“Before Grey Fox there was nothing”

I’m paraphrasing John Lennon here but the sentiment remains. I’d been a fan David Evans’ musings on mature style for years before I started writing this blog, and was amazed that nobody else really talked about menswear from the perspective of an older man – dads like shearling jackets and selvedge jeans too!

Suffice to say; no Grey Fox, no Dandy Dad. I was excited to grab a short interview with David last week, where we spoke about brands that reach out to the older man, must-have wardrobe items and some very sound parenting advice.

David nails the double breasted navy blazer and madras tie combo

What made you want to start Grey Fox the first place? Did you any previous experience blogging or in the fashion world?

I had no previous menswear or fashion experience and only a passing interest in clothes. I started because I wanted to write about something and, after some thought, the problems that older men have deciding what to wear and where to buy it seemed a possible topic – so I went for it, thinking I’d have run out of steam after a few weeks. Here I am over five years later!

How would you describe your style?

Classic British with an Italian trying to get out there somewhere.

Who are your style icons?

I don’t have any. I admire anyone who has found a successful style that suits their personality. There are many I borrow ideas from, such as Jeremy Hackett and Steve McQueen, but I don’t worship any particular individual. 

What brands do you think serve the older demographic well?

Oliver Spencer and Oliver Sweeney both advertise to older men and use them in their advertising and fashion shows. Unless a brand does that it doesn’t serve the older man at all – even of they sell products suitable for him. Most are nervous of doing this and end up advertising their clothes on the bony backs of twenty-year-old models where they hardly look their best.

Channeling Steve McQueen

You have a stylist Sarah Gilfillan that works with you, how did that come about?

Sarah is a superb personal stylist who works mainly with men. In the early days of the blog she was very helpful with style matters from colour to selection of brands. We still work together from time to time and I recommend her to anyone wanting some help with their style and shopping choices.

You’ve collaborated with several brands (pocket squares/ties/suits), can you tell us about some of your favourites?

My favourite was a collab with Johnstons of Elgin in which we worked together to design a cloth. I spent some time in Elgin and used their wonderful archive for inspiration. The cloth was then woven and a suit made at Dege & Skinner in Savile Row. It was a true collaboration in that all parties got lots out of it – too often collaborations are one-sided to suit the brands, but this was an exceptional arrangement.

What items should any gentleman worth his salt have in his wardrobe?

 Blue blazer, grey suit, raw denim jeans (not artificially distressed), good English brogues, pale blue shirts and some ancient madder silk ties.

You’ve been a parent for a while now; what’s the best piece of parenting advice you can share?

Communicate, communicate, communicate. Always know what they are doing without controlling them. You are the parent, they are the child; they don’t want to be friends, they want to be loved, guided, cherished and kept safely within your control at all times. That has produced for us two loving, totally independent, emotionally intelligent, brave and successful children now in their late twenties.