Days 18 – 25 #EdisXmasCountdown

christmas, EdisXmasCountdown, music

It’s the big day.

Christmas day 2017.

We’ve been on a journey, haven’t we. We’ve seen highs, lows, and a whole lot of Christmas clichés, but we’ve made it through, and here we are on the last day.

How has it been for you?

For the few among you who still somehow have no idea what I’m talking about, over advent, I have been sharing some of my favourite Christmas music. A mix of carols and pop songs, and old and new music, alongside reimagined classics, I have tried to share what Christmas has sounded like to me this year.

All of the action has gone down on Twitter and previous blog posts can be found here. Also, you can find the complete Spotify playlist here, as well as last year’s list here.

But now, without further ado, let’s look back over the last 7 days of Christmas.

Day 18

Can’t Wait For Christmas – TobyMac

We’re starting off the week with some cheerful pop from TobyMac. Hearing this one a few days ago really put me in the mood for Christmas. Yes it’s kind of cheesy, but I am willing to overlook that because you can tell that this man genuinely loves this time of year.

This song is taken from his seasonal album (Light Of Christmas) which also features a song with Owl City, who you might remember featured on day 12 of our countdown. I genuinely never thought that I would be able to make a non-ironic list of music in 2017 that includes Owl City twice and, quite frankly, I’m delighted.

Day 19

I’ve Got My Love To Keep Me Warm – Ingrid Michaelson

You’ve definitely heard Ingrid Michaelson’s music, but you probably don’t realise it. She has some success with her indie acoustic music in the early noughties and you’ll definitely remember hearing Be OK or The way I Am on adverts on TV shows at the time.

Today’s song is a modern cover of the Irving Berlin’-written classic, I’ve Got My Love To Keep Me Warm. Michaelson’s guitar brings some warmth to the classic song, as well as a simple, yet lively modernity.

This is  a very, very sweet song about love. But let’s face it, the couple in the song are very clearly in the honeymoon stage. A few months and a few fights on, it’ll be something along the lines of “my love keeps me warm because it’s like being in hell”.

Sorry, I’m an old cynic at heart….

Merry Christmas!

 

Day 20

What Are You Doing New Year’s Eve – Tori Roper

The first time I heard this song was when Zooey Deschanel and Joseph Gordon-Levitt (take a moment to appreciate how posh those names sound) shared an adorable acoustic cover on Youtube in 2011.

Annoyingly, they didn’t record their version properly so, instead, I just Googled ‘what are you doing new years eve acoustic’ and this version from, up and coming singer, Tori Roper appeared.

While lacking the duet element of Joe and Zooey’s version, it retains the song’s vulnerability and openness. We can all relate to feeling out of someone’s league, but the singer here decided to go for it anyway and shoot their shot.

I’m almost certain that they were immediately shot down after posing this question to their crush, because that’s how life is. But this is still a lovely, lovely song. Enjoy Zooey and Joseph being cute below.

 

Day 21

Carol Of The Bells – Libera

This is one of my favourite Christmas songs of all time. Last year, the a capella Pentatonix version featured on the list, but today I have decided to keep things slightly more traditional with a version from boys choir Libera.

It cannot be denied that this song is at least a little bit creepy, and the music video below which features the boys singing ominously in a forest does little to dispel that image.

Nonetheless, it’s a beautiful song about being excited for Christmas – something that I can definitely relate to today.

 

Day 22

I’ll Be Home For Christmas – Michael Bublé

Try as you might, it is pretty much impossible to compile a list of Christmas music without somehow involving Micahel Bublé. This man has somehow positioned himself as the King of Christmas and his covers of classic Christmas songs have gone on to eclipse the originals in modern day popularity.

If you read the blogs on last year’s countdown, you may remember that I have a, shall we say, interesting relationship with Mr. Bublé. To cut a long story short: I don’t like him (or at least, I don’t want to like him). I should note that this is through no fault of his own, and in fact exists despite his immense talent and the beautiful music he makes that I begrudgingly enjoy.

One thing I can proudly hold against him is his ill-advised cover of Santa Baby (that basically amounted to a series of ‘no homo’s), which I imagine must have been intended to be tongue-in-cheek, but in my opinion, just turned out uncomfortable.

Regardless, I can’t argue with his catalogue of work, especially the Christmas stuff which truly is some stellar stuff. There is a reason why he is trotted out every year at Christmas time with his non-threatening good looks and almost aggresively smooth voice.

At this point I’ve run out of space to talk about today’s actual song, but rest assured that, much like the other Sinatra-esque covers in the crooner’s canon, it is a heartwarming treat for the ears.

 

Day 23

Gloria – Josh Garrels

Our countdown started off with a song from Josh Garrels, so it is only fitting that he appears again toward the end to sandwich in our playlist. I hesitate to call this song a cover, as it sounds miles apart from the Gloria In Excelsis Deo hymn that we know, so let’s just say that today’s song was inspired by the centuries old song.

I enjoy the indie folk vibes and Garrels’ earnest vocals, as well as how the music builds into a joyous chorus of “gloria”s that sounds thoroughly modern but still echoes the same spirit of people singing the original hymn hundreds of years ago.

 

 

Day 24

Christmas Wrapping – The Waitresses

‘Twas the night before Christmas… I think I actually enjoy Christmas Eve more than Christmas Day. Anticipation is almost always better than the things itself.

Some of the more organised types will have their presents all wrapped up days, even weeks, before the big day, but I love wrapping gifts on Christmas eve, knowing that, in a few short hours when they’re opened, I’ll be able to see my family’s faces of delight, shock, horror, revulsion, and eventual acceptance. (You really don’t want to receive one of my gifts…)

Fittingly, I chose this iconic 80s jam for today’s song, but I have come to realise that this song has little or nothing to do with Christmas wrapping, but instead focuses on a woman who is unable to take hints as to when someone isn’t interested.

 

Day 25

O Come All Ye Faithful – Pentatonix

It’s the big day. I LOVE Christmas! I really hope you have had a delightful day, wherever you and whatever you’ve been doing.

I contemplated putting a sombre song that contemplates the deep, intensely theological ideas, but today is a day for celebration. So instead, here is a lively gospel cover of Joy To The World from everyone’s favourite a capella group, Pentatonix.

So there we are. 25 days of music. i hope you guys have enjoyed it as much as I have.

 

 

 

My little brother has the misfortune of being born on December the 26th. So for him, Christmas is just a warm-up for his big day, but a warm-up that (let’s face it) will always eclipse his birthday.

