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Staff Picks

The Mr P. Pieces We’re Buying Now

From a timeless camel overcoat to the perfect cable-knit sweater – the team’s picks and what to wear them with

The news that MR PORTER was releasing its own brand first broke on 17 October. That means that even those with their finger firmly on the pulse of the fashion press will have had at most three weeks to get hyped up about the release of Mr P.

We, on the other hand, have known about it for months. Since development began in earnest earlier this year, this brand has been a part of our daily lives. So, however giddy with anticipation you might have been feeling in the run-up to today’s launch, it’s nothing compared to what we’ve been through.

Hopefully you’ll understand, then, when we tell you that this special, Mr P. edition of Staff Picks is an important one for us. These are the pieces we’ve had on our Wish Lists for longer than anything else.

Whether it’s a wool- and cashmere-blend overcoat, a white shirt, a double-breasted corduroy blazer or a cable-knit Shetland wool sweater, the 52 pieces in this debut collection for Mr P. – 35 of which launch this week – are designed to slot seamlessly into any man’s wardrobe. To illustrate this, we’ve paired our choices with a few pieces from the rest of the MR PORTER roster.

I always rather fancied being a sailor, the fresh air and the open waves seeming unbearably attractive from the stuffy confines of a university library. But, problem is, I also quite fancied diving head first into the demi-monde, with all the accouterments that implies. Which is where this Breton striped chunky rollneck comes in, it being as appropriate for a day on the water as it is for a night drinking scotch in a basement in Soho. I would wear it with these Gucci sneakers to give it a contemporary slant and throw this Want Les Essentiels leather rucksack across my shoulders to finish things off. An outfit, as it were, for all seasons.

This winter, if you’re updating just one thing in your wardrobe, then make it a new coat. Not only is it the outer shell to your outfit (and therefore the first thing that people see), but an investment piece that’ll see you through the year – if you invest wisely, that is. Normally, I’m a sucker for menswear’s more relaxed offering when it comes to outerwear, but this year I’ll be investing in Mr P.’s double-breasted herringbone wool overcoat to smarten up my act. Not only will it keep me warm in the colder months, it’s as versatile enough to wear to the office as it is on weekends. Plus, a double-breasted style is one of those classics that’ll never go out of fashion. Wear it with the brand’s mélange Shetland wool sweater in on-trend brown, dark-wash denim jeans and a pair of Converse sneakers for a masterclass in off-duty elegance.

Last month, I had the pleasure of meeting Mr Tomo Campbell, a painter from London who participated in the launch campaign for Mr P. He modelled what, for me, is one of the collection’s standout pieces, a black double-breasted corduroy blazer that comes as part of a suit. I don’t suppose for a second that I’ll look half as good in it as he did, but hey: since when has that been a reason not to try? I’ll be pairing it with its matching trousers and this Mr P. Shetland wool sweater, for a little pop of colour.

A couple of years ago, I went on a trip to Japan to work on a film for MR PORTER. While there, I came across some milling facilities that make amazing denim. And it is from a similar Japanese mill that the fabric of Mr P.’s selvedge chambray comes from. The attention to details is spot on: you can see the selvedge on the inside of the button placket, a definitive sign of quality. I am really into Japanese designers at the moment, so I will wear it with a pair of Visvim FBT sneakers. A smart pair of jeans, also from the Mr P. collection, completes the double-denim look. Very kawaii.

While I’m normally one to shy away from bright colours, I’m a particular fan of this vibrant red cable-knit sweater. It gives a nod to the season’s pop colour trend and adds something a bit more interesting to my usual black, navy or charcoal wardrobe. I’m completely averse to scratchy sweaters, but thankfully the super-soft merino- and cashmere-blend gives a chunky fit providing warmth throughout the winter while being light enough to fit under a jacket, blazer or even layered up with an Oxford shirt.

The winter coat is an investment fraught with anxiety. It is not, for example, like buying a £20 T-shirt. You cannot idly cast it aside after deciding that, actually, green does little for your skin tone. It is an undertaking you must be wholly committed to. After all, your winter coat ought to be an intimate companion for the next three months or so. And in order for it to see you through thick and thin, and freezing cold, you must get on with each other – unconditionally so. With this in mind, I’m playing it safe this year and purchasing this camel overcoat from our in-house brand. “If you want a job doing properly...” etc. What to wear with it, though? Whatever makes my coat happy, I guess. Something inoffensive. A pair of black jeans, leather Derbies and an inexpensive T-shirt ought to do it.

The white Mr P. poplin shirt is without a doubt the crispest, best-fitting white shirt I’ve tried on in a long time. The Italian cotton poplin fabric is heavy enough that it won’t be see through or require a white undershirt, but light enough to keep you cool when you have a jacket over the top. The bluff collar is a wonderful detail and gives a contemporary feel to a classic piece. I will wear mine with the navy Mr P. worsted-wool suit (sold as separates) and always with a clean white pair of Common Projects BBalls.