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

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Friday, November 29, 2013

What Ben Wore

I am so happy when one of my Canadian customer's shares insights as to how we assembles his clothes. You may remember Ben Pearson writing in about his Madras jacket in Vancouver. Well, below I tried to re-create the outfit he explained to me last week that he put together. I hope I did it justice.

Hello Le Noeud Papillon,

As you can well imagine, I consider myself to be something of a menswear devotee. But I find that it's rare that I come up with an outfit that I truly feel proud of.

Today was one of those days. I wore a dark burgundy suit -- quite far from the norm, which I like. I felt like indulging myself, so I paired it with a light grey Canclini shirt from Camiseria Burgos in Madrid, complete with sterling silver collar stays. 

For my neckwear I chose your superlative Antoni bow, which I have adored ever since I got it. And my pocket square I confess I've forgotten the name of, but it was your navy with white piping number (I chose to hide the piping on this occasion). To continue the theme of opulence, I wore a pair of charcoal cashmere socks. 

Now, what could truly complete such an outfit and really take it from good to great? The Everett scarf. I've been dying to try it out ever since I acquired it a couple months ago, and Nicholas, I have to tell you: it is surely one of the finest things I own. I have some things that are more expensive, some even rarer (though I know you made but a handful of scarves), but nothing as prestigious. Wearing it, I felt like I could have knocked out Mike Tyson in his best day. It's just such a great feeling -- and that's why I care so much about this subject.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Maxim, Never Be Afraid Of Black Tie Again.... A Grosgrain And Silk Satin 'Reverse Duo' Bow Tie From Le Noeud Papillon

You are probably wondering why we are doing another post about reverse duo bow ties.... And I could tell you a big long story about the positives of getting two bow ties in one, but that might bore you. So let me be brief. Until now we have done mostly the reverse duos in order to make it possible to tie yourself our velvet bow ties. But it struck me recently, about the same time we received a fresh shipment of grosgrain, that there are basically two types of facings that a tuxedo comes with. Either a grosgrain silk or else a satin silk. These are the most prevalent finishes for a tuxedo across nearly every major brand in the world. But, as we all do from time to time, we decide one day to get a new tuxedo and it has the opposite silk facing we had previously to the last tuxedo we purchased. Enter Maxim. Maxim is the perfect bow tie to hold for years and hand over to your children or their children. Maxim is half grosgrain silk, half satin silk. It can be tied to reveal the half centre knot, or it can be tied flat so you can't see the contrast at all. It's all up to you, but it gives you the versatility to go shopping for a new tuxedo knowing that you have your bow tie covered no matter what the outcome. Shop it now:

Monday, November 25, 2013

This Is Daniel, Classically Dressed In Black Tie

This is Daniel. He came past the Studio last week because he wasn't sure about what bow tie he wanted and he wanted to rummage through a selection of silks. This bow tie was his final choice - it's our 'Modified Butterfly'. I was once told by my high school music teacher, a certain Mr. Bremo, that Mozart's manuscripts were analysed under a magnifying glass. They noted that on one note Mozart had cut and pasted over the the note so they began to peel back the folds layer by layer. He had tried 9 different notes before settling on the first one he chose. It's hard to go back in time and verify whether that high school teacher was telling the truth, but it certainly makes for a good anecdote and it's point being that this was certainly how Daniel came to find the right bow tie. He started first at this bow tie, then moved to velvet, grosgrain, half and half's, changed shape to diamond points, batwings and large butterflies, moved to colour, moved to contrast before finally settling on the first bow he was recommended. Nevertheless, this is the customer service one can enjoy when you book an appointment at the new Studio. Book now.

Silk Design Competition, Entrant #1, David Meisenburg, USA

I have a funny feeling that this silk design will be a finalist. I really love this design by David Meisenburg. David resides in the United States. He is an avid bow tie collector and has been featured on this blog before but my guess is that soon he will be opening his own bow tie business! Well done David, this is extremely impressive.

