Over the past 12 months the merchandising folks at J. Barbour and Sons must have been scratching their heads wondering why sales of their Sloaney outerwear have suddenly gone through the roof after being snapped up by drainpipe jeans wearing indie kids. Since I first saw guys and girls rocking vintage Barbour coats last year I thought it was a good trend revival, kinda harking back to that messy brit-pop pride of the 90's - I'm thinking Damien Hirst and Graham Coxon running around with pigs on a giant board game in the music video for 'Country House'. Barbour coats tick all the boxes for me - English made,
the connotations of flat caps and grandpa's, and endorsement by none other than her maj the queen (I think this love of heritage fashion is slowly turning me into a Royalist) . This weekend I saw a couple of boys around town doing the urban-Barbour thing and took a few snaps.

Classic Beaufort coat worn with turn-ups and brilliant camel coloured desert boots. I love these shoes, I'm thinking I might invest in some myself in exchange for the dainty lace-up ankle boots I was wearing throughout 2009.

Teeny tiny matchstick legs, shiny tasseled loafers, burgundy check scarf and mono-tee with padded Eskdale Barbour coat. 


I recently read about Luis Lopez-Smith, the 25 year old Manchester Met and RCA graduate who has just been drafted in as design consultant for Manchester sports brand UMBRO, in an attempt to make it as appealing to fashion conscious sportswear kids as other established labels who have cashed in on their 'retro-cool' credentials. I'll admit I was instantly intrigued by the idea of the footie fans' favourite, renowned for those polyester gym shorts and flammable fleeces, drafting in some hip young sportswear prodigy to breathe some life into the brand. Sadly theres nothing in the way of a collection yet, but here are a few pics from Lopez-Smith's mental MA show 'Hahabangbang'. Nintendo cartoon psychedelia, mindbending detail and trippy prints all the way.

Here are some bits from a recent shoot for Vice Magazine where they teamed chav UMBRO pieces with some of the tamer bits from Lopez-Smith's 'Hahabangbang' collection. I'm curious to see what comes out of this merger. Not sure what the UMBRO lads down the estate will think though...

Photography: Elizabeth Johnson, 
Pics courtesy Vice Magazine


I've never quite been sure about Hareem pants. It's the badly cut high-street versions which really get on my nerves. However, every now and then I come across someone who works a tricky item with good styling. 

tailored peg-top Hareems
unstructured micro animal print tanktop
mini-tux with strong shoulders and 3/4 sleeves
minimal accessories
windswept wavy locks, strong eyebrows and long fluttery lashes


Remember Sarah from my 'Venus in Faux Furs' post back in Autumn 09? well, she's a bit af a gal pal of mine and she has the most amazing selection of vintage and vintage-style frocks. She acquired this beautiful specimen from Quiggins in Liverpool a few years back - made by department store C&A, which was big back in the 80's. I have vague recollections of my mum buying my school shirts from there. I love the longer length of the jersey ra-ra frilled skirt and (not too crazy/scary/sculptural) shoulder pads. What a great find.


When I saw this long black 'Gestapo' trench and skinny jeans ensemble I couldn't help but think of Carlos D from Interpol, whose slightly severe 1940's/Gothic-chic phase I always thought was pretty cool. There's something 'secret agent-esque' about this immaculate vintage coat, buttoned all the way up with slick hair and leather gloves.


I love how the whole of Liverpool has gone into shutdown after the snow. I was trying to spend some xmas vouchers on the Chanel counter at Debenhams when the orange lady was like "we're closing in 5 minutes becuase of the weather". Funny. Anyway I didn't mind too much becuase there was a really nice tranquil atmosphere in the city centre and I had a mill about in the unmarked snow. I saw this threesome down the side of Bold Street and they looked like a sweet bunch, all huddled under one umbrella, so I asked to take their picture. 

The girl in the middle really stands out. Obviously she's very gorgeous but it was the tan and navy burberry-esque bucket bag caught my eye's got that 'middle-class country classic' thing I'm into a lot right now.


I took this picture before xmas and thought it would be a perfect pic to see in 2010. Happy new year folks :)

I spotted this cute girl in Quiggins (Liverpool) and thought her supersized 'face' sweatshirt-dress, featuring black and white panels of jersey with red sequined 'lipstick' was amazing. I love how this slouchy look, featuring not much more than a tassled black leather waistcoat and thigh high boots is cheeky but totally low maintenance. Just goes to show how an original statement piece can really speak volumes (and a good example of how sequins can work in the daytime...shocker!)