Goodwin Smiths New Collection | Men's Style Edit

Today I'm finally going to let rip and tell you all about the wonderful and prestigious Goodwin Smiths New Collection. My Instagram posts have been littered with style edits, many of which have been centred around these sumptuous Goodwin Shoes.

I consider Goodwin Smiths to be one of the best kept secrets in the shoe industry, which is astonishing considering they've been designing and manufacturing quality footwear since 1928. 

They manage to offer a great accessible price on their shoes by selling exclusively online. As much as I'm a fan and proponent of bricks and mortar, I'm also a huge proponent of free enterprise. (And not averse to saving £200 on a pair of high quality shoes, which is what you'd expect to pay in big brand department stores). 

These shoes are also awesome for this inclement weather. (Yes I use the word inclement like everyone else because I hear it 20 times a day on the London Underground). The durable anti-slip TPR sole unit with leather welt detail is key and beautifully enshrined with handmade Italian leather uppers. 

I have two shoes from Goodwin Smith, an eager beaver might spot the Sherwood Bordo brogue boot I've been sporting these past couple of weeks. 

However, this Linton Brown boot, (also available in Tan) is a premium buff calfskin leather, which has been primed to accept the unique colouration applied by our master craftsman. 100% chromium free. 

Why is Chromium bad? 

Chromium has been identified as the 4th worst pollution problem in the world! When your feet get wet your shoes can react to the solvents and the glues found in certain boots and shoes. Not good news for your feet, or your partner who is also subjected to looking at your feet when it's feet up time for Match of the Day. 

Invest in the best

Overall these boots feel fantastic, the leather is supple and my step is confident and assured. The price has even been reduced online so it's a great opportunity to treat your feet this Winter. (How about that as a tagline?) 

Floral Shirts for Summer | Men's Style Edit

Google search 'floral shirts' or browse the SS18 menswear collections from all of the high-street powerhouses and you be inundated with floral print shirts signifying a trend this summer season. If you shop around as much as I do, you'll realise that some designs of the floral shirt are loud with bold prints and bolder colours - think of a floral shirt mating with a Hawaiian shirt. 

Personally I prefer floral shirts that are a little more subtle, such as this Reiss number. Two colours and a semi-simple print design. Easy to style with a pair of black or navy jeans or with shorts on your summer holiday.

In this men's style edit, I'm wearing the shirt from Reiss, t-shirt and jeans from ASOS, watch from Rotary, sunglasses from Taylor Morris and Chelsea boots from Goodwin Smith. 

 

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Photo Credit Omnistyle

Yellow Tinted Sunglasses | The Latest Men's Summer Trend | Men's Style Edit

If you wasn't sunning it up at the most Instagrammable festival this week, aka Coachella in Palm Springs, California then you were probably getting royally pissed off with everyone that was. In all honesty I have no clue what bands played or if it was genuinely any good. All I know is that it's quite stylish and there seems to be a big wheel in the middle of it that's in the background of everyone's photos. 

What I did get out of all the 100's of instagram photos that I liked is confirmation on something that I've known for a while - yellow tinted sunglasses are this years festival trend. Actually let me rewind, this is not just a festival trend but one that will span men's, women's and unisex accessories this summer.

The yellow tinted sunglasses that I'm wearing in this men's style edit are from Gucci. Navy and yellow always work well together so I've gone with this colour theme for this look. My navy essentials t-shirt is from Zara and the layered navy striped shirt is from Reiss. My jeans are from ASOS, shoes from Goodwin Smith and finally watch from Rotary.

 

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Goodwin Smith x Carl Thompson | The London Edit

A couple of weeks ago I worked on a campaign with Goodwin Smith to showcase their new The London Edit and I'm super excited to finally be able to show you the results. The London Edit is inspired by the city, made for the man - a collection of 12 shoes and boots in classic styles and colours. What I love most about this collection is that there is a style for everyone, with designs that are an entry into the incredible Goodwin Smith brand. 