Friday, November 22, 2013

Jessica Hart Wears Le Noeud Papillon Bow Tie For The Front Cover Of This Year's GQ Men Of The Year Awards

Jessica Hart wears Le Noeud Papillon 'Modified Butterfly' bow tie -

Le Noeud Papillon Bow Tie Boutique Studio Opening - Thursday 21st November 2013

The Hendrick's sponsored opening of the boutique Studio last night was just perfect. Mostly family and friends and long term supporters of Le Noeud Papilllon, a lovely bartender called Sebastian who made a special cocktail called a Pompier and the best chicken and smoked salmon finger sandwiches courtesy of my partner's mother. The night was filled with great music. We played Sidney Bechet's 'Si tu vois ma mere', Cole Porter's 'Anything Goes', Ella Fitzgerald covering 'It's De-Lovely', Jon Hendricks singing 'Watermelon Man' live at The Trident Club, U Plava Zoru by Pink Martini, La Mer by Vance Joy, High Society Calypso by Louis Armstrong and many many more great classic songs. 

It was a lovely way to break in a new space. Thank you to all those that turned up. 

Matthew Cookson slippers, Carlo Riva bolts of fabrics and I Am Dandy book by Rose Callahan

Showing off some of the workmanship we achieve with Sydney's workrooms

Men of business - The Curran brothers.

I cannot take credit for this, the room was styled by Cameron Carter of Carter PR and it was done very nicely.
Hayden, left, and you know who, right

The Most Practical Summer Shirt For The Knock About Aussie

This customer of mine, he really should be a model with his Scottish salt and pepper good looks, but being Australian and too tough for all that, he works in demolitions. Which is why he needs a practical shirt. A few years ago he told me that he wore pop-over shirts religiously and had a few dozen made in a very sturdy workwear cotton that he could wear on building sites. However, his love of pop-overs then creeped into his extra-curricular time and he found himself drinking coffee on a Saturday in the same said shirt. So, his request was to make a pop-over in a more luxurious fabric for the weekend. He dropped past yesterday to pick these beauties up. They are made of Canclini and Monti shirting cottons and they give him the flexibility to visit a worksite in the afternoon, then put a blazer on and head out for dinner. For the knock-about Australian I think this is just about the best shirt around. Would you like to make some for yourself?

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Hendrick's G & T's Plus A New Pompier Cocktail And Le Noeud Papillon's New Studio Now Open

Fingers crossed tomorrow we won't have a tornado like was seen in northern Sydney last week, we will avoid torrential rain, no bushfires will smoke the city out and there'll be no gusts of winds lifting up the ladies dresses (or will there be!). If all goes to plan, tomorrow night will be an intimate enjoyable event with very few media and just good friends and customers around to say hello to the new studio. We look forward to seeing you if you RSVP'd. If not, stop past some other time to see what we're working on. Over the coming weeks we have a few new projects that will hopefully start to lift off the ground and take shape. Everything just takes time to create, including our little studio below. Regards, LNP

The new LNP Studio, now serving individual customers by appointment for shirts, bow ties, ties, smoking jackets and more.

Monday, November 18, 2013

Guerreisms Showing Us The Way Forward

Guerreisms for me is the best blog for emerging male trends of the 'uber' young tailored look set. If you don't already browse Guerreisms then I recommend you put it in your RSS and at least have a look once every two months. Below you will see some of the looks I think are going to be seen more in menswear and I will explain why.

Gold buttons on double breasted. Contrast print pants. Why do I think this will trend? Because it is a way of merging your tailored world with your modern urban needs. It is a kind of fusion of Old World and New World. With respect to gold buttons, gold has been off the menu for so long and yet it provides some of the most striking contrast to navy that really shows off the navy jacket a lot more. Notice also the puffed up triangle pocket square. I think this is also a nice look. 

This look has a certain 'Thomas Crown Affair' feel to it. It's a relaxed day wear approach. A gingham red shirt, a tan peaked lapel double breasted jacket with cream trousers. I would especially recommend this look for Australian men for this summer. 

This is one of the coolest looks I have seen in some time. In this ensemble it is the details that really get me. From the lining of the jacket, the herringbone subdued tones in the jacket or the height of the shirring in the shoulders. Then of course you will note the detail to the pants waist band which is electricity and the plysse grandpa collar shirt. This man is in possession of one of the best looks I have seen in 2013.

I recommend the look on the left for anyone attending a garden party in December in Sydney. This is a great mishmash of colours and patterns but somehow it works for me. Navy trousers, a cream waistcoat, a striped notched lapel jacket. I definitely think this look could be a future hit, allowing people to mix and match items from their collection and also giving you a chance to have one pastel for example, but without overdoing it on the whole thing. 

