• Reviews
  • Infinities Menswear – My Review

    Ralph Lauren Socks Above The Ankles

    Incredibly excited about this one. Who doesn’t like designer brands? Although the price tag may not always appeal to us, the quality you get for your money is, generally speaking, worth it. I am an avid brand buyer, not because I want people to know I’m wearing Ralph Lauren or Armani, but because I know what to expect from a label. When you own multiple items from one brand, you start to get a feel for it and know how things will fit before you put them on. You know that even though you wear a size 8 shoe, with this brand you’ll need a size 9. It’s nice having that security, it gives you confidence. I remember when the only place to get these world-famous brands was at their outlet stores or at flagship stores like Harrods; which going into makes you feel the need to dress up for the occasion and act in the most ostentatious of fashions.

    Not to take anything away from the mega department stores, they are great, most of the time; I still regularly shop at House of Fraser. BHS obviously got left in the 80’s and have now closed down. The fact Selfridges have a Primark section says it all. Maybe it’s time to try out the smaller companies selling top brands at decent prices, maybe it’s time to try Infinities Menswear.

    Let’s see, shall we.

    Infinities Menswear As A Company

    Founded in 1991, they’ve been around awhile. They built their name by building relationships with big brands and then eventually becoming big enough to retail some labels exclusively. They appear to be a company that has a good turnover of stock which is fantastic since you won’t end up constantly seeing the same dated products every time you visit. I’ve noticed multiple new names and ranges added in the past weeks and on top of that; they ship worldwide for all of you outside the UK.

    Infinities sell all types of menswear clothes; smart, smart-casual, casual and sportswear. I’d say they are more geared towards the casual side of a man’s wardrobe but you can find something to suit almost every occasion. Although please note you’re not likely to find any tuxedos.

    infinites menswear store

    It is incredibly evident that Infinities have a strong relationship with a variety of big brands known across the world; Polo Ralph Lauren, Adidas, Paul Smith, Lyle & Scott and Stone Island to name but a few. I’d say the two biggest and strongest brands they have are Polo Ralph Lauren and Paul Smith. Not only that but with over 250 Ralph Lauren items and over 150 Adidas items, you’re set for all your casual and sportswear needs.

    Quality

    Judging quality is a difficult one. I count 60 brands on the Infinities website. Could I tell you how they all rank in quality? Probably not. Infinities stock many big names as I’ve mentioned previously like Ralph Lauren whereby quality is established, then they have the huge brands where the quality isn’t so up to scratch, not mentioning any names. The issue of quality concerns will always be there so long as you keep trying new brands but if the price is right and the item is aesthetically pleasing, then trying a new label is worth a go.

    Price

    Most of the time when I look at a brand or a product I usually always check the price and ask myself; is it worth that much? The answer is usually no. When it comes to buying branded clothing, looking at the price is one of the last things you want to do really. Obviously, you would have a price range in your head, i.e. I would expect a pair of Ralph Lauren socks to be between £5-12 each, any more than that and it’s just not worth it.

    The way I see branded clothing is simple; I’m paying more than normal for the privilege of a Ralph Lauren logo on my sock.

    Product Review – Ralph Lauren Socks

    I was incredibly fortunate to be sent these Ralph Lauren Polo socks to review. I love free things, for some strange reason I actually tend to wear all the stuff I get for free more than the stuff I pay for. Maybe it’s a psychological thing. I go through phases in the year, whereby I’ll wear colourful socks for a few months and then wear nothing but black socks for another few months. Thankfully with the British weather finally picking up and even recording the second hottest day in the last 10 years, I can wear my colourful socks again.

    Ralph Lauren Socks Above The Ankles

    Ralph Lauren Socks Above The Ankles

    Ralph Lauren as a brand are fantastic, we know that we are basically told to believe that Ralph Lauren equals quality and I’m not about to disagree. Made from Egyptian cotton, these two pairs of socks in Navy & pink are wonderful. I have my reservations about Egyptian cotton as its usually quite thin and thus the elasticity won’t last long. I’ve had these now for two months and worn them many times and surprisingly the elasticity has stayed true. I’m yet to experience that horrible feeling of my sock rolling down my leg and bunching at my ankles.