To try and and combat this, my parents would always buy him a big present on his birthday. A huge remote-controlled car, or a bike or something large and ostentatious, so he would feel special.

One year in particular when he was very young, I remember he got something really big. Ironically, I can’t actually remember what that thing was, and I don’t think that he can either, because what he really enjoyed, what he really valued in that gift was the box.

He loved that box. I vaguely remember playing with him in it. We probably pretended it was a spaceship or something like that. And, as much fun as it was, we can’t escape the fact that he had wasted a wonderful gift.

I wonder if sometimes we can be like my little brother, getting caught up in the packaging of Christmas, but ignoring the amazing gift that’s right there.

Christmas isn’t about the presents, or the food, or the Christmas music (as much as that pains me to admit). It isn’t even about seemingly noble things like spending time with loved ones, or being kind to strangers, as great as those things are.

Christmas is about God loving us so much that he refused to be aloof and disconnected so came to earth as a human. Born in abject poverty, forced to seek asylum in a foreign country as a toddler, persecuted as an adult, and eventually killed, he most definitely experienced the lows of human life.

But this means that it can’t be denied that Jesus is for everyone. Young peasant couples raising a child born out of wedlock (Mary and Joseph), poor outcasts (the shepherds), rich, wise intellectuals (the Wise Men), even people who work in hospitality but aren’t very good at their jobs (the innkeeper). Everyone.

So when you think about it, Christmas is actually, dare I say it…

about you.

And me.

It’s about all of us. God thought we were worth coming to earth in poverty, scandal and shame, and ultimately worth dying for. So really, we’re the meaning of Christmas.

God thinks we’re worth knowing, so isn’t it mabe worth trying to get to know him?

So I implore you this Christmas. Have a think about all of this. Please feel free to message me, comment or whatever if you want to chat more.

But whatever you do, don’t just play with Christmas’ packaging. I can tell you from experience, the gift is so much better than the box.

 

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Days 11 – 17 #EdisXmasCountdown

EdisXmasCountdown, music

Contrary to what has become a popular understanding, the Wise Men – or Magi, if you’re feeling fancy – weren’t actually present at Jesus’ birth. If you were to ask a historian or just read the bible, you would find out that the Eastern travellers only came along by the time the little Baby Jesus had become the slightly bigger Toddler Jesus.

So they missed it. They missed the birth of our saviour. They missed the shepherds, missed the stable, they missed it all.

Poor form, Magi. Poor form.

The world’s most celebrated group of travelling mystics of all time were late.

So as you bear that in mind, I would like to very humbly offer an apology for the lateness of this post. Due to a combination of me being busy and of the dates of Christmas this year, I thought it would be best if I share days 11 – 18 today on Christmas Eve, then days 19 -25 tomorrow on Christmas day to round off the series.

For those of you who have no idea what I’m talking about, over the advent season, I have been sharing 25 of my favourite Christmas songs. There have been old songs and new, pop songs and carols, as well as some new versions of classic tunes.

Follow all the action on Twitter and read the previous weekly blog posts here, including last year’s entries.

So let’s get into it. Here is another week of Christmas cheer from me to you.

Enjoy.

Day 11

What Christmas Means To Me – Paul Young

“Candles burning low, lots of mistletoe…” Despite apparently growing up in the 1800s before electric light was commonplace, Paul Young’s Christmas memories are very sweet and are guaranteed to put you in a festive mood. The standout from his 2nd Christmas album, unsurprisingly titled A Very Special Christmas 2, this old school song brings a cheerful sense of nostalgia about the holiday season.

 

Day 12

Dear Santa – Mr. Little Jeans

Bringing things back into this decade, here is the oddly named female vocalist Mr. Little Jeans with Dear Santa. In this song, the Norwegian sings about the challenges of spending Christmas apart from her significant other. Unlike many other older or old-fashioned songs about lonely Yuletides, I like that today’s song does admit that “I wouldn’t need any presents at all, if I had my baby on a long-distance call”.

It’s perhaps a smidge less romantic than walking 1000 miles, but a cheeky Facetime with your long-distance partner on Christmas might be the best present you could get.

 

Day 13

Santa’s Beard – The Beach Boys

With a back catalogue that includes songs with titles like The Baker Man, Barbra Ann and Bull Session with the Big Daddy (and that’s just the B’s!), today’s song continues the Beach Boys’ seeming commitment to sing about literally anything.

This one details the disappointment of a little boy who visits ‘Santa’ at a shopping centre and promptly realises that the man is an imposter upon tugging on his beard. Traumatising stuff.

Sung in their distinctive surfer/barbershop style with their effortless harmonies, this song is a whimsical look into Christmas from the eyes of a five (and a half) year old.

 

Day 14

God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen – Tenth Avenue North

This song featured on last year’s playlist, but I can assure you, Nat King Cole’s version sounds miles apart from today’s tropical house cover. This track features on their creative Decade The Halls, Vol. 1 album – an anthology of popular Christmas songs, but with each sung in the style of music from every consecutive decade from the 1920s onwards. It shouldn’t take a genius to work out that today’s song is the last on the album as tropical electronic music is peak 2010s.

As you might have noticed from the playlist so far, oftentimes even the newest Christmas songs have retro influences – Sia’s Santa’s Coming for Us, Bonnie McKee’s California Winter, or even Dear Santa above spring to mind. This song however, bucks the trend, bringing a truly modern take to this centuries-old song.

And luckily, this is only volume 1 of the Decade the Halls album so hopefully we can expect more next year.

 

Day 15

You’ll Know It’s Christmas – Deacon Blue

Like many festive songs, this one is little more than a list of things that the writer enjoys about Chrsitmas. This time it’s snow, singing, people believing in each other and babies in manger nativity scenes.

Despite the hackneyed Yuletide motifs, this song presents a cheerful, optimistic and inspiring message, rather than merely the focus on gift-wrapping and icicles that much of Christmas music can have. I specially like how the song builds from a sombre contemplative start to the euphoric final chorus.

“You’ll know it’s Christmas when the snows are beginning and someone’s singing a song.”

Sounds about right to me.

 

Day 16

Up On The Housetop – Pentatonix

The Pentatonix love Christmas. Having released a festive album every year since 2014, this a capella  group take the whole ‘bringing glad tidings of great joy’ thing to the next level. Admirably, despite their sheer volume of output, they are still able to maintain the level of quality that got them noticed in the first place.