Friday, November 15, 2013

An Interview With A Realist Artist - Erling Steen, Copenhagen, Denmark

I came across Erling Steen whilst I was searching the colour midnight blue and looking for yachts that would give me an indication of the look I wanted for my store front. I clicked through to his blog and I discovered wonderful treasures that I would love to hang on my walls one day. Unlike most of the art I have collected to date, Erling Steen is a realist artist and I've always been fascinated by artists that can recreate visually what we see with our own eyes. That might sound ridiculous but when I attempted to be artistic at high school the one thing I always felt was elusive for myself was trying to get something to look as authentic as a photograph but with it's own character. This has then got me into hot water with some of my arty friends who don't like it when I question whether an artist has the discipline to create realistic drawings before moving into abstraction. So, when you finally find an artist who can do that which you never could do yourself, you find yourself itching to start up a conversation. See more of Erling's work here

Erling, when you sit down to paint something realistically it must be a lot more disciplined and finer in detail than if you were to paint something in an abstract manner. What are some of these considerations that you might think about prior to beginning a new canvas?

With my generation art schools and the  traditional  method of first learning to draw from nature became rather unpopular and many young artists  started out  painting abstract or semi-figurative  with  none or only superficial  traditional training.  Though figuration was,  so to speak,  in the  air I basically first and foremost learned to give “form” to abstract shapes on the canvas and “balancing”  the painting became the dominant issue.
So I always start a painting by sketching up abstract shapes that somewhat resemble the objects that I have chosen to paint because the main issue is the “balancing”, the “geometry of painting”, which has to be at least correct otherwise the painting will only be a nuisance to look at.
To paint a bottle and a glass is the easy part but equally important because it supplies the painting with “more to look at” with “flesh on the bone”.  I do favor  rather minimalist painting but the ideas that you get from watching nature are so much more abundant than what the abstract painter can squeeze out of his head.

Mouton Rothschild 2000 bottle, oil painting on canvas 33x41cm, 2012

Light sources are obviously very important when it comes to painting your subject matter, can you tell us about the constraints relating to light and how you use it to your advantage when painting stills and when painting human subjects?

As the objects in the still-life's must be in accordance with gravity and stand firmly on a support the light must be authentic coming from a defined source and having the feeling of daylight, otherwise the painting will fall into the categories of either surrealism or cubism and those are categories for others, not for me. For that reason I only paint in daylight.
Although I am a studio painter the light outside the studio, not only as it comes through the studio window, but also as experienced in the streets or by a walk along the coast  has a significant influence on tone, light and color of the paintings.
In recent years I have had the privilege of working in two studios in two different places in Europe with exceptionally strong and beautiful light, one in southern France not far from where impressionism was born and one in a small fishing village north of Copenhagen a few kilometers from where the Danish 19th century painters that later became the legendary Skagen painters first came looking for light conditions equal to those of southern France.
You may have noticed that all my still- life's have the light coming from the left! The reason is that I am right handed and if the light was coming from the right my hand, while painting,  would cast a shadow over the canvas and distort the light. The authenticity of the angle and source of  light is very important.
With the portraits there is a major difference as I, at an early date, found out that, because of this balancing thing, I could not have the model in the studio at some crucial moments while creating the painting so my figures are based on a mix of drawings and photos, but still the light has to be authentic.

  Lighthouse, oil on canvas 41x53cm, 1988. Collection of the artist.

Two glasses, oil painting on panel 30x40cm, 2010

Recently I have noted how much fabric plays a role in great artists subjects. Draping and cloaking of fabric as well as using it to convey movement and energy is really a fascinating aspect of art for me. I noticed, for example, that you have used velvet kerchiefs in some of your portraits. Can you tell me about your own experience of using fabrics in art and how you set about painting them?

Draperies and folds has always been an occasion to indulge in purely abstract painting in a covert sort of way and it is also a good example of how looking on nature will supply you with a lot more than you can squeeze from your head.   With the advent of oil painting  very sophisticated and impressive modulations of light and shadow  became possible which can add an abundance of detail to a painting and put “flesh on the bone” so to speak.
I paint folds now and then and usually do it with three shades of color on three brushes and then accentuate the highlights and the deepest shadows.

The science-fiction reader 1983

I recently wrote something about negative spaces but I am not entirely sure that I understand  what they are. Can you explain in your own words what is a negative space and how do you use these spaces to convey messages or to deliver a tone or feeling to your art work?

