Style

In the wardrobe of Craig Jacobs

April 4, 2013

Serendipity introduced me to Craig Jacobs, creative director and designer of SA fashion label, Fundudzi.

I’d missed two shuttle buses from a hotel in Umhlanga to the Durban Fashion Fair breakfast last year. When I spotted him walking out of self-same hotel heading for same breakfast, I was little OMG! that’s him!

Champagne o' clock with Craig Jacobs after the Durban Fashion Fair show - September 2012
Champagne o’ clock with Craig Jacobs after the Durban Fashion Fair show, September 2012

A further thirty minute delay awarded me the opportunity of coffee and a chat with the most humble, intelligent and super-calm designer around. And his darling mom. Word on the street is she bakes some mean goodies which I’ll hopefully get to sample some day. *nudge, wink*

Anyhoo, back to the fashion fair where I got to see his work up close and personal. I was blown away by the fact that such a laid back guy dressed in a blue shirt, baggy trousers and trainers(!) could create two such extreme collections. Cocktail dresses were rivaled only by gossamer wings. They carried a refreshing elegance and light in their simplicity. Dare I even say pretty.

Durban Fashion Fair, September 2012 (Photo by SDR)
Durban Fashion Fair, September 2012 (Photo by SDR)
Durban Fashion Fair, September 2012 (Photo by SDR)
(Photo by SDR)
(Photo by SDR)
(Photo by SDR)

The street wear collection, however, was bold in comparison. Here the designer was driven to make a statement; thumbing his nose at an establishment and forcing you to address or acknowledge social consciences.

(Photo by SDR)
(Photo by SDR)

And the models were beyond hot!

(Photo by SDR)
(Photo by SDR)
(Photo by SDR)
(Photo by SDR)

Or had I read too deeply into the work? Maybe he was just having fun. Either way, in my opinion, there’s always two sides to Craig (we like both) which shows in his work and his entertaining Twitter feed. Well worth a following.

So let’s take a look into one of our fave SA designer’s wardrobes.

Describe yourself. Eco-warrior, communicator, juggler, Mommy’s boy and avid reader of biographies.

Define your style. What is the signature Craig Jacobs look? My personal style is quite relaxed and low-key while my design style is all about understated elegance.

Which do you prefer; a S/S or an A/W wardrobe? I like the warm tones and layering appeal of Winter.

Which trend or style will you wearing be this Autumn/Winter? I’m popping a bit of emerald green into my wardrobe and might add a bit of military. It inspired my Winter 2013 collection which I showed last year in September.

(Photo by SDR)
(Photo by SDR)
539385_10151080229737393_1914398086_n
(Photo by SDR)
(Photo taken from FB)
(Photo taken from FB)

What is the one clothing item you will never lend to a friend? And why? Probably my Hugo Boss suit which I have worn to death! It’s my fail safe pick me up outfit when I feel like dressing up.

How would you style a plain white t-shirt? If it’s a great fit and gleaming white, there is no need to style it up. (Gents, sit up and take notes. I’m hearing this reply often. – Ed) I am loving the new minimalism. I think people fuss too much about over embellishing things whereas there is beauty in clean, simple lines. 

What colour dominates your wardrobe? Without a doubt, blue – especially navy blue. I am obsessed with Monaco Blue. There’s bound to be a bit of that popping up in my Spring/Summer collection, which I am finishing up now in preparation for my SAFW show in collaboration with American Swiss on April 13th. *claps hands*

Stripe. Denim. Leather. Which could you not live without? Denim hands down – especially my Uniqlo regular fit jeans crafted from Japanese Kaihara denim.

What is your best fashion buy? A pair of Paul Smith brown lace-ups with contrasting green laces that I picked up for about R300 at Galeries Lafayette.

What is your favourite go-to store? Honestly? (Yes, plse. -Ed) I much prefer art supply stores and book stores than clothing ones – but you can’t beat Edgars for the widest range of labels from local designer to international. (For the record, I battled with my conscience to include this answer simply because Edgars Cape Town doesn’t stock Fundudzi. – Ed #justsaying)

What has been your most embarrassing fashion moment / what will you never wear again? A pink waxed cotton shirt with white pants and white shoes I wore a decade ago to the Style Awards when I was a judge. Sometimes I still wake up in the middle of the night and go, WTF! and pray those pics never ever turn up to haunt me.

