Beach boys: Menswear gets into shape for the summer holidays

The traditional summer holiday may be a mere calendar page away, but that doesn’t mean a man’s sense of style should take a vacation, as a clutch of exclusive, coast-appropriate collaborations with menswear etailer Mr Porter prove

A trawl back through the family photo album will show that the British man has never been quite at home on the beach: black-and-white snaps show mid-century man enjoying an ice cream in his two-piece suit. By the Seventies, he’s in the smallest of budgie-smuggling Speedos; and come the Nineties these have been replaced by the baggiest of board shorts.

While the 21st-century man doesn’t have the same beach-ready pressure resting on his shoulders that his female counterparts have, that’s not to say a holiday should be seen as an opportunity to slack off.

Providing the right guidance to its often apprehensive male customers has been one of the pillars on which menswear-focused etailer has built its considerable reputation since its launch in 2011. As such, Toby Bateman, buying director of the site, has commissioned exclusive pieces from some of the site’s favourite designers in order to provide the holiday solutions its customers don’t even know they want yet. Bateman knows how important it is to offer exclusive pieces in an increasingly competitive market: “We strive to give our customers something that they cannot get anywhere else,” he states. “We’re delighted to be working closely with Hentsch Man, AMI and Wooyoungmi this season.”

The chosen designers have each interpreted a different holiday scenario, in keeping with their own background and aesthetic. But the beauty of these pieces is that they will fit into your summer wardrobe with ease once you’re back home, too. If only the same could be said about the obligatory souvenir T-shirt...


After working at at Marc Jacobs, at Givenchy with Oswald Boateng and at Dior Homme’s 30 Avenue Montaigne line, Alexandre Mattiussi wanted to create something different when he decided to go it alone. And so, when he launched his label Ami for autumn/winter 2011, Mattiussi did so with simplicity in his sights. However, it’s a discernably Parisian notion of simple – casual but still faultlessly chic and appealing to male shoppers en masse. It’s proved a successful strategy, with Mattiussi winning France’s prestigious ANDAM prize (National Association for the Development of the Fashion Arts) in 2013.

Inspired by reality from the beginning, there is an obvious affinity between Ami and, as evidenced by the fact that the brand is the only one that was invited back to create a second exclusive collection for the site, following a similar project last summer.

For the 2014 instalment, Mattiussi wanted to tell the age-old story of an American in Paris, albeit one without the shape-shifting tendencies of the film of the same name. Hence the collection’s fusion of varsity and collegiate styles with a Frenchy flourish of a recoloured Breton stripe.

Available today, from £85

Hentsch Man

Based in London, Brazilian-born designer Alexia Hentsch is a favourite among menswear shoppers-in-the-know for her simple and elegant designs. The designer founded her eponymous brand in 2008 after a fruitless quest for the perfect white shirt for her then-boyfriend. With a background in graphic design and a stint working for Wallpaper* founder Tyler Brûlé and freelancing as a set designer, Hentsch had the necessary design skills to make her idea a reality, with a childhood friend supplying the necessary capital.

Her capsule collection of Americana-inspired pieces is based around an archival print from the Forties, which features an illustration of an exploding house, with a Hawaiian element incorporated thanks to superimposed bright pink blooms. “All you need is one great print to tell a story,” says Hentsch. As the appreciation of jazzy prints can ebb and flow, though, more traditional dressers may prefer the fuss-free sweatshirts and tailored shorts that complete the collection. A lightweight navy bomber jacket brings the best of both worlds with an exclusive print lining.

Available now, from £90


Since its launch in 2002, Wooyoungmi has become a firm fixture on the men’s schedule of Paris fashion week. Such success is no surprise when you learn that designer Woo Young Mi launched her first brand in 1988 – the particularly successful Solid Homme – which led her to be known as one of the first menswear ready-to-wear designers in Korea. Wooyoungmi was created to produce contemporary wear that incorporated the subtle intricacies of tailoring, with art and architecture consistently forming the basis of collections.

For the collaboration with, Wooyoungmi builds on the desert theme of its spring/summer 14 collection with block stripes of blue, khaki and terracotta, with collages of digital cactus prints adding another dimension to the mix.

