Bow Ties Sydney, Australia - Le Noeud Papillon - Specialists In Self Tying Bow Ties


With over 1.7 million page views, Le Noeud Papillon's blog continues to provide lovers of bow ties with unique stories and content relating to menswear through interviews with industry icons and vignettes into topics relating to suits, shirts, shoes, ties, designers, weavers and much more.

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Sunday, June 16, 2019

How I Came To Love The Stack - If You Can't Beat Them Join Them


The husband of a billionaire heiress joins us for coffee in the morning sometimes after our swim off North Bondi circa 530am. Lately it's been very cold and there is a certain style of apprehension every morning when phone starts to go ding-a-ling.

I only mention the billions because it's something that seems relevant to 'The Stack' that he sports on his wrist. It was once said to me that the only people to wear stacks were creatives, the heads of companies and the children of the heads of companies. I am not sure who told me all this but I believe it was a Northern Italian who was explaining that everyone else underneath would not dare to be so outlandish. Only those guilty of nepotism or of being absolutely killing it in their own right would have such big kahunas. Everybody else was trying to conform so they could get ahead. I am crapping on too much. Let me get to the point.

I promised myself I would never get a stack. But my friend was naturally confident wearing his stack and I came to find them very charming. I owned but one Rubinacci bracelet from a habadasher since gone out of business. My friend told me about Maor Cohen, the Los Angeles based bracelet designed and his go to contact for his Stack.

What can I say, I thought to myself, well, technically I own my business, and I am a CEO I guess. I am creative, I am an artisan. I probably never recognise that. So, what the hell, let's give it a go. 

Three months later I have something to tell you, stacking is fun. Stacking is easier to wear than I thought, it just feels like a second wrist watch. And stacking is charming to look at when you have nothing to do but twiddle your thumbs. No, I will never be a billionaire, perhaps never even a millionaire. But I am at the helm of my tiny silk chop shop and I think I have earned my right to a stack.




Saturday, June 8, 2019

We Ship Worldwide, Our Customers Are Worldwide - Bow Ties From Le Noeud Papillon - Where We Continue To Hone Our Craft Year After Year

Do you want a bow tie that's different, one that sets you apart? Do you want something just for yourself? A self-tying bow tie that is made from the best silks sourced from around the globe, cut mostly as one off bow ties never to be repeated again? Would you like be a part of the process? We offer all this and more. Whatsapp us on +61413140994 or visit us at www.lenoeudpapillon.com


















Monday, June 3, 2019

Tones And I - Drop The Game Cover Of Chet Faker Song - Wonderful!

Ian Fleming Interview - So Cool!


I don't think I had ever seen an interview with Ian Fleming until this morning and it was a real treat. If you have a spare 5 minutes consider watching this - there is some charming dialogue between the interviewer and Fleming.



Sunday, June 2, 2019

Tones And I - What A Talent - I Hope She Becomes A Global Success

I went to the Oxford Arts Factory last night to watch Tones And I, a busker from Byron Bay who has made waves and now seems to be on her way to national and potentially international success. I found her so gutsy and raw, like an unpolished diamond (sorry, but they invented cliches for a reason). I cannot wait to see her career evolve and wish her every success. She has talent in every fingernail.



Sunday, May 26, 2019

New Yuzen Silks Just Loaded - All Will Be Sold By Tuesday Morning

I received a lovely testimonial from an American customer the other evening that I will post below. At the same time I have been busy cutting silks all weekend and this Sunday morning I have come in to photograph and upload them. They will all be gone by Tuesday morning at 9am so make sure you take a look before then. www.lenoeudpapillon.com

And from our customer:


Feedback

Bow tie enthusiasts we are witnessing something special.  LNP undoubtedly is in a class of it's own. The quality is unsurpassed. The designs are pure artistry. They have revolutionized self-tie with their unique pre-tie technique. There’s always something on the platform that satisfies my taste and style. I thought I had a pretty good tie collection until I discovered LNP.

K.Dillard, Maryland



Wednesday, May 15, 2019

Myle Vs Juul And How These Vapes Normalised A Traditionally Bad Habit

The writer Leo Tolstoy once, in his savage indictment on the institution of marriage by way of his novella The Kreutzer Sonata, said that both marriage and cigarettes were extremely similar in the sense that they were both terrible habits that one couldn't kick. 

Tolstoy himself found it hard to give up cigarettes all his life and if my memory serves me correctly, his biographer Rosamund Bartlett said that he never quite kicked it.

