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Australian Members

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by earthdragon, Nov 18, 2008.

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  1. DartagnanRed

    DartagnanRed Senior member

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    I cannot believe I am saying this, but I think RL under Oroton was actually better than RL under RL Corp as now. RL Corp is destroying the brand in Australia.

    Prior to ranting, I should mention I have not seen what has happened to the Melbourne store (I assume it's still the best one). I have seen several Myer/DJs concessions, the QVB store, the Brisbane store and the Bondi Junction store. Under Oroton most stores were a mix of absolute crap (think big pony three tone mesh polos) and fantastic, albeit pricey when not on sale stuff like some Corneliani jackets and trousers. Now everything's just mediocre. The entire store is like a concept store, filled with aspirational but impractical pieces like a full range in Black and White, with everything crested and slightly over-designed. The mannequins in the QVB store are covered in rowing sportswear. There's borrowing elements and themes for a design (eg a few embroidered oars on a varsity jacket), and then there's what RL have done: cotton jumpers covered in "RALPH LAUREN ROWING CLUB" with thick white crossed oars on the back. How many people are seriously going to buy that? You'd think that maybe it's just an aspirational/tone setting piece out the front, but the entire store is like that. The colour range is either straight black and white, or its orange, purple, lime green and electric blue all at the same frickin' time. Oh yeah, STOP trying to make RLX happen Ralph Lauren. ITS NOT GOING TO HAPPEN. RLX should be a little corner in the back of the store with 2 orange high vis jackets, not taking pride and place.

    The suits are gone (they were never marketed properly and were priced wrong to begin with) and there's a couple of Corneliani jackets left (eg maybe 2 in the store, both are some strange flax/wool blend in brown or plaid). There. are. no. basics. left. Plain navy sportscoat? Why would you want that when you can have a Chinese made blue jacket with printed palm trees for $499? Likely RL reponse: "It's called fashion, idiot, you wouldn't know".

    Everything store-wide has been marked up, except for polos and oxfords interestingly, which have come down slightly. They used to be quite expensive, but everyone bought on sale anyway. There will be fewer sales now, and when there are sales they'll be 20% off instead of the 50-60% off they used to be.

    I was quite optimistic when I originally found out about the licence change. As you can probably tell, I am quite passionate because I love the RL brands, the concept and the business model. I just wanted some of the amazing things I saw they had overseas. I spoke to similarly optimistic staff prior to the move (one of whom at DJs looks like he's been fired, likely because he was too old and didn't fit the Hollister/Abercrombie-style young, attractice and useless staff model that RL seems to be going for.) But the change never happened. The footwear line never came (again, I don't know about Melbourne), no C&J shell in Australia that's for sure (not that there'd be a market for it unfortunately). The suiting line wasn't expanded, it was cut entirely. The line I thought would work best in Australia (Rugby) got cut globally. The only improvement I can truly see has been womenswear, not that it'll do them any good though because no young girl would be seen in RL after the horrible reputation Oroton gave it.

    Worst of all, again in HK, I visited the brand new RL store. It was hands down, the most amazing store I have been into. Three levels, one dedicated to PRL, one to Black Label, one to Purple Label. There may have been >100 different suiting and jacketing styles in the store. There was a full adjoining footwear room the size of the entire QVB store. The staff were passionate, and the store was lined with things Mr Ralph Lauren loved: models of ferraris, marble chess sets, paintings etc.

    Obviously Australia can never have something like this due to a smaller, crappier market, but if RL could do 1/10th of what they have done in HK here, I would be a happy man. I used to buy some small but quality item from RL every few months (I'm poor). Since RL took over the licence I have bought nothing, indeed I walk out of the store each time pissed off.

    RL Australia: get your shit together.
     
    1 person likes this.
  2. Petepan

    Petepan Senior member

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    ^^^ Marlows were available in the Chatswood shop only.
     
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  3. DartagnanRed

    DartagnanRed Senior member

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    Not at all, I have bought multiple CT and TM Lewin shirts, they are good, not great, but very affordable options. (TM>CT in my experience).

