"Nurture your mind with great thoughts. To believe in the heroic makes heroes"
A quick update on the marathon and training. Thank you so much for all the advice and encouragement on last week's blog. I would love to tell you all how well the training is going, but my 92kgs pounding down on my poor calves and knees is taking its toll. On my 15th mile last week, the task of running 26 on April 17 suddenly seemed very, very daunting. If anyone sees a poor chap, who can hardly walk and looks a bit distraught in SW London over the next few weekends, then please help him as it will be ME, training! But it's for a truly worthy cause, so I will take motivation from my quotation this week. You can read about the charity I am running for - and I would be forever grateful if you were able to take time to sponsor me and my fellow runners - in the 'Oxglam' group, at the link below. Any donations big or small would be so, so welcome. Thank you. Here it is: http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/fundraiser-web/fundraiser/showFundraiserProfilePage.action?userUrl=oxglam&isTeam=true.
I thought I'd better stop boring you with car stories and information even though I'm dying to tell you that I think I've found the car that is going to make this Spring and Summer just that little bit more special, but I will refrain! As this is VOGUE.COM after all and I think I'd better talk about fashion (it's a classic Fifties Mercedes Benz by the way - ahhhhh, I feel so much better).
Fashion! I still believe that there is very little in the way of informative fashion advice and tips for men. From the success of my App so far, I can now see that there is certainly a demand from outside of the fashion industry and fashion capitals, for simple, basic advice on fashion and styling for men. Men's fashion magazines often focus heavily on fashion trends, catwalk and very expensive designer brands - much of which is far beyond the budgets and bewildering to a lot of men. One of London's greatest fashion assets in my eyes is Saville Row. Nowhere in the world has such a fabulous heritage for personal tailoring. I often find myself diverting, just so that I can take in a small part of the wonderful atmosphere and history of this very individual street in London. Knowing which tailor to choose can, again, be quite daunting for most men. What fabric? What cut? How much is it going to cost me? Well, there is a new tailoring service called Lawson Walker that can help. Launched in 2010 by entrepreneur Sam Lawson Johnston and fashion designer Mary Forestier-Walker, Lawson Walker's house style is unmistakably British and harnesses the cut and heritage of Saville Row but with an understated contemporary twist. Using pure wools and cashmere from the finest English mills, every piece is made in their workshop in London. They kindly made my suit for a recent event and I have to say, I don't think I have had so many compliments and questions about a suit that I have worn.
Sam and Mary really do simplify personal tailoring and at a less daunting cost, compared to most of Saville Row tailors. To think they also visit YOU wherever is convenient, to talk you through the whole process, from fabrics to measurements to final fittings, is a real treat and a simple idea. Why has no one thought of it before? Even though I have to say, getting to visit Saville Row for fittings etc is half the excitement for me. (www.LawsonWalker.com)
More fashion! I told you, no more cars talk ... (it's a 190sl and I think I'm in love. Oh dear.)
What do Paul Newman, Steve McQueen, James Dean and James Bond all have in common? Well, apart from being the best looking, most stylish men ever to have walked the planet, they also all loved their fast cars. But another thing these icons have in common, like a lot of men, is a soft spot for a great wrist watch. Bond has his Omegas, Newman and McQueen even had Rolex's named after them (I think I have a new aim before I die - to have a watch with my name on it ... a man can dream, I guess). The irrational amounts of money and research men go into when buying a watch, really does surprise me sometimes. I would like to say I'm different, but I'm not. It's my birthday soon and even though I am useless at receiving presents, it is my one time of the year that I try to treat myself and this year, it was on a 1973 Breitling Navitimer. I have it on my wrist now and have found myself lovingly staring it at as I type (I can see the women reading this rolling their eyes - and I don't blame you).
I only ever go to one man when this all important watch buying urge comes over me. His name is Danny Pizzigoni and he runs the Watch Club shop in the Royal Arcade, Mayfair in London. He opened the store in 1996 and his level of personal service is impeccable. Danny and his team really do make every customer feel very special indeed. Nothing is too much trouble, something I find extremely unique today. Watch Club deal in new, rare and vintage pieces and at the moment you can see the very illusive Newman and McQueen Rolex's in the shop window. The first ever time I had the pleasure of meeting Danny, his knowledge of watches astounded me (or was it just that I was happy listening to him, drinking the cup of coffee he had made and with Frank Sinatra playing in the background?) Anyway, whatever it was, I was sold and haven't been to another watch shop since. I cannot recommend Danny and his team enough. (www.watchclub.com)
Last and certainly not least last week was VOGUE.COM's 15th anniversary party at the new W Hotel. I think people must think I own the new W Hotel (I wish!). They were the sponsors of the short film I did late last year, Away We Stay, so the movie is playing in the lobby when you first enter and apparently on every TV in every hotel room (that's one way one making people sleep, I guess!). It was also the 3rd event I had been to at the W, as it's the hottest new place for people to have their parties at and I can see why - it's a wonderful venue. The party was as fashionable as you'd expect with VOGUE.COM, and one of the hottest tickets in town with an amazing turn out of people - the wonderful Dolly Jones of course (who had to put up with me even after the main party had finished - thank you Dolly, you thrown one hell of a party!), beautiful Laura Bailey (sorry, I kept staring), Alice Temperley, Matthew Williamson, Julien Macdonald, Henry Holland, Patrick Grant and, one of the highlights of the evening, keeping all the women happy (and a lot of the men to be honest), Colin Firth made an appearance! All in all a very special night, with lovely people - a testament to everyone's hard work and dedication at VOGUE.COM. Thank you!