After a cappella music’s spike in popularity in the early 2010s, thanks to the likes of Glee, flashmobs, the Pitch Perfect films, and of course the band’s own viral sucess, it can be easy to forget just how much effort goes into all of their music. Every sound you hear is made by their mouths, yet each song plays like a fully produced studio track.

A testament to their skill, they even somehow managed to turn this quite frankly ridiculous Christmas ditty into a bona fide jam that makes me want to move my body.

Looks like this year, Santa’s bringing another kind of slayyyyy!

Enjoy their cool VR video below. The future is now.

Day 17

My Gift Is You

To this day, I still have literally no idea what a hollaback girl is. Thankfully, in this new song, Gwen Stefani uses only standard English words.

Riffing on an admittedly now overused ‘all i want for Christmas is you’ trope, Stefani croons in her distinctive voice how her significant other is the only gift she needs, rather than money, a ring, or any of the myriad yuletide clichés.

Stefani reportedly wrote this song about her boyfriend – country music star Blake Shelton. Shelton recently received some stick for being chosen as People magazine’s Sexiest Man Alive with many suggesting there were perhaps more deserving candidates.

Regardless, with this song, it is clear there’s only one winner in Gwen’s heart.

 

@ediadegbola

Days 4 – 10 #EdisXmasCountdown 2017

christmas, EdisXmasCountdown, music

We’re well into December now and Christmas is very much on its way. I have already bought two secret Santa gifts and am looking forward to my work Christmas party i.e. my only opportunity to wear a suit until wedding season rolls around next year.

I love this time of year – the cold winds, the over-excited children, the dangerous hazard of icy roads. Ok, those definitely aren’t the best things that the season has to offer, but maybe below I can suggest seven of Christmas’ finest products.

If you didn’t know (literally, where have you been?), for advent, I am compiling a list of some of my favourite Christmas songs. I’ll be counting down to the big day with 25 of the best Yuletide tunes – old and new, Christian and secular.

Check out all the action on Twitter and follow the playlist on Spotify which I will update daily. And if you just can’t get enough, listen to last year’s playlist and read some of last year’s blogs too.

Ok then, let’s get started. Here’s what the last week has sounded like for me.

 

Day 4

Can You See – 5th Harmony

Taking a break from the almost aggressively sexual output that we have come to expect from them, here 5th Harmony sing a beautiful R&B ballad about a Christmas star that leads the way spiritually. (In case that was too subtle for you, this particular star is called Jesus).

This song was written for the soundtrack of The Star – a children’s film about that night in Bethlehem, told from the perspective of the nativity’s unsung hero: the donkey. Yeah sure, the wise men brought some expensive gifts, but try walking for 80 miles with a pregnant woman on your back.

It’s nice to see a modern Christmas song that talks a little about the meaning of Christmas, rather than just presents and snow and festive feelings, not that presents, snow and festive feelings don’t have their place.

Anyway, this song got me in a Christmassy mood when it was released in October, so I’m sure it’ll do the same now it’s actually December.

 

Day 5

All Alone On Christmas – Darlene Love

It really wouldn’t be Christmas without Darlene Love having a musical meltdown of some kind. Last year we had her crying on the doorstep pleading with her man to come home. This year it appears that said gentleman did not return and now she’s facing a lonely yuletide.

Jokes aside, this emotional song reminds us that this time of year can be very lonely for some people. Here is a woman who is so lonely that she is writing a letter to Santa Claus asking him to stay with her a while when delivering her presents. It’s safe to say she’s had more than a few brandys at this point.

I love the vulnerability in this song and her previous hit Christmas (Baby Please Come Home) though it’s worth mentioning that, aside from the honesty, both tracks also share an undeniably similar tune.

 

Day 6

2000 Miles – Tom Chaplin

For day 6, we have an updated cover of The Pretenders’ hit 2000 Milles. Not to be confused with The Proclaimers’ 500 Miles, or Vanessa Carlton’s A Thousand Miles, this song has become a Christmas classic since its release in 1983. Who knew geographically themed music was so popular?

In today’s cover, former Keane frontman Tom Chaplin breathes new life into the ditty as part of his new album Twelve Tales Of Christmas.

Sadly, this beautiful song isn’t about separated lovers as the lyrics suggest, but was actually written as a tribute to the Pretenders’ original guitar player who died of a drug overdose the year before tit was written.

Nevertheless, this gentle melody has brought a sombre joy to Christmases over the past few decades and, no doubt, this cover and the original version will continue to do so for many more.

 

Day 7

It’s Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas – Noah Cyrus

The lights are up, nutmeg is in the air, and shoppers are becoming increasingly stressed and irritable: It’s Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas. Today, Noah Cyrus brings us into the one week mark with a surprisingly beautiful cover of this quintessentially festive song.

Best known (let’s face it) for being Miley Cyrus’s little sister, Noah’s burgeoning music career has so far delivered a slew of competent, edgy and surprisingly mature pop singles for a 17-year old. Today’s track however, goes in a more traditional direction.

Being a middle child, I am aware of how annoying it is to constantly be compared to one’s siblings but I can’t resist sharing this video of Miley’s Christmas 2008 performance when she was just a year younger than Noah is now.

2008 truly was a simpler time.

 

Day 8

California Winter – Bonnie McKee

Having written for the likes of Katy Perry, Britney Spears and Taio Cruz (Dynamite was a massive tune, don’t even try and deny it), Bonnie Mckee is responsible for some of your favourite pop songs. Her own musical career however, has been a little more bumpy after releasing an unsuccessful album and parting ways with two record labels.

Unperturbed, she decided to go it alone as an independent artist and has produced some incredibly slick pop and fantastic music videos over the last couple of years that are, in my opinion, woefully underrated.

Today’s song is a retro-styled romp as Bonnie sings of how her lover makes her feel warm inside, like a California winter. So far, so cliché, but the cute lyrics and creative single-shot video make this catchy song stand out that bit more.

For more exciting festive goodness from Ms. McKee, check out her California Winter Extravaganza Christmas special here.

 

Day 9

Ave Maria – Frank Sinatra

Full disclosure: this isn’t technically a Christmas song. The melody was written by Schubert almost 200 years ago as part of his Opus 52. Over time, the tune has been borrowed to go with the Catholic prayer to the mother of Jesus – Hail Mary, or in latin, Ave Maria.

So, not really a Christmas song per se, but Mary kind of had a big role to play in the  whole nativity story, so I’ll allow it. And despite not understanding any words in Latin other than ave and Maria, I love Sinatra’s strong, yet gentle voice on this tender ode to Jesus’ mama.

