Monday, 30 November 2015

Open the Now with Moët & Chandon

Inspired by the new Moët & Chandon campaign "Open the Now", I was followed by cameras for a day to unveil an average day in London as a photographer. A snapshot into my life directed by Aaron Christian.

The concept of "the now" is something I'm continually conscious of and so this project peaked my interested immediately. As a photographer, my whole world is focused on capturing a moment in time, something never recreated, completely unique. When the shutter goes, we see what was now, then.

On another level, the most interesting and healthy people I know all embrace this concept in life, the idea of living in the now. The future is uncontrollable and the past has gone, all we have is our current state. With this in mind I try to be present in the moment. Over-planning is a burden as much as nostalgia is.

See our short film below, shot in my studio and around Soho in November 2015.

Good Men at Goodwood, Part 3: Chichester, West Sussex

The final installment in my photography from Goodwood Revival. There are so many incredible looks of vintage menswear from the three day event that it's hard not to post them all. See Part 1 here and Part 2 here.

Friday, 27 November 2015

GarconJon meets Noel Stewart: La Maison Remy Martin, London

Recently I met up with Mr Noel Stewart before his presentation in the lounge of La Maison Remy Martin, a private members club open for the month of November on Greek Street in London. After an incredible month of events in the beautiful Soho townhouse, we sat down with a cocktail and talked about architecture, loo roll and of course hats.

Noel Stewart, Milliner

What did you want to be as a wee boy? As a young child I wanted to be a painter but when I got to 12 I thought architecture was for me. I realised that it was all about straight lines and mathematics so that quickly put me off. My parents are both creative and I'd always been encourage to draw and paint so that let my mind flourish. My mother used to have an old suitcase filled with cereal packets and loo rolls that we'd dig into on rainy days to make things.

Do you think there's an architecture to hats? Totally. Weirdly I think I've become an architect of fashion and that's much more appropriate for me. There are many creative minds in my family as my brother is an architectural technologist and there are some art historians. I also recently found out my grandmother made wedding dresses too. More and more I believe that this kind of thing is in your genes. I meet many students who've never designed before but when they attempt it for the first time it comes so naturally. It always transpires that someone before them has been in the art world.

Other than buildings, what inspires your designs? Often a whole collection will be inspired by an experience. I could take a trip to China for example and the whole visual I encounter there will be the reference. It's really varied, it's never one thing.

Why hats and not clothing? I'm actually not as interested in clothing. When I started making hats in a fashion context rather than a sculptural one. The head is such an extraordinary place to accessorise as it so brashly showcases who you are and the character you want to create. My spacial awareness and desire to make beautiful things all leads back to what's on someone's head.

Do you think there's a type of person that wears hats? There's a type of person who becomes obsessed by hats and it's very much part of their identity. The worst thing to say to a milliner is "I don't suit hats" because we know that it's really because you've not found the right hat yet. A lot of it is about confidence, both the confidence to initially put on the hat and then the confidence it gives you when you wear it. It puts you into a different place.

Since you began work as a milliner 20 year ago, how has the way men wear hats changed? The designs themselves haven't changed much but the attitude towards them has. Men now appreciate the quality and see them in the same way they approach an expensive pair of shoes. Men and women shop very differently so it's less about fashion and more about high quality, craftsmanship. They want something no one else has but also not outrageous enough for people to think it's odd. It's like when a man buys a suit - he wants to know the lining it something not many others have. It's not for show, it's for them.

Many religions regard the top of the head as being close to God or a channel of energy to the universe. Is there anything spiritual wearing a hat for you? I always like to think of Native American tribes who would use head-dresses and feathers to show the connection to a greater power. There is a certain protection that a hat gives you and can allow you to be yourself. A hat sets you apart in some way, there's a reason why the Queen wears a hat every day.

Finally, leave us with some words of wisdom. With hat wearing it's all about playing. Play until something clicks and that also relates to life. When trying to find the things you love you need to play, play, play. Others may regard it as frivolous but actually I think it's critical and the doorway to happiness. 

