This year started well! At the beginning of January the postman greeted me with a special package. A delayed gift from Santa Claus? Nope! In this first blog of 2019 you can read all about my latest essentials.
I proudly present you my collaboration with Grams(28) and tell you why you don't want to miss this new brand.
November 2018, I got in touch with the creator behind Grams(28). I've been following their activity for quite some time and I have to say, I LOVE IT! Discovering new concepts/brands is great, but when you come across pearls like this one, you realize what a beautiful platform Instagram actually is. At Grams28, they focus on making timeless pieces by partnering with the world’s finest makers, sourcing the finest material, trace down to their origin and sharing their story with you, so you will always know what you are buying, literally.
Know what you are buying
Each product has its own code consisting of ten numbers, divided into three sets. Style number, material provider, material type and the makers that make the product. On their website you will find exactly what the codes stand for and you will learn more about the product itself.
Take my Zip Pouch Small with code ( 105 2601 852 ) :
CATEGORY: 1 LEATHERGOOD
TANNERY: 26 TEMPESTI
MATERIAL: 01 ITALIAN VEG. TANNED NAPPA
MADE IN: 852 HONG KONG
For example, if you like to know more about the factory in Hong Kong, then take a look at their website under the heading factories where they tell you a lot more about it. Because of the great idea behind this code I would almost forget what makes this product so beautiful for me. Namely, the minimalist design and the use of beautiful quality leather. This combination together with the great finish down to the details makes one thing very clear. At Grams(28) they know damn well what they are doing!
( first picture: Zip Pouch Small / second picture: iPhone Pocket Sleeve )
Their cost breakdown
Besides insight into the product, the material and the manufacturer, Grams(28) also gives you insight into the structure of its sales prices. So you always know what you're paying for.
For the sake of clarity. I didn't write this blog at their request, but because I find sharing their products absolutely worthwhile. In addition, given the quality of the material and the distinctive design, their products are, in my opinion, very competitively priced.
Check them out yourself
To prevent me from talking any longer about how much fan I am of Grams(28). Use the link below to discover their collection yourself.
Shop the products in this blog:
Damn. It's time to open a bottle of champagne (or two)! The first year Minimal Men is almost a fact. A year with ups and even more ups! I look back at my IG pictures of a year ago... the following words come to mind: overexposed, no coherence, but with passion ;) And don't forget that huge load of blogs... okay there is still room for improvement! But I have to say, without all your support I would never have come where I am now. A big thanks to you all guys!
After months of searching
Finally I succeeded! After two months of searching I proudly present you my new winter coat from Filippa K. I have to say that a second herringbone coat was not to be expected, but I'm very satisfied with it. Just as I've switched from slimfit/skinny to loose fit in the last six months in my entire clothing collection, this is also the case with my new winter coat.
The challenge was mainly to find a coat that just comes over the knee. Not because I'm almost 2 meters like most of the Dutch guys, but more because 95% of the coats are a lot shorter. I know Filippa K is a brand who looks beyond design and thinks about sustainability of the fashion industry, another good reason to buy from them!
Sustainability in 2019
Because I believe that change begins with yourself, I've decided to focus more on the origin and sustainability of the products I buy and the brands I will work with in 2019. The past few weeks I've followed a documentary about the effect of the fashion industry on people and nature. Shocking! Only now I realize what the consequences are of fast fashion and the damage it causes... think of; working conditions, water shortages, environmental pollution etc. With my new blogs I want to pay more attention to sustainability indication. Not for marketing reasons, but because I think all of us should gain more insight into the process of making garments.
Cheers guys! till the next blog.
Luke Herringbone coat - Grey melange
Unconstructed three-button coat with a relaxed, knee-length silhouette and dropped shoulders. It features two welt pockets and two interior chest pockets, and comes in a textured, mulesing-free virgin wool quality with an elegant herringbone pattern. The inside is lined with recycled polyester. *
Made in: Lithuania
Address: Draugystes 15 B, 51228 Kanuas, Lithuania
Collaboration started: 2005
Number of Employees: 4 (0 men /4 women)
Visited by the Filippa K Supply Team
Factory: Vike UAB
Address: Neries Krantinè 16, 48402 Kaunas, Lithuania
Collaboration started: 2017
Number of Employees: 34 (1 men /33 women)
Visited by the Filippa K Supply Team
Despite the fact that the season of winter boots is almost approaching I would like to talk about sneakers. Why? Because as far as I'm concerned they deserve some attention. In this blog I share my vision about quality sneakers and the limits of quality.