Day 10

Humbug – Owl City

Owl City. Now there’s a name we haven’t heard for a while. After his huge single Fireflies and some follow up hits like Good Time with Carly Rae Jepsen, Owl city (real name, Adam Young) has quietly plugged away, continuing to make music in his trademark electro-synth autotuned style.

I stumbled upon this track a few weeks ago and, despite its under-produced album art,  it resonated with me. Taking aim at the over-commercialisation of Christmas, Adam sings about the stress of finding the ‘perfect’ Christmas gift for his significant other. Eventually, he decides to give her the only thing of real value – his love. This is either a beautiful romantic gesture or a massive cop out. I’ll let his girlfriend decide.

Oddly, both the melody and message of this song remind me of James Corden’s The Greatest Gift song from Sainsbury’s cute claymation advert last year. Unlike Owl City however, the supermarket were very careful not to suggest that people don’t buy presents, merely that they should do so whilst also enjoying time with family. They are  a  chain of shops after all.

 

So that’s it for another week, friends. I’ll see you next week, same time, same place.

 

@ediadegbola

Days 1 – 3 #EdisXmasCountdown 2017

christmas, EdisXmasCountdown, music

Can you believe it’s that time of year again?

Christmases (or should that be Christmi?) come around faster and faster each year.

The loyal readers among you might remember that, for advent last year, I did a countdown of my favourite Christmas songs, imaginatively titled #EdisXmasCountdown. The disloyal charlatans among you won’t remember that, but I forgive you. Christmas goodwill and all that.

So here’s the deal: every day, instead of scoffing a morsel of poor quality chocolate before breakfast, I will share one of my favourite Christmas songs on Twitter and my Instagram story. Then each Sunday, I will share a blog post, saying a little more about that week’s songs and what they mean to me.

This is the first of those posts.

I have tried to gather a mix of secular songs and carols, old and new music, as well as interesting covers of classic songs that you might not have heard. Hopefully there will be something for everyone, but perhaps it’s more likely that there will actually be nothing for anyone who isn’t me, seeing that this is a list of my favourite songs.

The Spotify playlist will be updated daily and last year’s playlist can be found here. Finally, all previous blog posts are available here.

Now that all the housekeeping is out of the way, this is what the last few days have sounded like to me.

Day 1

The Light Came Down – Josh Garrels

Our first song is a charming piece of indie folk. A slow, atmospheric start leads into gentle vocals from Garrels who sings us through the meaning of Christmas. The harmonies are stunning, the strings are cheerful, and the message is beautiful.

This is what Christmas is about.

I wanted to include this song in last year’s countdown but I discovered it too late and had already run out of space on the list. Regardless, I loved the song so much that I have been listening to it all year round, even though I know that enjoying Christmas music outside of November and December is illegal.

Worth it.

Day 2

Santa’s Coming For Us – Sia

Day two definitely steps things up a notch. This is the lead single from Sia’s new Christmas album Everyday Is Christmas. Seasonal albums are always a bit of a risk. On one hand, you’re limiting all purchases/streams of your music to the two aforementioned legally prescribed Christmas music months; but on the other hand, if you’re lucky, you can score a goldmine like All I Want For Christmas Is You which reportedly earns Mariah Carey £376,000 every year!

I don’t think Sia has anything to worry about because this upbeat pop track is an instant classic. Singing about the joy of indulging in clichéd yuletide things like hot chocolate and writing letters to Santa, this song taps into an excitement that I haven’t felt since I was but a young lad. With it’s irresistible beat and star-studded video, this catchy tune will have you bopping all the way to Christmas.

Day 3

It’s The Most Wonderful Time Of The Year – Andy Williams

Despite its unnecessarily long title, this track is an absolute staple of Christmas season. Basically just a list of things we do at Christmas, this cheerful song sounds like it was written exclusively to play over montages of Christmas preparations in movies. How many Christmas films (of varying quality) have you seen that open with this song playing in the background while people put lights on trees and wrap presents? I can already think of three.

Like literally every song that is even vaguely Christmas-related, Michael Buble has done a popular cover of this song, but today we’re going for the original.

Take it away, Andy.

That’s it for now, I’ll see you next week for some more festive tunes.

 

@ediadegbola

Header photo by Caley Dimmock on Unsplash

Christmas at Gap

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Christmas is all about family.

It’s an incredibly tired cliché that is trotted out year after year in film, music and television, but it’s true. Christmas is for coming together and enjoying (or enduring) time with each other, whether you’re Kevin McCallister’s criminally negligent family or a teenage mother giving birth to an illegitimate child in a stable full of animals, shepherds and Eastern men.

The thing is, family doesn’t just have to be the people who share your surname. Sometimes family are your friends, neighbours, colleagues, or the barista who always gives you extra whipped cream on your gingerbread latte (God bless you, Trevor).

That’s why I was delighted to get some of the team at Gap York involved with this Christmas/family themed blog shoot. And I was even more delighted when I found out we would be joined by some extra special little helpers!

A huge thank you is in order to one of the most creative people I know, photographer Luke Porter. Check out his fancy new website here. Another big thank you is definitely owed to our models. The big ones were Jon, Darcey, Jen and Rachel; while the smaller, cuter and, frankly, better ones were Massey, Aami and Isobel.

At the time of writing, all of the items were available in the Gap York store and I have included online links of the pieces or similar ones where possible. Ladies and gentlemen, we are now approaching The North Pole. Please mind the Gap.

Pastel Paradise

I have a soft spot for pastels. Baby blues, mint greens, heather greys, pale pinks, I love them all. While winter often brings to mind many deep, bold colours like bright reds, greens and burgundys, there’s a gentle simplicity to lighter, paler colours this season.

The standout for me has to be this pink faux fur coat. Darcey looks almost indulgently comfortable here, pairing it with  a cableknit sweater and some velour jeans, both in cream.

Isobel’s sweater dress and sparkly tights, and especially Massey’s Chewbacca jumper also go some way to stealing the show. The boys’ Star Wars collection is full of fun, cute and witty pieces like this, and quite frankly outstrips anything that adult men are wearing this season. Sorry lads.

Jen and Rachel both went for long-line roll-neck sweaters and partnered them with complementing shades of velour denim. On top, Rachel’s wool coat borrows the clean lines and minimal design of Scandinavian style, while Jen’s oversized ribbed cardi is the perfect layer to wrap yourself up in and keep warm.