Tobacco smoking is something that I absolutely loathed and hated the first time I tried it but which twenty eight years later I have a complicated relationship with. I loathe it, I love it. I loathe it, no really I do, but ah, I love it. The sting of a cigarette, the small groups of outlaws that band together to smoke, the behind the curtain at that fancy hotel in West Hollywood smoking, the intimate conversation over a cigarette. Then there is the loaning out of cigarettes which starts a conversation, the borrowing of a lighter, the handing back of a lighter, the can I now borrow a cigarette and of course the 'we've run out of cigarettes, who wants to come in the car to go get more' followed by a private conversation. Those who smoke know or understand the same world created by cocaine users who make small and private spaces and close and open worlds to people depending on how the evening goes.

But vaping must be a God send to tobacco companies who have changed course and those who entered the space early, because it takes away a great deal of the smell and stigma attached to traditional tobacco smoking. And though that private little culture that had developed around the naughtiness of tobacco smoking was still somewhat of a draw card to those that still wanted to spark up, for those of us who had succumbed to vaping, within a few weeks it seemed so last century. 

Wallet, keys, phone, vape. Let's go. That's how it was appealing. These new vapes made it that other little accessory to add into your world. Coupled with the knowledge that you could now dispense marijuana in these things (I have not yet had the pleasure of trying this) and knowing that somewhere in Colombia a lab scientist was figuring out how you might vape cocaine in a year or two ... forgive my ignorance if it's already available on the dark web.

It is a game changer. It normalises smoking. It gives it a new way of being okay... I have read the John Hopkins breakdowns - basically a traditional cigarette has 7000 chemicals in it, vaping is for the most part nicotine and water (though it's unclear what other chemicals are also used). A heating coil and what appears to be a gel like liquid which is heated by a coil and turned into a vapour through the power source, a stick like battery, is all that seems to be happening. The drug nicotine still remains just as addictive as cocaine or heroin, but, on first glance, it's delivery mechanism seems to be far less toxic.

Let's assume that the vapes are indeed what they say there are, less toxic instruments to deliver nicotine, what then are the other benefits of using them?

In my opinion they are as follows. I feel obliged to smoke a whole cigarette once I light it. By contrast, I can draw on a vape whenever I choose. I don't need to open the windows or go outside to vape. I can carry the equivalent of four packets of cigarettes without a noticeable bulge in my suit or trouser jacket. I can give someone a refill and we can share the device without having each others slobber all over it. There are many flavours I can try. My lungs feel lighter. I don't have to cough and splatter. I don't get bronchial. I can kiss a woman without smelling like an ashtray. I don't have a terrible hangover the next morning. I can keep one at the office, in the car, in my bedroom if needs be because the amount I used to spend on cigarettes was becoming ridiculous. 

I estimate that on average when I was smoking regularly I would have spent (given that a packet of 20 cigarettes in Australia is currently $35AUD) an average of $3640AUD a year not including the blow out periods such as the silly season. By contrast Juul costs approximately $80.00AUD and the landed price of refills is roughly $10AUD a pop. So you could bring your average yearly spend down to $600AUD in my opinion or else $1000AUD if you were to stretch it out. 

Unfortunately, and because it is unclear as to the legality of some of the cartridges I used I am not willing to tell you which website I purchased these on or which shop in Sydney I bought the Myle from.... suffice to say that if you know me well you can Whatsapp me.

Finally I wish to tell you about the two models I tried and why.

On entering one shop in Sydney I was told the Juul (which I had seen in Switzerland in January) was out of stock and that they only ran a brand called Myle. I asked what was the difference and the store clerk said the Myle was better... I'm sure it was...

So here are my thoughts:

1. Myle - truthfully I like the slightly bigger size than the Juul. The flavours available are perhaps not as good as the Juul but the device seems to pack a bigger battery life plus a three light display for your batter power. The other great thing is that the Myle requires only a direct plug in with a micro USB power source which means you can use all your old cables to have  a charge port wherever you go. The device also comes in some seriously chic designs like rose gold. 

2. Juul - it has the sort of street cred where you feel compelled to buy it plus it is very slim and discreet. It also comes with creative flavours like Cafe Latte and Cucumber. But; it has one terribly annoying and impractical aspect and that is you need to dock it in their own usb charge dock in order to recharge and that means you are a moment away from letting that little sucker fall down and drain pipe or fall down some crevice between your car seat and centre console and you will be cursing the brand and it's designers all day long. 

Other than that, the devices pretty much operate in the exact same manner. So determing which one will be Android and which one will be Apple is not immediately apparent. One thing is for sure, the Myle packs that Android feel of like 'we will make this cross platform compliant' whereas already the Juul has that feeling of Apple - if you want to use our sleek design we will make it hard for you to leave us...

