We are pleased to announce that we are now stocking a selection of the SAINT JAMES collection in our Earlham Street shop.
“Around 1850, Saint-James, a commune in Lower Normandy, located 20 kilometers from Mont Saint-Michel experienced a real industrial adventure. The Legallais family started to spin and dye locally produced wool. This was then resold as skeins and balls of wool to the haberdasheries of Brittany and Normandy, later as underwear : real woolen shirts which gave birth to the fisherman’s sweater. In 1950, Julien-BONTE, from Roubaix (France), took control of the Company and gave up the traditional activity to concentrate on the manufacture of cardigans, sweaters, including the famous “Real Breton Fisherman’s Sweater” knitted in Pure Wool. With such thick and tight knitwear, they are considered almost waterproof… Knitted very close to the body, this sweater becomes “the seafarers’ second skin”.“
To be brutally honest, we were ever-so just slightly stumped when it came to these. They look like slippers, but hard leather heel and soles didn’t seem right – who would wear hard leather soles around the house? Well, having consulted our historical shoe oracle and stylist phenomenonata David Nolan, it would appear the Greeks are who wear their hard-soled slippers around the σπίτι (house). These are indeed house shoes, also known as a ‘Grecian’ slipper, and a nice example in tan too. £poa.
The Earlham Street shop recently underwent somewhat of a refurbishment. Here are some snaps…
Whilst it Our recent attentions have temporarily turned in favour of preparing to launch the SHOWROOM Publication Vol.II. Yep, it’s with the printers and will be in stores in the not too distant future. For those unfamiliar with this, last year we published a ‘conceptual mood and reference’ project packed full of moody style shoots, obscure scribings and curious doodlings. Such was the fantastic reception, we did it again.
Alas!, more on that later as we gather momentum by revisiting the archive of Lawrence W Dagger. Dubious 1920s New York detective/Steak House owner Larry Dagger first came to our attention when Douglas Gunn returned from a buying trip to America. In a grubby plastic bag buried at the bottom of a heap in a junk shop, he found an extensive, seemingly autobiographical, scrapbook detailing the extraordinary life and times of a quite remarkable character. Douglas’ account of the file is prominently featured in SHOWROOM Vol.II. (Vol.I is available to order here).
Here is a closer look at the mugshots and criminal identity cards that made up such an interesting part of the archive.
Here is a snippet of some unique jewellery and other adornments we currently have stocked in the showroom. The cabinets in the Earlham street shop are pretty well stocked too. Please contact us for more information.
WWII Silver Sweetheart Bracelets. £poa
Rumour has it, when Francis Ford Coppola was looking for a new film to make back in 1982, it was his daughter Sophia who recommended S.E. Hinton’s teen classic ‘The Outsiders’. Her recommendation was a winner, the all star cast and the coming of age theme, along with a classic wardrobe made it an instant hit.
As with West Side Story, gangs and stylised youth sub-culture never looked so good, in this case it’s the privileged ‘Soc’s’ in their Sta-Prest and Madras checks, versus the white-trash ‘Greasers’ in dirty denim, hooded sweats and cut-off Mickey Mouse tees.
We came across this old article about the demise of the High Street, with a young looking Paul Smith standing in front of a “shop that radiates individuality”. Hopefully this is still the case with the same shop as it looks now, ‘My how some things NEVER change!’
We found the article on Paul Gormans blog. You can read more of the original article by clicking here : http://www.paulgormanis.com/?p=1272#more-1272
Photograph taken by Graham Turner for The Guardian Weekend supplement, Dec 3-4, 1988.
The 14 Earlham Street shop as it is now.
Jacket’s, Jungle 1945. This British Army womens WWII jungle shirt is eerily reminiscent of the McLaren Westwood ‘Seditionaries‘ parachute shirt, even down to the rubber buttons. The belt looped through the epaulette, the removable sleeves, and the stamped ‘GAS FLAP’ all add to it’s Punk ‘bondage-like’ appearance. The shirt also features wrist buckles, pleated chest pockets, and reinforced shoulders. Completely mint and unissued it’s a great example of the humble origins of some of Punk’s iconic DNA.
* Vintage Seditionaries / Sex Parachute Shirt with iconic silk Karl Marx patch by Malcolm Mclaren and Vivien Westwood & Only Ararchists Are Pretty – image sources unknown.
Words Simon/ ATP Shirt photos Nic Shonfeld
Here are a few snaps of our limited edition cover edition book by photographer Nic Shonfeld, whom we commissioned to shoot the book for us. Nic has been working closely with us for over a couple of years now and we think the images in the publication are a credit to his understanding of ‘us’ and what we ‘do’ within our industry. You can see more of Nic’s photos on his website here: nicshonfeld.com
You can order a copy of our limited edition collectable cover by clicking the link here:
We have now restocked North Sea Clothing knitwear to our Earlham Street shop. This seasons range features several of the new styles including ‘The Engineer’, seen below with it’s rather attractive collar. You can see more photos of the collection by heading over to our facebook page here:
We have just taken delivery of our special cover edition of our book Vintage Menswear. Limited to 500 now in stock.