Jon’s pink hoodie is right on the money – pink shades have been huge for men over the past few seasons. We butched things up a little with the distressed denim jacket, and duly un-butched things with his ladies’ skinny jeans as Jon prefers the more snug fit.

Aami’s shirt plays around with classic patterns and proportions, contrasting different sized checks, but still keeping the same colours for a sense of uniformity. Both he and Massey look great in the grey biker jeans that, if nothing else, provide an extra layer of protection to the scuffed knees that young boys seem unable to avoid.

Altogether, with the soft candy tones and the snuggly, cosy materials,  I can’t think of a better uniform for the season of peace and goodwill to all men.

 

Crazy Christmas

At Gap, these rainbow stripes come out every Christmas season (though we call it ‘holiday’ season thanks to the politically correct and non-denominational Americans who run Gap). Though perhaps a little much at first glance, I have come to love these quirky patterns and kooky colours. Most of these items come in a set of similar-coloured pieces so, if you were so inclined, you could deck out your entire family in matching (read: clashing) stripy or fairisle knitwear from head  to toe.

Naturally that would be too much for most reasonable people, so for the rest of us, it’s nice to mix and match with simpler pieces.

Rachel has definitely earnt her stripes here with the rainbow jumper and scarf. Gap also offer some stripy leggings but I think we can all agree that sometimes you can have too much of a good thing. Underneath, she has on a pair of distressed slim straight jeans – a modern take on the 90s destroyed denim trend.

Jen has taken a leaf out of Rachel’s book by adding a matching scarf to her fair isle jumper, stopping just shy of overkill. The Scottish knitting pattern is a Christmas classic  and immediately makes you feel all warm and fuzzy inside. And outside.

Speaking of which, her legging jeans are lined with brushed cotton which means they feel as comfortable as your favourite pyjama bottoms.

Darcey’s jumper is a little more reserved than the others, restricting the stripe motif to the heart on the chest. Her gold puffer jacket however, is far from reserved, bringing a little bit of luxe to the colder months. Finally her otherwise simple hat delivers a burst of colour with the fluffy pom-pom at the top.

Aami’s long sleeve tee pokes fun at the questionable jumpers we get given at Christmas (sorry, Grandma). but his blue striped snood and hat set bring a less ironic sense of Christmas cheer. My favourite item however, is Aami’s varsity jacket. Effortlessly stylish, this jacket will keep you feeling warm but looking cool. I just wish they did it in adult sizes.

On the other hand, Massey keeps things classic in his stripy sweater and gilet. You’ll notice that the shades in the boys’/men’s stripes are subtly different to those of the ladies/girls, but I like how the patterns tie together.

Isobel is wearing all things bright and beautiful, but her denim jacket breaks up the otherwise overpowering patterns. The fingerless glove and woolly hat set look great paired with the stripy dress and leggings and, coincidentally, her hair braid.

And finally, Jon might be having a Blue Christmas, but his spirits definitely seem high in his jumper and gilet. Pairing burgundy with blue, the navy cable-knit scarf finishes off the cosy outfit.

Styling and directing these guys was so much fun. Being a family themed shoot, I decided to put everyone in matching outfits, like on a cute family Christmas card – you know, a cute family Christmas card sponsored by a multinational retail corporation.

For this shoot, I was inspired in part by the #DGfamily campaign and in part by the multi-layered drama of a renaissance painting. I wanted to get shots that reminded me of my family – dysfunctional, but happy. It’s all about everyone coming together in the mess that is life, whether mucking around with a scooter or giving your mum a cuddle.

It was great fun having the kids involved. I really wanted to give them a chance to show their personalities, so I asked them to bring in their favourite toys. Expecting three fidget spinners, I was pleasantly surprised when Aami arrived with a scooter, Massey, a Star Wars book and Isobel, a cuddly toy. Even in something as simple as that, it’s clear to see their differing characters.

In spite of their differences however, it was great to watch all of the gang messing around and joking with each other. Most of these guys don’t have modelling experience (though Isobel could run circles around Naomi Campbell) so, although I tried to get some slightly more staged shots, none of them looked as good as the natural ones.

The genuine smiles, the uncontrollable laughter, the occasional squabble.

That’s family.

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And yes, it definitely is too early to be saying this, but…

Merry Christmas from all at Gap York!

 

@ediadegbola

 

Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon

Fashion, places

One does a lot of growing up after university.

And I can say from experience that adulthood is a bitter pill to swallow. As inevitable as it is unpleasant, growing up is something that you immensely look forward to as a child, and then realise the true extent of your erroneous thinking more and more with each passing year.

Adulthood – the mistake you somehow keep on making.

One thing that I have personally noticed about ageing is that I have started enjoying things that I didn’t like when I was younger. I used to hate alcohol but over the years I have reluctantly had to tick cider, wine, beer, rum and, most especially, gin off the no-drink list. Whiskey is my only holdout because it literally tastes like paint stripper, but I can only assume that within a few years, I’ll be sinking it down with no regard for my health or tastebuds like a middle-aged hedge fund manager.

I also enjoy tomatoes, spinach, granola and tonic water, even though I know for a fact that none of them taste good. But worst of all, I now have a predilection for Supermix Haribo – a flavour that is objectively and undeniably inferior to the classic Starmix or  the exotic Tangfastics.

God, have mercy on my soul.

On the plus side, among maturity’s other consolations, I have recently discovered the understated joy of wandering around stately homes. This discovery has led me to succumb to the only thing that ages a person more than male pattern baldness: I signed up for National Trust membership.

Like a sort of MTV Cribs for baby boomers, visiting a heritage property offers a glimpse into an unattainably lavish lifestyle – a peek into what could have been, had I not been born to parents of such humble means.

The younger me would have scoffed at the thought of spending a day in an ancient mansion. But the younger me wouldn’t have able to afford it even if he wanted to, so he can pipe down.

It is for this reason that, whilst visiting the property some weeks ago, I decided to do an impromptu blog shoot in the grounds of Castle Howard – one of the grandest houses in the country.

Home-ownership might be looking less and less likely for millennials, but a boy can dream.

Borrowing the neutral shades and minimal feel of Scandinavian style, today’s outfit is simple but packs a punch. So let’s start of with today’s statement piece – my dragon print shirt.

I bought this at a vintage shop in Belgium. I love being able to say that, it makes me feel fancy and cosmopolitan. What sounds less fancy and cosmopolitan is the fact that it only cost €3.

