Good evening folks
You lucky, lucky people! Why? You ask…because you get me, @clobbercalm.cal, doing the intro this week? Nope. Although the grammar is a tad better, ey Ben 😉
The reason that you are lucky is that tonight’s clobber-donned bloke is Nick Johannessen aka @welldresseddad and he’s got some cracking insight into what makes him tick. Plus, he’s from Norway so essentially he’s a viking (without all the pillaging obviously 😬) and that’s pretty cool by us!
But seriously, Nick’s creativity with his shots is completely different to anything else out there and you’ve got to appreciate that, surely? Not just because it’s hard to be different on a channel like IG but also that, it speaks volumes of a guy that puts the time into his sartorial passion.
Right, I’m not going to drone on anymore (another plus in having me do the intro 😝) and pass the mic over to Nick…
MEET THE MAN BEHIND THE MENSWEAR
NAME: Nick Johannessen aka @welldresseddad
OCCUPATION: Engineer, programmer & blogger
1. So Why Instagram?
I started posting images to Instagram way back in March 2013, a month after I started the blog at welldresseddad.com. Initially the idea was to promote the fledgling blog, but as time has gone by it’s really taken on a life of it’s own, with lots of keen followers and requiring time to keep up! It’s a great way of meeting people too with either direct or tangential interests, and of course the best feeds can be both inspiring and a great way to discover new things.
2. Why Denim, Boots, Workwear, Ruggedness?
As for many others it’s a case of going for what feels real, stuff with a story, garments that while rarely in fashion are never unfashionable. I expand on this to bring in things like brogues, tweed, mountain parkas, waistcoats and also making my own garments. Just denim and boots can be a little limited, and I may be an outsider in the denim community in actually preferring a fresh pair of raw denims over a worn out pair!
3. What are your thoughts on the rise in popularity of “Instafashion” and the community it is creating?
On the one hand it’s a great way to see what others are doing, watching trends, seeing new stuff from far-flung places, different ways of combining stuf and sharing your own getups, on the other hand it does promote a high level of consumption which is difficult from an environmental and not least financial perspective!
4. Top 3 brands to shop and why?
There’s just so many brands out there that it’s hard to select just three. When it comes to denim I have a lot of love for Companion Denim. Iu is a great guy and the quality of his work is just sublime. Monitaly mountain parkas also take quality to the next level and are my favourites for the cold season. A lot of the time I’m all over the place brand wise though, a brand I thought I’d like forever last month may be totally out in the cold this month. I also find very few brands that manage to stay on top of their game for a long time, or even come up with interesting new pieces over time. Take Nigel Cabourn as an example, some stone cold classics from a few years back, nowadays completely lame, yet Mister Freedom manages to stay fresh and quirky.
5. Where’s your favourite place to shop these brands?
Almost always online, due to not following seasons and not having any good shops locally. I’ll buy stuff (and sell!) through forums, private trades or occasionally even eBay. While I do travel a fair bit, even large towns rarely have many good shops and for the most part even when I visit them I’m kind of disappointed. Thinking of really nice shops I’d say the old 14oz shop in Mitte, Maritime Antiques in Copenhagen and … the Walker Slater womenswear shop in Edinburgh! A lot of the time it’s the atmosphere and staff more than the selection that makes the shop, as so many shops hold basically the same selection of stock.
6. When did you decide to voice and share your love for your threads on social media?
As mentioned above, this came as a consequence of starting a menswear blog and wanting to spread the word. Over time though sharing photos has become a thing in itself, mainly because it takes less time and gets more immediate response than spending time researching and writing a blog post. So since March 2013 I’ve posted 2300 images to Instagram and slowly built up a decent following. I try to add some wry humour to my posts, so you get both a photo and a quick read 🙂
7. What’s the secret behind your great images; Who takes them? When are they taken? How do you capture the magic your followers enjoy so much?
Most of my photos are taken by myself or my long suffering wife. When I take them myself it’s either as a sneaky selfie or using an SLR on a tripod with a remote control. What I use depends on where I am and whether I’ve planned something special. Sometimes you find the perfect background and just want a quick snap, other times I have an idea that needs a little more effort put into it. Saturdays it’s often my wife that has to step up and take a photo, most often in town with people around, which always makes things a little uncomfortable as I’m not a very outgoing person!
8. What feeds do you like to follow and check in on? Who should we check out?
If you follow a few hundred people you will find there are a few that are more noticeable than others. One guy I appreciate a lot is Michael Pretolani. He just adds heaps of different to his getup! Apart from him there are a number of people I follow that post the occasional good images, but really it’s hard to keep up with the sheer numbers of photos posted and it’s become even worse with all the ads now. I think half of the people I follow probably never post any more, and if someone posts far too often I’ll probably unfollow them! Of the general rugged denim and workwear guys, they tend to blurr a little, but Mark (@1lrg) and Svante (@theurbanhippieswe) are genuine good guys and @corymahlke does very creative photos.
9. What tips would you give new starters on Instagram to help them get there feed off the ground and successful?
Have a good think about what makes you different and how you can get that across. Don’t just copy what others are doing. Follow people you enjoy, comment where you have something to say and generally join in.
10. And Lucky Last, You’re going to be stranded on a desert island, you can take 1 outfit (4 items) and 1 drink ONLY with you.
What would they be? Who made them? Why are you taking them?
A pair of Companion jeans, a Mister Freedom CDO jacket, Alden Indy boots and a Triplstitched indigo-striped shirt. Quite a mix of sources and makers, being made in Spain, Japan, the US and England, but a common denominator is that they’re quality crafted by makers that are being paid to make them, and they are made to last. The Companions because having clothes made bespoke, made to fit your exact measurements, is very much better than trying to find the perfect fit off the shelf. The CDO is just a great combination of wool and canvas, in the style of a WW2 battle blouse. A great jacket where you have the style of an army jacket, but without using camo or obvious military colours. The Indys are just such a recognisable and classic style, in a quality that means there is no silly breaking in needed, just boot up and head out. In Triplstitched I have found shirts of a consistent fit and quality that suit me totally, avoiding the fuss of trying various sizes and brands.
And that’ll be a large G&T, thanks.
Love it Nick! Absolutely fantastic write-up and thanks for taking the time out for us. Judging by the three jobs listed on your ‘Occupation’, the fact you’re a Grandad and a cult style icon I don’t know how you fitted us in BUT we’re glad you did and I’m sure your/our readers do too 👌
Right, I’ve got a date with the cheeseboard (that festive spread isn’t going to eat itself) and then got Supply Co. jobs on so I’m going to leave you guys’ to your evenings.