NOW IN STOCK – ORDER ONLINE
In the manner of Swiss Biker gang maestro Karlheinz Weinberger here are some more one-off key clips. Available now from the Earlham Street shop.
New to the Seven Dials shop is this small silver stash of sweetheart jewellry, rings, bracelets and charms. The perfect addition to our vintage watches and reclaimed key clips, we’ve been collecting these for a while. Not as expensive as a Saxon hoard, but shiny and jolly nice all the same.
All pieces shown are available from The Vintage Showroom, 14 Earlham Street, Covent Garden.
For enquiries please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org / +44 (0)207-836-3964
Nearly, but not quite…
A cool 1960s sweatshirt with the catchphrase “Ve-e-e-ry Interesting” made famous by Arte Johnson as ‘Wolfgang’ the German soldier, in the era defining comedy show Rowan & Martin’s Laugh-In. The psychedelic sketch show ran from 1968 to 1973, and featured a host of cooky counter-culture characters, it also introduced a very young Goldie Hawn to television.
This one features a single Vee front neck, woven label, and probably dates to the late 60s. It is available to buy at the Earlham St. store now.
Words SM / photos NS
Original 501s hidden rivets all singing all dancing improvised (allegedly) for the runway back in 90s with GUCCI tags and hardware making them either worthless or priceless depending on your point of view!
Well, marching. Square bashing, drilling, stomping, yomping, yes they are British army officers boots from the 1940s. They bear all the hallmarks of empire building quality leather boots standard issue during the war, increasingly scarce nowadays.
“Andy was back real skorry, waving the great shiny white sleeve of the Ninth, which had on it, brothers, the frowning beetled like thunderbolted litso of Ludwig van himself.“*
The whole Beethoven sweatshirt craze started in 1962 as an advertising campaign for Rainier Ale, created by Howard Luck Gossage. An original ‘Mad Men’ Ad man, he was known as the ‘Socrates of San Francisco’, an advertising visionary who preached from a converted firehouse, his ‘anti-advertising’ style captured the zeitgeist, and he’s also credited with introducing Marshall McLuhan to the world of Media.
Jane Fonda sporting the look. This one is dated 1977 and is available in the shop now.
*Taken from A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess
Words by SM.
Customized 1980′s MA1 Bomber from The Vintage Showroom shop archive.
£POA (Merc not included).
This thing conjures up images from the seminal 1981 John Landis movie An American Werewolf In London, and the tragic, doomed American tourists David and Jack on the bleak Yorkshire moors.
Brands such as Sierra Designs, early North Face and Mountain Equipment typify this 80s nostalgia in outdoors retro. Perfect for this country’s inclement weather at this time of year, get down to down and grab yourself a lighweight but warm, vintage down jacket at our shop in Covent Garden, but remember stick to the roads and beware the moon…
What to say? the colours speak volumes alone. This is more Grateful Dead meets Frank Spencer meets Kaffe Fassett, than the Duke of Windsor, or Brideshead. The bright, modern colour dyes contrasted to the natural tones of an original are more Isle of Wight 1970, than the Shetland Isles. As loud as it is, it’s all relevant, and just shows the longevity of this particular knit style.
Some more jingly-jangly dingle dangle key ring clippy hanger things in the shop again.
Perfect for this weather is this recently unearthed treasure trove, fresh as the day they were made. A stock of saleman’s sample shirts, all with the distinctive CC41 Utility mark.
These Pucci-esque pastel colour Aertex polo’s and candy stripe Egyptian cotton poplin collarless shirts in smock ‘popover’ style, or fully buttoning, seem incredibly modern.
We have just made some more of our vintage key clips, re-using antique belt leather, objets trouvé, and chunky metal hardware. Ideally hung from a belt, you can clip whatever you like on them, keys work particularly well. Available now in the shop, but grab them fast they won’t hang around for long (yawn).
Already on the fashion radar, granted, but this new book of photographs by Karl Heinz Weinberger (Rizzoli 2011) is another chance to look at his innovative work. This unassuming part-time Swiss photographer meticulously documented the delinquent Swiss biker gangs of the early 60s. Swiss cheese this is not! The hard-edged homo-erotic portraits revel in the fetishistic detail of DIY denim and customised leather, the minutiae of a subculture that make these pictures pure fashion. Pre-dating punk and pre-empting the films of Kenneth Anger, the contradiction of the throwback 50s boys style with the 1960′s girls beehives and mohair, make this an essential and fascinating reference.
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