    I tend to look after my clothes with regards to following the label in washing advice. Even though I take care, cheap socks always end up bubbling into random cotton bunches and usually within two months look a year old. Although the Ralph Lauren socks certainly don’t look brand new they don’t look a year old either. Take a look at them side by side with a pair of socks I bought for £1 a week after I got the Ralph ones.

    Obviously priced at £16 you would expect a difference in quality from the £1 socks but is £8 for a pair of socks really worth it. Well if you love brands and have a spare bit of change, why not? They are light, look fantastic and if you ever do take off your trousers or wear shorts then you can flash that expensive logo.

    Ralph Lauren Socks Above The Ankles

    Ralph Lauren Socks Above The Ankles

    Ralph Lauren Socks Above The Ankles

    The Perfect Customer

    Infinities menswear is not for everyone, same way brands aren’t for everyone. Not all of us are cash rich and many of us have big commitments so sometimes brands are a little out of reach. I recommend if you fit into that category of NOT cash rich, then I suggest only shopping here during the sales and try your luck at grabbing stuff in your size.

    If you are either a massive designer brand wearer or money is not an issue for you then infinities is for you. With massive stock, good prices and exclusives, they have the balance perfect so you probably won’t bump into someone wearing the same thing as you.

    Average Prices

    Accessories – £50

    Whenever we want to buy a certain brand but are not able to quite afford it, we turn to accessories as they’re usually the cheapest. On Infinities buying any accessory will set you back a minimum of £5 for a pair of Egyptian cotton socks from a brand I don’t know. At the top end of the accessories, a Paul Smith leather bag will set you back a comfortable £500. The average accessory will set you back £50, while £60 would get you a Paul Smith leather belt and £30 with Infinities will get you two pairs of Ralph Lauren socks.

    Paul Smith Accessories City Embossed Weekend Bag Black

    I’d say this is fairly expensive for the accessories.

    Paul Smith Reversible Saffiano Leather Belt

    Paul Smith City Embossed Weekend Bag Black

    Polo Ralph Lauren 3 Pack Combed Cotton Socks Black/Navy/Grey

    Shirts – £60

    Shirts are a part of every man’s wardrobe (or at least should be) and quite possibly one of the most important components of the outfit. I’ve spent many years working in the office without my tie and blazer so how my shirt looked was critical. Infinities without a doubt have many shirts available although the vast majority would not be suitable for office wear. Most are quite casual from casual brands like Lyle & Scott, Paul Smith & Armani. Thankfully for us, they do have a fair number of dress shirts suitable for all office environments. An Armani dress shirt would cost you around £70, while you could get a Ralph Lauren or a Lyle & Scott dress shirt for around £60. I wouldn’t expect you to pick up a designer shirt for less than £50, not a nice one anyways.

    Lyle and Scott Lyle & Scott Micro Gingham Shirt Blue

    £60 is probably around the price I would pay for a designer shirt, most I’ve seen would cost a lot more. Overall, Infinities shirts are priced well.

    Lyle & Scott Micro Gingham Shirt Blue

    Polo Ralph Lauren Luxury Twill Shirt Blue

    Suits/Blazers – £200

    Infinities are aimed more towards casual clothing than it is office-wear, which is probably why they only stock one full suit and five blazers all from Paul Smith. The PS by Paul Smith mid-fit suit is the only they sell. It’s a single breasted, double vented navy suit with a playful interior lining. It’s truly a wonderful piece of tailoring made from 100% wool and would be the exact suit I’d love to buy. However Paul Smith’s suits are way above my pay grade, priced at £549.95, it’s not for those with small pockets.

    The other five blazers they stock are all designed by Paul Smith and are priced between £99 and £335. For me the suit is far too expensive while some of the blazers are decently priced, their stock is far too low.

    PS By Paul Smith Mid-Fit Broken Check Suit Navy

    Paul Smith Blazers Infinities Menswear

    Office Shoes – £80

    I must say I did not expect Infinities to stock any smart shoes, don’t judge a book by its cover right? I suppose seeing the giant that is Bass Weejuns on Infinities is enough to put that assumption to bed. The brands that supply Infinities with their smart shoes are four; Bass Weejuns, Paul Smith, Ralph Lauren & Swims. With about 40 shoes to choose from, all range between £65 and £200, which is about what you would expect. The stock once again isn’t fantastic but you can definitely work with it.

