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The Edit

Insider Brands You Need To Know

Discover the seven exciting young designers to add to your Wish List right now

History is big business in the style world. Most international megabrands worth their salt have a good 50 years under their belt, if not more. Words such as “heritage”, “tradition” and “craft” are frequently sprinkled across their press releases. Reissues are presented as “icons”. Journalists visit “the archive”. And that’s because older is better, right?

The truth is sometimes, but not always. A lot of the time, it’s just nice to have a bit of novelty in one’s life. As testimony to this fact, we at MR PORTER have gathered together the following edit of brands, all less than five years old, that you might not yet have added to your favourites, but can definitely fill a few of the gaps in your wardrobe. 

Such is the ease with which the wares of Officine Generale have been subsumed into the wardrobes of the MR PORTER team, it feels like the Parisian brand has been around for ever. In fact, it’s been only four years. The reason behind our instant uptake? The brand really hit a sweet spot when it launched in 2012, offering a range of simple, clean-looking tailoring and casualwear in exceptional fabrics at an extremely attractive price point. Key pieces within the collection, such as the fisherman twill chinos and button-down Japanese selvedge shirt, have the feeling of instant classics, thanks to the meticulous attention paid to every detail by designer Mr Pierre Mahéo (who personally tests the fit and cut of each garment on himself to ensure it feels as good as it looks). In short, though Officine hasn’t had much of a past as yet, it’s obviously got a healthy future ahead of it – a case in point being SS16’s blouson-style suede jacket and fantastic travel suit.

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  • Officine Generale Cotton Oxford Shirt

  • Officine Generale New Fisherman Cotton-Twill Chinos

Sometimes you just need to nail the basics to get something right. This is the thinking behind New York-based brand Alex Mill, a line launched by Mr Alex Drexler (the son of J.Crew’s chairman and CEO Mr Millard Drexler) in 2013, which focuses on the building blocks of your wardrobe – shirts, jeans, simple, unstructured tailoring – and attempts to well and truly nail them. As is evident from this spring’s cedar green and flannel shirting, there’s an appealing sturdiness, a no-nonsense quality to the best of the Alex Mill range, a quality that’s particularly reassuring in this time of fast fashion and 24-times-daily Instagram updates. Look to this brand when upgrading your weekend wear, and you’ll never look back.

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  • Alex Mill Checked Cotton-Flannel Shirt

  • Alex Mill Gingham Cotton-Flannel Shirt

Remember the days when you bought a pair of sneakers just because they were comfortable? Or because Mr Noel Gallagher had them? If so, you’re showing your age. Now, of course, we’re in the era of the designer sneaker, and such small-minded reasoning is far from enough to get the connoisseur to part with his hard-earned cash. Luckily for footwear brand Greats, launched by sneakerhead Mr Jon Buscemi in 2013, its products have all the requisite qualities that you expect these days: sharp, minimal design, vegetable-tanned leather, waxed cotton laces, a Made In Italy stamp. Luckily for its considerable fan base, Greats offers all this at a rather competitive price point. And when we say “competitive”, you should read “unbelievable”, really. A welcome addition, then, to the sneaker pantheon.

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  • GREATS The Royale Leather High-Top Sneakers

  • GREATS The Royale Leather Sneakers

The brainchild of enigmatic graphic designer Sk8thing (fond of wearing bandanas around his face and cultivating a general aura of impenetrable mystery), Cav Empt was launched in 2011. Since then, it has built a sizeable (actually, this is one of those moments when we should be using the word “cult”) following for its razor-sharp streetwear, which typically comes embellished with startling graphic prints and intriguing gnomic utterances in the form of floating slogans and typography. Key pieces this season that demonstrate Sk8thing’s magic touch include a sharp-looking technical fleece (that must be the first time those four words have been strung together), the understated C.E cap and, for those whose street cred must extend to their ankles, the retro-styled, type-adorned cotton-blend socks.

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  • Cav Empt Printed Panelled Loopback Cotton-Jersey Sweatshirt

  • Cav Empt Embroidered Corduroy Baseball Cap

There’s a pleasing heft to the silver jewellery of London-based designer Mr James Tanner, whose work is inspired by bold, architectural forms. His latest collection is also, excitingly, his first and, even more so, exclusive to MR PORTER. If you’re the kind of design-savvy person who frequently says things like “brutalism is underrated in my opinion”, look no further than Mr Tanner’s designer landing page, and feel secure in the knowledge that you’re looking at something both cutting-edge and wonderfully unique.

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  • James Tanner Sterling Silver Bracelet

  • James Tanner Sterling Silver Signet Ring

As healthy pursuits go, running must be one of the oldest. As clothing categories go, sportswear must be one of the most competitive. Yet, in 2013, husband-and-wife duo Ms Claire Kent and Mr Bill Byrne came up with a new proposition for the running enthusiast – an athletic brand that celebrates the pleasure of amateur participation in the sport. This brand was Iffley Road, a range of running gear blissfully free of the neon and go-faster stripes you have come to expect when hitting the sports department. Offering everything from neatly cut plain running shorts to waterproof outerwear and technical base layers, Iffley Road maintains a rigorously minimal design aesthetic throughout its products that feels fresh, stylish and, yes, a little bit new. Invest in a few of its understated pieces and transform your frenzied morning jog into something that little bit more elegant.

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  • Iffley Road Pembroke Running Shorts

  • Iffley Road Drirelease T-Shirt

Watch brand Sekford launched its first collection in December 2015. And now, here we are in January 2016, and it’s available on MR PORTER. (You’ve got to move fast these days, especially with a brand like this.) Masterminded by CEO and creative director Mr Kuchar Swara (also a co-founder of tasteful men’s magazine Port), Sekford creates products inspired by the great tradition of English craftsmanship. The type on the dial of each watch, designed by renowned foundry Commercial Type, is inspired by the work of 18th- and 19th-century stone masons. The straps, meanwhile, are made from cordovan leather sourced from Derbyshire. Even the brand’s logo – a Gothic revival woodcut of a fox – was carefully commissioned from Lincolnshire specialist engraver Mr Mark Wilkinson. There’s just one thing about them, actually, that isn’t incredibly, wonderfully English. And that’s the fact that they’re Swiss made. But you know that’s a good thing, right?

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  • Sekford Type 1A Stainless Steel and Leather Watch

  • Sekford Type 1A Gold and Cordovan Leather Watch