    I was just trying to describe the Aussie shirt market. The average bloke sees TML/CT as being some of the best shirts out there and will actively seek them out, as they will do with Brooks Brothers.

    I wasn't being condescending about these brands at all (except MJ Bale shirts-they are shit, I have bought two and regret it), in fact I was using them as an example of how the Aussie shirt market is actually larger and more evolved than pretty much everything else and this is why BB will survive.
     
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  4. DartagnanRed

    DartagnanRed Senior member

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    Really? Recently?
     
  5. Geoffrey Firmin

    Geoffrey Firmin Senior member

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    Location:
    South West of the Black Stump
    

    In September 1939 my father and his brother rode from Roma to Brisbane to enlist in the AIF his brother signed up and the recruiting sergeant knocked my father back as he didn't turn 21 till the end of the month. They then sold the horses and bought a motorbike and rode to Sydney by the time they got there he was 21 and he enlisted at Vic barracks. What I don't understand seeing as I have read of it so often in history and fiction books is why the recruiter didn't say ' come back tomorrow when your 21'
     
  6. JimmyHoffa

    JimmyHoffa Senior member

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    Incredible war stories from everyone. Very inspiring.
     
  7. The Ernesto

    The Ernesto Senior member

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    Now that is customer feedback.
     
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  8. ben21652

    ben21652 Member

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    I have bought a pair of suede single monk from them (not mto). The shoes are made very well and the price is reasonable.
     
  9. Henry Carter

    Henry Carter Senior member Affiliate Vendor

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    On the Monaro, NSW.
    
    FWIW Matt, I take my DSLR out fly fishing with me quite a bit, mostly when water levels are low in summer/autumn and the chances of falling in are negligible. I just strap it accross my body away and don't find it impedes anything, even casting. It does only have a standard size lens on it though.
     
  10. Geoffrey Firmin

    Geoffrey Firmin Senior member

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    Having taught photography at University to both 1st and 2nd year the best advice I gave my students was to just shoot images, this was still with film and processing and if your lucky you would get 2 images on a roll of 24. With digital its a lot easier to learn framing and composition its like being in a narrative and every so often you are confronted with an image that has an entry and exit point, in other words something happened prior to taking the photo and then something continues after the photo is taken. Its a mind set and then its just a case of shoot and shoot again, the more you take the better your eye gets.

    I spent the past six years taking photos of junior rugby matches the first were so, so then it dawned on me that I had to get into the rhythm of the play and anticipate the shots, knowing Rugby helped and it produced some good images over the years but essentially it was the same narrative mind set at work.

    These days I avoid photoshop and just crop to get the image in tighter, because with digital I can snap away and review immediately and most of the time I have just been using the iphone5 camera over my Cannon. There are a couple of good books worth reading I could recommend, not technical but dealing with subject and approach also just looking at images and working through the composition seeing what works and what doesn't PM if you want the details.
     
  11. Gerry Nelson

    Gerry Nelson Senior member

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    Melbourne, Australia
    I heartily recommend the Sony RX100 - pretty much all you will need in a compact camera for a long while. Portability is key for me and it fits in my jacket pocket with no problem and the quality is fantastic. I can just focus on the framing, composition, etc. The shots in my blog for the past year have all been with the RX100.
     
    1 person likes this.
  12. ben21652

    ben21652 Member

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    I have bought a pair of suede single monk from them (not mto). The shoes are made very well and the price is reasonable.
     
  13. couldnthaveknow

    couldnthaveknow Senior member

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    Hey mate no harm done, I was joking - you are quite right, there's no way BB would come to Australia shirts first if they didn't think it would work. And for CT and TM Lewin shirts, to be honest I buy them because their iron free is pretty good, and between working and exercising and the occassional social engagement I just don't have the time to iron a nice shirt. Pretty blasphemous on a menswear board but, I'm a practical guy!

    Ok I see... the Ricoh is a good acmera but probably more suitable as a secondary shooter. The main reason is it has a fixed focal length of 28mm - so in other words no zoom. Most people will eventually level up to prime lenses (ones with no zoom), but its not an ideal starting point especially for a walk about.

