We begin a new column on musings on gentlemen essentials. We will cover the classical wardrobe – suits, shoes, accessories like wallets, cuff links, and gentlemen furnishings. We begin the first episode with a visit to the great luxury emporium called Malmaison by The Hour Glass.
Malmaison is styled after the home of the Napoleon Bonaparte, and carries a large selection of watches as well as a fine selection of gentlemen clothing and furnishings. Ready to wear jackets by Rubinacci, shoes by Pierre Corthay, leather goods by Ethan K are some of the selection offered. We took a quick tour of the beautiful premises a few years ago when they opened, and this is our short visual report of the store. And a few more photographs of the interior here. Here is our pick for the day:
A Gentleman’s essentials: Selections from Malmaison by The Hour Glass
Our selection starts from the foot…and we selected the Corthay Arca Stream in brown, a pair of long calf length socks also by Corthay. A rep tie by Charvet with a magnificent silk pocket square, also by Charvet tucked in the jacket pocket. In this case, the jacket is a not hand made, it was hastily borrowed for the photograph as the Rubinacci jackets, carried by Malmaison were sold out! A pair of Roland Iten cuff links and a pink aligator wallet by Ethan K. And of course, a magnificent Parmigiani Fleurier Tonda Skeleton watch. A gentleman’s essentials.
The shoes and socks
The shoes are bench made in the Corthay studios. The model has a nod to nautical origins as it was a tribute by Pierre Corthay to his grandfather who taught him to navigate the oceans by the stars.
Of note are the two seams which pinch the toe box of the shoe, providing visual depth to the design.
The two seams are hand picked and sewn, this lifting effect gives height to the leather upper and defines the lines of the Arca Stream. The double seamed nose of the shoe, achieved with precision, evokes the stylish nautical world of the 40s, with a nod towards early scientific research on velocity and air resistance.
Socks are selected to show a bit of individuality. Plain or ribbed black socks are always proper, but a bit of flash in this case, an orange pair is selected. It complements the brown shoes beautifully and picks up on the tie and pocket square’s red/rust hue. We recommend only calf length socks for the gentleman, as showing a shiny shin is not proper. We will delve more into this in later articles.
A gentleman’s breast pocket on his jacket (technically called a coat) should never be bare. It should always be adorned with a pocket square. The pocket square must never match his tie, or any other piece of his clothing. But rather complement the tie. This is typically achieved with a tie in to the hue of the square and tie, or to the pattern. In this case, we paired the rep tie to the a square dotted pocket square. The common tie in being the red/rust hue of both. Note also that as the patterns on the tie and square are different, a more coordinated look is achieved by matching the scale of both.
Note the coat shown above is not hand sewn. We can see clearly the buttonaire hole is machine made (and not even opened!), as are the stitching on the pocket. As noted, this was a jacket from one of the staff.
Wallet and cuff links
The house of Roland Iten supplies the cuff links. Roland Iten creates interesting furnishings from cuff links to belt buckles and credit card holders. All are engineered and manufactured in Geneva, and all incorporate clever mechanical contraptions to make its use easier and better. The RZ8 MK II ZILETTO Slyders shown here in rose gold with black DLC incorporate a sophisticated push-button ejection mechanism and a unique click-controlled, sliding sleeve calibration system. More details on the Roland Iten site here.
The wallet is handcrafted by Singapore boy Ethan Koh’s own brand. Coming from a family trading in alligator and crocodile products for the last 3 generations, Ethan has made waves in the industry. We carried a short feature on him several years ago on our editor’s personal musings site. Read that report here. Featured here is a crocodile gentleman’s wallet, finished in shocking pink on the exterior, but with a Belgian blue interior. Pink for an small item like a wallet, which spends most of the time inside a pocket is acceptable, even for the most conservative dressers. Just like a bright lining on one’s jacket is a personal expression and can be louder than one’s personality.
As expected, the hand work finishing and selection of the crocodile hide is exquisite.
The watch: Parmigiani Tonda 1950 Skeleton
The house of Parmigiani is one of the most independent watchmaking houses in existance. Still a small manufacture, and not part of a large group, Parmigiani Fleurier has in-house capabilities from manufacturing small parts, escapements, cases, dials, and movements. It also has a reputable restoration department. The Tonda is their classical line, and this SIHH 2015, it was updated with a new skeletonized movement.
The skeletonizing is done by hand, and parts of the movement bridges are carefully removed to create a pleasing pattern. The dial is almost non-existant, and is open for the most part to reveal the skeletonized movement within. With a case size 39mm diameter and 7.97mm high, the watch can be considered unisex,and will be equally elegant on a gentleman’s wrist as it will be perched on a beautiful lady’s.
We will continue to bring you articles like this to help spice up the sartorial aspects of a gentleman’s life. Our views will be decidedly very traditional and classical, and will tend towards a conservative, discrete and rather quiet lifestyle. We hope you will enjoy it. Please write us to tell us what you think, and what you would like to see move being covered.
Parmigiani Tonda 1950 Skeleton in rose gold: S$65,100
Charvet Pocket Square S$100
Charvet Silk Tie: S$250
Corthay Arca Stream: S$2500
Corthay Calf length socks: S$50
Roland Iten cuff links in Black DLC rose gold and diamonds: S$16800
Ethan K crocodile wallet: S$1700