Buying clothes and accessories for a true gentleman can be a nightmare. But, luckily for you, The Week Portfolio is here to help.
From luxurious luggage collections, to richly illustrated books, sturdy hiking boots and personalised jewellry - here is the rundown on the best gifts for men, to hopefully take the fear out of last minute shopping.
Au Départ Paris
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French heritage brand Au Départ Paris can trace its origins to the early 19th century. First established in 1834, the trunk-maker opened a dedicated boutique on Paris' boulevard Denain, conveniently located opposite the then newly opened Gare du Nord. This Spring, Au Départ Paris has been relaunched at Milan's Salone del Mobile design fair; in London, the brand has taken up a temporary home at the Mazzoleni Gallery on Albermarle Street, Mayfair.
The store is a must-visit for monogrammed tote bags, trunks and luggage, as well as modern furniture assembled by Italian interior mavericks Studio Dimore. Special editions include custom trunks built to fit Playstations and record players.
“I wanted to work with Kim because I’ve always been an admirer of everything he creates”, Nikolai von Bismarck told us following the release of his latest book.
For The Dior Sessions, photographer von Bismarck captured exquisite Dior tailoring in rare portraits of sitters including David Beckham and contemporary artists Raymond Pettibon and Takashi Murakami.
The book is published by Rizzol, with proceeds donated to support the Teenage Cancer Trust.
When Nicolò and Carlotta Oddi first conceived of their luxury knitwear brand Alanui, the Milanese siblings did so with just one perfectly designed and finished item. Made from jacquard cashmere in vibrant patterns, their unisex cashmere cardigan was worn oversized and closed with a two-tone belt.
The cardigan has lost none of its appeal since, and this winter the Oddis have dreamt up a special edition of their famous product to celebrate their brand’s partnership with Manhattan retailer Bergdorf Goodman. An ode to New York, the knitwear features a classic New York City street scene at dusk.
The image is completed by yellow cabs, brown stone townhouses and the Empire State Building. Even the Statue of Liberty has donned an Alanui cardigan.
Tiffany & Co
There's a workshop with a difference in Rhode Island. It is here, in the New England state famous for its sea views and colonial-style towns, that Tiffany & Co crafts wold-famous sports-trophies including The Commissioner’s Trophy, which is awarded annually to the winner of the Major League Baseball World Series.
The American jeweller pays tribute to its Rhode Island workshop with its Tiffany 1837 Makers Heritage Edition, a new collection of fine jewellery for men. Seven designs exclusively available at Dover Street Market’s London, New York, Los Angeles, Singapore and Ginza outlets include dog tag necklaces, chain-link bracelets and cuff links finished in textured and aged sterling silver.
A Tiffany 1837 Maker’s collection of stamps marks each piece with the brand’s seal of approval.
Levi’s Vintage Clothing
At a Christie’s auction in 2016, American fashion brand Levi’s bid on a lot with a difference; a brown leather jacket originally worn by Albert Einstein in the 1930’s. Having won the artefact, Levi’s issued a brown leather version of Menlo Cossack Einstein jacket in 2018.
This winter, invest in a piece of menswear history as Levi’s debuts a black leather Einstein blouson. Each jacket comes in a special box containing a fragrance by Brooklyn-based perfumer D.S. & Durga recreating the scent of Einstein’s own jacket and an auction paddle.
Luke Edward Hall
Greco Disco is the first book by British artist and designer Luke Edward Hall. Edward Hall, whose previous collaborators include Burberry, auction house Christie’s and London's Royal Academy of Arts, is a man of many creative trades, including pottery, illustration and collage.
All of these and more are including in the book, which is a treasure trove to discover and cherish. There are also fold-outs and a special insert in the style of a sketchbook.
From Birmingham’s jewellery quarter comes a selection of pens with a difference. Ludwig Frederick Brenner first established his business in 1932, debuting a propelling pencil fitted with twelve three-inch leads – measuring a yard of lead – instead of the customary single lead.
Today, Yard-O-Led manufactures elegant writing instruments – fountain pens, roller-balls and pencils are all available – in heritage finishes including a finely worked barley pattern and silver polished to a high gleam.
At Louis Vuitton, a new Damier Graphite Map pattern adds whimsical sketches and mascots to the brand's much loved checkerboard pattern. Sourced in Louis Vuitton's archives, the suitably travel-centric print depicts bellboys clad in red uniforms and caps wielding suitcases (LV, of course), a branded steam train and a hot air balloon hovering across a speeding yellow delivery truck.
Luxurious kit bags packed to scale up or down winter mountains (or perhaps just a wintery walk through Hyde Park) are incomplete without a pair of hiking boots by Brunello Cucinelli. Finished at Signor Cucinelli's proprietary manufactures in the Italian hamlet of Solomeo, the boots are crafted from pale Nubuck leather and detailed with felt inlays.
Head to London’s Chiltern Street to discover the consciously designed trainers of C.QP at Marylebone institution Trunk Clothiers. The Stockholm headquartered brand has made clean design its USP.
C.QP Racquet low-top trainers – available in muted tones including Lava grey and snuff brown – and shearling-lined high tops are the stand outs.
Tastemaker Isabel Ettedgui has unveiled a duo of Connolly scented candles. Available in two sizes – a large “at home”version is joined by a travel edition – the candles burn in elegant deep brown glass containers, emitting either a rich leathery aroma or the earthy Grain 1001.
Post-Christmas, New Year is a time for reinvention. Find a new signature scent with Creed’s Men’s Discovery Set: the pack includes three of the heritage marque’s best-selling scents and an atomiser which can be refilled once a favourite fragrance has been singled out.
The selection includes Olivier Creed’s Aventus – which was first released in 2010 to mark Creed’s 250th anniversary and namechecks Napoleon Bonaparte as its muse – the refreshing Silver Mountain Water. Millésime Imperial includes marine notes with scents of mandarin, bergamot and musk.
London specialist Rebus employs and trains artisans including goldsmiths and hand-engravers to finish signet rings, cuff links and other jewellery at its Hatton Gardens workshops.
For a personalised gift, turn to Rebus' selection of pendants. Available in four shapes – signet, shield, oval and round – and in yellow gold, white gold or silver finishes, pendants are emblazoned with intricate engravings or set with gemstones.
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