I hope one day to kick totally the habit of smoking and vaping. It's really not healthy to consume nicotine in my opinion, and I think Tolstoy had a point. But if I am going to stay dosing myself I know which delivery method I would prefer. So, for the time being I am vaping my life away.








Sunday, May 12, 2019

New Carlo Riva Fabrics Have Arrived For Bespoke Shirts


My fixation with white shirts hasn't quite dissipated. In fact it might of gotten worse. Though I rarely get more than one wear out of a shirt before I have a dirty collar, there is something deliciously simple and elegant about a white shirt which works for bow ties. It is like white bordering a painting or having a blank canvas on which you build out from.

The Carlo Riva fabrics chosen on this round are the Voile Etamine and the Linen Arsenal. Very clean fresh fabrics from looms that are considered the best in the world. And though I have tried and love Alumo, Canclini, Monte and the now defunct SIC Tess range, I always feel like Carlo Riva is the only one which creates a second skin.

Bespoke shirt appointments can be booked by sending a Whatsapp to +61413140994



The #SALE codes are live.


The basic philosophy is this - we cut a range of bow ties each week, many of them one-off pieces, then we load them up onto the website and sell them down by Monday morning. If I have done my work correctly, you will pay the RRP I have put on them. If I haven't, you will pick up what I personally think is a bargain. You live by the sword, you die by the sword. If I haven't done my job then I lose. It's that simple. And by the time I have finished packing the bow ties to be shipped Monday morning I am after lunch able to start cutting again. Some people I know think I am an idiot for doing this, that I am ruining my brand - I understand their perspective. But from mine, we don't wish to hold onto silk and the cash we generate simply gets plied into new designs. It's why we will run six to ten times the amount of designs on our website that our nearest competitor is able to offer. The one off pieces, all finished with rose gold hardware, are, in my opinion, some of the best if not the best bow ties in the world today. None of them are perfect. My ultimate goal is to hone my craft over time and keep exploring new textiles, new designs, new knots. Like the Japanese woodblock artists, I never seek perfection, I seek excellence over time. For custom work please Whatsapp me on +61413140994. 




Friday, May 10, 2019

The Greatest Thing Since Sliced Bread - Superfeet And Other Luxury Insoles


It came about quite randomly, I was on Murphy Street in South Yarra, Melbourne. I was strolling around in a pair of penny loafers I had sourced on Ebay to patina. I always take the chance that they won't fit properly, I always have. I'd love to buy great English shoes in Australia but outside of Double Monk the number of stores that sell them are few and far between, what is on offer is limited. I wish I lived in England, just kidding, but for shoes it would be a great place to live. You have Cleverley there, Gaziano & Girling, John Lobb, Foster & Son, Churches, Crockett & Jones. No matter how hard those poorer nations try to catch up, the English keep their edge in style and construction.

The penny loafers were slipping. I stopped in at the bootmaker and asked him if he had good quality insoles. He did. He had German ones. I put them into the shoe and boyakasha, it was a perfect fit. That was March. Since then I have done some research and I wish to report back on my overall experience of the insoles I have played with.

It is worth noting that the average sports shoe company spends just 6 cents on your insole. So getting additional ones that are made of quality materials and have supportive functions can increase the longevity of the shoe, improve your ability to run or walk by up to 25% per day and, most of all, give you a more comfortable journey.

THE TOP BRANDS

By far the most comfortable and supportive ones I tried were the Birkenstocks but there are issues with these that I will explain later. Then second to that is the brand SUPERFEET which offers the most comprehensive range as well as the best quality and most unique materials. Finally, I tried a really comfortable insole called GELAXY.

REASON FOR INSOLES

My primary concern was to try and make shoes that were slightly too big or that had stretched too much more comfortable to wear day to day. The main issue was that because I mostly wear 'loafer' or 'slipper' style shoes, the bigger the insole the less functional it would become because the heel of your foot could slip out on a more rigorous stride. The aim of the game was to find something slim but well constructed.

BIRKENSTOCK

Overall these are very good insoles and offer great arch support and a very comfortable journey. The problem was they were only function in deeply set sneakers. In fact, there were very few shoes in my wardrobe that could actually work with the Birkenstocks owing to the depth of the cushion from the front to the back of the shoe. There was not even a slight chance they would work in a penny loafer, alas, they now reside in an old pair of Nike low cuts.

