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London's new Dandy glows in the dark

London has a new Dandy.  Not since the days of Bunny Rogers (noted for ultra slim New Edwardian style) has London had a male style figure who turns heads, who wears what might seem outrageous clothes but which are in fact immaculately elegant and sectonandhills.jpgwhich are worn with sufficient dash and aplomb to carry them off.

Guy Hills is the chap, a young photographer who has launched a range of splendid tweeds, under the Dashing Tweeds label. Here, he is seen with tailor Edward Sexton, wearing one of his latest suits, made for the Savile Row event at the British Embassy in Paris earlier this year.

He is quite unself-conscious about his distinctive style, full of enthusiasm and with a boundless interest in clothes and their details. His newest summer suit, by tailor Alan Bennett at Davies & Son, has caused a considerable stir, much to his delight. Impeccably tailored, with formal jacket, and made in one of his own colourful tweeds, it has short trousers (see below). Scooting along the pavement of Savile Row, he brought tailors to the windows and smiles to the faces of passers-by. shortsuit.jpgYet this is a perfectly sensible and eminshortsjckt.jpgently suitable tailored outfit for warmer weather - and infinitely preferable to the shapeless shorts and limp T-shirts widely adopted for 'comfortable' summer wear.

It is lightweight and, as an added practical feature, the tweed has a fluorescent thread in the pattern, which makes it glow in the dark. If you are still out, riding your scooter or bike in the twilight, you will be not only stylish but visible to other road users!

We were present sextonsuit.jpgas the suit was first put on by Guy Hills, who was so delighted with the result that he decided to keep it on - though he and tailor Alan Bennett assessed the braid edging should be carried on round the collar and on the cuffs. "I don't want to take it off now, I like it too much, " he said. "I'll bring it back in a few days time."

He likes colour, sees no reason why men should be so sombre and has collaborated with Kirsty MacDougall (see textiles page) to create the Dashing Tweeds collection, which is all woven in the UK. She brings weaving expertise to the enterprise.

Another of his suits which emits a light glow in the dark is shown here,a well shaped jacket above slim trousers, made by Edward Sexton.

Guy Hills shows just how original and exciting bespoke tailoring can be, with designs that certainly stand out amidst the ubiquitous standard dark business suits - by day and by night. Perhaps they may encourage a new generation of young dandies.


Princess Ann awards New York angophile

New York menswear emporium Paul Stuart has been described as “the closest thing to a Savile Row experience outside London” and New York Magazine says the store is ”the Aston Martin of menswear”. 

Now, its President and CEO, Clifford Grodd, who has been responsible for fostering appreciation of Savile Row elegance and high standards in menswear in the US, has princessanngrodd.jpgreceived due recognition for his efforts. At the annual British Fashion Council Export Awards in London this Summer, he was presented with the Export Personality of the Year Award by President of the Council, Princess Ann, marking his significant contribution to exports from the UK.

A slim, elegant figure, he has presided over the legendary store for over 55 years, during the course of which he has indulged his Anglophile tastes and brought the best of British style to New Yorkers.  And with a further 100 stores throughout the US, his influence has ensured a wider appreciation of excellence and style,

He explains that his personal passion for clothing is not about clothing per se. “My passion is about style and the visual language that represents style. Clothes are not the most important thing in life, but they do matter because they say two things about who you are: a) good clothing instills confidence; b) it shows that you value yourself.

“What’s more, if you can enhance the environment and the people around you by looking elegant and dapper, why not? There is an aesthetic to how one lives life, an appreciation of a beautiful park, flowers, why shouldn’t this carry over to personal appearance?”

Indeed.  Mr Grodd’s is another influence, as Guy Hills above, that we hope may spread, extending to those many young men who seem so determined to be as ill-kempt and ugly as can be.  Curiously, many of them may espouse support for the environment – without seeming to understand that they too are part of it.


  Autumn 08 edition

:: SAVILE ROW Style Magazine ::



IN THIS EDITION - A new Dandy for London... Tailors off the piste... Fabulous timepieces... Private jet jaunt...A Welsh distillery... and much more besides

contact Home – Tailors off the Row - Powell and Lutwyche
contact Style 1 – More off-Row - Allen and Benson & Clegg
contact Style 2 – and more - Littman and Everest
contact Style 3 – Sailor fashion
contact Style 4 – The New Dandy
contact Keep Fit – Salt is Good for you
contact TextilesGlowing tweeds
contact Watches Wind-up luxury
contact Cars – French originals
contact Drink Welsh spirit
contact Treats – Butler service
contact Nautical – Home at sea
contact Travel – Private jetting
contact Culture - Art in the park
contact Contact Details and registration
contact Tailors of Savile Row – listing of top tailors and interviews
contact Archive – Back Issues



TIE-BASHING  has enjoyed one of its periodic outings recently, with no less an influence than the BBC’s Newsnight host, Jeremy Paxman, saying they are useless. Designers, politicians and style pundits have weighed in with their views aired in newspapers, on TV and radio, and Tony Blair’s former supreme, Jonathan Powell, even went so far as to decree that male guests attending his wedding should not wear ties.

There is nothing quite so engaging at seeing ageing men-about-town indulging in a spot of  quite out-dated style posing.  Just as they reach the stage of needing to kick over the traces and show how hip they still are by rejecting the style emblems of their youth, so a younger generation is just discovering the appeal of those rejects. 

One young writer, Richard Godwin, in the London Evening Standard summed up this syndrome: “What these middle-aged men fail to appreciate is that in “rebelling” against the tie, they remove the princicple means of sartorial expression open to them, turning themselves into drab, open-collared drones.” He cherishes his own eclectic collection.


LONG established name across Piccadilly in Jermyn Street is Coles, recently acquired by the Glenaden Shirts company. 

Coles  started life as a tailoring house in 1878 but became one of the Jermyn Street shirt specialists.  Like many of the other bespoke shirtmakers in this area, it has faced fierce competition from the ready-to-wear market in recent years. Now, it is being given a fresh injection of design and marketing know-how for a collection of quality British made ready-to-wear shirts.


The Glenaden company is dedicated to keeping Coles up-market, said m.d Andrew Lowden, using fine Italian fabrics, as in shirt above.