Cloth and Hide · Musings

Amazon Launch and the Australia Tax

Seems like everyone waiting with bated breath for Amazon to launch in the land of Oz have had their shopping heaven dreams crushed. Newsflash: Amazon is not the retailer-Armageddon. Not yet anyway. Not only is the range of products on Amazon Australia much much smaller than the US counterpart, but the prices are pretty much what they normally are in Australia (read: rubbish).

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Cloth and Hide · Musings

Ethics in fashion

With the annual orgy that is Black Friday sales just around the corner and Christmas and boxing day sales looming, it pays to think about the ethics of fashion when you are diving into those deep deep discounts. Sure we all love a good bargain, and with these fast fashion brands springing up everywhere, the prices are lower than ever before. But who is really paying the price?

I watched a documentary recently where Ricky Yates went around the world looking at where sable furs and croc skins come from. Some of the ‘farms’ where they keep these animals are absolutely horrendous. The scale of operations in China are so huge now that real fur can be bought at a lower price than synthetic furs. Live plucking of down has also come under the spotlight recently. Continue reading “Ethics in fashion”

Musings

The immigrant’s son

I’ve been listening to Blamo! recently (which is an awesome podcast btw) on my work commutes and many of the interviewees mention their style influences come from their dads. My story is a little different and my dad definitely does not have a sense of style!

Arriving in Sydney from China as a little immigrant kid, I grew up on the streets of Cabramatta in the 90s. This was during the violent, drug rampant era where fights broke out on the streets, junkies were literally shooting up in the stairwell of the flat where we lived, and John Newman was assassinated. My primary school friends were all little hoodlums and the coolest shit back then were Nike hats, baggy sweats and massive baggy pants. Naturally we appropriated gang culture and gangsta rap tropes. For some reason the school principal at the time thought it wise not to enforce school uniform rules so me and my friends would turn up to school in our homie G attire. The only rule was we had to take our caps off during class. 

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Musings

D-D-D-Disruption!

Almost everyday I see some new startup on social media claiming to be disrupting the watch or clothing industry. I won’t name any names but there’s this watch one that keeps coming up so I click on it and sure enough it’s some fashion watch startup with a cheap quartz movement. I’d hate to be the naysayer but you ain’t disrupting shit.

I can’t imagine any watch enthusiast abandoning their collection of mechanical art pieces for this crap. And if I wanted a cheap fashion watch that was “excellent” quality I have many other brands to choose from. The reality is that these are completely different markets and “disruption” is just a nice buzzword to use but a distortion of the truth. True disruption is making a product that can actually stand up to the competition in the same class.

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Musings · Watches

What’s it Worth?

I’m sure by now everyone has read about the recent auction of Paul Newman’s Rolex Daytona which sold for 17 million US dollars and I’m reading about it online and having discussions with people about it and the question that is always asked is: Is it really worth it? In the context of this particular watch, probably not to me or a lot of other people, but it was worth it to someone because that’s what they paid.

And really you can apply that logic to a lot of the watch world. To pay a few thousand to tens of thousands of dollars for an antiquated device that “just tells the time” seems absurd, but then if that’s what you think, you are really just missing the point.

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Musings

#1 Dad

I’m gonna take a break from the clothes and shoes for a sec to talk about something I’ve noticed since becoming a dad.

I’m a new-ish dad -my son is now a toddler and I sometimes take him somewhere by myself, whether it’s the shopping centre, or a market, or the doctors, or the park. And the comments or reactions I get from strangers are always overwhelmingly positive, and I feel, disproportionate to the job I’m doing. As in: I’m just looking after my son, MY son. I mean, I’m kinda the reason he is in this world so I SHOULD be looking  after him. I’ve been told that I’m an angel, that I’m such a great dad, or I get huge beaming smiles from just about everyone I pass (though that last one could just be because my son is goddamn adorable). And I’ve spoken to other new dads who say they have experienced the same thing.  Continue reading “#1 Dad”

Cloth and Hide · Musings

The Magical Shrinking Act of Menswear

It’s been creeping in and you probably have noticed it. Menswear has definitely been shrinking over the last decade or so. First it was skinny jeans. That led to skinny chinos. It was bound to happen as the internet and #mensstyle blogs started teaching men to dress better, cleaner, and tighter. I think somewhere along the way fit, comfort, and silhouette have been thrown out the window. Maybe it’s just because I am in my thirties and my metabolism is slowing down and I want to be able to eat my lunch, a piece of cake, and still be comfortable. Or maybe I’m just sick of zipping up those ridiculous short flies at the urinal – how are you supposed to get anything done with a fly that short? Continue reading “The Magical Shrinking Act of Menswear”

Musings

Catalyst

This has been a long time coming. I am finally doing it. I’m starting a blog. I am constantly jibber-jabbering to my wife, my friends, my work colleagues about the virtues of quality. Returning to the old school and doing things the proper way. But in Australia most of the public are still enamored with the cheap, the disposable, the transient. So I’m starting this blog to share my interests and the knowledge I have accumulated over the years. It might not be 100% right and certainly there will be experts who know more than me on any given topic. But this is my journey as well. And as I learn and discover, I will put it on this blog so you can learn and discover as well (if anyone bothers to read this haha). Continue reading “Catalyst”