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So, everyone knows how much I love the Anderson & Sheppard haberdashery. Expensive as it is, they are doing something almost unique around the world – creating genuinely innovative versions of classic menswear  without resorting to the any of the tomfoolery of fashion. 

There could therefore have been no lovelier place to hold the launch of my latest book, Best of British: The Stories Behind Britain’s Iconic Brands

It was a lovely evening. The shop feels so warm and comforting even when empty, but packed with 100 or so representatives of the makers included in the book, plus friends and clients, it was positively festive. 

Above, Toby Egelnick is giving his part of the speech – explaining the conception of the book – before handing over to me and Horst (Friedrichs, photographer – just visible on the right).

Toby is part of the wonderful design team Egelnick & Webb that produced this book as well as my Permanent Style 2015 annual earlier in the year.

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I am wearing:

  • Grey flannel suit, Anderson & Sheppard (obviously)
  • Silver tie with small yellow and blue pattern, Bulgari
  • ‘Natural’ cashmere scarf, Begg
  • White spread-collar shirt, Luca Avitabile
  • On the feet, black Cleverley imitation brogues

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Lewis Leathers made a colourful addition to the company

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With the very lovely Eggert, furrier

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Nick Inkster

Who is the delightful young lady in the guard’s tunic?


Hi Simon,
Thanks for sharing this quick report. While watching the pics included here and others from previous reports of events, I am somehow struck by the relative diversity of the people that make up the UK craftsmanship at this level.
From that perspective too, I think this world is unique!

David Craggs

John makes a great point. It’s lovely to see what a diverse crowd this industry attracts.
As the great Roxy Music once proclaimed “All Styles Served Here”

Nick Inkster

Looks to be Welsh Guards unless I am mistaken.


Dear Simon,

Perhaps you will organize a book launch in Paris ?




Welsh guards, Nick, you are right.

nick inkster

Thanks Lonsdale. I guess the first question will not be so easy to answer…….


Simon I love the Mickey Mouse ears on you in the “I am wearing” photo.


So the first comment on Simon’s successful launch of a book about a topic in which we all share an interest and passion is… to creepily ask for the name (is that what you were looking for? Her address?) of the blonde girl photographed in red. “Delightful Young lady”. You may as well as have said “charming gal” or “fine filly”. How patronising and just… Yuck.

Obviously this blog is, by its very nature, frequented by men, but Simon does so well in writing about fine tailoring and craft in an insightful, modern, considered and reflective way, that comments like Nick’s, which bring to mind images of (older) men (doubtless in very well tailored suits) smoking cigars and resenting “political correctness gone mad” whilst commenting on the waitress’ bum, act as an unpleasant reminder (if that’s the word I want) of earlier connotations and popular prejudices about “fat cats” and “savile row tailoring”.

Apologies for drifting off the topic of what looks like another wonderful book and an excellent evening Simon. I just find the comments by Nick the opposite of a “permenant style” philosophy, and this isn’t the first time that amongst the first comments on a post uploading event photos have included a man singling out a woman and asking who she is (incidentally, what these people want to do with this information is beyond me – Google them for more pictures is my best guess…)

Nick Inkster

Thanks, James, for the constructive advice.

Adam Jones

I have noticed in a few posts recently you have been wearing a few “designer” ties. Bulgari, Tom ford etc. is this purely for aesthetic reasons or does the quality hold up against people like drakes, etc. I only ask because I recently bought a Ralph Lauren purple label tie, and whilst it is very nice, I am a little disappointed in quality compared to some of my others, especially for the price. A few lose threads here and there after a few wears etc. I have a drakes grenadine i have worn to death and still looks great.



I’m sure you’ve got the wrong end of the stick. Nick was admiring her coat 😉

Andy Poupart

Received my copy of “Best Of British” in the mail yesterday! Thank you, Simon. Incidentally, I was in James Smith’s about two weeks ago and bought an umbrella from Arnold. He was very proud to show me the James Smith entry in your book. He was quite taken aback when I told him I not only had heard of the book, but that I had a copy on order. Anyway, another very handsome and stylish book. I look forward to more!

Ian Leslie

I love this blog. Even the arguments in the comments section are resolved in a civilised manner.


Looks like a great event, I love that shop as well, very calming. Nice to see my buddy Shaun on your guest list!

David Craggs

The shop is fabulous and pretty much the only shop – along with their bespoke end that I frequent. I go into Drakes from time to time but don’t spend a whole lot with them.
A & S Haberdashery reminds me of Newcastle’s Marcus Price back in the early seventies. Great clothes, great ambiance and a really independent esprit de corps
Does anybody know of a shop in London, Paris or NYC that is remotely their equal?