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beau brummell

Sartorial London

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Gustav Temple takes a highly educational sartorial stroll around the West End of London with professional city tour guide Russell Nash We meet on the steps of the Athenaeum Club and head along Pall Mall towards the bottom of St James’s Street, where Russell pauses outside the fabled gables of London hatters Lock & Co. to tell us its history: “In 1676, James Lock opened a hat shop very close to here. At the time, this area behind the Palace was being developed. Henry Jermyn, who had taken a lease on the land, developed it and the aristocracy started to…

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Creams, colognes and after-shaves

in Features by
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Part Two of Chris Sullivan’s history of male grooming The first rudimentary form of shaving cream was documented in Sumer, Mesopotamia (now Southern Iraq), around 3000 BC, which combined wood alkali and animal fat. Further shaving creams remained essentially unchanged from the Romans to the Renaissance, and it wasn’t until the 18th century that men started using a badger hairbrush to apply the soap. Shaving cream as we now know it first cropped up in the 1840s in England, Vroom and Fowler’s Walnut Oil Military Shaving Soap being one of the first widely available foaming tablets on the market. Since…

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Marilyn Monroe

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One of the biggest challenges in writing about someone like Marilyn Monroe is that people have been writing obsessively about her for almost a century. Books on her famous lovers, confirmed or rumoured, are generally the first thing one comes across. Another focus is her impact on fashion. There’s rather a lot on her reputation for being difficult on set, her tragic life and conspiracy theories about her death. The first problem with writing on such a complicated person is having to leave so much out – Marilyn’s work in the Civil Rights Movement; how she pressured one of Hollywood’s…

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The Grand Flaneur Walk

in News by
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On Sunday 14th July, a group of flâneurs assembled before the statue of Beau Brummell on Jermyn Street, London at midday. At precisely the same hour, another group of German flâneurs assembled in Dusseldorf, while yet another group in Los Angeles prepared to set off when the London walk reached its destination. This proved impossible, for all three walks aimed to explore the art of the flâneur, which is to walk without purpose or destination. Without plan, strategy or appointment and armed only with curiosity, an open mind and unlimited time, the flâneur walks among the crowds, oblivious to the…

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