoke suit you may even discover that person inside you thought never existed.

Simply put, a tailor made suit can be a reflection of who you are, how you see yourselves, and how you would like others to see you. If you want to set yourself apart from the pack then I suggest you find yourself a tailor and get set to run with the wolves.

Sixborn love the guys at  Tie The Knot. Amazing Ties. An amazing reason to buy amazing ties. Check them out:

tietheknot

 

Fashion. New Style

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Knowledge Is Power

The thing about fashion is that one day your wearing skinny legged trousers, and the next your being asked to wear flared pants. It’s a never ending ebb and flow of ideas and colours, cuts and trends. Fashion can be about the pulse of the world, the economy,  or the overall attitude of society. Fashion never stops, you either go with it or go without it.

Yet, Fashion is probably the most misunderstood of all the creative industries, it is an enigma that most of us are ashamed to acknowledge we are part of. Yet each one of us is impacted by it daily. The decisions we make as to what we wear are determined years before by Fashion Designers and the Fashion Industry, the industry most of us denounce of ever having any knowledge about.

The fact we know very little about the Fashion Industry, means that we make decisions to clothe ourselves blindly and we allow other people to make decisions about how we adorn our bodies.

Sometimes it can be our partners, friends, families, or too many tacky TV programs, who influence our style. We empower others to help define us, how we look as we move through the world. You see it everyday, men being dragged around shopping malls, with badly advised haircuts and clothes that are way inappropriate, having being told that look like a better version of themselves.

This could all be avoided if we accepted that Fashion can be an important part of our day. Business men at the top of their game are always usually groomed well, suits pressed, hair coiffed. It’s no coincidence that some of the highest paid jobs often carry a dress code. But the dress code isn’t specifically about the exact cuts of suits or the latest must have fabrics, but really a code of “Best Self”. Dressing as a way of respecting future clients who will invest in your expertise, and knowledge.

My best piece of advice is treat fashion as you would the gym, or any other routine. Little bits and more often can help a lot more, than big twice yearly shops. The more you research about the things you like the better the decisions you will make when you do finally decide to go out shopping, and the more like your “Best Self” you will become.

Because as they say, knowledge is power

A FASHION CONFESSION.

 I wear leggings.

Not just at the gym. Not just at yoga or ballet.  EVERYWHERE.

Yes, that’s right.  Those stretchy shiny black leg stuffing tights that people substitute as pants? They’re my wardrobe staple.

Please don’t judge me.  It’s just that, well, I HATE jeans.  “WHAT???” you say –  “who is this crazypants jeans hater and what is she doing on a fashion blog loving leggings like some kind of Li-lo denialist???” Settle down there I say.  There is no need for such liberal use of the question mark.  And let’s leave Lindsay out of this.  Let me explain.

I’ve got a weird body. Oddly shaped.  I don’t fit the magazine mould for ‘apple’ or ‘pear’ – I’m no kind of fruit at all.  I’m over 6′ 1″ with a short bricky body, no waist, no boobs, and legs that go forever.  Sounds good doesnt it? Walk a mile in my size 12 shoes, darlings.  It’s no picnic. Maxi dresses are never maxi enough, mini skirts are not an option, heels leave people gaping skywards and as for pants? I just say no.

For my entire awkward adolescent life, and beyond into my early 20’s, I had suffered from what’s known in the medical fashion world as “anklearis frozenitis”.  Where pants the world over stopped short a good two inches above the ankles, leaving my pale skin cold and exposed.

The humiliation was always exacerbated by smug shop assistants who, upon seeing my enormous frame, would exclaim “oh we have ones that will fit you!” and like some sick fashion challenge, subject me to dozens of ill fitting options before crumbling in defeat.

They were the worst of times. While all my friends were wearing cute little bootleg Sass and Bide, or hipster Lee jeans, I was forced to shop meekly in the men’s section at Just Jeans.  No, I was not decades ahead of the boyfriend jean trend. I was just desperate. I was forced to wear baggy jeans and sling them low on my hips so they’d reach an acceptable level and meet my flat, ugly skater shoes.  My musical tastes changed accordingly to rap and hip hop.  I wore baseball caps and baggy shirts and looked like an uncomfortable pre-pubescent boy.

The advent of internet shopping was my bright light at the end of the tunnel.  But though my search engine worked overtime on “tall girl clothes”, the results were always ill-fitting and poorly made.

And over the years, with the explosion of shopping chains, with more choice than ever, the situation has not improved.