La Maison Remy Martin on Greek Street hosted events throughout November, including a style tutorial with Mr Noel Stewart himself. Go to for more information.

Thursday, 26 November 2015

GarconJon meets Clym Evernden

Clym Evernden has been on my radar ever since he drew me serepticiously a few years ago. Since then I've been following his journey through beautiful artwork for brands like Louis Vuitton and Charlotte Tilbury. This month he's teamed up with Heathrow’s complimentary wrapping service in aid of Oxfam for a range of bespoke, beautiful limited edition gift boxes & bags. To celebrate, I went to his East London studio to talk style, art and Armand Van Helden’s Witch Doktor.

Roll neck wool navy jumper: Margaret Howell

Clym Evernden, Artist

Where did you grow up and where do you live now? I grew up in East Sussex, and went to school in Canterbury. I now live near Spitalfields, East London.

What did you want to be when you were a wee boy? I don’t remember having job ambitions to be honest! I had very specific interests, in particular nature, such as ornithology but never translated these into job prospects. Looking back much of my knowledge of the natural world has informed my use of shape, colour and a playful character and attitude in my work.

You started out in fashion design, at what point did you realise it wasn't your calling? I always loved the concept end of designing, creating the idea, atmosphere. I was never keen on the technical and production side. I’ve always been interested in fashion and can conjure up entire collections in my head including outfits, show venue and casting but the graft involved to make that a reality I’m not so keen on.

What inspired you to work in the fashion world initially? In my early teens I immediately identified with a certain industrial and grunge atmosphere that was happening in the fashion world. That was around the early 1990’s. I was never interested in super models and raised catwalks but felt excited by the drama and club culture atmosphere created in early shows by designers like Owen Gastor and Alexander McQueen. Simultaneously I became really into rave music and loved the energy on the catwalk which was often coupled with this kind of music at that time. Often I was more interested in the soundtrack to the show than the clothes; so the venue, set, casting, entire effect interested me. I became a bit of a fashion geek and can still reel off otherwise forgotten information, such as the Alexander McQueen A/W 1997 ‘It’s a Jungle Out There’ collection was shown in Borough Market under the arches below London Bridge station and the soundtrack opened with Armand Van Helden’s ‘Witch Doktor’.

Sunglasses: Blyszak Eyewear, Leather biker jacket: Topman, Merino wool jumper: MHL Margaret Howell, Acid wash jeans: Levi’, Trainers: Asics

Despite my love of menswear design, I think my personal style is very restrained and practical, mainly as the duties of a photographer are quite physical. How would you describe your style? I would never describe myself as ‘fashionable’ and I have no interest in trends. I do love clothing and like you I go for items which are both functional as well as aesthetically pleasing. It actually gives me pleasure to have clothing which has a practical appeal. I don’t really understand high maintenance or delicate clothing. I love fabrics such as denim and leather which evolve and gain character through use. I get a small thrill from pocket placement and size inside a jacket as I know I can access my phone and pens easily. Brands I go for at the moment are Carhartt and Levi’s for basics and Burberry Prorsum for tailoring and clothing I might wear to events. I also love Margaret Howell knitwear for the winter. I recently discovered an small French brand ‘Vetra’ which specialises in remakes of authentic French workwear jackets which I love.

When you're working at a fashion show, how do you make sure you get the best view? I'm very fearless and animated at shows so if I need to nip across the catwalk to a better seat just before the show starts I will. Often I speak to the PR if I’m not happy with my position and explain what I’m doing and they are happy to help.

Which do you prefer to draw, street scenes or fashion shows? It depends on the show or street scene. They’re very different entities, sometimes creating great work at a show can be a thrill as I’ve had to work so fast and am happy with the results, whereas a street scene might be particularly engaging because I'm interested in a specific figure and the work becomes an ode to particular otherwise forgotten moment in time.

