Fashion: Bailey's cream

His Jigsaw Menswear was a sensation. Now Chris Bailey has gone one better with his own VIP range. Report by Tamsin Blanchard. Photographs by Amelia Troubridge

hen Chris Bailey, owner of Jigsaw, created the company's first men's collection just four years ago, there was nothing else like it: you had a choice between the likes of Burton, Gap, M&S or Next, and designer labels such as Paul Smith, Katharine Hamnett or Gucci. Nothing in between. When Jigsaw Menswear arrived, however, it had coolly designed shop interiors and a collection by a thirty-something designer who understood what men like him wanted. "I wouldn't put anything in the shop I wouldn't wear myself," says Bailey in his gruff, gravelly voice.

Jigsaw Menswear's success proved just how many men-like-him there were. The stores, with their modish staff and deafening, hip soundtrack, resembled a very of-the-moment nightclub. Of course, the problem with trendy nightclubs is that once they get too popular, the core audience stops going. To many a designer, the fact that everyone was wearing their clothes would be cause for celebration. But when Bailey read a magazine feature in which several men commented that Jigsaw had lost some of its kudos now "everyone's wearing it", he agreed: he wouldn't want to wear something everyone else was wearing either. So he set to work again. What Bailey has come up with is the shop version of the VIP room in a nightclub. This autumn, he launches a new collection within Jigsaw - called Bailey. It was shown for the first time at Tokyo Fashion Week earlier this year to great acclaim and the collection is available from Jigsaw Menswear stores around now.

"Jigsaw is for a much broader base," he explains. "Bailey is for people like me." As Bailey designed the original Jigsaw menswear for people like him, we must assume he's moved on. "The intention is to offer a smaller and more select collection - more considered in colour and styling," explains the designer. There will be better-quality yarns and fabrics giving the clothes all-important feel appeal. It is not necessarily more expensive than the main line, but there will be limited production on many of the pieces of, say, just 50 of a certain jacket. It is a clever move. If anything is going to make a collection desirable and sellable, it's making it a limited edition.

I manage to catch him on the telephone at his office, despite the fact that his publicist informed me that he was in China. "I've missed my flight two days running," he laughs. When he finally manages to catch the flight, he will travel to Hong Kong to sort out some business involving knitwear and then on to Japan where three more shops are opening in the next couple of weeks, making a total of eight (the first Jigsaw menswear store in America opens in New York later this year). There are 13 Jigsaw Menswear stores in the UK. Bailey does not hang around.

"Men are far less gullible than women. You just can't convince a guy to buy an item of clothing if he thinks he doesn't look good in it," he says. Ten years ago, the majority of men considered clothes shopping a chore and a bore and, though some still do, Bailey believes that men are beginning to gain confidence about the whole business. They have even started to see shopping as a form of entertainment, as women, of course, have done for years. And if Bailey has his way - this autumn he is selling trousers that stop six inches short of the ankles - the fun is only just beginning

Above grey duffle coat, pounds 395, black wool suit, pounds 420, white shirt, pounds 65, all by Bailey, available from Jigsaw Menswear, 27 Brook Street, London W1, and branches nationwide, enquiries 0171-499 2521

Above right black three-quarter length sheepskin coat, pounds 475, by Bailey, as before, oatmeal wool zip-front cardigan, pounds 98, by Jigsaw Menswear, as before, beige broken-stripe shirt, pounds 65, by Bailey, as before

Above (left to right) black suit, pounds 420, white shirt, pounds 65; beige wool suit, pounds 420, beige broken-stripe shirt, pounds 65; charcoal suit, pounds 420, grey rollneck pounds 85; all by Bailey, as before Above left red sweater, pounds 85, by Bailey, as before

Stylist Catherine Hayward

Models Sebastian Reynold and Jacob at Models 1 and Will Harley at Storm

News
A Brazilian wandering spider
news

World's most lethal spider found under a bunch of bananas

News
people
Arts and Entertainment
Tim Wonnacott dancing the pasadoble
TVStrictly Come Dancing The Result
Sport
Mario Balotelli pictured in the win over QPR
footballInternet reacts to miss shocker for Liverpool striker
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Life and Style
ebooksA superb mix of recipes serving up the freshest of local produce in a delicious range of styles
Life and Style
ebooksFrom the lifespan of a slug to the distance to the Sun: answers to 500 questions from readers
Arts and Entertainment
BBC's Antiques Roadshow uncovers a TIE fighter pilot helmet from the 1977 Star Wars film, valuing it at £50,000
TV

