Home to looks we love and the makers that inspire us

Statistics, eh? Apparently there’s more chance of being killed by a toaster than a shark. And a 28% chance that you’re going on holiday in the next 3 weeks. 

We don’t like to argue with the numbers - so, this week, we’re eating cereal for breakfast … and composing our checklist for the beach. Some ideas to round out your holiday packing:

1 - Italian Cotton Shorts, by SPOKE - now 25% off:

The sharpest shorts on the beach in our signature tailored cut. A handful of these left in Khaki, Navy and Grey.

2 - Slubbed Cotton T-Shirts, by SPOKE 

“Wow, I have just too many fresh t-shirts” said no man, ever. These are cut from the finest slubbed jersey cotton in an incredible 12 sizes, for a perfect fit. A better summer tee you will not find - and next day delivery is free on all orders before 3pm.

3 - Wave Loafer in Navy & White, by Swims

21st century deck shoes, cut from rubber and neoprene - a perfect marriage of form and function.

4 - Glacier Park Towel, by Pendleton

There are few greater luxuries in this world that a good rub down with a soft, deep pile towel. The Pendleton’s have been making these in America for 6 generations - dyed in their classic, signature palette.

5a - Flash Boys, by Michael Lewis

Our Non-fiction summer pick: ’High Frequency Trading’, made thrilling - marvel at how Michael Lewis has pulled it off again …

5b - Stoner, by John Williams

 “The best novel you’ve never read”, rediscovered after 50 years in total obscurity. Haunting stuff.

6 - Brown Acetate Sunglasses, by Suit Supply

You will lose or break your sunglasses - it’s a universal law of nature. So stop spending £150 on them. Channel Don Draper with these acetate classics, for less than £80

7 - Tote bag, by Marc Jacobs

You may be a man, but you’ll still need a bag for your beach clobber - and there’s no danger this olive, black and blue tote will ever be confused with a ‘man-bag’. Made in tough, water-resistant nylon, with beige leather handles.

8. Hand surf by Frescobol Carioca

The latest beach toy from our friends at Frescobol - hand-shaped in Brazil and finished with beeswax. Hand surfing successfully will instantly make you the most attractive man on the beach. Fact. Good luck.

Enjoy the sun.

- Team SPOKE

Shorts- The Longer Guide

Our thoughts on how to rock shorts this summer:

1. Nail the Fit - Loose shorts are great for the gym. Or for ‘Home Improvement’ activities. Otherwise, wear a pair that fit, or you’ll look like a slob. As a general guide, the shorts should be about as wide at the hem as the widest part of your thigh - and no wider. In other words, it should be difficult or impossible to pull the hem up to the top of your thigh.

2. Check the Length - the hem should fall somewhere between 1 and 2 inches above the knee. Higher than that and you start to enter 80’s footballer territory.

3. Roll the hem - most shorts are cut to one length, erring on the long side. As the looks above demonstrate, a rolled hem is totally acceptable way to adjust the length as required

4. Lose the Socks - Generally speaking, socks and shorts should never be seen together. We struggle to think of exceptions. Slip-ons, espadrilles, loafers, boat shoes, flip-flops - there are lots of options in terms of sockless footwear. We love a pair of Quoddy’s. You don’t have to rule out trainers but it might be worth investing in some invisible socks.

5. Lighten the Pockets - Pockets should always be on the inside of the short, unless you work in construction (and you are at work). No exceptionsOverfilled pockets won’t do your fit any favours so try and keep things simple and stripped down - remove any unnecessary key rings and find yourself one of those milimaist, 21st century wallets. Perhaps one that doubles as a phone case. We love this, by Dodo

6. No Denim (ever) - look we don’t want to be snobs, and we’re pretty sure Nick Wooster or David Beckham could carry it off if they wanted too. But why make life hard for yourself? Denim shorts make all the wrong references.

Ready to practice? Find our own Italian cotton shorts here. - cut in italian milled cotton, and trimmed with swiss hardware, these are currently available in Navy, Grey and a classic Khaki.

Next day delivery and returns are free in the UK …

OK Folks, here’s the truth: a card won’t cut it.