There seems to be a renaisance in fashion illustration recently, why do you think that is? I think in the last decade websites and marketing tools became too slick and digital. We seemed to have moved into a more ‘honesty driven’ culture now which celebrates inventive and imaginative creations as opposed to a cold and polished conglomerate vision. Illustration is a great way of introducing 'hand-feel' and soul into a project.

Cap: Nike, Rigid selvedge denim jacket: Levi’s, Orange technical knit sweater: Carven, Black jeans: Levi’s 501, Shoes: Christian Louboutin

Your work has a dream life, optimistic quality. Do you think that reflects your character? Yes I do, that’s an interesting observation, I haven’t been asked that before. I love creating work which has a witty and characterful vibe, basically something that will make people smile. I have no interest in creating something tortured or heavy. I also have a very active imagination so can make up entire scenes and characters without the need for references. I suppose this does reflect my character. I often try and find humour in most situations good or bad.

What does this project with Heathrow mean to you? I was thrilled to be selected to work on a project which showcases a handful of top tier talents in my industry. I love creating work which is used as a print repeat for product, so I was excited to see the gift boxes and wrapping paper. It’s also the first time I’ve worked with the aviation industry. I love to travel so it’s great knowing something I’ve produced artwork which might enhance someone’s journey. I also like the idea that the gift wrap itself will make it’s own journey across the globe to various destinations. The fact that the project supports the charity Oxfam is also very important to me.

Leave us with some words of wisdom. I think it’s important to remember those in need or who are lonely during the Christmas period, as we all get consumed by buying gifts and seeing friends and family. Supporting charities like Oxfam is a good start.

Velvet top collar wool coat: Burberry London, Cream wool jumper: A Kind of Guise, Jeans: Levi’s 501, Scarf: Hand knit by Mum, Leather brogues: Burberry Prorsum

GarconJon meets Idris Elba: Superdry, Regent Street, London

I've had the privilege of photographing a few recognisable public figures over the years and so I know what comes with that territory. Usually it's a bit of an entourage and a lot of fanfare but less frequently is the subject as humble and warm as Idris Elba. He may have been being pulled left, right and centre but he was calm and collected in his approach when I met up with him this morning. We had a quick photoshoot before the official launch of his first clothing collection with Superdry in their Regent Street store where I also had the chance to ask some questions about the project.

Idris Elba photographed at the Superdry store on 103-113 Regent St, London.

You're a Londoner born and bred, how had the city influenced the collection? Grewing up in East London, style was always a huge part of my life. I believe that the way you dress tells the world who you are. This is a city with so many cultures that it's important to be sure of yourself. I think the collection reflects me completely as there's not a single piece I wouldn't wear myself.

There must be so many offers from fashion brands to do this kind of thing. Why does Superdry feel like the right one to collaborate with? The truth is there are so many opportunities for actors to just be "the face" and take a cheque. I didn't want to do that with this collection. I'm a customer of Superdry anyway and have been for years so when I was approached I thought it could be a great chance to do something special.

How long have you been planning the collection for?
It's been a process of about 11 months but once we first met everything rolled really quickly. The design process was a blitz of meetings where both Superdry and myself came with ideas which were merged. I worked closely with my stylist to get the designs right. We spoke a lot about colour, material and fit - those were my main areas of interest.

Does your experience with acting influence you hand in design?
As an actor I know what it's like to wear new designs every time I work, so I've got a lot of experience what works for me. It really comes across in our big coats. I've spent far too long working outside in freezing cold conditions and I now fully comprehend it's value. We made overcoats that are properly cosy.

The collection is huge with 250 items available, what makes this special? We really wanted to make this line premium. The idea was to incorporate some incredible coats and beautiful wool items with a focus on the right cut. I think a regular guy will come in here and be able to find something he loves the look of but also an items which will last for a long time. This is about pieces that work season after season. I'm a great believer in quality when it comes to menswear.

Do you have a favourite piece?
I like all the knitwear. I spent a lot of time making sure that was right as I wear a lot of it. The standout piece to me is the leather biker jacket though - it's is just the boss.