    Office Shoes

    The average cost for a pair of shoes you like in your size would probably be about £80. Not bad but not cheap either.

    Trainers – £50

    I’m quite into going smart/casual nowadays so trainers are becoming more and more my kind of thing. If like me, your interested in trainers then you can expect to pay roughly the same amount you would anywhere else. Maybe this is me being ignorant but trainers appear to be the same price across most companies/brands. The only time I can tell a difference in cost would be if one has a sale while the other doesn’t.

    Infinities Trainers

    £50 spent with Infinities will get you a pair of simple & smart Ralph Lauren trainers or a pair of Adidas originals.

    Similarities

    Infinities are just like many other sites, they are essentially a broker for big brands. I suppose they have may have been part of the first few companies that started selling other companies products but with the internet boom, there are now thousands of websites selling big branded items. The question then arises; what makes them different?

    The three main areas that would influence my decision to purchase from one brand as opposed to another would be price, stock & exclusivity.

    We’ve all been on websites where items are so cheap they are basically free, and you’re thinking ‘OMG Armani Suit for £10!!’ then you check and it’s out of stock. You also get those websites that have wonderful products, with free delivery and hundreds in stock but when you compare the price to House of Fraser, it’s £50 more expensive.One thing that makes companies stand out, other than price is exclusivity. If a man’s not bothered about the price for whatever reason then sometimes he can turn to wanting exclusive items others don’t have.

    We need balance and I wanted to see if Infinities has that balance.

    Price, Stock & Exclusivity Comparison

    Adidas Originals Los Angeles Trainers

    I first had a look at some new in trainers, I picked a personal favourite of mine; Adidas Originals Los Angeles Trainer Black. Priced at £74.95, I was fairly certain I’d be able to beat that price. I did manage to beat the £75 price tag by £10 on five or six different websites however none had the trainers in every size. The maximum number of sizes available on any one of the other sites was two (size 6 and size 13.) Infinities, however, had in stock all sizes from 6 to 12. These trainers are a classic example of what I mentioned earlier, most websites have super cheap prices and no stock – fantastic. Interestingly enough Infinities let me order fifteen pairs of these in size 8 so they clearly have stock. In terms of exclusivity the fact that most websites had these in stock themselves for seemly quite a while, I can assume that Infinities are a bit late to the party in that sense so I’d have to mark them down in terms of exclusivity.

    Adidas Originals Los Angeles Trainers

    Price Score – 7/10
    Stock Score – 10/10
    Exclusivity Score – 6/10

    Polo Ralph Lauren T-Shirt Grey

    Next up was the Polo Ralph Lauren Classic Crew Neck T-Shirt Grey Heather priced at £44.95. We all know and love Ralph Lauren and as such I expect Infinities to be off the mark on this one since the Ralph Lauren market is so competitive. I managed to find over ten suppliers selling this t-shirt with only three stocking it in every size, even Ralph Lauren’s own website was out of stock of XXL. Of the three that had every size in stock, all were priced at £45, same as Infinities.

    Polo Ralph Lauren T-Shirt Grey

    Price Score – 8/10
    Stock Score – 10/10
    Exclusivity Score – 7/10

    PS By Paul Smith Brushed Oxford Shirt Sky Blue

    Lastly comes the Paul Smith Oxford Shirt. I wanted to pick something that I thought could be quite unique and I picked well. I searched the web and only found one other company selling it, which is a good sign. Oddly I couldn’t even find it on the Paul Smith website. Priced at £114.95 on Infinities it’s 5 pence cheaper than the other website it’s sold on.

    PS By Paul Smith Brushed Oxford Shirt Sky Blue

    Price Score – 8/10
    Stock Score – 10/10
    Exclusivity Score – 10/10

    Blog

    I do like a good blog, hence why I got into blogging in the first place. I’m addicted to fashion and football blogs and in the last few weeks I’ve attempted to keep up with Infinities blog. Most of it isn’t really to my taste since it’s them promoting their new products rather than useful reads. Which to be fair to them, they are a store and how else would customers know about their new collections if they didn’t promote them. There are some decent reads on how to re-wax your jacket or how to roll up your sleeves however most are look-books.