Some of you will think, is he going to talk about white sneaker again? Absolutely! But despite that, I have enjoyed some more colour in my collection the last few weeks, including my Velasca sneaker, which I introduced in my previous blog. In recent years I've discovered that the supply of sneakers is enormous, but despite that it's sometimes difficult to find the right one. Until recently my preference was for white minimalist sneakers. Perfect to combine and despite the lack of color still a statement.
1.) One of my favourite white minimalist sneakers is from Artisan Lab, an English based label that works with selected Italian artisans exclusively. In terms of design, this sneaker has everything to compete with the high end sneakers. A frequently asked question to me is whether I also like the quality. The answer is yes! Considering the sharp price I am amazed by the quality of these kicks. Both the hardwearing sole and the leather ensure that you can enjoy these clean boys for a long time! Price 125.00 British pounds.
2.) A combination between Paris and Amsterdam! A week ago I was approached by the two young designers behind Ascot & Charlie. A menswear brand based between Paris & Amsterdam that distinguishes itself among others with their low top sneakers. A sneaker with an eye for detail made of Italian calf leather. I myself am a big fan of their soft padding on the heel and calf skin lining. Their premium sneakers are available in different colours.
3.) Finally, I would like to bring my Velasca Milano sneakers to your attention again (see previous blog) because I can really recommend them after a few months of use. The walking comfort of these kicks is perfect for me. Even after a whole day strolling through the city, they remain comfortable. Since I wear regular navy, they can be perfectly combined with my outfits. The price for these sneakes is €185,- on their webshops.
I understand that choosing the right sneaker can be quite difficult. Do you choose an affordable sneaker with the risk that the quality is disappointing? Or do you pay double for a high end sneaker? No doubt there is a link between the price and quality of a sneaker, but even clearer is that there is a link between the price and the brand name. Quality has limits and this is the point where hot air determines the price. Luckily there are plenty of beautiful sneaker labels where the combination price and quality level perfectly. If you have any questions about the kicks mentioned above, I'd be happy to answer them from experience.
Damn. It has been far too long since I wrote my last blog. This morning I thought it would be the perfect time to share some things with you while enjoying a cup of coffee (filter coffee as this is my new addiction).
Looking back at the summer holidays I realize how much I enjoyed Sicily, London and the great collaborations that have come into being. Unfortunately, the reality is clearly visible again and I can be found daily in the university. Last week, however, was more than worth sharing with you.
New collaborations are always great, that's why I like to share this brand with you.
Mail from Italy! The Italian shoe brand Velasca approached me a few weeks ago. As usual I first delve into the brands with which I start a possible new cooperation. However, it soon became clear to me that Velasca was the perfect combination of passion and craftsmanship. Each of their shoes follows the centuries-old tradition of Italian craftsmanship. They make them in the heart of Italy ― in Montegranaro, the Marche region ― where the whole urban fabric is built on the craft of shoemaking. My preference went straight to the Poetta sneaker because I didn't have a single blue sneaker in my collection yet. As I expected, the sneaker is beautiful down to the last detail and they are comfortable AF. At Velasca they believe high quality craftmanship should be accessible to all. They certainly succeeded in this! If you think for yourself, If you wanna try these sneakers yourself and you happen not to be near one of their shops (Milan, Turin or Rome), their online webshop offers a great solution. But don't forget to use my personal discount code!
15% discount code: maat15
Why Velasca sneakers?
While fashion changes every season, they offer a timeless style that represents a refined, Italian elegance. They are available in different colors so they always have a sneaker that matches your outfit. As an example, I like to wear blue outfits lately, of course white sneakers are perfect, but my Velasca blue ones make all the difference with their fresh white sole. Together with the artisans, they select the best materials to get that kind of quality you expect in high-end products. From choosing the leather, or the binding technique, to the application of the sole, every step is handmade in Italy. As you may know, a beautiful packaging appeals to me enormously! Velasca scores a 9+ for me (see unboxing video on Instagram). If you want to know more about this beautiful label, visit their website and get inspired.
Thanks for reading and I'll be back faster this time with a next blog!
Is it time for transparency in your clothing collection? Do you know where your clothing is made of?
