Readers of this blog may well be familiar with the internet presence of Gentleman's Gazette, a men's style blog authored by Sven Raphael Schneider. He has recently parlayed his blog notoriety into an online shop selling fine men's accessories; neckties, pocket squares, et cetera. I was recently asked to review a few of his products, as well as the shopping experience at the web site.
First up is this two tone knitted silk tie. Available in a variety of colors, I chose brown/orange to complement a tweed jacket that has an orange line in the overcheck. The tie is well constructed and soft, with a nice delicate sheen to it. I also dig the contrasting end weave of the front and back blades.
Let me here admit the difficulty I face in writing an article such as this. As an inveterate thrift shopper and therefore cheapskate, I have amassed over the years a wide selection of excellent ties for little more than $2.99 apiece or so. This tie sells for $85. I am certainly not in the habit of spending anything like that for neck wear, but it helps to remember that as things go, a tie of this quality usually sells for more than this. In that regard, it has merit. Also, it's a really nice tie and I like it.
Next, a linen square with a hand rolled edge and trim stripe in green. The linen is high quality and the construction very good, and I will likely get a lot of use from this piece. Again, not in my usual price range, but at $35, well in line with the current scene. ( or so I'm told. I generally get pocket squares in a bin full of ladies scarves in a thrift shop for a dollar or two)
Lastly, a yellow silk "carnation". Gentleman's Gazette offers a number of these silk lapel flowers in all types. At $30 a pop, this is the one item I'd most likely splurge on. From a step or two back it looks real enough, it's crazy dandy, and it doesn't get killed under an overcoat like a real flower would. I may not be one to wear a lapel flower often, but I suppose that if it were a daily habit, having a few good silk numbers like these would be a huge advantage.
As I said before, these things are expensive and given that this is mostly a blog about High Cheap, reviewing items like these while keeping in the spirit of the blog can be difficult. But it helps to remember that I couldn't thrift shop so well if I didn't know what the good stuff was. This is some of the good stuff, at a fair version of good stuff price.
As for the shopping experience, the website work pretty seamlessly and the items arrived in less than a week. I give Sven points for running a tight operation and offering a fun selection that is clearly of consistent high quality.