    If you’re a football fan I’d recommend having a look at the Cruyff rapid trainers. I read the blog post and fell in love, have a read here.

    Cruyff Rapid Trainers Red

    Cruyff Rapid Trainers

    Newsletter

    I always recommend if you like a brand/company to sign up to their newsletter and Infinities newsletter seems to be pretty decent so far. It’s important to know when there’s going to be a new sale so that you can get hold of the discounted items first before the good stuff sells out.

    As a cheeky side benefit, Infinities will you 10% off your first order just for signing up. Not bad by my standards.

    infinities newsletter 10% off

    Final Words

    At first working out what Infinities’s game plan was confusing. I wasn’t sure if they were trying to be like House of Fraser or another version of ASOS. I find that they are pretty much neither or maybe a blend of the two. I suppose I’m still not sure what exactly they are but then again do they need to be anything? Is it possible they can just be themselves? I would say time will tell but they been around for more than twenty years so maybe time has already spoken and maybe you should give them a go.

    Infinities – Click Here

    Ralph Lauren Socks Above The Ankles

    Ralph Lauren Socks Above The Ankles

    Ralph Lauren Socks Above The Ankles

  • Reviews
  • Burton Reivewed

    burton review logo

    My Burton Review

    Burton as a whole is a good company.

    The above statement is generally what most people would say about Burton, it’s also my opinion. It is a good company that sell good clothes at a good price. Once upon a time, 80% of my wardrobe was Burton branded, that’s now declined to 2%. To sum up my Burton review simply, as mentioned, Burton sell good clothes but after awhile good just doesn’t cut it.

    History

    I can’t say this is my Burton review without mentioning it’s history. The company has some amazing history, ever heard the phrase, “the full monty”?

    Montague Burton founded Burton in 1904. After World War II, Montague Burton was one of the suppliers of suits to the British government. They supplied the jackets, trousers, waistcoats, shirt and underwear. Thus the phrase, “the full monty” was born.

    As nice as that is, history is history and nowadays Burton are known as the little brother to Topman. I mean that in the un-cute way. Burton is cheaper than Topman with very similar quality and lightly chubbier. Topman is generally marketed towards skinny fit men while Burton is aimed more generally towards everyone. The issue then falls onto Quality – which both brothers lack unfortunately.

    Burton is one of the cheapest options on the high street to buy a suit, usually ranging from £79 to £150. They fit the description of “off the rack” perfectly. Generally all are polyester or a polyblend with wool and usually come out quite thin. Their suits are not designed for an active man who enjoys walking or occasionally messing around. Try jumping onto a bench and it’s very likely you’ll rip the trousers at the crotch.

    Collections

    They have a few collections designed for everyone. I must admit, the difference between them is not much. I myself have owned a suit from every collection, as you can guess the best suits are the most expensive. The difference between the best and worse suits is very minimal.

    £79 Machine Washable Suits

    Supposedly Burton’s worst suit, this machine washable suit comes as a two piece suit, a jacket & trouser for £79. I’d never recommend machine washing your suits, even if they are machine washable. Out of all their collections, this suit is by far my favourite. All of the £79 suits come in default colours, black, grey & navy with no patterns or designs. They are simple, with very small lapels, usually forcing you into wearing a slim tie. They’re all a mix of polyester and viscose, which will often give them that shiny look to the suit, usually quite visible in the bright sun light. They way I see it, a suit for £79 – you can’t go wrong. Definitely the perfect suit for those starting out and building up their wardrobe.

    burton machine washable suits

    For an extra £30 you can grab a waistcoat to spice things up, totalling to £109.

    Wool Suits

    Wool suits from anywhere are pretty much guaranteed to be a good buy. The fabric wool is very reliable and comfortable. All their suits in their wool collection are 100% Italian wool. The quality is impressive, it feels good and looks better. The fit isn’t bad either.

    The wool suits have been created with work in mind. Designed in five colours you could wear to work, all year round. Black, Blue, Navy, Dark Grey & Grey.

    burton menswear wool suits

    For some strange reason, they only do wool suits in slim fit. If you happen to fit into a slim fitted suit, enjoy. Everybody else, jog on.