    With a lot of the mirrorless, like the olympus pen, sony nex, if you put it next to the canon g12 (or G1X if you have money for that) you will see that the key difference is the number of controls and dials the g12 or G1X has. This is actually its main advantage. The reason its difficult to get stunning shots on a point and shoot is, even though the camera sensor is physically capable of takign the photo, the camera lacks the ability to control all aspects of the imaging process, in order to get that kind of output.

    In this way, the NEX and Pens etc are 'advanced point and shoots' in my opinion. Indeed, what you find on a lot of advanced camera bodies is really extensive manual controls - 1 dial for everything. This is the main reason I'm goign to go with the canon G series (12 and up, to G1X which is the newest) as my prime recommendation.

    The other thing is - the mirrorless cameras look small but the lense on them is actually quite large. Its not very pocketable. The G1X isn't small either but it doesnt have a massive protruding lens, so you can stick it into a coat pocket.

    For a spot of inspiration, check this out. This is a review of the G9, this is the kind of quality you can get
    http://www.luminous-landscape.com/reviews/cameras/G9-Japan.shtml

    in terms of second hand, I wouldn't recommend cameras second hand because the actuator that flips the mirror up - that thing has a limited life. Probably between 100k to 150k shots. If it breaks it costs quite a bit to fix. Lenses, yep, definitely second hand because glass is glass, but not so much for camera bodies.

    Having said all that, in terms of recommendations:

    New - theres only one other I'd throw in there and its the Fuji X20. This is a retro styled camera, probably not as well rounded as a canon G series but very interesting to shoot with.

    second hand - Leica. When it comes to state of the art quality, Leica is the shiz. Keep your eyes wide open (cos they're super hard to find) for well priced 2nd hand D-Lux 6 as the most well built point and shoot with the best lens, or, the Leica X2. The lens on this is at least DSLR level, if not better - but theres no zoom (which is needed for high quality glass).
     
  14. Oli2012

    Oli2012 Senior member

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    Sydney, Australia
    Semantics.

    I wouldn't recommend RM Williams anymore - it could be done when I bought them for $325 and got a free wallet with them but $450 to buy a boot that Kevin Rudd wears is too much for most new SF members.

    I feel the same about Double Monk - C&J are great shoes but $550 is a lot to blow on a pair of shoes in the view of most Aussie males, let alone when you figure in polish, conditioner, shoe trees, a topy and the reality they'll need a second pair to rotate with.

    A bricks and mortar Loake store would work though - its not so much of a stretch from a Florsheim to a Loake.

    IMO TM Lewin and CT represent the best value point of RTW shirting. Anymore and you're better off going M2M.

    MJ Bale has been horrendous. I bought the Adrians are year ago and the Murrays a few months back, but its wading through a sea of 'super slim' crap now.
     
  15. joiji

    joiji Senior member

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    Don't we have Loake in B&M for around $350-450? Can't say I agree with you that isn't a significant step up from a Florsheim for $~150.
     
  16. Romp

    Romp Senior member

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    Sydney? Melbourne?
    I still think Carmina are best value shoes around. $400 delivered and I prefer them over CJ handgrade
     
  17. LonerMatt

    LonerMatt Senior member

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    Melbourne, Australia
    Very good camera recommendations - will look further.

    Romp - seriously starting to believe you re: Carminas!
     
  18. Foxhound

    Foxhound Senior member

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    Can't try them on in Australia.

    Henry Bucks in Melbourne carry the Loake 1880 range as well as Church's.
     
  19. Oli2012

    Oli2012 Senior member

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    I thought the 'without the ridiculous mark up' was implied. I'd happily pay $50 more than online stores to try a shoe on.
     
  20. Plestor

    Plestor Senior member

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    Loake 1880 is like 200£ now these days (i.e. 300-350 shipped).

    Meister when I talked to them in august they seem to want to get out of them due to fit issues. Melbourne members can confirm on deny.
     
    Last edited: Nov 11, 2013
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