If trend pieces are a Tinder fling, tailoring should be a slow burn – a long-lasting love affair that feels just as good the 100th time as the first. However, buying into this approach on the high street hasn’t always been easy, with off-the-peg suits until recently lacking the quality and staying power that is required of formalwear.
Step forward, Charlie Casely-Hayford. Almost a decade on of from launching an international menswear brand with his acclaimed designer dad Joe at the age of 22, his name is now a permanent fixture on the scene. Alongside dressing the likes of Drake, Michael Fassbender and Robert Downey Jr, Casely-Hayford Jr regularly tops best-dressed and most influential lists himself, owing to an innately cool personal style.
Collaborating with Topman was the natural next step, as his slow, statement aesthetic and patient Savile Row attention to detail partners seamlessly with the streamlined, modernist outlook of the high street retailer.
The 10-piece collection is crafted from premium fabrics (think Italian 140s woven wools and real horn buttons) and features high-end detailing such as the signature Casely-Hayford sloped shoulders, wide lapels and gunmetal buckle adjusters. Split into four event themes – Wedding, Work, Weekend and Occasion – it’s never been easier to create a capsule wardrobe of wearable suiting that’s tailored to every situation.
Not many items of clothing are as divisive as the waistcoat. Despite teetering on the edge of ‘estate agent chic’ in the everyday, in more formal situations they add an air of grandeur to a look that fittingly reflects the surroundings of a wedding. The Fine Tailoring collection brings the waistcoat back from sartorial Siberia with a neat fit that doesn’t add too much bulk under the streamlined blazers and ends flatteringly over the trouser fastening.
The maroon three-piece is great for classic I Dos, while the soft navy option is a more contemporary take for city weddings. And if you fancy stepping out in something with more splash; the soft grey check with double-breasted waistcoat will ensure all bridesmaid eyes are on you.
The Casely-Hayford belief is that formalwear is where boundaries can be pushed to truly show off personal style. That doesn’t mean going rogue, though – luxurious fabrics in unexpected hues and satin peak lapel finishes add some va va voom without heading into novelty suit territory.
A kimono jacket, for instance, may sound a tad Hugh Hefner, but to stand out from the crowd, the 100 per cent silk wrap is this season’s sartorial must-have. Pipe, slippers and bevvy of babes optional.
The hardest-working tailoring in any rotation is bound to be your workwear. Chances are, your business threads will get more outings than any other, meaning you want something that’ll work both long and hard – think of it as your wardrobe’s employee of the month. Equipped with the ability to flit from client meeting to after-desk drinks without skipping a beat (or gaining a crease), the Fine Tailoring collection can hand over its CV confidently.
Slim fit, single breasted blazers crafted from rich, 100 per cent wool woven in Italy, combined with the traditional half-canvas construction lend these suits an air that’s more CEO than travelling salesman. Navy is the order of the day – and whether you opt for a rich, deep hue or a slight check, you’re guaranteed to be dressing for the job you want, not the one you have.
Since the rise of athleisure, the boundaries between what we wear at work and play have blurred – so much so that Casely-Hayford designed part of his tailoring collection to be worn specifically while dressing down. “A lot of our bespoke clients ask specifically for suits they can wear with a T-shirt and trainers, so we’ve introduced a few in the Topman collection,” he says.
The key to nailing this look is creating balance. So where the single breasted jacket pairs with jogger-style trousers to add some laid-back edge, the double-breasted blazer pairs expertly with relaxed silhouette trousers. Off-duty, but very much on form.
Shop the full Fine Tailoring collection now in store and online at Topman.com.