'They know the real definition of dandy, dapper and elegance...'

Submitted by Theodore Johnson
instagram @mastertheodore

'My Story, what is my story? Now that’s a question! I am character who gains inspiration from British heritage and tradition, but have mutilated these qualities to adapt in today’s modern world.

I have always been surrounded by fashion and style as my mother is a qualified interior designer and works in the cosmetic industry. I suppose this is one of the key factors that introduced me to fashion. My mother always looks sophisticated, she receives from France unusual and delicate handmade tights, to add that little edge to her outfit and of course a piece of handcrafted jewellery for character.  

Daily Fashion Illustration, Theodore Johnson

As a child living in a small village in the county of Cheshire England, I would spend my time reading many classic children’s novels such as “The Lion, The Witch And The Wardrobe,” “Mary Popping,” and “Wind In The Williows”. As ones got older with these books being the part of my childhood, I can see it has formed the backbone of my inspiration. The books are British, traditional and feature in the 1920’s – 1940’s.

What draws me into era of the 20s – 40’s? It’s not something I haven’t gone out of my way to do, I have been naturally attracted to it. I think that I am drawn into these era’s because people were stylish, graceful and pleasing to the eye, compared with how people dress today. As they say “First appearance is everything” and the first appearance someone sees before meeting you, is the way you dress. Fashion for me, isn’t just the way we style ourselves but the way we live and form our life’s.

Today’s modern business man is “suited and booted” with a crisp briefcase, which will carry his laptop, IPod and some documents. You would probably find him in an office or perhaps a coffee shop doing some work. Whereas, I will be dressed in a chic vintage suite that is slightly off today’s mark and will carry a leather case. You cannot recreate the texture or the scent of used leather and of course it won’t be perfect, it will have a mark or two on it.

I wonder to myself with items such as this “Who did it belong to? , What story has it got ?” You wouldn’t find me in a coffee shop, but in a local public garden sat near or below a beautiful memorial of a past British Monarch. Whiles sitting there I would pull out a compact original windup gramophone from my case and start to play some iconic 78rpms from the 20’s, which calibrate with my outfit to compose a calm eccentric surrounding.

From wearing British Harris tweed in the cold December months to a causal dandy boater hat in the summer, there are always three types of people who comment on my style. The first person is your stereotype clean-cut adult - “oh he looks peculiar” The second person are friends and acquaintances - “How fine and dapper” The third person is elderly - “When I see you, I find it so refreshing, a jubilation and timeless”Alas, at the end of the day I don’t really give a “flying monkeys” on how people perceive me but the third type of person I have always got time for, not because I find it a compliment but because they know what it was like to live in that era I take inspiration from. They know the real definition of dandy, dapper and elegance.'