I recently got chance to go and have a look around a Press Event where Togs & Clogs previewed there top brands. The event was held in the Northern Lights Agency based in the heart of Manchester. I was really nice to see the latest collections from such brands as Armor-lux, Farah Vintage and a highlight for me was seeing the latest Togs % Clogs / Grenson G-Lab. You can see a nice little video Hypebeast put together here - http://hypebeast.com/2013/8/process-crafting-the-togs-clogs-x-grenson-g-lab-archie
Also featured was the latest collaboration with Armor-lux and Nigel Cabourn. Using the Original breton stripe, Nigel has worked alongside Armor-lux to create a trademark Cabourn heritage feel garment.
I also caught up with JP from Togs & Clogs and got his thoughts on the event and the brands featured.
'Northern Lights Agency was formed 10 years ago by Len Hamilton and Nigel Eley, who met whilst working in the Fashion industry; where both had started off gaining valuable experience in retail, then subsequently became Buyers for Size and Flannels respectively. They were two of the first people to bring Original Penguin in to the UK, which to this day is a brand that they sell to retailers in the North of England. The agency now has a wide range of Brands within its portfolio, from very commercially established brands like Original Penguin, Farah Vintage and Humor to niche or more premium tiered brands Like Armor-lux, Marshall Artist, Anerkjendt, Ransom and Maians Footwear and this reflects the mix of their commercial understanding of the industry, with their personal love of fashion, design, quality of product and their own refined tastes.
2 years ago Len and Nigel, along with Tom Summerfield who worked as a Sales Agent at Northern Lights, decided to set up an online Menswear and Lifestyle retailers called Togs + Clogs ( www.togsandclogs.com ), believing that their was a bit of an niche in the Market to combine the two sectors and allow guys like themselves or people they knew, to buy everything they wanted under one roof so to speak, and again using the combination of their industry experience and wider interests, along with Tom’s understanding of web development and social media platforms to help drive such a business. Over the last two years much of Togs + Clogs evolution has been organic, and everything from the buying, to photographing products and packing boxes is done in house. Creatively they have a very small team of like minded individuals and have found that this has worked well, and hopefully the collection of personalities and enjoyment they have working on creative projects such as the on-line look books is evident and in part gives the site its own personality and identity that makes it a little different from its competitors.
So that’s the two established sides to the business, but there are also plans to become distributors as well as sales agents of some of the brands in the Agency Portfolio, so watch this space!
I suppose the point of the press day apart from to gain some PR for both parts of the business, was to allow people who may be interested in any part what the guys do, to come and see this from their own point of view, ask questions about the guys experience of the Fashion Industry and learn about a side of it that many people don’t even know exists. Also, aside from what goes on here, we thought that from a bloggers point of view, being able to have access to clothing collections that wont hit the shops for another six months, and the space that this happens in is pretty cool… Although you are probably better off commenting on that.'