I am not quite sure what you mean by negative spaces? It sounds a bit like art critic talk? But I do of course come to think of my monochrome black backgrounds which I think are rooted in modernism. I see my black backgrounds somewhat like Piet Mondrian's grey backgrounds.
I mentioned before that I am a bit of a minimalist and I am very fascinated by what you do not see, what is not visible. Black is a color, but a color that you do not see, it is usually red or yellow but can also be blue or green but you only experience its color through the influence it has on the visible colors.
Another thing you don't see in most of my paintings is the ground plane, but it is there mirrored in ellipses and angles on top of bottles, glasses and other objects.
And then of course the black gives my paintings maximum contrast.  

I have always admired artists who have more than one discipline. Recently I was in the Blue Mountains outside of Sydney, visiting the home of Norman Lindsay, and I noted that he was across many disciplines of art and craft, from model ship building, to cartoons, etchings, paintings and sculpture. Do you also indulge in any other disciplines of creativity?

In the mid seventies my painting began to take off in a promising direction and as I felt comfortable and at ease with it I began to look around for some other activity because I knew from my own experience as well as from art history that the process of painting demands a certain degree of distraction, you can not sit there looking at your own painting all the time, so I joined a fencing club and embarked on a life long adventure  in this discipline. It was my luck that eastern Europe started to fall apart at that time and world class fencing masters from Poland came as refugees to Denmark. As I was over 30 years old when I started fencing a competitive career on even a moderate level was out of the question so after the first fifteen years in fencing I became a coach.
The highlight of my fencing career was the few years that I had the privilege of coaching Pernille Svarre, World Champion in Modern Pentathlon in 2000.

Some years ago I got myself a camera to take photos of my paintings for publishing on the internet but could not help pointing the camera in all kinds of directions. Today I have a small pocket camera that I carry with me all the time and the results are as you can see on my photo blog.

Who are some of the painters that you admire and of these which one do you think made the greatest contribution to art?

Among my idols are René Magritte, Piet Mondrian, Juan Gris, Vilhelm Hammershoi, Anna Ancher, Chardin, Edward Hopper, Cezanne, Jan van Huysum, Rachel Ruysch, Jan Vermeer, Jan van Eyck,  Giorgio Morandi, Andrew Wyeth, just to mention a few.
The direct inspiration and influence come from painters like Luis Melendez, Willem Kalf, Juan Sanchez Cotan and the two paintings in the Louvre by Baugain.
The greatest contribution to art we have to divide between the two Jan’s, Vermeer and Van Eyck.

Self-portrait 1985

I would venture to say that some of your portrait paintings have a ‘Nordic austerity’ to them. Would you be able to explain what my constitute this feeling and how you give across this feeling as you paint your art?

Of course I am born and raised in a Nordic Lutheran country but Denmark never was that austere but rather liberal minded so I think it mainly comes from the Flemish so called primitives and their way of “constructing” portraits in the less flexible egg tempera medium. The more realistic portraits that come with Rembrandt and the pure oil/resin technique  and which evolve into the typical salon “naturalistic” portrait in the 19th century are in my opinion less interesting and also more redundant seen in relation to photography.
So perhaps the “austerity” is a result of  “back to the roots” of a more “constructed”  figure painting.

Self-portrait 1982

Do you think all young artists should be taught the discipline or realist artistic expression before they develop their skills for abstract expression or do you think that artists should gravitate to this area of art only if it pleases them?

I think that learning to give form to abstract shapes first  is a major step forward in the disciplines of painting and sculpture  and  that it somehow mirrors a major step forward for civilization.
It is a problem with abstract painting that it is contaminated with iconoclasm and it is a problem with hyperrealism that it has a tendency to drown out “form” but between purely abstract and excessive hyperrealism there are an abundance of possibilities for painters and  sculptors.

M/Y Al Mirqab, oil painting on canvas 81x65cm, 2010

When They Begin The Beguine

Well, we have the formal opening next Thursday but we are ready to serve your needs from today moving forward. The studio is intended to be a place where individuals come to be served. Whether you need an exotic jacket made of wool or silk, a bow tie, a matching bow tie and vest, a shirt, a smoking jacket, some slippers, a cashmere robe, a tie, a scarf, a pocket square - we have you covered for these items. We would like it to be a place where you are given a chance to touch and feel fabrics, choose carefully, spend some time talking about your own style and hopefully once we are done, we will get moving to turn your ideas into a reality. The only catch is that it is by appointment only. We look forward to serving you and hope that you get a chance to stop by in the near future, or after Christmas when it will be a little more quiet.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013


Hello Blog Readers,

I have just today compacted the last of the Bresciani socks and we are overloaded with size 12 in long socks. That is, the traditional over the calf variety for a foot that takes a 10 1/2 -12 USA, a UK 9-10 or an EU 43-44. If this is your size shoe then these socks are for you. They are in a wide variety of colours from yellow, green, navy, orange, teal, burgundy, purple etc etc. I need to clear them off ASAP. The socks regular price is $49.95AUD but I will consider any offer put forward to me sent to bow at le noeud papillon dot com. Please include your name and your shipping address and we will respond ASAP.