    Standard Skinny/Slim/Tailored Fit

    Burton design their suits in three different fits. They’re most successful line is their slim fitted suit. I wore Burton’s skinny fit suits for awhile but I found they just didn’t fit me comfortably enough and I ripped too many suits at the crotch. Slim fit was definitely my favourite fit in their suits, I found their slim fit suits the most comfortable and best quality. The tailored suits just felt a bit.. slim fit.

    Conclusion

    Burton review menswear

    Burton is without a doubt one of the best hight street retailers in the UK. Unfortunately that doesn’t say much for the high street retailers. Burton is really good for price but the honest truth is, there are cheaper options with similar quality. As 75% of Burton’s suits are made from polyester and viscose, literally the cheapest option possible – you can get similar suits everywhere. Matalan is a great cheaper alternative to Burton if you’re on a low budget. Obviously it’s much more reputable to have Burton on the inside of your suit jacket than Matalan.

    Overall a good company for anyone just starting to buy suits. I’d definitely avoid Burton if you don’t wear slim fitted suits. Tailored just aren’t there thing.

    Hope you enjoyed my Burton Review.

  • Blog
  • Slaters Menswear – Two New Ties

    Slaters above the ankles fashion blog

    I was out shopping on the bank holiday just gone, it didn’t go very well, I was looking for some loafers and couldn’t find anything decent enough. I found myself in Moss Bros glancing at some ties and I asked the saleswoman if any of the ties were polyester. She looked at me a bit confused and then her manager recommended I have a look at Slaters. Thankfully I did and I’m now the proud owner a beautifully made light blue tie, which damaged my bank account by a whopping £5. I now have another pink paisley tie on the way.

    If you don’t know much about Slaters, they are a nationwide menswear store which is run by the Slater family. The unique thing about them is each of their stores actually have tailors and offer free alterations on most of the stuff they sell. I actually used to call them the “backstreet shop” as they only have their stores on side-roads and back-streets. Here’s a snippet from their site;

    Can we let you into a little secret? We don’t have main High Street stores. There, we’ve finally
    said it. There is a good reason to this decision – we don’t want to pay extortionate rents and then
    have to pass on the costs to our customers

    In the middle of writing this post my pink tie arrived in the post and I was quite excited. I do feel like I bought two fantastic ties for only £10. These are my first two purchases from Slaters ever so I can’t comment much over the rest of their products. However, I’m very happy with the company and definitely will be ordering again so I’ll be sure to keep you guys updated.

    IMG_0309

    IMG_0307

     

    Slaters above the ankles

    IMG_0285

    IMG_0278

  • Blog
  • John Lewis Review

    john lewis store logo
    [Photo: www.huffingtonpost.co.uk]
    John Lewis is a weird store for me to talk about. (Warning – I’m going to rant for two paragraphs in this John Lewis review) Now I am going pretty sure most of you will disagree with me here but I absolutely hate shopping in department stores. Selfridge’s, House of Fraser, Debenhams and even TK Max – I hate them. Selfridge’s is perhaps the only one I can bear, Harrods is not too bad as well.

    You’re probably wondering why I don’t like them. It’s pretty simple really. The layout of the stores themselves are pretty annoying. I’m looking at boss suits and then somehow I’m in Primark. Aside from the layout, the mini-stores inside department stores just don’t know what they’re selling, they never carry a lot of stock so sizes are very limited. My main problem however is just the lack of variety of styles as they generally try to have a little bit of everything.

    John Lewis is a little bit different. I actually only buy Ted Baker & John Lewis Suits from John Lewis, I generally just don’t find the rest of their suits that special. The suits I do buy from them are pretty unique though. My favourite thing about John Lewis is being able to buy last seasons Ted Baker suits for almost half the price it was originally being sold.

    I know I went on about the negatives of a department store but at the same time you can also get some great shirts, ties, socks and shoes from John Lewis. What I generally do is to go into the store and try on a whole outfit, regardless of whether I’m looking to get just a suit or a suit plus accessories.

    Below are some of my favourites from John Lewis.

