This Summer, Lee-Jon and Natty were honoured to attend the first New York Fashion Week: Men’s in over a decade on behalf of Secret Empire. Being a bespoke firm rather than ready-to-wear, Secret Empire didn’t officially present anything, and as a result you’ll find scant mention of us in the official literature, but rest assured that behind the scenes Adams & Ball were fêted, celebrated, and relentlessly consulted for advice by every major player in the international menswear scene. Free fur-coats and sports cars aside, Adams & Ball were photographed by literally tens of blogs, websites, magazines, and amateur pornographers, most notably for the Financial Times’ popular Suits and the City column.
Having attended every single Fashion Week event, we can report that, in terms of trends, the 90’s are very much back in style. We offer the following evidence: Lee-Jon spilled hot coffee on Chad from the Red Hot Chili Peppers and Natty thought he saw Eddie Vedder, although it later turned out to just be a chubby dude with a goatee.
Adams & Ball took New York Fashion Week: Men’s as an opportunity to throw a party thanking Secret Empire’s New York clients and friends. The soiree took place at our family seat in Greenwich Village. Guests enjoyed savoury navettes from new French market Le District, and liquid refreshment was generously provided by Charles Heidsieck Champagne, who recognising that Secret Empire clients are people of taste and discrimination and grande soif, decided to forgo their usual non-vintage, sending their delicious 2005 Brut Cuvee Millesime, which tastes of cream, fresh flaky pastry, apricot, and monumental erotic power. By the end of the party there was barely enough left to bathe in, so Adams & Ball were forced to supplement their nightly co-ed soak with liquid diamonds and Faberge bath beads.
Our friend and Secret Empire client and star of Communique #1 Dale Henriques wrote about the event (not including the bathtub after-party) on his website HommeSchooled.
Summer is the season of trade shows, none so thoroughly photographed and blogged about as Florence’s infamous Pitti Uomo. Having viewed this carnival of cobblestone catwalkery from the safety of our volcano lair, we have discovered a troubling trend: the seeming result of a shortage of socks. The pitiable participants tried to pretend that nothing was amiss in the piazze, but the implications are clear: these are desperate times for the Italian menswear industry, as nobody can seem to afford socks.
The effect is painfully exaggerated by other indications of poverty, such as the ongoing fabric famine, which has resulted in ridiculously short jackets and trouser hems. We will not sit and watch our brethren suffer. Secret Empire is announcing its ‘Wopping Good Socks’ program. For every suit purchased, we will shod one pair of Florentine feet in high-quality British socks. Your adopted feet will write you a monthly letter telling you how thankful they are to be warm and loved.
When a man turns up with a jacket made out of his childhood Winnie the Pooh curtains, it raises both our eyebrows and our expectations of his character. When not eccentrically peregrinating the wards of London, Will (pictured above with his younger sister), spends his time keeping his Wikipedia page up to date, and giving talks about why not to bother learning to code. He is described as a social entrepreneur, which sounds good, although we don’t know what it means.
This author once described him as the salesman who doesn’t know he’s a salesman, with a charming ability to lead, corral and convince. We salute him using this power to further education and technology. Both helping people find work at Makers Academy and chairing multiple government committees on education. Also he’s one of the only members of Secret empire who can literally Lord it about.
Sometimes Adams & Ball visit the delectable and debauched Eccentric Club in London (our eccentricity is usually wearing waistcoats that match our suit - crazy!). In between cocktails, we met the surprisingly sane milliner, Alex Shaw of Lairds. If you ever see Lee-Jon in a fur felt Fedora, it is almost certainly from Laird’s unstuffy hat shop in London.
We’d recommend any of the fur trilby’s over the usual market muck you see balanced on the swaggering male head. They’ve made creations for film, fashion designers and other bespoke clothing makers. We also heartily recommend drinking with Alex. So if you ever meet him in person, buy him a drink for us. Send us the bill if it makes you feel important, and we’ll send you vouchers for our Fictional Health Spa and Exotic meat BBQ Grill. You’ll love the Ostrich Burger.