Minimum order is 5 pairs of socks. RRP is usually $249.75. This offer is first come first served. That is, if you order first, you get the best pick of the stock and you make requests which we may be able to fill.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Here Is What I Mean About The Trousers.... AND... Buying Trousers For Overweight Or Oversized Men

Following on from my previous thread about the window pane check I thought I ought to explain in detail what I meant about the trousers. So often men dress with low cut jeans or trousers which have the problem of a) running the risk of showing rear cleavage if you bend over too often and b) letting your stomach / waist line hang over your pantaloonies.

Nobody wants to see a man in my shape show either of these potential wardrobe malfunctions and there is a very simple way to overcome it. a) you raise the waist line in the trousers and come up higher towards your belly button by increasing the rise and b) increasing the size of the waist band. a) is important because as men age they can no longer expect to be as appealing in skinny pants as they were in their 20's and b) is delightful because it acts almost like a naturally embedded cummerbund to hold you in. 

I cannot take credit for increasing the waist band to 3 inches. Credit is due to the design team at Zegna for showing off their designs in April at the Zegna Wool Awards in Sydney and also to pioneer Lucca Rubinacci who has been sporting similar styled trousers (albeit much more elaborate) for the last two years. These small changes in designs are extremely functional for larger men.

And whilst we are on the topic of larger men....This week I was in the city because I needed to replace some jeans which I absolutely adored. The brand was called Isaia and I had picked them up on sale about 6 months ago. The size on the inside of the trousers said 40 /56. I understood this to be 40 inches 'AMERICAN' or '56' European. I tried on three pairs in this exact same sizing tag at VOI in Sydney and none fit me. I went to David Jones and again I was presented with the same problem. I was told that the highest Nudie goes to is a size 38 and that they usually sell out very quickly. The same was said of Levis. The Mavi jeans were not stocked in 38. As far as I knew, Ksube was the same. When I confronted the sales team they said 'you have to go to High And Mighty '. 

There are two ways for retailers to deal with larger sized clients. Either they force their customers to lose weight (not a bad thing and I am working on it regardless) or else they adapt to the market place. Something tells me that if every time you put a 38 on the shelf some rather jolly chap like me snaps them up, then perhaps it's time to take heed and cash in on people who eat too many hamburgers. If you also find it very difficult to find larger sizes and know where one might 'go where everybody knows your name' (Cheers reference), then leave a comment below. It would be an absolutely stellar post if we could give a guide to larger men as to where they can go to purchase good clothes either physically or on the web.

The Sloane Ranger Comes To Town

You can click on this image to enlarge it and you will be able to see it a little better. This is my latest addition to the family. Continuing on in the Tom Ford wide peaked lapel fashion, I worked with a sturdy wool from Holland & Sherry. Simon Rice showed me the #692047 wool from the "Sloane Square" wool bunch. It was the kind of subtle box check I wanted to play with in the hope that I might get an extra two seasons out of it. The box check, in my opinion, has it's sun setting soon. So to go an all out contrast might reduce the longevity of this suit which has had so much careful work done that it would be an absolute waste to make it merely for one season.

For the trousers, given that I am a larger than usual sized man, I decided to experiment with a trouser waist band which was 3 inches wide and to increase the rise in the trousers. This was an excellent choice as it has meant that I am now definitely making the transition from 'attempted skinny jeans' look into the 'I accept middle age is approaching' look. By doing this I have also given my stomach a chance to be holstered into the pants to avoid looking like I am spilling over my waist line. This has been a real battle for me over the last three years with tight pants pulling in at the waist and 'pumping' up the tyres because of the pressure. The easiest way to slim yourself is to allow for more in the waist so you aren't putting pressure on your mid region to over-hang.