(Here, I was tempted to get back at Craig for the Edgars thing by googling this pic – then remembered The Bromwell Boutique in Woodstock carries Fundudzi. – Ed forgives transgression)

Complete this sentence; “I wish I had a penny for every time someone asked me… if I prefer media to designing. I tell them I am a communicator who uses words and clothing to transmit a message.

(I, on the other hand, would tell these dumbasses where to get off. With his most recent accolade of a feature in the March issue of Italian fashion bible, Amici, why would we want to be deprived of Fundudzi by Craig Jacobs? Seriously? – Ed *shakes head*)

Amici March 2013 (Photo taken from FB)
Amici March 2013 (Photo taken from FB)

Craig, it was both a pleasure and an honour meeting you. Thank you for doing this interview so beautifully. Given that we haven’t celebrated Champagne o’ clock since September last year, I think we owe each other that pleasure pretty soon. Hopefully accompanied by some of mom’s yummy baked goodies.

Til then, I’ll continue to be inspired by your regular Sunday Times Lifestyle Trendspot articles. One of my weekly highlights.

Trendspot with Craig Jacobs. Sunday Times Lifestyle 10 March 2013 (Photo from Craig's FB page)
Sunday Times Lifestyle 10 March 2013 (Photo taken from FB page)
Trendspot with Craig Jacobs. Sunday Times Lifestyle 17 March 2013 (Photo from Craig's FB page)
Sunday Times Lifestyle 17 March 2013 (Photo taken from FB)

Here’s to supporting SA designers. Happy shopping everyone.

love & light

Clouds xxx

Photo credit: First pic is my own; all others captioned accordingly. BTW, SDR photography is amazing for SA ramp fashion. (Simon, I hope we get to meet soon.)

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In the wardrobe of Hendrik Vermeulen Couture

March 21, 2013

So you’ve read the previous post of my visit to the Hendrik Vermeulen Couture boutique in the Mother City yesterday.

Hendrik Vermeulen Couture 33
Hendrik Vermeulen Couture Boutique & Atelier at No. 79 Hout Lane, Cape Town

It’s almost hard to believe we’d only met once before, briefly at the Polo earlier this year, and hadn’t seen each other since.

Hendrik Vermeulen Clouds Drummond Veuve Clicquot Masters Polo 2013
Hendrik and I at the Polo in January.
JD with model, Rachel Luesse wearing Hendrik Vermeulen Couture
JD with model, Rachel Luesse wearing Hendrik Vermeulen Couture

What was intended as an hour-long interview turned into a four hour Champagne o’ clock session. Needless to say I felt right at home. For this reason, I had to split my blog posts or you’d have lost all sensation in your finger scrolling down the page.

Hendrik Vermeulen Couture 22
Hanging with the boys yesterday afternoon

We spoke about the boutique which opened on the 1st of February – a milestone commemorated in style by a limited edition of gorgeous silk scarves intended as gifts for close friends and clients who didn’t make the opening. Such a beautiful gesture.

Here are some pics from the Simply Vermeulen 2013 Collection which he showed at the launch. I hadn’t attended so grabbed some off their Facebook page.

Hendrik Vermeulen Couture 35
Photo by Yvette Gilbert
Photo by Yvette Gilbert
Photo by Yvette Gilbert

Love! And I fell madly in love with the boutique and everything in it.

Hendrik Vermeulen Couture 19

Hendrik Vermeulen Couture 27

Hendrik Vermeulen Couture 34

Hendrik Vermeulen Couture 05

Hendrik Vermeulen Couture 10

Anyhoo, amid many sips of pink bubbles and belly-aching laughter, I climbed into the wardrobes of business and life partners; Hendrik and JD, the power couple who makeup Hendrik Vermeulen Couture and Simply Vermeulen Prêt-à-Porter. The conversation went something like this.

Me: Define your personal style.
HV: Workwear has to be functional because I’m always bending or kneeling on the floor when I’m fitting. For events like the polo, I wore a printed linen shirt from our new collection. I wear my designs so if anything, that is my style.

Hendrik Vermeulen Couture 36

Me: Which trend will you be wearing this Autumn/Winter season?
HV:  I’m in the mood for funky jackets. I’m loving colour like emerald, coral and turquoise. And the purple around the boutique.

