Diner en blanc - with Indochino

Monday, July 21, 2014

Indochino dropped a surprise collection today, a number of all-white suits and shirts, some of them with paisley patterns (poly blends - I guess you can't get that pattern on wool). Available from $549. It seems they were made specifically for the Dîner en Blanc event in Vancouver. Would you wear it?

Indochino - New Summer Suits & Shirts

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Indochino Summer Suits

I've been checking through the new arrivals a bit lately, looking for some items to freshen up my summer garderobe. As you guys may know, I've spent the past 15 months in SE Asia, I'm back now and just took an exciting position at a start-up. I've got a ton of suits in my wardrobe, but I'm now required to dress less formal. My colleagues usually show up in shorts and t-shirts, but that's not really the way I want to go. I was thinking of at least wearing a dress shirts and well fitting jeans or chinos. Anyway, I need quite a few new items. New shirts (cutaway collars don't work without a tie), blazers, pants, etc. Luckily I can at least use my shoes, but some will need to be refurbished (more on that in a later post). 

So, I've been looking through what Indochino has to offer at the moment. There are continuously some items on sale on new ones are being introduced on an almost weekly basis. Just a few days ago a couple of new suits and shirts were added.

Here are my considerations for the new future. 

Indochino Casual Shirts:
What makes the casual shirts (all of them here) casual? A softer collar, most of all. I don't actually have one of their casual shirts and right now the selection is pretty limited, but I think I'll consider the light blue chambray shirt ($79).

Indochino Shirt Review

Indochino Boca Chinos
Boca Rust Chinos ($129). Curious to see how the colour will look in reality, hopefully not too flashy!

Indochino Boca Chino

Indochino Blazers
Summer Indigo Plaid Blazer ($369). Definitely a bit louder, probably will only wear it with solid coloured pants, don't want to overdo it...

Indochino Review Blazer

Indochino Sale Specials - including ties, tie clips, shirts and more:
Indochino Sale (often updated)

Deal Alert: Get $100 off of Indochino Premium Suits

Saturday, July 5, 2014

Indochino Premium Suit Coupon

Indochino's premium suits have become a big and important part of the line-up. Available from $649, these suits are made from premium fabrics - a difference you can see and feel. They are of course even better value for money on sale and you can now save $100 by using the coupon code SELECTPREMIUM at checkout - possibly, the deal is only valid for grey suits, I'm about to verify this. Thanks Craig G. for the input via email!

Indochino Premium Suits Sale:
Simply use the coupon code SELECTPREMIUM at checkout to get the deal. The offer expires July 19th, 2014. 

Company Spotlight: Awl & Sundry Review

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Awl & Sundry Review

I first heard about Awl & Sundry via Sabir's excellent style blog and decided to give them a try as well. Getting great shoes online is increasingly becoming an interesting alternative to shopping big brands and very often the customisation aspect is an important part of the selling point.

Mantorii is probably the oldest and maybe the biggest doing this professionally, but there are a number of new entrants into the market that promise to deliver an even better deal. One of the biggest challenges for smaller start-up is always finding a reliable production partner that will take you serious even with a smaller volume, but it seems Awl & Sundry have done a great job and their shoes arrived exactly on time.

Awl & Sundry Review - Customisation Process

A clear interface and a great configurator leads you through the customisation process step-by-step.  You can either decide to use an existing design and just add it to your shopping basket, adapt it a little bit, or just start from scratch and select from Oxford, Derby, Monk etc. and your preferred last. Every change you make is reflected in the graphics, there are a tons of different design options and leathers to choose from. You can even choose from different coloured laces and contrast stitching options. Your Awl & Sundry pair can look anything from classy to Frankenstein (blue snakeskin double monks with red suede sides, anyone?) with different leathers and designs combined. Prices start at $350 incl. shipping and shoe trees, but can go up to $600 if you choose snake leather, for example.

Awl & Sundry Review

One thing you can't customise is the interior of the shoe (only one lining leather) and the soles - it would be nice to have an option for a layer of rubber, for example. You can also have your shoes monogrammed, but the position of your initials is on the upper leather, at the heel and that position screams for attention a bit too much for my taste. 

Sizing is always an issue and Awl & Sundry is trying to make this as easy for customers as possible. In the end, it is also very much in their interest to keep return rates low and satisfaction rates high. The measurement method Awl & Sundry provides is not yet perfect (it needs you to print and align to papers), but in the end it worked liked a charm for me. The problem is that most people think they know their shoe size, but in reality they don't - in addition, most brands use different lasts, so a size 8 at one brand might very well be a size 7 at another.

Awl & Sundry Review
High quality looking suede leather and blue laces

My Awl & Sundry pair is kept rather simple. I chose a rather casual brown suede pair of Derby Wingtips with blue laces - these are great to wear with a pair of jeans and also work with some suits, depending on the colour and the formality.

The first impression was very positive. The shoes feel very solid and heavy in a good way. They certainly do need some time to be broken in, but that is also due to the Goodyear construction (meaning the shoes can be resoled) that simply makes the shoes a bit more bulky and sturdy. New shoes should be worn carefully, if you have sensitive feet (like me), then ideally you just wear it for a few hours per day at home. I still got blistered on my toes from the first few wears, but everything's fine now and they fit like a glove. I said my first impression was positive, my experience now after a couple of wears certainly confirms the great quality.

The shoes even come with cedar shoe trees, which is a great and very useable extra. These shoe trees will remove any moisture from the shoes and keep the shape of the shoes. You can also use them to stretch your shoes a little if you go for an adjustable shoe tree.

Overall, a clear recommendation for Awl & Sundry. You get to fully customise your pair of shoes and I definitely think you are getting great value for money. Anyone here who owns a pair already? Always interested in hearing other opinions.

Awl & Sundry Review
Carefully crafted leather soles - nailed heels, channeled stitching