Of course, I am not offering full suits at the moment. So if you wanted to create something like this you can choose from the following:

Patrick Johnson Tailors
46 Liverpool Street, Paddington, Sydney
+612 9966 7548


Steel Tailors

Narelle Urquhart on 0408 408 557 or email: narelle at 

For The New Studio - Something Special For The Window

When it came time to choosing how to decorate my window display for the new studio I decided that it needed something special to really show off the lustrous and rich Italian silks we wish to display in the window. After a period of deliberation and a few phone calls I got in touch with Mike from Mike's Signs. Mike seemed to think nothing was outside the parameters of his work, which usually makes me nervous when someone talks like this, but in the case of Mike, he seemed to have all the answers. All I knew was that we needed to play around in gold because of the window frames I inherited when I took my lease. 

Two weeks and a few bush fires later, Matt ( from Mike's team ), was ready to come on site. We had been through a number of iterations about which colour blue, what processes, what colours of gold, the level of detail required and so on until I eventually came to the conclusion that if I bothered Mike any more the job might never get done. 

The process was extremely exciting. All the work was created in vector graphics .AI files by myself. Each item was then printed individually by Mike's team within their workroom whilst the metallic pin stripes had to be hand cut individually and placed on a roll. For myself I have always been as fascinated with the process as I have been with the output, so I am going to show you each stage below and tell you a little about it.

1. After cleaning the windows thoroughly, Matt begins to stick down the metallic gold pin stripes

2. Matt prepares the laser cut gold letters to be affixed to the windows

3. Matt carefully places each item on the window

4. Matt now prepared the windows for painting enamel for the backdrop

5. A rich coat of enamel paint is placed on the rear side of the window to provide the desired glazed effect

6. Voila - A new sign is born. 

We are still not yet finished but I envisage that sooner than later we will be able to show you the final product. In the meantime, if you would like to indulge in a thoroughly enjoyable window sign process, consider contacting Mike's Signs here.

Saturday, November 9, 2013

The Dandy Portraits Book Trailer - A Lovely Lovely Little Video

Well I leave you this weekend with the perfect little video on the uniquely dressed men who are the subjects of The Dandy Portraits' 'I am Dandy' . If you haven't already purchased the book, do so before Christmas.

I am Dandy - Book Trailer Video from Rarebit Productions on Vimeo.

Friday, November 8, 2013

Magnus Omme Portrait Series: Mikael Winblad – An Entrepreneur - Malmö, Sweden

Mikael Winblad portrait by photographer Magnus Omme -  Click to enlarge

Mikael Winblad -  Malmö, Sweden - Portrat by Magnus Omme

Mikael is the owner and founder of the concept agency, Ugly Duckling. The company works within cultural and creative spaces.  The portfolio consists of a broad spectrum of projects ranging from nightclubs and fashion events to designing content for the VIP-section at the Swedish Pavilion at The World Exhibition in Shanghai and founding the people casting agency, Epic People.
Mikael is known for his long hair, beard, black jeans, suit jacket and having blurred lines between his business and social life.
Mikael is portrayed in the garden of his newly bought property, a 100-year-old house in Malmö, sipping on a glass of well-aged rum, and  just about to spend his evening at home with his wife and two young kids.
Mikael wears a Le Noeud Papillon limited edition ‘Marcus’ bow tie from our 2012 collection of silks.

See more of Mikael’s entrepreneurial pursuits by following the links below.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

The New Competition Begins - Design A Silk To Be Turned Into A Bow Tie And Named After You

Now Hear This!

The 'Design A Winning Bow Tie Silk'  Competition Is Now Declared Open. Entries close on the 31st December 2013.

What Is This Competition About?

Have you ever dreamed of being involved in the construction of a cloth or garment? We are looking to find dynamic and creative minds willing to apply themselves to the art of designing a silk specifically for a bow tie. The design will be woven on jacquard looms in Italy. The art of designing for jacquard loom silk is that the design must repeat within a small space for a bow tie, it must me three or less colours, it must be unique, eye catching and above all, it must be personal.

All submissions will be in the form of a PDF emailed to bow at le noeud papillon dot com and subsequently they will be loaded as jpeg on the site. We would like each submission to be explained to us. Things such as:

* Who are you, where do you come from and what made you want to join the competition?
* What shape of bow tie best suits this silk?
* What influences played into the design?
* What sort of designs do you enjoy from other companies?
* Was there a period that inspired your design or some reference to popular culture, literature, art?
* What would you like us to call the bow?