Who did you have in mind when creating this collection? I'm calling him 'the everyman'. Really everything in the collection I would wear myself but I see it relating so most British gents. We're not into gaudy branding in the UK and so I've created something here which is simple and chilled.

See the full collection online at

24 Hours with GarconJon on

This week you'll see an unfamiliar sight if you head over to as I stepped from behind the camera and into the front. I was asked by the team to partake in a photoshoot documenting my daily life around London wearing some of my favourite threads from the AW15 collection. The shoot took us from coffee with clients, to shooting in a penhouse, to my exhibition at Nigel Cabourne in Henrietta Street. Thanks to Timberyard, Ruffians, Capco and Beating Bowel Cancer for the support.

See the full story on now.

Wearing Margaret Howell Roll Neck Sweater and Balenciaga Wide-Leg Wool-Flannel Trousers.

Wearing AMI cap, Acne Denim Jacket and Officine Generale sweater.

Wednesday, 25 November 2015

GarconJon meets Alessandro Koberta, The Content Store

In association with American Express®

Last week I caught up with Alessandro Koberta of The Content Store, an independent menswear retailer on Lamb’s Conduit Street to get an insight into this perfectly crafted small shop.

Situated in the historical part of Holborn in London, the shop is just one of many that contributes to this buzzing local community which feels more like a village than an urban jungle. The hand-picked items along with the personable approach of the staff are just a few of the things which make this one of my favourite stores. 

What did you want to be when you were a wee boy? An artist. I studied art and painted but transitioned into fashion. I love design in clothing with textures, fabrics. I’m really happy with where I am now.

Why is Lamb’s Conduit Street such a great location? Before I started working here I had no idea that it was such a haven for menswear. All my favourite brands have stores on the street and I love that it’s tucked away from the mania of the main high streets. Here you can take your time and browse through everything.

What are your favourite items in store right now? Right now I love our Portuguese Flannel shirts and it’s also a big hit with the customers. We’ve sold out a number of times on many of the items. They’ve even run out of stock and can’t give us anymore! I’ve got to say I’m also partial to a pair of Anonymous Ism socks.

How would you describe your own personal style? I love heritage brands. It’s all about the story behind the garment for me and working so closely with the designers means I learn a huge amount about the process from each one. Today I’m wearing an AMI coat and SNS Herning jumper which is a Danish company that makes nautical clothing.

Why do you think it’s important to support small shops? We really value our relationships with each one of our customers. I’ve got to know so many people who now just come in for a catch-up and it’s great to create and have that community feeling.

Why would someone choose The Content Store above another retailer on Lamb’s Conduit Street? As an independent retailer, you’ll definitely find items here you won’t find anywhere else. It’s not just with menswear either, our lifestyle items like the Honest candles also add a touch of difference.

Leave us with some words of wisdom. In terms of style, I think one should never follow the latest trend. Select quality pieces carefully that will stay relevant to your wardrobe for years to come. In terms of life, always be nice to people and quite often they’ll be nice back.

It's The Content Store's personal approach that keeps me going back time and again. Hearing how they support new designers and offer a personalised shopping service in-store has inspired me to explore more local small businesses and I hope it encourages you to do the same, especially in the lead up to Christmas which is such a crucial time for small retailers.

Saturday 5th December is Small Business Saturday - a great time to get out and discover your local small shops. Visit or to find out more.

I visited The Content Store and found out more about this retailer in association with American Express, principal supporter of Small Business Saturday UK.

See the full post below.

Tuesday, 24 November 2015

Adam Kelly: Kensington Gardens, London

Adam Kelly, buying and merchandising director at Fenwick of Bond Street, wearing a brown suit outside the Burberry show in London.

Monday, 23 November 2015

Good Men at Goodwood, Part 2: Chichester, West Sussex

Looking back at the vintage menswear outfits from Goodwood Revival festival. See the first post here.

Sunday, 22 November 2015

Simple Streetwear: Holborn, London

Style on the street photographed at London Collections Men in Holborn. Printed cap paired with a white oxford cloth shirt and rolled-up chinos.