So I renounced jeans. I banned pants.  I scoffed at Maxi’s.  And I embraced the safe, comfortable legging.  Not on it’s own, mind you, I remain to this day highly opposed to visible camel toe and panty line.  But teamed with a dress, a long , belted shirt and a nice ballet flat, it works for me.

And you know what I realized? It looked fine. Those abnormally long legs I hated as a teenager turned out to be a good asset. And in (high denier) skin-tight black leggings, I can go on and flaunt it, ankles covered.

I believe it’s called dressing for your shape.  And it’s not always easy, and sometimes you gotta go through a lotta pain and hip-hop to find what works for you. So haters begone.  I will not be defined by denim. ‘Cos these long legs love a legging.

And now, the sky is the limit for this giant black duck. No longer will I be dictated to by the fashions and seasons.  No longer will I curse my body because it doesn’t “work” with the latest trends.  Because I’ve found something that works

for me and I’m building my style around it.  That’s why the world needs more SIXBORN.  It’s not just for apples or pears.  It’s the place for pineapples and bricks, for figure 8’s and figure 2’s. A place where difference is embraced, where the fashion fringe can find their style.  And whilst I’m still jeans-shy, I’m seeing my fashion therapist.

 

And this summer, when you see me rocking a SIXBORN maxi, your jaw wont be the only thing hitting the floor.  Finally, the fabric will be too.

 

 

 

The Fat Duck Review

A man should always be seen at some of the most important places all over the world. The places that take ages to get a booking or require some secret code to get into their sanctunmed walls. A gentleman, should he find himself in such a position should take stock of himself, and propose the following question:

What the hell am I going to wear?

(Well there might be a few other questions he might want to ask himself).

I also hear you say, why is he only talking to the men, why isn’t he addressing the people who really count?

Well the fact is I am talking about the men is because it was this question that I had to pose on the morning that I found myself on the receiving end of a wonderful Sunday lunch invitation

The only other thing that kinda preoccupied my thoughts was that I wondered how long it would take to get to the Fat Duck Restaurant, 16,000 km away from my home in Australia!

The Fat Duck is the temple of gastronomy tucked away in a village outside London. It is perhaps the most amazing blend of theatricality surrounding food that I have ever had the privilege to experience.

To be lucky enough to secure a booking is like wining the Lotto because it means you had beaten 3,000 other hapless fools to the punch. You heard me! 3,000 enquiries for reservations make it to the Fat Duck’s booking lines every week! The fact that three Aussies got one of the golden tickets to the Willy Wonka chocolate factory, is a testament to the sheer will of …..well u know who u are!

So onto the task at hand.. What does one wear.

Well the fact is, you can wear almost anything, because there are hardly any rules when it comes clothing anymore.
But wearing anything comes at a cost. It means that youre expecting an ordinary everyday experience, and that is not what you get from the Fat Duck.

A Gentleman should always take his A Game to an extravagant 14 course culinary spectacle like this, be aware of his surroundings and appreciate the effort that has gone into the dinning experience he has had the privilege to be invited to.

This also extends to the wardrobe he chooses to adorn his body. Will it be classic gentleman, or trendy young upstart. Will it be preppy private school boy, or 60’s inspired Don Drapper?

It matters little what style you choose, but it is important to differentiate these special events than those in your everyday life. It’s a way to remember, and put into perspective those things that rise above the everyday or the mundane. I compare it to flying in first class when all you’ve ever flown is economy or cattle class.

So if it’s a classic white shirt that you choose then make sure you take it to a cleaners to have it pressed and starched just right. It’s the little things, things that don’t cost a lot but that indicate you are making an effort. Wear your best undergarments, socks without holes, and polish or clean your shoes. If your wearing a suit then pair it with a crisp pocket square, and perhaps my thing of choice at the moment a deep red carnation.

Life throws special little gifts your way every now and again, so the last thing you want to do is ruin it by feeling like you have not made an effort. Not everyone can be dressed by a stylist or have the looks of a modern day leading man, but you can go to the hairdressers or barber and have your locks tressed and your beard shaved and face what is an unforgettable experience…..and who knows you might just be rubbing shoulders with Angelina and Brad or Bono, and if u do tell them I said hi!

Wedding Do’s

Renting a suit for your Wedding is like trying to impress the chicks in your sweat pants.
It can be done, but not advised.
Step out from the mundane suit rental merry-go-round, and get yourself fitted for a hand tailored suit in the finest fabrics, delivered to your door.
Why should the Bride have all the fun?
If she is going to spend her life savings on a dress that she will only ever wear for a day, then its only fair that you get to spend some of your hard earned coin on a suit you will have for your life.
James Bond (Sean Connery not the other fluff balls), or George Clooney, the choices are endless, but a great hand crafted suit will make you feel like a star on the most important day of your life.

