Nick Hart: My Style Rules

The Spencer Hart designer reveals his influences and inspirations

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I believe that people should find their own style: I don’t think there are any rules. Certain people with fantastic personal style can pull off anything. 

If you're scared of colour, introduce it a small piece at a time – mix it up and blend with more sober shades. On holiday is good time to give it a go – a lot of the time brights don't quite work in an urban environment.

OutKast and Pharell have a great twist on the Forties look. The shoes I’ve designed for my new Palm Springs collection (S/S '15) are to go with things like pleated shorts and blouson jackets – it’s taking the forties Rat Pack look and making it current. 

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I think Sammy Davis Jr was the most stylish member of the Rat Pack. If you look closely at photos of Frank Sinatra, his suits never fitted him very well.

Steve McQueen had that great, apparently effortless thing. But he knew what he was doing – he got things altered, he was putting thought into it. 

Right now, Alex Turner is a guy with great style. He’s created his own persona, he has his quiff and his retro thing going on – his individuality is fantastic. And Benedict Cumberbatch does formalwear very well. 

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I'm a huge believer in mindfulness, and I apply that to clothes – taking your time and enjoying the moment when you're getting dressed or shopping.  

Every man should have a tailor or a sales assistant that you trust, and who knows what they’re doing.

My key summer key pieces? A beautiful, tailored white shirt, with a couple of buttons un-done and a skinny spread collar. A well cut pair of mid-grey trousers with side adjusters, so there’s no belt and belt loops. A good pair of shoes – maybe a pair of black suede brogues, if you were being daring. And then an open weave textured blazer, very soft, de-constructed, unstructured inside the jacket, in a navy or French blue.

A great style item to invest in is a bespoke a midnight blue two piece suit, in a British fresco fabric. Half lined, quite light on, but you can wear it all year round. Midnight blue makes a serious day suit, but you can wear it in the evening. It photographs well, it comes to life better than black. A suit like that you can keep for the rest of your life.

Hats are fun – they’re about dressing up. Certainly they don't suit everyone – but if they look good on you, it should be illegal not to wear one. 

I like taking the tradition of Savile Row and giving it a twist - adding a fitted, angular, modernist look.

Music is a big style influence. I grew up in the Seventies and Eighties, and I love that whole funk and soul jazz thing. There's an energy that weaves into my design – I love this idea of being on a dance floor in an immaculately cut suit, really going for it, but looking sharp. 

Nick Hart has launched the Spencer Hart SS15 Palm Springs collection exclusively at The Spencer Hart Suite, a pop up styling and shopping experience at the W Hotel London – Leicester Square's EWOW Suite, visit wlondon.co.uk  

 

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MORE IN STYLE: 
Frank Muytjens: My Style Rules 
Jeremy Hackett: My Formalwear Rules 
How To Be Bolder With Your Summer Style

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