The Prizes

The winner will receive $200.00 in cash wired to their nominated account anywhere in the world. Apart from this, the winner will also receive 3 bow ties ($465.00 RRP)  from the limited edition silk we create from their design.

*Please note that the winner will forfeit the property rights to the design as part of the competition. Le Noeud Papillon reserves the right to use the images of each of the submissions and the winning submission within all their marketing channels to help promote the competition. 

Please use this template as a reference on how to layout your design

Let your imagination run wild until you come up with something which expresses what you want to say, in this moment of time and space, something which is relevant to your life and your culture.

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Fabric As A Portal Into The Fourth Dimension

This is going to be such an experimental and non-cohesive blog post. A trip if you will. For the other day I sat with a very interesting woman who explained to me her fascination with fabrics as she rummaged through our silks. "You see", she said, "some believe that staring at fabric can actually remove you from the present and move you into the fourth dimension. The subtle textures, the folds, the shadows, the grains, they all divert us away from our daily thoughts until we are lost in them. I once read that when Aldous Huxley first took mescaline he recorded the process in an interview and the first thing that he was asked was "what are you staring at?" to which Huxley responded "I am looking at the folds of your sleeves".

This was all over a morning coffee and for a moment I felt I was surfing some beam of light as though I was a central character in the final act of Kubrik's '2001: A Space Odyssey'. When I came back to earth I realised that my companion was in many respects right and I had just never noticed it. I too often feel as I look into the grain of fabric, or the negative spaces from the folds in a rich and flowing navy suit that I get lost in the fabric.

So, whilst I don't have a very robust conjecture to make about fabrics and the fourth dimension I would instead like to say that fabric and man's pursuit for deeper understanding for the world around us are totally entwined.

In my opinion there is a thread (pun) between all of the great artists and fabrics. Let's start with Caravaggio's San Gerolamo. In this painting the role of the red fabric and it's negative spaces adds a depth and richness and sets a mood to the painting that perhaps speaks to us as much as the subject.

In another of my favourite paintings, Boticelli's 'Birth Of Venus' notice how the fabric conveys to us the magic of the act of birth of Venus rising out of the sea by an clam shell as the fabric billows from the heavens that bring forth the wind. As much as anything figurative in this artwork, the viewer is drawn to the orgy of sensations relating to the textures and fabrics surrounding the human forms.

Again through Guercino and 'The Raising Of Lazarus' we see the use of fabric as ways to convey hidden messages of feelings, thoughts, spaces and ideas. Why is Jesus cloaked in crimson and navy whereas Lazarus wears white?

Then there is the role of fabric in telling us who the person is and where that person is placed in society. Consider this painting by Robert Peake in his portrait of Henry, Prince Of Wales. The role of fabrics in this painting is to convey completely to us the importance of this man's status and the trappings of his lofty position.

Fabric and textiles are so much more meaningful to us than just 'rags' that we put on ourselves. They are places for us to explore and to get lost in, to excite us, to haunt us, to convey meaning, status or context and to transport us away from our existing conceptions and in some cases, open up our doors of perception.

SAVE THE DATE: 21st November, 2013 - Hendricks Gin and Le Noeud Papillon STUDIO - Exploring Silks And Cottons And Learning How To Tie Your Bow Tie

Well after the longest time I have finally been able to tee up a date with the good people at Hendricks to orchestrate a night where our blog readers, customers and friends can come and see our silks and shirting cottons, see what we're working on, learn how to tie your ties and bow ties, share ideas and enjoy a newly designed Hendricks cocktail. And, for many of you, it will be the first chance to see the custom studio where you can navigate your way through silks and cottons and order your shirts and bow ties to be made.

As the studio is a smaller space, we are limiting the number of people on the guest list to 50. So if you are interested in coming along, email Cameron from Carter Post PR on the details above. Looking forward to meeting you all and sharing a good G&T.

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Dustin - Made For A Private Client In Los Angeles, Now Available On Le Noeud Papillon's Website

This bow tie was designed for a customer in Los Angeles, USA. We decided to put some on the website at as the colours, not being done justice by our in-house photography, are very dynamic and punchy. This bow tie is a statement of luxury and seduction mixed with Old World charm and sophistication. It is a self-tie bow tie and I must admit, there is a little trick to getting the knot to sit like this, which, if you are the lucky purchaser, I will make you a private video so you can see how it gets done. I think this bow would sit particularly well with the actor types in Hollywood that spend their Halloween at somewhere like the playboy mansion.