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ABOVE: THE CAMDEN BLACK

Why It's Time for a Life & Body Detox

My life 'Online' is great. Just head over to my Instagram account and you'll see that for yourself, but is it really that great in 'real life'? If you peel back those Instagram filters and Photoshop layers you'll uncover the truth. Just a normal guy who experiences the same highs and lows as everyone else, battling through life. Trying to be successful in work, experiencing different cultures through travel, searching for 'the one', trying to find time for friends and family whilst forever thinking what the fuck am I doing with my life?

This weekend started on a Thursday for me, as I was an usher at one of my friends wedding which was taking place on Friday. Being freelance taking time off work is always quite stressful as you have no holiday pay, no sick pay and no pay in general if you don't put in the effort and hours. Right now I'm working so hard creating content and have a variety of different collaborations of which are focused on creating advertorial and editorial content for the brands. Interesting but time-consuming. Having a few days off work made me think about the blogging industry in general, is it really worth all the work for the reward and why I continue to do it? 

5 years ago I left a very successful career in IT working for a privately owned commodities trading house where I was the global head of networks, network security and voice communications. A role that took me around the globe, from DR Congo in Central Africa to the bright lights of Singapore in Asia and everywhere in-between. If only I knew what a travel blogger was back then! I left this career to pursue a better work/life balance, something that, looking back over the last 5 years I've yet to achieve and although blogging isn't the most challenging in terms of intellect it is extremely challenging creatively and mentally. I now work from home 7 days a week from 7.30am to about 10pm most days, if not later. 

The blogging industry is an odd one, it's relatively new in terms of a career and most of the time it is very individual, a bunch of very ambitious, competitive people all contesting in a saturated market place. I've been creating content on my blog since 2014 and built it from a handful of page views to one that now competes with some of the biggest men's lifestyle publications in the UK. I'm really proud of where I've got in this new workspace, but I'm also immensely proud for each and every single men's or women's blogger out there. The very early adopters of the blogging life deserve so much credit, they were the visionaries of what created the industry that many of us work in today. Then you have the remarkable creative bloggers who have refined blogging with their professionalism and exceptional content. This selection of people are the ones who have elevated blogging into editorial content creation, a segment of this industry that is arguably the most cost effective and desirable for brands. Finally you have the late-adopters trying to make it, who are incredible; their desire and ambition keeps us all on our toes. The way we consume data has changed year on year and is going to continue to evolve over time, so who knows where we'll all be in 5 or 10 years time. Each and every blogger deserves credit as you've seen a gap in the market and capitalised on it.

This year I've been working really long hours creating content for men's lifestyle brands as I feel things have really taken off with not only my blogging but my business too and I need to capitalise on the good times. My business is London shirt makers Hawkins & Shepherd and I'm currently in the final stages of creating a new collection of 'Country Shirts' perfect to wear with a tweed jacket and in the early stages of designing a new premium Made-in-Britain range of shirts. It is all taking it's toll on my work life balance as right now there is very little 'life' going on as it is all 'work'. Even events which seem great on Instagram Stories are actually considered as 'work'. 

At 37 and what seems like a great life, I've been successful in my career, I've started a year-on-year growing business and have capitalised on a new industry in blogging. I've met some incredible people, some intelligent people, some people that make me belly laugh for hours and some amazingly beautiful people. All that said I'm still single and spending the weekend at a wedding with incredible couples and families really hit home. Is work effecting my ability to find a girlfriend? Am I concentrating on work too much, that my life and what I desire in my future are being affected? Is work stopping me from seeing my friends and family? Why does work take up every spare hour of every day I have? And is this the reason why I can't seem to give even what 'on paper' is the perfect girl for me a chance? Am I going to be eternally single and 'Uncle Carl' to all of my friends kids? Work has taken over, fact. Which is why I've decided to take a life detox, that doesn't mean that I'm going to stop working - hell no! It just means that my priority's need to change slightly and I'm going to look at delegating more so that I can focus on life again. 

If I look back at my relationship history in the last 7 years, it's been pretty shocking on all accounts. Other than one relationship that we brought out the worst in each other I've only really had a few two months flings (I don't really know what the call them) as they had potential but went nowhere. But it's not only my love life that has taken a backseat due to work commitments but it is also my fitness. Today I felt normal again after a couple of days of insane drinking, so decided to do a boot camp class on Clapham Common with British Military Fitness. How have I got so unfit?! So it's also time for a body detox which I'm going to record my progress as of tomorrow for a couple of months and see how far I can transform in a relatively short timescale of 8 weeks.