Another inspiration for the collection was South Korean installation artist Kyung Woo Han, who created the brand’s seasonal advertising campaign. “Inviting a different artist to re-imagine and interpret the Wooyoungmi collection each season has produced such inspiring work,” says Madame Woo. “Kyung Woo Han’s pieces capture the Wooyoungmi clean and minimal aesthetic and the sense of nature and the elements in our spring/summer collection perfectly.” µ

Available from 27 May, from £120

Life and Style
ebookNow available in paperback
ebookA delicious collection of 50 meaty main courses
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating

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

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Fashion

    Recruitment Genius: Parts Advisor

    £16500 - £18500 per annum: Recruitment Genius: One of the leading Mercedes-Ben...

    Recruitment Genius: Software Developer

    £27500 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...

    Recruitment Genius: Telemarketers / Sales - Home Based - OTE £23,500

    £19500 - £23500 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Experienced B2B Telemarketer wa...

    Recruitment Genius: Showroom Assistant

    Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: This global company are looking for two Showro...

    Day In a Page

    Fifa corruption: The 161-page dossier that exposes the organisation's dark heart

    The 161-page dossier that exposes Fifa's dark heart

    How did a group of corrupt officials turn football’s governing body into what was, in essence, a criminal enterprise? Chris Green and David Connett reveal all
    Mediterranean migrant crisis: 'If Europe thinks bombing boats will stop smuggling, it will not. We will defend ourselves,' says Tripoli PM

    Exclusive interview with Tripoli PM Khalifa al-Ghweil

    'If Europe thinks bombing boats will stop smuggling, it will not. We will defend ourselves'
    Raymond Chandler's Los Angeles: How the author foretold the Californian water crisis

    Raymond Chandler's Los Angeles

    How the author foretold the Californian water crisis
    Chinese artist who posted funny image of President Xi Jinping facing five years in prison as authorities crackdown on dissent in the arts

    Art attack

    Chinese artist who posted funny image of President Xi Jinping facing five years in prison
    Marc Jacobs is putting Cher in the limelight as the face of his latest campaign

    Cher is the new face of Marc Jacobs

    Alexander Fury explains why designers are turning to august stars to front their lines
    Parents of six-year-old who beat leukaemia plan to climb Ben Nevis for cancer charity

    'I'm climbing Ben Nevis for my daughter'

    Karen Attwood's young daughter Yasmin beat cancer. Now her family is about to take on a new challenge - scaling Ben Nevis to help other children
    10 best wedding gift ideas

    It's that time of year again... 10 best wedding gift ideas

    Forget that fancy toaster, we've gone off-list to find memorable gifts that will last a lifetime
    Paul Scholes column: With the Premier League over for another year, here are my end of season awards

    Paul Scholes column

    With the Premier League over for another year, here are my end of season awards
    Heysel disaster 30th anniversary: Liverpool have seen too much tragedy to forget fateful day in Belgium

    Liverpool have seen too much tragedy to forget Heysel

    Thirty years ago, 39 fans waiting to watch a European Cup final died as a result of a fatal cocktail of circumstances. Ian Herbert looks at how a club dealt with this tragedy
    Amir Khan vs Chris Algieri: Khan’s audition for Floyd Mayweather may turn into a no-win situation, says Frank Warren

    Khan’s audition for Mayweather may turn into a no-win situation

    The Bolton fighter could be damned if he dazzles and damned if he doesn’t against Algieri, the man last seen being decked six times by Pacquiao, says Frank Warren
    Blundering Tony Blair quits as Middle East peace envoy – only Israel will miss him

    Blundering Blair quits as Middle East peace envoy – only Israel will miss him

    For Arabs – and for Britons who lost their loved ones in his shambolic war in Iraq – his appointment was an insult, says Robert Fisk
    Fifa corruption arrests: All hail the Feds for riding to football's rescue

    Fifa corruption arrests

    All hail the Feds for riding to football's rescue, says Ian Herbert
    Isis in Syria: The Kurdish enclave still resisting the tyranny of President Assad and militant fighters

    The Kurdish enclave still resisting the tyranny of Assad and Isis

    In Syrian Kurdish cantons along the Turkish border, the progressive aims of the 2011 uprising are being enacted despite the war. Patrick Cockburn returns to Amuda
    How I survived Cambodia's Killing Fields: Acclaimed surgeon SreyRam Kuy celebrates her mother's determination to escape the US

    How I survived Cambodia's Killing Fields

    Acclaimed surgeon SreyRam Kuy celebrates her mother's determination to escape to the US
    Stephen Mangan interview: From posh buffoon to pregnant dad, the actor has quite a range

    How Stephen Mangan got his range

    Posh buffoon, hapless writer, pregnant dad - Mangan is certainly a versatile actor