Me: What is the one clothing item you will never lend to a friend.
HV: I don’t know. I’m easy going so it doesn’t matter. I’m not that fussy about my clothing.
JD: I am still missing my lambskin leather jacket. (bear in mind his accent, so ‘jacket’ is actually pronounced zha-kert) I loaned it to a friend who then lost it in a restaurant somewhere on 42nd street in New York. Thank goodness I don’t see the friend anymore but I still think about my ‘zha-kert’.

Me: What would you pair a plain white t-shirt with?
HV: I don’t actually wear white t-shirts anymore. Maybe because I hadn’t been to a gym in a while. I sleep in them. tho.

At this point I had to get some really dirty thoughts outta my head and remind myself we were both married – sadly not to each other – that he was gay and his partner was sitting right there! I also won’t mention the intensive and extensive discussion which ensued around mens underwear in general as well as the detailed descriptions JD offered of their respective bottoms;-)

Yip, this interview was meandering along like a Woody Allen movie. Slowly!

Me: So let’s change the tee to a plain white shirt like the one JD’s wearing. How would you style that?

Hendrik's wicked and charming partner, JD.
Hendrik’s wicked and charming partner, JD.

HV: That’s also from our new collection. We introduced a linen menswear line when we opened the boutique. For styling, I love playing around with scarves. Our wardrobes have an impressive collection; lots of colour, textures, lengths and fabrics. By changing a scarf, belt and shoes you can easily take a look from day to night. (Note to self; buy more scarves.)

Me: Which colour dominates your wardrobe?
HV: I’ve probably got the most eclectic wardrobe. Not a lot of black. I think I only have one black shirt.
JD: In South Africa, men love black too much. In Europe, black is for funerals.

Me: Ja, but James Bond wears black suits. And don’t tell me you don’t like James Bond. Or his style.
JD: What? Ahhh! he’s probably going to a funeral.

Me: So what’s a good alternative? What would you recommend to men who aren’t as comfortable with colour?
JD: We tug and pull them kicking and screaming into charcoal, ma-aaaybe dark grey. We hope. We try. But black? Pffft! I die.

Are you seeing the slow Woody Allen vibe we got going here?

Me: Moving on. Stripe? Denim? Leather? Which could you not live without?
HV: I think I would struggle without denim but it doesn’t define me. I’m more about quality and fit. Leather? not so much. And the printed fabric rather than stripe  is more what I’m into now.
JD: I had a long leather coat once. Lent to a different friend this time. Also. Gone!

Me: Maybe it’s on 42nd street with the other zha-kert. You should go back, it might still be there. Or look after your stuff. And find better friends;-)
JD: *hysterical laughter*

Me: What is your best fashion buy?
HV: Surprisingly, these red suede trainers. I’ve no idea where they’re from but I love and have been wearing them for the past 7 years. The best quality ever; not a stitch has come undone. And my Energie jeans which I wore for nearly 10 years before it started losing shape. They were really good jeans.

They were really cool.
and these are really cool shoes

Me: What is your favourite go-to store in South Africa?
HV: I don’t really have a favourite store. I love the feeling of discovering something. Anything. I might see something in a window – and if it’s quality and fits well, it doesn’t matter which store or brand it is.

Me: And abroad?
JD: Colette. We love Colette.

Me: Which do you prefer; a Spring/Summer or Autumn/Winter wardrobe?
HV: Autumn/Winter. I love layering. Once again, having fun with the scarves is great.

Me: Last one and you have to give me an answer. What has been your most embarrassing fashion moment?
JD: Ohhh, what is that place above India?

Me: China? Mongolia?
JD: No, the one with the mountain.

Me: Nepal?
JD: No, where they embroider?

Me: Turkey?
JD: No. But it doesn’t matter. I had an embroidered waistcoat from there once. I wore it with green Levi 501’s. Green! And a striped shirt with lots of colors. I burn the waistcoat. It was terrible!

Me: Good for you.
HV: I can’t think of anything now. Oh wait.  I just thought of one. (And he covers his face) My matric dance outfit.
JD: Ohhh, ye-eeesss! Shame.
HV: It was a Mao neckline, 3/4 length jacket.