A simple off-white shirt with a Cuban (or revere) collar, the pattern elevates what would otherwise be quite a basic item. The ‘oriental-style’ print hints at the Chinioserie trend that has been popular over the last few seasons. East has met West time and time again in designs from Maharishi to Gucci, culminating notably in the popularity of  last year’s standout item – the embroidered souvenir jacket.

Fortunately, my printed dragon evokes the aesthetic, whilst costing me considerably less than Gucci would have me pay for this embroidered shirt.

You’ll notice that I am wearing a white tee underneath my shirt. This is for two reasons:

  1. It provides a casual, yet put-together look that also offers an extra layer of warmth
  2. A button fell off the dragon shirt the first time I wore it and the hole
  3. would expose more of my midriff than I feel comfortable about.

Annoying as that is, you really can’t complain when you paid €3.

Below midriff level, I have gone for the beloved favourite of hygge-loving hipsters and middle-aged piano teachers alike, beige chinos. When you literally have a dragon emblazoned across your chest, it’s best to go low-key with the rest of the outfit.

These guys were my go-to trouser of the summer and I love the simple, relaxed style. And, as you may have noticed if you have read this blog before, I continue to be physically unable to wear trousers without rolling up the hems.

Bringing a little colour to an otherwise plain and neutral outfit is my denim jacket. Another gift from the thrifty Belgian vintage scene, this oversized outerwear is a great layer to throw on for an effortless retro look.

Finally, on my feet are some sport socks (bought purely for aesthetic purposes, I rarely play sport of any kind) and some simple plimsolls from Primark. Try saying that last bit 3 times fast.

Having now spent 6 years as a legal adult, and 2 years out of university, I have to admit that some days I really do wish I was a kid again.

But aside from the changing tastes and the having to go to work like every day (what’s that all about?), if adulthood looks like this, maybe it’s not so bad after all.

 

@ediadegbola

 

Is fashion art?

Fashion, musings

Is fashion art?

This question, undoubtedly asked by many a fashion designer clamouring for a sense of legitimacy to their craft, has probably existed for as long as the two disciplines have.

Of the creative arts, fashion is perhaps seen as the most frivolous. Fine art has a centuries-long legacy of appreciation and academia, as do music, creative writing, and theatre. Even film and television enjoy a populist endorsement that leaves their existence immune to interrogation.

But despite its ubiquity – most human beings wear clothes, most of the time – fashion can  often be seen as a superficial younger sibling.

But this all rides on the titular question: Is fashion art?

The creation of fashion definitely mirrors the process of making art; from conceptualisation, to sourcing of materials, to the production of the piece. Other than salary, what is the difference between the person who produced these paint-splattered Levi jeans and artist Jackson Pollock creating his iconic “drip-style” artworks?

That said, as Alice Rawsthorn notes for the Guardian, it could be said that fashion and art serve different purposes. Fashion is for expressing beauty – a duty that art, especially contemporary art, is often unconcerned with. Art’s function is to explore the complexities of life and to (at least attempt to) make meaning of the world around us; any beauty that comes from that is merely a by-product, Rawsthorn argues.

I, however, would suggest that perhaps our question is too simplistic. There is still much debate in creative communities over what does or does not constitute art, as well as many line-blurring and line-transgressing works, from performance art to street art to art installations. If we can’t even say for sure that art is art, surely we will struggle to agree on whether or not fashion is.

Regardless, over the years, fashion and art have in fact walked hand in hand. In the 1930s, Lola Prussac’s Hermes handbags wore Mondrian’s cubic aesthetic – as did Yves Saint Laurent’s dresses in the 1960s. Fast forward top the 21st century and Alexander McQueen has collaborated with Damien Hirst, Marc Jacobs with Daniel Buren (displayed, of course, at The Louvre), and even self-proclaimed genius Kanye West accepted help from performance artist Vanessa Beecroft’s when launching his Yeezy collections.

Art and fashion’s give and take is well documented, but the growing popularity of fashion sketches from the likes of Hayden Williams or Richard Haines is a perfect example. Are these drawings fashion or are they art? Or both? Or neither?

It’s difficult to say. But this lack of definition doesn’t make them any less beautiful.

Photo by Rob McConkey.

Autumn Layering with Gap

Fashion

Autumn – the time of year where everyone pretends that pumpkins aren’t gross – is upon us once more.

As the nights draw darker and the trees begin to jettison their leaves and we all finally embrace the fact that winter is indeed coming, we can at least take solace in the benefits of autumn style. Namely – the return of layering.

At Gap where I work, we love a good layered look. And as any good mother will tell you as she forces yet another jumper over your head – layering keeps you warm and toasty.

Wandering around our beautiful city, I asked some of the team at Gap York to talk me through a few of their favourite layers from our fall collection. (We call it fall not autumn because Gap is run by American infidels.)

A massive thank you is in order to the ever-talented Luke Porter (he genuinely outdoes himself every time), to the stunning Teajuanas café for letting us shoot there, and of course to our lovely models – Josie, Callum and Courtney.

So hold tight to your overpriced seasonal latte because once again, ladies and gentlemen, we are approaching the station. Please mind the gap.

CALLUM

What do you like about the clothes you picked?

I chose the knitted jumper because of its versatility. Its neutral colour means it goes well with most things in my wardrobe and it’s great to throw on for an extra layer before leaving the house on a chilly morning! The fit is very snug and comfortable to wear which is very important for me. I like to feel relaxed and cosy in my clothes as winter approaches.

I love the sweatshirts we recently got in at Gap which are a great twist on the iconic Gap logo hoodies. I chose the navy blue one today but I also have it in green. I enjoy the detailing on the sweatshirt, with “original” stitched in red over the bold “Gap” branding. I think they work well in any outfit and are a really nice statement piece; they definitely remind me of the Gap hoodies I used to wear in the early 2000s!

I am also obsessed with the marbled effect buttons on this check shirt. I think they’re a really nice touch that make it stand out from the many other check shirts I own.

A denim jacket is a classic staple piece everyone needs somewhere in their wardrobe. I’m incredibly picky when it comes to choosing a new jacket and usually just settle for vintage (I like denim jackets to look a bit worn and distressed) however I love this indigo wash Gap jacket. I wore it with a pair of black skinny jeans and, though I’m not brave enough to go full double denim (think Britney and Justin at the AMAs circa 2001), I would definitely wear it as a layering piece.

How would you describe your style?

I would describe my style as simple yet smart. You can usually find me in my favourite pair of  black skinnies (Gap Sculpt True Skinny jeans really did change my life and I have never looked back!) paired with a sweater/t-shirt and jacket. The lack of bold colours and patterns in my wardrobe means I can throw together an outfit quickly without too much fuss. I also like to add a few accessories to jazz things up a bit.