    Kin by John Lewis Slim Fit Stamford Tonic Suit Jacket, Midnight Blue

    Bertie Aston Leather and Suede Brogue Derby Shoes, Black

    Dune Runway Patent Loafers, Black

    Kin by John Lewis Mercer Knitted Tie, Navy

    Gant Dot Diamond Silk Scarf, Midnight Sky

    John Lewis Fleece Lined Leather Gloves, Black

    Kin by John Lewis Reversible Belt, Black/Red

  • Reviews
  • GANT Review – Menswear

    gant review mens suits chinos

    My GANT review is a difficult one, it is an absolutely amazing store, the products are of top quality, but they are definitely expensive. GANT is a luxury clothing brand of American heritage launched in 1949. You can buy GANT clothing from the many signature GANT stores around the world or from different outlets like John Lewis. They sell clothing for men, women, boys, girls and babies.

    GANT is one of those stores that I just admire, I feel great in the store and I feel even better walking around the shopping center with a GANT shopping bag. The quality of GANT is amazing, all you have to do is select one of the links below. When you wear a shirt from GANT you can really feel the difference. I would recommend pretty much everything from this store, it is an absolute top quality store that really goes above and beyond most stores.

    Cost wise, it is up there as one of the most expensive stores around. The average shirt price is around £80, which is obviously more than we are used to paying. However, with the price in mind, I still very much recommend them.

    gant review mens suits chinos
    http://www.hamm-footwear.com/licence-brands/gant-footwear/press-releases/

    My Favourites From GANT

    GANT Beige Cotton Chinos
    GANT Beige Cotton Chinos
    GANT Window Pane Blazer- Light Blue
    GANT Window Pane Blazer
    Gant Checked Oxford Shirt
    Gant Checked Oxford Shirt

    Hopefully my GANT review helped you get a bit more of an understanding of GANT. If you’re considering purchasing something from GANT, it will set you back quite a bit of money, but it will last, I can guarantee you that.

    gant review mens suits chinos
    https://www.pritchards.co.uk/menswear/brands/gant/c-24/c-82

    GANT Review

  • Reviews
  • Zara Review – One Of The Greatest Highstreet Stores

    zara store - zara review menswear

    Zara Review

    This is by no means an exaggeration when I say Zara is 100% the best men’s retailer in the UK. I Suppose that’s the Zara review over.

    You won’t be buying many suits and shirts from Zara as they don’t sell work wear. They do blazers and shirts but they’re for smart/casual occasions. Not only is Zara a fairly cheap company to shop at, it’s also a fairly expensive one. It accommodates for both the rich and the poor. They sell different types of clothes, generally ranging from smart tracksuits (that you wouldn’t work out in as they look too good) to £200 trench coats with white fur.

    zara review inside store
    https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/9/9a/Zara-salesdesk.jpg

    What Makes Them Unique?

    You know what you’re going to get in Zara, they change their stock every season, yet if you walk in, everything looks the same. Sounds like a bad thing right? Once you walk around you realise every item is different. It’s definitely a work of art.

    Why I Love Zara?

    1. Zara is a non judgmental brand – your friends who have millionaire fathers shop at Zara & so do your council estate buddies.
    2. You look classy – Zara don’t do baggy and they don’t do cheap. I bought H&M jumpers recently and they literally fell apart with thread flying out left, right and centre. In all my years of buying from Zara, not once have my threads come out (none that I’ve noticed anyways.)
    3. They pretty much only sell Black, Blue or Grey clothes which works out perfect me!
    4. They have unique clothes you wouldn’t find in most stores – no lie. I recently bought these amazing chinos that feel like their made out of the softest carpet, absolutely perfect.

    What I Buy From Zara

    Whenever I need a jacket or coat of any kind I stop off at Zara first. Usually after 15/20 minutes of looking I’ll find the perfect jacket/coat for under £80.

    Whenever I need trousers that are smart but not too smart like suit trousers, I ONLY go to Zara. Very rarely will I venture out and buy chinos from somewhere else. I can usually get a pair of really nice trousers or chinos for around £25. What an absolute bargain!

    What They Sell

    Smart Clothes – Mainly either smart casual clothes or dinner/evening wear.

    Go to the Zara website.

    Zara Mens

    Zara is definitely one of the best places on the high street, they don’t need a review but nonetheless I hope you enjoyed our Zara review. I’ll be adding more to this in time to come as well. Feel free to leave a comment below.