TV presenter Fiona Bruce seemed a bit startled by the find during the filming of Antiques Roadshow

News
people

Comedian says he 'never laughed as hard as I have writing with Rik'

Sport
Steven Caulker of QPR scores an own goal during the Barclays Premier League match between Queens Park Rangers and Liverpool
football
News
i100
Life and Style
tech
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs General

    Science teacher

    £110 - £130 per day: Randstad Education Chelmsford: We are seeking a languages...

    Year 6 Teacher

    Negotiable: Randstad Education Plymouth: Randstad Education Ltd are seeking KS...

    Year 6 Teacher

    Negotiable: Randstad Education Plymouth: Randstad Education Ltd are seeking KS...

    Year 4 Teacher

    Negotiable: Randstad Education Plymouth: Year 4 Primary Teachers needed Randst...

    Day In a Page

    Oscar Pistorius sentencing: The athlete's wealth and notoriety have provoked a long overdue debate on South African prisons

    'They poured water on, then electrified me...'

    If Oscar Pistorius is sent to jail, his experience will not be that of other inmates
    James Wharton: The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

    The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

    Life after the Army has brought new battles for the LGBT activist James Wharton
    Ebola in the US: Panic over the virus threatens to infect President Obama's midterms

    Panic over Ebola threatens to infect the midterms

    Just one person has died, yet November's elections may be affected by what Republicans call 'Obama's Katrina', says Rupert Cornwell
    Premier League coaches join the RSC to swap the tricks of their trades

    Darling, you were fabulous! But offside...

    Premier League coaches are joining the RSC to learn acting skills, and in turn they will teach its actors to play football. Nick Clark finds out why
    How to dress with authority: Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear

    How to dress with authority

    Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear
    New book on Joy Division's Ian Curtis sheds new light on the life of the late singer

    New book on Ian Curtis sheds fresh light on the life of the late singer

    'Joy Division were making art... Ian was for real' says author Jon Savage
    Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

    Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

    The Bafta-winner talks Hollywood, being branded a psycho, and how Barbra Streisand is his true inspiration
    Tim Minchin, interview: The musician, comedian and world's favourite ginger is on scorching form

    Tim Minchin interview

    For a no-holds-barred comedian who is scathing about woolly thinking and oppressive religiosity, he is surprisingly gentle in person
    Boris Johnson's boozing won't win the puritan vote

    Boris's boozing won't win the puritan vote

    Many of us Brits still disapprove of conspicuous consumption – it's the way we were raised, says DJ Taylor
    Ash frontman Tim Wheeler reveals how he came to terms with his father's dementia

    Tim Wheeler: Alzheimer's, memories and my dad

    Wheeler's dad suffered from Alzheimer's for three years. When he died, there was only one way the Ash frontman knew how to respond: with a heartfelt solo album
    Hugh Bonneville & Peter James: 'Peter loves his classic cars; I've always pootled along fine with a Mini Metro. I think I lack his panache'

    How We Met: Hugh Bonneville & Peter James

    'Peter loves his classic cars; I've always pootled along fine with a Mini Metro. I think I lack his panache'
    Bill Granger recipes: Our chef's heavenly crab dishes don't need hours of preparation

    Bill Granger's heavenly crab recipes

    Scared off by the strain of shelling a crab? Let a fishmonger do the hard work so you can focus on getting the flavours right
    Radamel Falcao: How faith and love drive the Colombian to glory

    Radamel Falcao: How faith and love drive the Colombian to glory

    After a remarkable conversion from reckless defender to prolific striker, Monaco's ace says he wants to make his loan deal at Old Trafford permanent
    Terry Venables: Premier League managers must not be allowed to dictate who plays and who does not play for England

    Terry Venables column

    Premier League managers must not be allowed to dictate who plays and who does not play for England
    The Inside Word: Brendan Rodgers looks to the future while Roy Hodgson is ghost of seasons past

    Michael Calvin's Inside Word

    Brendan Rodgers looks to the future while Roy Hodgson is ghost of seasons past