Me: But Jeremy Irons wore that to the Oscars a few years ago!
JD: Exactly!
HV: I wore it with fitted pants and platform shoes. And I had yellow highlights in my hair. (Covers face again)

Me: When the hell was this? The 80’s?
HV: No, 2000. (He giggles sheepishly)

Me: You had yellow highlights in 2000!?
HV: I’m from Bloemfontein. It was a pretty hot look there.

Me: I’m sure. Shame. One more; complete this sentence, “I wish I had a penny for every time someone asked me… ”
JD: Say like Clouds. She walks in and says, I want that couture pants but the leg must flair like the Prêt-à-Porter one in the window.

Me: Hey, hey, hey! Easy! 🙂
HV: No, this is the one that gets me. “You obviously don’t make that in my size”. (They both roll their eyes.) I can dress any body shape imaginable. All you need to do is have the confidence to wear a Hendrik Vermeulen couture.

Hendrik Vermeulen Couture 13

Me: I love you guys. Thank you again for the gifts of style, love & laughter.

The limited edition printed silk scarves they designed for the launch.
The limited edition printed silk scarves they designed for the launch.

Follow Hendrik Vermeulen Couture and Simply Vermeulen on Twitter for more of this. And then some.

Big hugs
Clouds xx

Photo credit. All pics my own unless otherwise accredited.

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In the wardrobe of Ty Keogh

March 7, 2013

You will know Tyrone ‘Ty’ Keogh as Jack van Reenen in the wickedly popular TV series, The Wild. (And your mom will probably remember he’s dad, Danny, from The Villagers; one of SABC’s first ever TV soapies back in the day.)

Ty keogh - photo by Stone Elephant Photography

With film roles opposite the likes of Meg Ryan, Ralph Fiennes and most notably Leonardo de Caprio in Blood Diamond, Ty’s no stranger to the big or small screen.

Add this to a long line of sexy awards like CLEO Bachelor of the Year 2011, Mr April in Cosmo’s 2012 calendar, You Spectacular Awards Sexiest Male Celeb and ClarinsMen Sexiest Man of 2012, we can safely say this actor, model and film maker is pretty recognizable.

I, on the other hand, know him as that guy who took his shirt off at Cafe Caprice;-)

(l) Clouds Drummond with Ty at The SA Style Awards in JHB and (r) at Cafe Caprise for the Grey Goose Vodka Boy Auction.
*** (l) With Ty at The SA Style Awards in Jo’burg and (r) at Cafe Caprice in Camps Bay for the Grey Goose Vodka Boy Auction.

Now before you go all, Ag no man! on me, know that he’s an awesome person who did it for charity at the Grey Goose Vodka Boy Auction last Winter. That’s where we met.

I then bumped into to him a few times since; always fully clothed, and realized the man’s got serious swagger in the garment department. No surprise then, when our Tiger of Sweden ambassador added GQ Best Dressed 2012 to his list of style accolades.

Ty Keogh GQ Magazine Award

While he and I are by no means besties – I’ve only ever chatted to him at social events – I have to say he comes across as funny, sweet, intelligent and an all round nice guy.

With charitable campaigns like supporting drug-rehabilitation on his agenda, he also seems pretty serious about living life beautifully. And I don’t mean simply throwing money at charities. He physically dedicates some of his time to counseling recovering addicts.

Ty Keogh & Nicole Flint at The Glamour Oscars party
*** Ty Keogh & Nicole Flint at The Glamour Oscars party

With the exquisitely beautiful Miss SA 2009 and The Wild co-star, Nicole Flint, on his arm, Ty seems to have it all. I met her at the Glamour Oscars two weeks ago and while I’m tempted so say, OhEmGee he’s with her!, I can’t. She is so lovely, you have to ohh and ahh.

At this party, I also got it straight from the horse’s mouth that we won’t be seeing Jack van Reenen for good. Well, what’s the point of watching TV then? Sadly, it doesn’t get any better. Ty isn’t moving onto another show or anything in the near future. Instead, he’ll be repositioning himself behind the camera as producer, following in the footsteps of his mom, Debbie. Talented family!

Ty Keogh - for Edgar Club Magazine

Til then, lets take a look in his wardrobe. You know the drill. (And for the record, I did not have to correct one. single. word.) Gotta love it.