What’s your favourite thing about autumn?

My favourite thing about autumn is seeing the seasons change! Watching the leaves fall, dark evenings, switching from air-con to heater, and getting to wear super comfy winter accessories like snoods, hats and gloves.

Look 1: Callum wears the shaker stitch crew sweater and Sculpt true skinny jeans. Hoodie and jacket, model’s own.

Look 2: Callum wears the standard fit plaid shirt, icon denim jacket, logo crew neck sweater and Sculpt true skinny jeans.

JOSIE

What do you like about the clothes you picked?

I picked the burgundy swing dress for several reasons. I love the shape as it hides a multitude of sins! It’s also a great material (softspun cotton) which is comfortable and I know it washes well because I’ve bought other things in this material. It’s versatile so can be worn on its own or with a belt like I did for the shoot. It’s great for a day-to-night outfit too – just by changing the accessories, you can go from a more casual day style to a dressed up evening style.

A parka jacket should be in everyone’s wardrobe for the autumn/winter months. This one has a detachable hood so it can look like two different coats in one! That said, the fur is my favourite bit so I leave it attached most of the time! I love all the small details like the elbow patches and the lower hem line at the back which give it that added edge. It’s a good size too, so know that I can add layers underneath when it starts to get even colder. Plus it has toggles inside the waistline so it can be pulled in to give you more shape.

How would you describe your style?

My style is quite simple really. I like to be comfy so most of my wardrobe is comfortable stretchy dresses and leggings. Because of my shape I prefer the A line or skater dress/skirt style. I love clothes that can be casual but then I add some accessories and it looks like a completely different outfit! Accessories are definitely my thing and I have a ridiculous collection of jewellery. I don’t wear too many prints and go for the darker colours (my wardrobe holds a lot of black) but I love a bold statement accessory to give my simple outfits the added edge and style.

What’s your favourite thing about Autumn?

My favourite thing about autumn is those early, fresh and cold, but sunny mornings where you get to wear plenty of layers – chunky cardigans and warm wool cable-knit scarves). I absolutely love the deeper and darker autumn colours in fashion. Especially because the burgundys, khaki greens and mustard yellows all reflect the colours of the leaves on the trees!

Josie wears the softspun long sleeve swing dress, 2-in-1 quilted parka, and super opaque tights.

 

COURTNEY

What do you like about the clothes you picked?

The combination was smart with the stripy tee and the pinstripe twill trousers, but I wanted to add some edge with the black denim jacket too. I wear the jacket all the time and it goes great with pretty much anything, whether dressed up or dressed down.

The trousers are actually for men, but I like the slightly looser fit for a relaxed vintage look. The light pinstripe is a nice touch that you don’t notice at first glance, but it makes them a little more special. They look great in a casual outfit like this, but can easily be dressed up by replacing the t-shirt with a white shirt, for example.

Also, I’m a big fan of comfort and these items feel great, especially the trousers which are really soft while still looking quite smart. I definitely go for practical clothes for day to day wear so comfort is a big rule for me.

How would you describe your style?

I would describe my style as basic with elements of clashing patterns. I’m all about simple essentials as the foundation of my outfits but I like to play about with size and proportions – oversized t-shirts or jackets, high-waisted trousers etc. I also like to experiment with different patterns, colours and fabrics.

I live for vintage and you can always find me in charity shops hunting for a bargain. I especially love vintage denim and leather which always have a slick retro vibe.

What is your favourite thing about autumn?

Layering. There is nothing more satisfying than being able to wear more than one layer on top. In the summer you get to hot, but autumn is great because you can layer up. I love the feeling when you first start to feel the chill in the air and bring out your jacket that’s sat at home all summer.

Courtney wears: twill trousers and the icon black denim jacket. T-shirt model’s own.

 

Callum and Courtney wear the logo crewneck sweater. Josie wears the logo zip hoodie.

 

Courtney, Callum and Josie all picked their outfits and styled themselves. It was great to see how they put their own personal spin on things whether it was Josie’s colour-coordinated hair, or Courtney’s rolled up trouser hems, or Callum’s jewellery.

One thing I love about Gap is that you are able, or rather encouraged, to do your own thing and make it work for you. Courtney opted for men’s trousers because she enjoys the comfortable and relaxed fit, while Callum went for women’s skinny jeans as the men’s jeans aren’t as tight as he likes them. For the logo shot, they all threw on men’s hoodies and sweatshirts for a relaxed casual vibe. As you can tell, Courtney went extra large for a vintage oversized feel, while Callum and Josie preferred a more fitted look.

Once again, it is worth pointing out that Gap are very liberal with the dishing out of discounts. At the time of writing, all regular priced items in store are 35% off ticket price, while online you currently get up to 30% off full price and sale styles. Keep up with the offers by joining the mailing list here.

Now if you’ll excuse me, there’s a pumpkin spice latte with my name on it… albeit misspelled horribly by the barista.

@ediadegbola

How to Dress for a Wedding Part II

Fashion

Every friendship group has that one friend who is really good at giving advice, and that  one friend who never takes good advice.

Somehow I often end up doing both. Looking into the lives of others, I find the path of what to do is always exceedingly clear, but when it comes to me, I find it incredibly difficult to do what I know that I should.

Not long ago, I wrote some tips for how to dress for a wedding. I recently went to a wedding – and obviously wore clothes so I thought it would be interesting to put my outfit to the test and see how good I am at following my own advice.

I actually bought this Topman suit as a matching 3-piece (trousers, blazer and waistcoat), but due to the perils of online shopping, the trousers didn’t fit properly. I can just about squeeze into them, but they are very tight and definitely not appropriate to wear to a wedding. Or anywhere there might be children.

Instead I have substituted the trousers for some black chinos that cost me £7 in H&M’s sale. Normally I would have chosen some more formal ‘proper’ suit trousers, but I really couldn’t turn down that price.

Rationalising my cheapness, I decided to style it out as a rustic suit separates look – not unlike pop/folk band Mumford & Son’s iconic tweed-and-chinos style.

So that’s the outfit, but how does it measure up?

Taking the 5 tips from my post, let’s see if I practise what I preach.

 

Keep it simple.

Right off the bat, I’m wearing a jacquard patterned blazer and waistcoat. So far, so outlandish. But you’ll notice that I’ve gone for plain black trousers underneath to tone down the impact of the jazzy top half. The same can be said of my shirt and shoes.