GELAXY AND BERGAL

The Gelaxy and another German brand Bergal became the best overall slim comfort insole which worked best for penny loafers. They were sleek and well made and the gel aspect to both of the shoes greatly improved the hard and often unforgiving nature of well made English shoes. They say that a well made bespoke shoe is totally wonerful to wear, but I do not believe that. All English shoes, as comfortable as they might become, start out painful as buggery and it takes a good deal of time before they become yours. By using a Gelaxy or Begal I was able to slightly layer up inside the shoe without having the toes rub against the leather which is an ultimate no no on as a stroll across Hyde Park and you will have blisters for the rest of the week.

SUPERFEET

This was ultimately my favourite overall brand of insoles - a combination of range, purpose and material qualities was what came to make me a proper fan. Of the models that I have tried I would say my favourite are the merino wool ones which wicker away sweat whilst keeping the foot dry in the way that wool does. It kind of keeps your foot warm and somewhat moist but not wet. It's hard to explain but the best example might be when you walk around the house in Ugg Boots on a cold day. These insoles are almost impossible to use in low cut loafers but are possible to use in high top sneakers and a slightly too big chelsea boot.

The Superfeet Carbon range can fit a loafer or an Oxford and ought to be considered as your first go to in the Superfeet range if you are looking for additional support in a regular shoe. They are light and with a low profile but you really need to check the depth of your shoe before proceeding as they too won't work on any old shoe.

The bigger Superfeet insoles really should be used for high tops and trekking boots. It would be pointless to try them in low cut shoes. But the function I most enjoyed about them is that often I go to the beach in the morning and regular insoles seem to be difficult to slide into with remnant sand on your feet. These new insoles were great for getting in and out of the beach in the mornings and to date they remain in my favourite running and high tops that I use for sports and swimming.

Finally there is the heel only insoles by Superfeet. They are great when you can't afford to to pad the front of the shoe owing to room but your heel is slipping. In my opinion these ones need to be direct stuck, so there is the issue that you will potentially have to keep them in the shoe for the duration of owner ship and the aesthetic and snobbery factor of losing the nice looking logo that's stamped into the sole of your shoe when or if you have to pull them out.

In short, insoles are wonderful for your feet and can really improve the comfort of a shoe, especially if you happened to purchase something a little too large on Ebay. As times goes by and you experiment with them you will find what works for you. Personally the two that remain the finest of the bunch would be the Bergal for loafers and Oxfords and the Superfeet Merino for high tops.




Tuesday, May 7, 2019

There Is A Reason We Are So Fond Of Goldmember


I cannot tell you how often one of my friends will quote Goldmember at any given opportunity - you only need give him the slightest window and out it comes "I loove Goooold, the look of it the shmell of it". Humans love gold - our obsession with it is biblical - think of Exodus.

"When Moses went up into Biblical Mount Sinai to receive the Ten Commandments (Exodus 24:12-18), he left the Israelites for forty days and forty nights. The Israelites feared that he would not return and demanded that Aaron make them "gods" to go before them (Exodus 32:1). Aaron gathered up the Israelites' golden earrings and ornaments, constructed a "molten calf" and they declared: "These [be] thy gods, O Israel, which brought thee up out of the land of Egypt." (Exodus 32:4)"

Lately I have been loving gold too, specially black and gold. We use gold in our store front, gold on our foil stamps, our boxes are gold, the new silks are woven with gold thread and our atomisers are gold. 

But like these Dieter Mach Six sunglasses, the use of gold needs to be roughly tamed. Too much gold and it is gaudy, not enough gold and it loses it's presence. Less is certainly more but too little is a faux pas - otherwise, whats the use of using gold. Dieter sunglasses sit right on the edge of 'just too much' for much of their hip-hoppy styled glasses - but on the more subdued models like the Mach Six they are near enough to perfection. 

I encourage you to take a look at them on Ebay and to consider picking up one of our more recent silks with gold in it. It would make a perfect combination for any of you heading off to Cannes for a film festival, that perfect amount of bling that gets noticed on a red carpet. For the rest of us civillians, and especially for Australians heading into the winter balls etc, why not consider stepping out with something a little more outrageous and give them something to talk about.




The Political Landscape 2019 - The New Window Painting By Peter Howard

I'd like to think I was apolitical - but if I had to place myself somewhere it would be to the right of the spectrum. My father once gave me the compliment of being enterprising - and I would like to agree - I don't think I would make much of a communist factory worker. As we approach the Australian federal elections I asked Peter Howard, the local Vaucluse resident painter, to paint something with political comment (I did not care to ask him if were left or right) in time for the election. This was a fabulous outcome, totally irreverent and as one Instagrammer commented - "it would be funnier if it weren't so true". Bravo Peter, another great job on the window. 