Do yourselves a favour, check out Sixborn, and run with the wolves!

Colette

Enter the mother ship.

Whatever you thought about fashion and fashion retailing, then you need to take another perspective.

I had heard about this store for many years, in magazines and in blogs. I had heard about how it was the Holy Grail of retailing, and how it helped to challenge the notion of the way a small independent boutique could operate.

I had seen the pics, and thought that I had it under control, that I had it’s measure. A little like a prize fighter studying up his opponent…intimidated but ultimately confidently cocky.

Well I was wrong.

Colette, that uber store of all things chic, in the middle of Paris taught me that my cockiness was misplaced… It taught me that sometimes the hype is worth the paper that it’s written on.

However this fashion dream came into being and whomever is responsible, the fashion community is richer for it’s existence.

Its part installation, part warehouse, part hangout spot, but totally amazing. Even the packaging is displayed in such away that for a split second I was fooled into thinking that it was this seasons must have!!! Such is the skill to sell the fantasy

People were spilling onto the streets, tourists walking by wondering what kind of happening was happening, and cranking beats filled the air.

“No cameras in the store Sir”, I was asked as if taking photos would kill the soul of the shop, so I was reduced to taking it all in the regular way, sights and sounds and smells.

The store is on 3 levels and a couple of mezzanines. Ground floor is the street filter section of tshirts, sneakers, eyewear and accessories, plus some chic giftware. Each piece carefully selected to reflect the street culture of today, and each section is guarded by a couple of workers..they are protective here so don’t mess about..

Up a flight of stairs you find the serious mens and womens collections, which are punctuated by lots of mannequins also wearing some of the collections. This section is for the serious shopper and probably the reason why most people come to the shop. The collections include Yves Saint Laurant, Thom Browne, Comme des Garçon, Dior and the lesser known labels such as Opening Ceremony, Band of Outsiders and Ice Cream.

Delicate fabrics and sequins stand alongside hoodies and skate shoes. Each asking for the same amount of admiration from the customer. It is this concept that makes this experience so exciting and energizing, valuing design for it’s merit and not by it’s monetary value.

If your keen there is a level for art installations and a beauty bar a couple of steps down. And if the experience of emptying your wallets has left you needing a lift then the basement is where the cafe is at.
They have left no stone unturned. It is a total lifestyle experience.

If you are in the area, or making a trip to Paris, I would make this fashion destination one to mark in your schedule. It is well worth a visit.

Baby Its Cold Outside

When the days get shorter and the wind howls around at your ankles, its time to dust off the winter jackets and scarves, and leap into a new season.

I find it difficult to leave the sunshine and warmth behind, but i will tell you one thing that makes the transition a little easier, and that is, shopping! Im talking about the kind of shopping that helps to boost your wardrobe, and add to the clothes you purchased last season. Nothing helps you face a dreary day more easily than some new items of clothing. A simple scarf, or a new pair of shoes, can really make a difference.

Check out the new shapes or colours in the stores at the moment, and try no to be swayed by the ever youthful shop assistants who will tell you that stuff you dont like or dont want is this season’s “must have”. Check out the magazines at the begining of the new season and whatever attracts the eye as desirable is the kind of stuff you should look out for at the shops. But dont be fooled, because the stuff in magazines is styled to within one inch of its life and can look very different in the flesh. You will need to go in and check out the new styles and colours and get into the changerooms to try stuff on. The more you try, the closer you will get to knowing what looks good and what you prefer to see yourself in.

I have said it before, but knowing how best to adorn our bodies is not a blessing bestowed on us at birth. It is like a muscle that needs constant training to glisten in the light. The more you exercise it, the more it will return to you. Dont be detracted by all these well dressed buffoons in the street, you too can look just as well dressed if you took a little time every now and again and go shop.

Shopping at the stores is also very helpful, because if you ever need to purchase clothing online, knowing the cuts and colours reduces the wasteful situation of ordering something that you never had any business in wearing! Allow your mistakes to help you make better decisions in the future. There is nothing worse than having to live those fashion disasters over and over through photos.

So as the new season whispers your name on the cold winds, get out there and find your style. Once the depths of the short days come into play the only person who will be smiling and looking sharp will be you!