In this blog I introduce you to one of my favorite brands called Organic Basics, created in 2015 by four Danish guys with the intention to change the fashion industry. Sustainability does not stop at fair production, when after just a few months, it is back at the level of bulky waste, we cannot call it very sustainable. In the beginning, Organic Basics started making quality men’s underwear, consciously created with GOTS certified organic cotton, but now they are focused on more than that. In addition to production in Europe (i.e. as little transport as possible), good working conditions and sustainable materials are of great importance to them. Last week I had the opportunity to try two tee's, namely an Organic Cotton and a Silvertech one. Over the past year, I have decided for myself to invest in clothes from brands that make a difference. Organic Basics undoubtedly belongs to these. The tee's they offer are available in the most essential colours and are extremely comfortable to wear. For me, nothing beats the experience of a quality fabric and the appearance it brings with it. The question of where it comes from is therefore not unimportant to me. The Organic Cotton t-shirts are made in Turkey, to be precise Izmir. They the cotton that is used comes without toxic substances, pesticides, chemical fertilizer, and nasty chemicals. Next to their Cotton shirt they have the Silvertech tee's. What are they? As the name suggests, use is made of silver because it turns out that silver has historically been used as an antimicrobial piece of technology. The purpose of using silver in there basics is to prevent the need for frequent washing, and doing so helps reduce the environmental impact of a piece of clothing. Maybe you wonder how this substance feels? I can tell you, it feels soft, elastic and strong at the same time.
I myself have chosen a size bigger than I normally choose as I prefer a somewhat wider fit. However, this is not necessary as they are very true to fit.
The Organic Cotton tee is available in four colours: black, blue, grey and white. As for the Silvertech, it comes in the colors, white and black.
As most of you know, I believe that the packaging of products is very important. In other words, the whole experience. This is something they have certainly thought about at Organic Basics! Wow! Minimalistic, clear, and discerning is the first thing that comes to mind. Receiving your product will be even more of a party.
Because I think everyone should experience the products of Organic Basics I can offer you a 20% discount on your purchase in their webshop by using my personal code: minimalmenxOB20
Try it yourself because you deserve it! Check their website here.
Caution! For my female readers. I know you are there ;) They also have women's clothing.
Thanks for reading!
Generally I'm very pleased with my clothing collection. Of course there is always space for new items, but only for the right products of added value. Some weeks ago I was approached by the German label called Dalgado. I felt incredibly honoured to be able to collaborate with them, because they do exactly what appeals to me, namely sell products (belts and gloves) with so much passion and attention to quality. It's probably even better to say they sell a lifestyle for those who pay attention to beauty.
I quickly realised that in the past years I had invested a lot in the main lines like trousers, shirts, shoes etc. but only a little in the finishing touches such as a great belt! As I already have some nice leather belts I was very curious about the woollen one called Alessandro, because I had never seen a woolen belt before.
As you might have seen on Instagram they had sent me one so I was able to try it myself. To be honest I was quite surprised.. even with my high expectations. Never before had I had a product that was packed with so much attention to detail like this one. It was a true gift!
The belt is made of the finest materials and has a very high level of finish. The buckle feels solid and has a beautiful matte finish. It is easily fastened because it can be pricked through the wool in any place.
Because I believe in their products as much as they do, I can offer you on behalf of them a discount of 10% on your purchase in their webshop by using the code: Maat10 . You can discover the entire collection at https://dalgado.de/en . The grey colour for example can be nicely combined with white, navy or black to keep your outfit minimalistic. Of course I didn't start my insta to become a sales channel. I consciously choose to work only with the brands that I believe are of added value to all of you, just as they are for me. Dalgado is definitely one of them.
Shirt: Filippa K
Trousers: Cavallaro Napoli
Sneakers: Common Projects
Just a short video of my last trip to Italy. For a week I traveled through several places to discover the true Italy. Are you planning to visit Tuscany? Feel free to ask for tips and recommendations.
Watch the video now ->
Except that I had got an awesome shirt, I became inspired to further expand my clothing collection with only those pieces which would be an addition. I started online to look for brands that make the difference.
Soon I discovered a world of labels that inspired me and made me aware of the added value of quality and attention. I got in touch with men having the same passion from all over the world. Certainly without their support I couldn’t have been able to learn so much. The last three months it went even faster and I reached + 5k followers (grateful!), different collaborations and great wonderful projects that are about to begin soon. The next few month I will deal with the development of my website and your daily outfit, interior and travel inspiration on @guillaumemaat. I can't thank you all enough for the past few months. There will be (a lot) more soon!
Every winter when you get your coat out of the closet, the streets turn into the same gray colour.
