1 year ago

The Rake - April_2016



At an engagement drinks recently, which happened to be my own, a friend of Mrs. Editor-to-be mused that, having met my father, she now “totally gets why Tom is how Tom is”. I hope that’s true. My father is the picture of respectability as far as I am concerned. That night he was wearing, as is customary for him — an ex-cavalry officer — a well-pressed suit and shirt with highly polished shoes. He wears the same Docksides he has had for 15 years, as they are “perfectly good”, and even though he is a septuagenarian he still does 100 press-ups and 250 sit-ups every morning. Work was always as important as staying in shape, and fortunately, given his need for exercise, his work involved running the best gentlemen’s gymnasium in the U.K., and probably anywhere else. Slim Jims was the name, and it was meant to be a haven that provided for city workers (all of whom would have done national service) a similar level of comfort and amenities they had experienced in the officers’ mess. The minute detailing was all there, and it was immaculately run with an archetypal British club cosiness and stuffiness combined. The household was more or less the same salutation to British conventionalism. The children wore tweed jumpers, manners were impeccable, and punctuality when going to church or school was an important discipline. This was a construct of parental teamwork — my mother cannot be left out. She is an ex-member of the Vogue editorial team who on occasion worked with this issue’s Follow Suit subject, Patrick Lichfield, a life expertly told by James Medd (page 38). It was my father’s clothes I remember best. He was always immaculate: a charcoal-grey double-breasted suit was standard issue, and he would always choose a regimental or club tie over something designer. He was never interested in fashion, he relied on the old codes of dress to see him through, and supported artisans to help create his image, but he was never flash. Every bit a former officer on civvy street. It was his shoes I was most captivated by. As soon as my feet were big enough, I was borrowing (stealing) his shoes. They were mainly from the venerable George Glasgow Sr. when he was still at New & Lingwood, and they ranged from suede slip-ons to full brogues. My father is very much a style inspiration to me. He would probably hate that notion, for he did not try to contrive a ‘style’ — he was stylish by accident, which is very cool. He also had values that he passed down to me and my siblings, and it’s difficult for me to imagine veering too far from the path when I pass my values on to my own children. They shall be taught to love the Queen and possess the sartorial and social values that my father personified. “There will be no high-street fads in this house, young man, get those skinny jeans hence,” I shall say. In a lot of ways, this issue is a celebration of a bond that writers and artists have tried to articulate through the years — the bond between father and son. We can’t cover it all, but we know what we like and what to pass on to you. Our cover star is Andrew Lincoln, who proved himself as humble and gregarious as he is photogenic. His character in The Walking Dead, Rick Grimes, is a man dedicated to protecting his family — they are not necessarily blood relatives, but the people he trusts as the world descends into a zombie inferno. The relationship with his son is the most complex on screen, as he knows he must educate him about the realities of the world he inhabits as he matures into a young adult. He tries his best to hold him back and protect him, but ultimately understands that the tightest grip is an open palm (page 72). This is very much the path that the most handsome sexagenarian on the planet, Bernard Fouquet, took with his son, the equally striking Nick Fouquet (both pictured above), celebrity hat maker and the type of young artisan that The Rake will always support (page 102). Jemma Freeman talks about her own father and the touching relationship that led her to follow in his footsteps, the last thing he might have expected but something that would have made him very proud (page 98). Elsewhere, Nick Foulkes muses on the finest riposte to the arriviste trappings of the Côte d’Azur and a beau monde destination ne plus ultra: the Marbella Club (page 90). Aleksandar Cvetkovic looks at both the return of the widelegged trouser and the shape-shifting rakishness of the broken suit (pages 132 and 144). Also featuring in this issue are topics ranging from global warming (page 188) to the perfect way to spend time in Morocco while taking drugs (page 32) and the rise of yellow-gold watches (page 166). Enjoy the issue! — Tom Chamberlin, Editor @tfchamberlin IMAGE: ROBERT SPANGLE 16

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