In the latest entry of our Mason & Sons Selects series, members of the team muse about their favourite pieces that have served them well over the last few months as the summer season winds down to a close.
It's been a strange summer for obvious reasons. In terms of our social lives, all of the the parties, holidays and impromptu gatherings we had in mind that would resemble some sort of Slim Aarons-esque summer-scape have been sadly lost in the ether.
Now, we're longing to return to our flannel suits, tweed jackets, trusted sweaters and Tricker'sboots, but we thought we should take these final opportunities to commend some of our favourite pieces we've worn in a most loyal way these last few months. Whether it be swimming trunks (if you're so lucky to have a regular access to a pool or idyllic beach), Curry & Paxton sunglasses, or more simply an everyday Sunspel polo shirt to take you from day to night, here are some of the team's favourite pieces that deserve some praise.
David Mason, John Smedley Hatfield Pullover
During the summer months, if I'm not in collar and tie, Sea Island Cotton knitwear by John Smedley is my default choice of garment, and has been for as long as I can remember. Given that I've only had a necktie around my neck on a handful of occasions since the middle of March, my Smedley collection has seen a lot of action this season.
I don't have a wide range of styles. They are all crew necks, and mainly in navy. I wear them with everything, from shorts or chinos to blazers and suits. Sea Island Cotton is something of a luxury, but by no means effete. Smedley's finely crafted pullovers seem to last forever, and improve with age.
On the odd chilly night, I have reached for my winter staple - the 4-ply cashmere roll-collar cardigan by William Lockie in navy blue. These pieces of my wardrobe are like old friends. It's been a challenging few months, but it's comforting when you are in good company.
Browse our knitwear offering, here.
Elliot Mason, Mason & Sons Sand Safari Jacket
The extended good weather we are experiencing in London, although not quite an Indian Summer, comes with several benefits; eating outdoors, traveling on two wheels, further opportunity for seersucker suits, and daily wear of Curry & Paxtonsunglasses. However, the one thing that I could not have been without over the last few months is my Sand Safari Jacket. No matter how warm it gets in the day in the UK, I seldom find that you can be without a jacket in the evening.
As the temperature begins to plummet, the Sand Safari Jacket is perfect, not only for cooler evenings but also as a compliment to much of my summer wardrobe. I have been able to pair it with cream seersucker trousers, beige linen trousers, navy linen trousers, camouflage cargo pants, denim jeans, biscuit cotton trousers, and the list goes on. But beyond all else, the thing I love most is the pockets! Keys, wallet, phone(s), face mask, hand sanitiser, et al. The jacket fits it all. Storage capabilities would be lost if it were not for the security detail. The button down pockets and internal zip pockets for the most important possessions (see the previous list) are comforting features in a city's hustle and bustle. I am less concerned about the change of season and the start of more frequent rainy days, knowing that I have the water-resistant Navy Safari Jacket in reserve!
Browse our outerwear offering, here.
Ryan Chua, Motoluxe Sky Blue Popover Shirt
Summer reminds us to slow down our hectic pace and take a moment to enjoy the view. The heat forces us to relax our wardrobe too, but not to forsake style. Sean Connery traded his Conduit Cut suit for camp collar shirts as James Bond. Steve McQueen raced his Meyers Manx along the beach as Thomas Crown, owning his “King Of Cool” status wearing peach linen and a wry grin. Gianni Agnelli, well, being himself, touring the Amalfi Coast with Jacqueline Kennedy, in his crisp white popover shirt. Which brings me to my favorite summertime shirt, the Motoluxe Popover.
Made from lightweight oxford cloth with the slightest bit of stretch, allowing for dignified movement, while retaining its slim shape. In sky blue, it will compliment any partner, as I will demonstrate. Almost every Friday this summer, I’ve paired it with my light grey wool/linen glen check suit and silver grenadine tie. When evening rolls around, I change into my favorite pair of stone colored Levi’s and SandersSnuff Suede Chukka Boots, and I put the top down and speed towards the beach for a weekend with my family.
Once I arrive, I change into my Hemingsworth Navy Swim Shorts and white gum Uniform Standardsneakers as I roll up my sleeves and watch the sun disappear into the sea. When summer eventually finds its end, each wear thereafter will remind me of days like this.
Browse our casual shirts offering, here.
Benedict Browne, Uniform Standard Vintage White Leather Series 1 Sneakers
I have a confession: I haven't worn a suit nor jacket since early March and the same goes with any kind of 'formal' shoe – be it a loafer or an Oxford. My feet I think are thanking me for that, because they've been subjected to being encased by a pair of Uniform Standard sneakers (the vintage white model) for longer than I can recall.
Now, I'm not sure how I should be feeling about my confession. Part of me says 'what the hell are you doing, Ben?', and another part of me says 'well done, keep it going'. In my teens I was obsessed with sneakers and had more pairs than I could possibly count and a bedroom diminishing in size by the week. Then, in the last five years I've built up a reliable resource of black calf and brown suede shoes to dip in and out of with relative ease. Have I gone full circle? Not sure.
These last few months would certainly have been less enjoyable without the Series 1 from Uniform Standard, a young British brand with commendable business ethics that offers sneakers and nothing else at fantastic price points. The contrasting sole is a nice touch that adds a bit of retro character (always a winner, that) and I've been able to go anywhere with them (not that I've been going anywhere 'fancy', mind you). While my footwear arsenal consists of retro runners in garish colour combinations from my misspent youth and the aforementioned black calf and brown suede city-stompers, the next build for me will be adding more of the Series 1 as I really don't think I need anything else.
Browse our ready-to-wear offering, here.