In September as soon as the first winter coats are exposed in the shops, it usually starts to itch me. In spite of the fact that making online purchases is nowadays very popular, I still prefer to pay a visit to stores. Orientation and gaining inspiration I do online. When I'm looking for a coat, I certainly have a few favorite stores, including Suitsupply. This originally Dutch company has coats with a great fit, eye for design and everything of excellent quality. I noticed one of their most sophisticated overcoat options, called Vicenza. A herringbone coat made of a rich, warm, soft blend of wool, alpaca, mohair and silk by Vitale Barberis Canonico. The latter is the oldest weaving-mill in the world. This special company is situated in Trivero, Italy ; there largest customer at the moment is the luxury menswear fashion house Ermenegildo Zegna.
This blue coat has an elegantly single-breasted fit and offers enough warmth for average winter days (in the Netherlands). I deliberately did not opt for a black or gray coat because I want to give some color to my winter outfit. Combining has so far been almost never a problem since the majority of my clothing has no contrasting colors. Given the prevailing (dominant) pattern of the jacket I always wear it with a plain scarf in the color blue or gray. This gives a good balance and ensures that the coat will be accorded its full weight. The same applies for a pair of trousers, I only choose a plain one for that as well.
Of course, the price of your coat is not the only factor that determines whether or not it will complete your outfit. H & M recently launched some beautiful coats (H&M Studios) for a very friendly price.
In spite of the fact that this winter is already nearing its end and spring is coming into view, the new winter trends '18/'19 already came out in the past few months. During the fashion week in Milan, Paris and London it became clear that the diamond pattern will play an important role in autumn. Regarding the color trend black/dark blue, mangosteen and caramel will mainly be present.
I'm already looking ahead for the new winter coats. As far as the diamond pattern, this is already amply present in the new spring collections of many labels. I leave the winter for what it is and in the next blogs I will focus on the spring and the trends it brings this year.
Brand - Suitsupply
Collection - Fall 16/17
Thinking about Italy, things coming to mind are good food, tasty wine and enjoying life. After my trip to Rome, and afterwards Sardinia (also recommended!) Florence was on the program. Florence is the capital of the Tuscany region and is a perfect base for both the city and the countryside. Since we were traveling in high season (August) we could count on a generous portion of heat. For me, I can stand it well, but not everyone likes 37/38 degrees Celcius. Thanks to some preliminary research I found a beautiful hotel (Art Hotel Villa Agape) a few minutes drive outside the city (including a free shuttle service to the center), which made the combination of a quiet surrounding and citylife perfect. That the hotel is rated with a 9.4 is not surprising, given its location, style and beautiful garden. The garden offers plenty of seats to enjoy a glass of Italian wine. The shuttle takes you within 15 minutes to the heart of Florence at any time. With all its highlights, the city has enough to offer for an unforgettable trip.
Lounge spot hotel
1. Uffizi: The one who hasn't visited the world-famous museum Uffizi has not seen the city of Florence.
2. Duomo Firenze: By far the most famous and beautiful church in Florence is the Basilica di Santa Maria del Fiore.
3. Palazzo Pitti: This majestic palace and estate is certainly worth a visit. To admire only the gardens, you're sure to spend half a day.
Even if you're not interested in culture, but just want to enjoy the terraces and shops, I'm sure you will enjoy yourself. When it comes to fashion, Florence is a paradise with both the big brands and small Italian specialty stores.
During our stay we paid a visit to the following cities in Tuscany region:
1. Siena: do not miss this city! Siena is about a one-hour drive from Florence, a medium-sized place where you can still feel the real Italian atmosphere. Since the surrounding of Siena is rather plane and the city itself is on an elevation you can see it from a distance. To reach the city centre its possible to use escalators. The central square is still used annually for the famous horse races (Il Palio). Either the Duomo of Siena should not be missed during your visit.
2. Pisa: who doesn't know it. The city with it's leaning Tower. In advance we already read that Pisa itself isn't the most beautiful city, but we still wanted to see the tower in real life. Regarding the city, it didn't disappoint me, but staying there longer than one day is certainly not necessary. It's very busy and there are just few points of interest besides the tower.
3. Volterra: less known, but more than worth it! This beautiful city in Pisa region was one of the highlights during our trip. The traveling time from Florence was about 1.5 hour along a fascinating landscape. The city itself is considerably smaller than Siena, but with its narrow streets, restaurants and panorama-views unforgettable.
Because I can't get enough of the beautiful region of Tuscany, I will visit it again in may 2018.
This time - you can imagine - Volterra is the main residence.
Keep an eye on my INSTA for new photos and videos of my second Tuscany trip.