 

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Photography by Sophie Milner

What to wear this Party Season | Black Tuxedo vs Navy Tuxedo

With the AW17 party season looming it's time to start thinking about what you are going to wear. Never has there been so much choice as there is today when it comes to tuxedo suits or dinner jackets and I've styled two of the most popular colour choices, black and navy for your inspiration. A black dinner jacket is the most classic of all styles whereas navy versions are making a comeback whilst gaining in popularity for those fashion conscious individuals who want to buck trends and look marginally different to the masses.

When asked to dress as 'Black Tie' it is worth double checking the exact dress code because 'Black Tie' could be just a generic term to wear dinner jackets regardless of the colour. White tuxedos are also quite popular, although you'll either have to be uber cool or the office joker to get away with such a bold statement suit - as I'm neither of those, I can't wear one!

That leaves me with either black or navy and if you want to look your dashing best, here are a couple of styles that tick all sartorial boxes. 

When wearing a black dinner jacket, the key is to respect the history around such a classic, tailoring masterpiece. With that in mind, stick to a timeless cutaway white shirt rather than wingtip collars, as it's much more sophisticated and stylish. When I generalise wingtip collars, I think about my 18 year old self and badly dressed Christmas parties. A black bow-tie is essential. If you are an expert in tying a bow-tie, try to make the knot small which will give you more fabric to create a butterfly style bow-tie. Black shoes complete the look. If you have the budget to buy a new pair of shoes to wear with your tuxedo, I would recommend buying patent shoes, it's a perfect match. Finally if you have over-indulged in the lead up to party season, or if your suit is a little tight, match the dinner jacket with a well fitted waistcoat and you can then leave the jacket undone and no one with notice it's slightly too small!

 

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I'm a massive fan of navy tuxedos, it's a slightly more modern style, so therefore you have a certain level of freedom to wear this slightly differently without repercussion and I have tried to accentuate this in my styled look above. Of course a navy dinner jacket or tuxedo would work extremely well styled the same as my first style, with a black or navy bow-tie and waistcoat. However in this look I wanted to showcase a completely different approach fixated around the pin collar shirt. The pin collar shirt is a 1920's classic, it is super smart, it's designed to protrude and champion the tie. 

Often when at your work Christmas party or winter party season event, there are two distinct timings to the evening. 1) The arrival or the dinner, where you keep your tie on and look pristine. Then 2) The wind-down which could be a DJ set, where you'll be welcomed to relax and enjoy the rest of the evening. With this in mind, this outfit works extremely well. The pin collar bar, tie and scarf are all accessories that you'll wear to wow your audience on arrival, whereas later on in the evening you can remove the pin bar, remove the tie, undo a couple of buttons and you're ready to party the evening away. Navy tassel loafers with no socks is not everyones cup of tea, so I'll suggest alternatives such as dark brown or black Oxford shoes (*with socks!).

 

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Photography by Toni Tran with all photos taken at The Franklin Hotel, Knightsbridge.

Goodwin Smith Shoes Spring/Summer 2017 Collection Collaboration

THE GISBURN TAN

I'm incredibly proud to be a part of this collaboration to showcase the Spring/Summer 2017 shoe collection by Goodwin Smith. Their new SS17 collection includes some classic formal shoes, suede Chelsea boots, beautiful brogues and some on-trend trainers. When I first looked at the Goodwin Smith collection that I would be styling with my very own wardrobe I noticed how diverse it was, from formal office shoes to casual trainers and everything in-between. This is why I tried to style my clothing to be very formal then gradually transitioning into smart-causal then casual looks, whilst attempting to showcase the shoes with some bold socks.

THE EMBASSY PETROL BLUE

THE WHALLEY TAN

THE HEBDEN NAVY

THE HARWOOD TAN

THE WISWELL BORDO

THE MANHATTAN BLACK AND BORDO

THE MANHATTAN PETROL BLUE

THE GISBURN BORDO

THE MITTON BORDO

Goodwin Smith Shoes

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Photography by Charlie Sawyer