And so, with exquisite timing, we present the Ultimate Father’s Day Gift Guide, 2014

Of course, we don’t think you need to look past #1. But hey, maybe your Dad doesn’t wear trousers … so we’ve hunted down seven other great ideas:

1. SPOKE Gift Card - Didn’t see this coming, did you? The Card comes in a decidedly wrap-able presentation box, with a measuring tape to guarantee a perfect fit.

2. Hamilton & Hare Days Of the Week Gift Box -  the perfect pairing for our SPOKEs - boxers from Hamilton and Hare in their signature tailored cut, hand finished and embroidered with the days of the week.

3. Parrot Drone - That’s right, his own remote control drone. Buy him something he really doesn’t need, and that he’d never buy for himself. These are always good gifting principles - and this definitely qualifies.

4. Stanley Pocket Flask- This should leave you enough change to fill it with a fine single malt. A 14 Year Balvenie should do it.

5. A Naked Wines Gift Case - wine may not feel like an inspired choice, but Naked do things differently. He’ll appreciate the introduction.

6. The GoodWood Festival Of Speed - As an almost universal rule, men love this event. Officially the largest motoring garden party in the world. Being held 26th- 29th June - general admission tickets from £27. 

7. American Felling Axe - OK, look, maybe we’ve been watching too much Game of Thrones… but we think axes get a bad press. This is a fine tool. And the ultimate expression of manhood, too. Even if he just hangs it in the shed …

8. Handmade Waxed Utility Roll - aka a Tool Belt. A really nice one that your mum will approve of.

Get shopping. 

5 Rules for Wearing Bold Colours

  1. Wear Bold

    Sure, these colours demand a bit of confidence. We get it. But confidence is an attractive thing. Maybe the most attractive thing. So get some bold into your wardrobe, and wear it. The next 4 rules will make sure you stay the right side of the line ….

  2. One Bold Piece at a Time 

    Confine yourself to the one statement piece. Taking it any further is risky territory. This isn’t just about colour - you should also approach patterns, accessories or fussy details with caution. Once you have your statement piece, keep everything else simple - and when it comes to tailoring keep the cuts clean and basic.

  3. Neutralise

    In our featured outfit we’ve chosen a dark Khaki safari jacket. Other masculine pieces such as a Peacoat or a Harrington work well- just keep the tones neutral (navy, black, white, cream… you get the idea).

  4. Don’t Just Stick to One Look

    OK, Orange or Electric Blue are hard to pull off in a formal setting - but there’s still a range of looks to experiment with here. We’ve illustrated something smart casual  - and of course warm reds and oranges work very well dressed right down-  try them with just a simple white or Navy tee and pair of converse or deck shoes.

  5. Take them on to Autumn

    Don’t act so surprised. Brights are trans-seasonal and shouldn’t be restricted to the peak Summer months. Autumn is all about colour. Once we get there, pair your bold statement pieces with earthy shades such as brown, olive and cream.

Look out for new SPOKE Brights appearing in our Washed Cotton Chino Range

Outfit Grid (from right to left):

1.‘Rust’ SPOKEs available now2. Vintage Blues Band Harmonica, 3. Shirt by Hugo Boss and Cardigan by Armani, 4. Derby Shoes by Bespoken, 5. 35mm Yashica, 6. Daniel Wellington Wrist Watch, 7. Anti Fragile, N.Taleb, 8. Safari Jacket by Ted Baker.

Agreed. We’d add that over paying for a product can sometimes leave a similar sentiment- but ultimately quality does come at a price.

Agreed. We’d add that over paying for a product can sometimes leave a similar sentiment- but ultimately quality does come at a price.

Our faded reds. #nofilter #streetstyle

Our faded reds. #nofilter #streetstyle

London street style shot from Esquire magazine. 

London street style shot from Esquire magazine. 

Autumn Mood Boards

Everyone loves Autumn- Bonfires, fireworks, leaf piles… It’s all good.

The challenge with an Autumn collection is to embrace the season, in all it’s earthiness, without suffocating in cliches. 

So sure we’ve got the Autumn favourites- nature inspired tones of brown, maroon and green. But we’ve tried to breathe life into them by using glimpses of brighter colours, like the naples yellow and ocean blue which will be incorporated in the finished details.

Here’s a preview of what our design team has come up with.

Us too.

Us too.