Tuesday, April 30, 2019

Hand-Selecting And Hand-Cutting Silks Makes A Difference - Black Tie Peacock Bow Ties

By using see-through patterns and hand-selecting silks we are able to create unique one off and subtle silk bow ties that have an air of spunk whilst retaining the elegance of traditional black tie. They are not for everyone, nor do we wish to sell to every one. They are for the man who already has a black satin silk bow tie and requires something for a celebration, maybe his 50th, maybe he just got a promotion, maybe it's time for him to step out at a gala dinner. Whatever the reason, we don't care, just find a reason. Because once you don this bow tie, there is no going back, you are the man who stepped out of the confines of de rigeur black tie, the renegade, the Young Turk, the baller. Enjoy it and don't let the haters get to you, as Taylor Swift once aptly said - haters gonna hate hate hate hate, I just wanna shake shake shake, shake it off, shake it off. www.lenoeudpapillon.com

Sunday, April 21, 2019

Silk Eye Shades - Why Ours Are Better .... In My Opinion ... :)


Last week I logged onto Mr. Porter to buy some silk eye shades. I just wanted to see what the competition was offering. You see I know where our silk comes from and I know it's from the most reputable silk mills in the world. And I know the linings we used can't be found anywhere else. I know our customers love them, I know they make for a great gift. I know that when I say with a Parisian designer from a notable house last year and I showed him a pair he said "wow, why didn't I think of that" and now they are also making silk eye shades. So, I know there is nothing wrong with the product or the quality. Only, perhaps, the size of them. So, from tomorrow onwards we will be working on a female size of eyeshades in the hope that husbands, who already own a pair of our eye shades, may consider a pair for their BAE (which I understand means Before Anyone Else) .... 




Being Generous Never Dates - The Elegant Proportions Of Michael Douglas In The War Of The Roses


It is Easter for most Christians today. My Easter, the Orthodox Easter, comes in a week's time. So I am using this Sunday to write the blog and design silks and .... soaking in some television and revisiting old movies.

This week it has been all about The War Of The Roses. I watched it mid week in the evening and I was struck by how elegant the clothes were on Michael Douglas' character, Oliver Rose.

The costume designer, Gloria Gresham does an exceptional job of creating the arc of the character; from the young Oliver Rose in a mac on a rainy day in Nantucket looking for a bargain at an estate sale, to the young family man, the lawyer on the make trying to ingratiate himself with the senior partners and finally to the man who reaches the zenith of his manhood until his wife tells him she wants out just as the kids are packing off to go to college.

It is such a well told story narrated by the idiosyncratic voice of Danny De Vito as he tells a prospective new client of the slow and eventual degradation of the marriage until Oliver finds himself pissing in his wife's fish in what is some of the best but dark comedy I have ever seen and possibly the most enjoyable divorce film I have ever watched.

And the clothes are wonderful. Michael Douglas does a three piece so well in this film with a longer collar and lower notched lapel often in a more generous cut both in terms of the size of the lapels and in the shoulders. He is, when at work, impeccably dressed in a higher stand windsor collar and a small dimpled four in hand silk neck tie in a jacquard woven silk.

But it is the waist coat, something so few men do in Australia and which so few men do well these days anywhere, which sets off the suits and gives him a presence that befits his position as a senior partner in a law firm.

The use of costume in this film only heightens the fall from grace as the breakdown of his marriage becomes so vitriolic that he resorts to wearing his white tie tuxedo with a silk top hat and bow tie on top of a t shirt to venture into his wife's dinner party, throwing his snotty tissue in the soup bowl before announcing that he will then go into the kitchen to piss on their fish.

If you haven't watched the The War Of The Roses, you should. It's a killer comedy (black comedy?) and in between the entertainingly toxic relationship that builds you will enjoy all the fashion which, in my opinion, has not dated one iota.












Monday, April 15, 2019

The Great Pleasures Of This Job - Meeting Your Eccentric Customers


In eleven years we have generated relationships with customers all around the world and I have met up with them in cities such as Milan, New York and Paris. It is a great pleasure to meet them - they are always different and seldom do they not surprise me. The last customer I caught up with was Phillip Carmody in Melbourne. He is a school teacher specialising in music and when I saw him standing there in a bowler hat I thought 'no, that can't be him'. We'd spoken on the phone but I'd never managed to get an image of him. He has a radio announcers style of voice, one which did not befit the eccentric tartan suited bow tie wearing beard loving bowler hatting man in front of me. And what a pleasure it was to sit down and just talk. Such a pleasure and I am so glad he let me take this photo of him. Mission documented. Now to the next eccentric!