Simon Crompton's Picks


Greg always picks really interesting pieces for No Man Walks Alone each season - particularly from smaller Japanese brands.

But sometimes I struggle to get a sense of these online - as their weight, handle and proportions are crucial to how they wear and could be styled.

In this installment of my seasonal picks from the No Man Walks Alone collection, therefore, I thought I'd include on some of these pieces I particularly like - alongside the stand-bys of Eidos, G.Inglese and Tie Your Tie that I would always recommend.

1. Sartoria Formosa - Olive cotton suit

In an age when few people wear a formal suit to work, cotton is the most casual and relaxed of alternatives in a full suit.  And green, I'd argue, is the most versatile colour of cotton. Not light or sandy enough to have too many summer associations, and wonderful with both white and blue shirts. A solid option from Formosa.

2. GRP - short sleeve linen crew neck

Online it should be clear that the colour and texture of this top have real appeal: the cloth has a natural slubbiness that feels elegant yet casual. However, the hand is harder to appreciate.  It is dry and slightly coarse, which is rather different to the softness of a plain cotton, but can also add a feeling of lightness and freshness - a little like high-twist wools used in summer dress trousers.

3. Naissance - Blue and white cotton tape belt

Most summer shorts come with belt loops, and a belt can be a nice way to add personality to something that's otherwise plain and functional. But belts are often heavy. Cloth strips like this one are an interesting alternative, and I found that this one has enough texture in the material to keep any knot from slipping once tied. 

4. G. Inglese - Beige hemp, ramie & soy shirt

I love shirts in this colour in the summer. Natural, earthy tones feel so much more appropriate with casual clothing than the bright white of office dress.   And don't let the unusual fibres put you off - the hemp, ramie and soy just feel like a particularly soft cotton/linen mix. 

5. Tie Your TIe - Khaki brown cotton tie

It's army brown. Military drab. Wear it with a similarly coloured shirt and a casual observer might think you'd just come back from the Army recruitment office. But worn with a regular blue or white shirt, it's a really nice alternative to a dress tie, and one that feels very casual and laid back. Beautiful finishing from Tie Your Tie as well. 

6. Monitaly - Flat front shorts in hand-loom natural cotton

I'm spotting a theme here. Many of my selections this season seem to involve natural colours and slubby texture.  This Monitaly short has a lovely feel, and nice proportions for a short: perfect length just above the knee, and a simple cuff for a little visual interest.

7. Sage de Cret - Belted, pleated shorts in navy cotton/linen

Combining several of my seasonal themes - of belts, shorts and washed colours - this piece from Sage de Cret is a more unusual alternative to the Monitaly mentioned above. The built-in belt works really nicely, holding the waist firmly and letting the rest of the material (a satisfyingly soft twill) flow from it. 

8. Lesca - Corbs sunglasses in dark brown tortoise

These sunglasses are large and sculpted - there is a real 3D flow to the way the frame runs out and round the bridge, before curving back again.  That movement, together with the high contrast tortoiseshell shape, lend a lot of character to what are otherwise very classic sunglasses. 

9. Castaner - Navy espadrilles with natural sole

The most popular men's design by Castaner, the Pablo espadrille is at ease in the most casual settings like the Mediterranean seaside - but is also a rakish footwear alternative for those summer outfits of linen trousers and popover shirts.

10. Eidos - Cream linen/silk shawl collar dinner jacket

A rather different take on natural colour to finish, with this cream dinner jacket from Eidos. The silk/linen cloth has a nice matte, gummy texture to it, which is appealing, and manages to remove some of the super-fancy, dressy qualities of a cream jacket. If you're going to wear light-coloured eveningwear, this is how to do it

Simon Crompton

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