Gimme a few words to describe yourself. I’m a serious guy with a quirky sense of humour, movie nut, bookworm, beach bum, wannabe chef, animal lover and boyfriend to the most incredible girl. (See, I said you would ohh and ahh – Ed)

Describe your fashion style; Sporty, Classic, Modern with a nostalgic twist, Relaxed…? Definitely classic when it comes to dressing up. I’ll always choose the suit, but not afraid to switch it up with some sneakers and a basic T-shirt. 

Do you prefer an Autumn / Winter or Spring Summer Wardrobe?  Definitely the Spring / Summer wardrobe. I like to keep my clothing simple and elegant and not accessorize too much. jeans and a well fitted T-shirt is my staple.

Ty Keogh for GQ Magazine

What’s your go-to store when you’re in the mood to shop? For suits, I’m hooked on Tiger of Sweden. The cuts work well for my body and I always feel sharp when I’m attending an event or red carpet function. For my basics, it’s a close call between Zara and Country Road. If it’s street style, I’ll shop at Prime in Rosebank, Jo’burg and Loading Bay in Green Point, Cape Town. 

Which trend are you working this Autumn? I’m not the kind of guy who pays too much attention to trends. I prefer to keep my look classic; and classic works in all seasons. This autumn I’ll probably be working a few Steve McQueen-style sweatshirts with denims and maybe an ankle boot.

How would you style a plain white t-shirt? A great white T-shirt should fit so well that you don’t need to style it. Paired with indigo Japanese selvedge or camel chinos, you are set. 

Ty Keogh - Portrait by Byron

Denim. Leather. Or Stripes? Which could you not do without? Denim is my staple. They are the fundamental ingredients of my wardrobe.

What is your best buy ever? A dark blue leather biker jacket from G-Star Raw. It’s the kind of piece that just works for me and I can wear it for the rest of my life. Also a pair of brown El Burgess leather ankle boots that I picked up in Argentina a few years back. They can be worn as smart or casual and always make an impression. (Awesome! – Ed)

What has been your most embarrassing fashion moment? A maroon suit Io wore to fashion week a few months back. It was made for me by a local designer and when I arrived to collect it, I felt too bad to tell him how I felt about it. I wore it against my better judgement and felt embarrassed the entire night. (Sounds luv-lee!;-) – Ed laughing to herself while still keeping her own fashion misfortunes a closely guarded secret) I learned from that experience and I’ll never wear something I don’t feel comfortable in. (Best fashion advise anyone could dispense – Ed)

Ty Keogh - Portrait by Byron

One word. Perfection!

Follow this icon of fashion, film and hotness on Facebook or Twitter for more inspiration, style and fun.

Ty, thanks so much for doing this. All the best with your future film adventures. See you on the red carpet:-)

love & light

Clouds xxx

Photo credit: Pics marked with *** are mine. All others grabbed off Ty Keogh Facebook page. Relevant photographers are free to contact me for personal accreditation.

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In The Wardrobe of Kobus Dippenaar

January 18, 2013

One of the special moments of Summer in Cape Town is wearing a pretty dress to a cafe situated inside a men’s boutique clothing store with three uber hot men.

Loading Bay on Hudson Street, de Waterkant
1. Loading Bay on Hudson Street, de Waterkant

I met up with stylist to the stars Duncan Papè from Style 360 for a coffee and gossip sesh. He brought along good friend Ernst Kuhlmann who had left the bustle of Jo’burg for a month to play in our sandbox by the sea. (FYI. Ernst heads up Black; a brand architecture company with a website as sexy as he is. #justsaying.)

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In TheWardrobe of Alex Piara McGregor

September 20, 2012

I met the sassy Alex McGregor during Cape Town Fashion Week earlier this year and she was just so sweet.

Ok, maybe she was on her best behaviour because the tequila hadn’t hit yet. You know the kinda girl who looks like butter could melt in her mouth but a few shots down the line she’s riding the mechanical bull, topless, waving her shirt in the air screaming, I’m gonna have your babies, one day! at the blushing barmen. I seriously doubt it, though. Alex is approachable, funny, confident and after dealing with her on this interview, I have to add, incredibly professional. It’s no surprise she’s been featured in local blockbusters like Spud, The Movie which featured John Cleese and now the sequel,  Spud – The Madness Continues due for release next year. She’s also appeared in Confinement opposite my buddy Bjorn, who you got to meet HERE.

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