Head of design Dean Gomilsek-Cole discusses the essential items that every man should have in his wardrobe.
There’s something special about classic pieces, those dependable, yet stylish, items that can be worn with anything for any occasion, formal, smart or informal. The foundation of any man’s wardrobe, mine included, often features many variations of these items and help to balance out the numerous fashion faux pas we occasionally make.
The White Shirt
The white shirt is probably the most written-about wardrobe staple and at Turnbull & Asser we have created many. Obviously collar shape trends come and go, but the subtle cutaway stance and confident depth of the standard T&A collar has endured many decades with very few tweaks, and has earned its space in my wardrobe. Whether you choose double cuff or single depends on your preference, mine personally is a single cuff as I like our signature three button detail, and I always manage to lose cufflinks.
The Collar Stays
If, unlike me, you can be trusted not to lose accessories then it could be worth investing in some sterling silver collar stays to keep your collar point sharp, even under pressure.
Next we move on to the neck tie which has been in and out of favour over the past couple of years, but certain styles can always prove essential. For me, a navy tie is the perfect accompaniment to a crisp white shirt. Texture is the key to adding some interest to solid coloured ties; with ridged stripes, twill and herringbone, the weaving ensures the tie doesn't look flat, while still works with any outfit. Having shrugged off the skinny tie and even the ‘invisible’ tie aka the top-button-undone trend, our classic 9.5cm wide blade is having somewhat of a renaissance.
A navy blazer should be next on the agenda, again widely available in various silhouettes both double breasted or single. My choice this season would be our aptly named Consort Blazer, a great weekend piece, that would also pass muster at all but the most formal engagements. It has an intricate weave structure, reminiscent of our classic ties, that adds depth and newness to this most recognisable, and typically English, garment to take it out of the ordinary.
I am a great advocate of the pyjama set. I would have scoffed at this just a few years ago, but after a winter in my draft-ridden 1920s house I invested in a navy blue pair. Now, even though my house will soon be undergoing renovations to bring it into the 21st century, I have also purchased a crisp white pair for the summer season. It’s not actually about staying warm anymore it’s more about being stylish during my self-imposed reading hour, before getting ready for bed. They have also become a travel staple, as I can never seem to get the air conditioning right in any hotel and often freeze myself. On a recent trip to Mallorca the new pyjamas had a breakfast outing on the balcony of an apartment in Palma - not something many people can pull off in their underwear, but in pyjamas it is most acceptable.