What makes a sophisticated gent? Is it merely a sharp suit, shined shoes and a fresh haircut, or something deeper? Throughout history we’ve looked up to icons – from Bogart to Brando, Beatty to Beckham – not only for sartorial guidance, but as standard-bearers for substance, character and elegance. When it comes to looking the part of a man of knowledge and culture, passions and pursuits, they clearly had it figured out: It’s about what you do as much as how you look.
But no one has to go it alone. Why not leverage tools that are objects of refinement designed with the urbane in mind? Even better if they can inspire one to achieve his goals and express his personality at the same time.
And in a retail destination such as Raffles City Singapore, it’s a cinch to upgrade yourself (or husbands or dads in your life – Father’s Day is fast approaching, if you catch our drift).
Here’s a guide to what’s essential to manifesting the stylish sophisticate.
Mind the clock, always
Manners maketh man, and being punctual is time-honoured etiquette. The new Montblanc 1858 Geosphere Limited Edition 1858 will do the job splendidly (in two time zones, no less) while adding a touch of class to any ensemble.
These watches take inspiration from the spirit of adventure: Designed based on the colours of a desert landscape, the timepieces commemorate Reinhold Messner’s solo 200km, five-week trek across the Gobi Desert in 2004.
Montblanc 1858 watches were designed and conceived as tool watches. And the Geosphere, a key icon of Montblanc’s 1858 line, features an in-house worldtime complication – perfect for the suave jetsetter. It is powered by the automatic Calibre MB 29.25, and bears two domed turning hemisphere globes at 6 and 12 o’clock, with a rose gold-coated and brown day/night indicator for both the Northern and Southern hemispheres. Super-LumiNova coats the longitude reference meridian, for enhanced legibility, and a second time zone sits at 9 o’clock, a strategically located home time indicator.
Make your mark, literally and figuratively
Being a gentleman is as much about comportment as it is about intentions, and committing those to paper (in your own hand too) sends a powerful message. The new Montblanc Meisterstück Around the World in 80 Days collection is built just for that job. It combines expert writing instruments and accessories with designs inspired by a tale of the Victorian spirit of adventure, chivalry and heroism: Jules Verne’s beloved novel “Around the World in 80 Days”.
The bestseller chronicles intrepid British gentleman Phileas Fogg’s attempt to circumnavigate the globe to win a bet, and his daring exploits along the journey. And the three editions in the collection – Resin Le Grand and Classique, Resin Doué Edition, and Solitaire Edition – feature numerous references to key moments in the story.
Far from being a relic from the pre-internet era, the fountain pen still has a place in today’s society, amid all the screens and styluses that surround us. Besides being a handy tool to have on hand when you need to jot down notes, it’s an expertly engineered ode to writing and literature. Sign documents with a flourish or chronicle your own adventure with an instrument imbued with this much spirit and legacy.
Don’t overlook the details
Keep vital items and other essentials about you, and you’ll be prepared for any situation life throws at you. Brilliant writing instruments deserve handsome accompaniments, and accessories from the Montblanc Meisterstück Around the World in 80 Days collection are the ideal sidekicks. Extending the theme of Phileas Fogg’s Suez Canal-to-Bombay steamship journey, blue is the colour of choice for the leather pen pouch bearing the wave motif, calfskin notebooks embossed with steamships or playing card patterns, and ink of the deepest intensity.
Radiate positive energy
Uplift any space with your presence by exuding confidence and poise, and a scent that mirrors that appearance of refinement is the perfect complement. Penhaligon’s aptly named Sartorial fougere may have an uncommon inspiration – the cutting rooms of Norton & Sons, the famous Saville Row tailor – but its staying power is nothing to laugh at: the iconic scent celebrated its 10th anniversary late last year.
Possessing the olfactory qualities reminiscent of a British gentleman, Sartorial draws on and recreates elements one might find in a proud, storied tailoring business – beeswax that strengthens sewing thread, steam that freshens and presses garments, the metallic scent of fabric scissors – and combines them with head notes of neroli and fresh ginger, heart notes of lavender and leather, and base notes of tonka bean, cedarwood and myrrh.
The modern man keeps it all together, but he doesn’t achieve that by himself; items and accessories that give him a leg up are part of his toolkit. Master leathercrafting atelier Bynd Artisan offers clever creations to get one’s life in order. Its unique Agenda notebook is indispensable for keeping a clear head, with paper sturdy enough to handle fountain pens, a back pocket for small notes and loose items, and a gold or silver gilt edge for an elevated look, all enveloped in natural leatherette material that’s available in 10 colours.
The Token & Key Holder with Lanyard is designed to accommodate the now ubiquitous TraceTogether Tokens and gives the government-issued devices a more sophisticated appearance while protecting them from the elements. (It’s even available in four colours and can be personalised with a name or favourite word.) And the lanyard, which can go around bag handles or your neck, will ensure you’ll never misplace your token.
This article is part of a 12-part series on style, art and culture, published in collaboration with Raffles City.
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