Finally, I opted for low-key accessories – a burgundy bowtie and pocketsquare – which bring an understated pop of colour to the outfit. I toyed with the idea of adding a subtle lapel pin from Topman to the mix, but it snapped the first time I tried to put it on. (The same has happened with lapel pins I’ve bought from River Island too, so I’m going to avoid high-street brands from now on. Or maybe I’m the problem…)

Serendipitously, the poor quality lapel pin did me a favour in the end, as this outfit is loud enough without it, and simply doesn’t need anymore accessories. The suit speaks for itself.

Simplicity – 3/5.

 

Have fun.

Where I perhaps fell short in the last section, I definitely succeed here. This look is nothing if not fun. The playful jacquard pattern projects a level of bubbly confidence (that you don’t necessarily have to feel yourself!)

I enjoy the colourful accessories, especially the bowtie. I thought about wearing the more conventional necktie, but this burgundy bow stands out a little more, and it makes me feel like the Eleventh Doctor which is always a plus.

As discussed above, the rest of the outfit is as simple as possible but I do love these brown brogues, which are definitely eye-catching. Finally, I decided to go “sockless” and roll up the legs to show off  a little ankle. Saucy.

Fun – 5/5

 

Be practical.

For me, fashion has to be functional. As slick as it may look, if you’re not comfortable or can’t move in it, what’s the point?

On the surface, wearing a three-piece suit to a summer wedding in a marquee perhaps doesn’t seem the best idea, but I rather like having the layers. If you’re hot, you can take off the blazer, and you can put it right back on as it gets colder towards the end of the night.

Another thing I like is to wear an undershirt which addmittedly might seem counter-productive to some, as it means adding yet another layer. On the contrary, this layer soaks up the sweat (and doesn’t feel noticeably hotter), meaning that you can hold up your arms carefree and sweatpatch-free, whether you’re raising a glass in toast, or tearing it up on the dancefloor.

Practicality – 4/5

 

Make sure it fits.

Fit is probably the most important part of fashion. The way an item sits on you can be the difference between an awful outfit and an amazing one.

Being unnecessarily lanky, I often struggle to get clothes that fit my long arms properly. this time I think I might have just got away with it, but I’m definitely cutting things fine.

And to be honest, you’re just lucky I didn’t talk myself into wearing the inappropriately tight trousers!

Fit – 3/5

 

Don’t let your shoes let you down.

This is my favourite pair of shoes so,  unsurprisingly, I think I have done quite well here. The brown shoes stand out a little from the black footwear that is often the formal go-to for men, while the broguing detail brings some eye-catching elegance.

Similarly, the sockless and rolled/cropped trouser look is rather on-trend and, once again, stands out a little from the crowd. Plus, it’s nice to have your ankles out in the summer! (Though I have no idea why mine look so veiny…)

Shoes – 5/5

 

Overall I scored 20/25 points which equates to 80%. That’s a first class honours in university terms.

Nicely done, Edi.

But actually, I wrote the post on wedding outfits and I put together this outfit to wear to a wedding. So surely anything less than 100% is a failure.

Awkward.

On the plus side, this can serve as a timely reminder that, when it comes to fashion, style, and taste in general, rules are made to be broken. Wear what makes you feel happy and comfortable and confident in yourself, not what some sartorial rulebook says.

Even if that rulebook happens to be called Edication.

Bare Essentials

Fashion, music, places

Instagram has a lot to answer for – roughly 90% of my procrastination, for one thing – but one of its great benefits is that it helps us come across people and brands that you would otherwise never discover. One such brand is Bare Vintage, and such people are its founders, Lauren and Gus.

Bare is an independent retailer of handpicked vintage clothes. Available on their website, as well as on social shopping app Depop, Bare’s ever-changing collection offers pre-owned branded and designer picks. A selection of one-offs, their aesthetic lands comfortably in mid 90s sportswear territory, alongside the occasional kitsch pop culture find.

Imagine the coolest person you’ve ever met was selling all of their clothes on eBay and you’d be somewhere close to what Bare Vintage is. Fittingly, that is basically how the brand got started.

“When we began we had no idea what it would become, we were just selling some of Gus’s vintage pieces that wouldn’t fit in our tiny apartment!” admits Lauren. Two years on, it’s safe to say that things have taken off, though not without difficulty.

“The biggest challenge has been trying to find time… We both work full-time, and everything we’ve done for Bare has been evenings and weekends. It’s our dream to be able to pursue it full-time eventually and have the time to try and focus on all the projects that at the moment are just ideas.”

Aside from expected streetwear/vintage fodder Reeboks and Nikes, the Bare collection is also littered with names like Ralph Lauren and Tommy Hilfiger – the quintessential duo of preppy turned sporty turned hip-hop turned vintage style.

The team really have an eye for spotting unique finds too, whether it’s a burgundy varsity jacket or a sweatshirt embroidered with Looney Tunes characters.

“Every single item we sell is hand picked,” they announce proudly. “When we choose an item, we ask ourselves ‘Would we use this piece in a photo shoot?’ which keeps the standard high. A piece has to be great quality, unique design and you shouldn’t want to put it down!”

I had the pleasure of visiting their pop-up shop in Manchester a few weeks ago to take a look at their collection first hand. For the London-based brand, it was their first venture up North, but any apprehension was unfounded as the response was unequivocally positive.

“We are both still absolutely amazed at the turnout we had at our Manchester pop up,” Lauren and Gus confess. “There was a real sense of community up there and we can’t wait to come back again!”

The event took place at The Grey Shop, housed in Jutah Studios – a boutique streetwear space in Manchester’s Northern Quarter (past readers will know I’m a big fan of the Northern Quarter). Over some pulsating beats and a few gin and tonics (clear liquids only to minimise damage to the clothes in case drinks spill during particularly passionate skanking), I had a peruse of the collection.

Two standouts for me were a couple of varsity jackets – one in a golden hue and the other a Lakers branded number in mustard yellow. Definitely not for the faint-hearted, I quite enjoyed the obnoxious yet undeniable cool of the pair.

So, what’s next for Bare Vintage? I ask.

“Our next pop up is 25th – 26th of this month (August) in Birmingham! Neither of us have ever been to Birmingham, so it’s another adventure for us. We plan to host more events across the U.K. and beyond, so keep an eye out.”

A good place to keep an eye on Bare Vintage is on Instagram where they post choice items and snaps from their photoshoots. Having already amassed just under 15,000 followers however, you might have to join the queue.

 

@ediadegbola