Many other hues are produced, but grey is the iconic colour for flannel – a mid-grey the most mix and match
adaptable. “Our world-famous greys are dyed using many colours to a closely-guarded recipe,” says Douglas Cordeaux
the owner and Managing Director of Fox Brothers. “Our signature is a very warm-coloured flannel, never cold or blue
in tint. It’s instantly recognisable, the connoisseur’s flannel.” And it is their heralded mid-grey woollen flannel,
that has been chosen to feature in the latest Lorenzo Cifonelli for The Rake collaboration. Cifonelli’s iconic 6X1
double-breasted jacket and matching trousers have been rendered in a carefully selected 14oz mid-grey flannel and as
Lorenzo has demonstrated with his styling methods, it’s is a fabric that balances elegance with panache. The
incorporation of a contrasting red gingham check one-piece collar shirt underneath is testimony to the
To underline the difference in quality and character of flannel you have to delve into the weaving process. At Fox
Brothers it is all woven in-house in Somerset, by a team of thirty-odd artisan weavers using old looms, whilst
employing special and unique colouring formulas. As The Rake’s sartorial guru Chris Modoo once put it: “The best
flannels are created using a mélange of tones, and mills will combine yarns in ecru, grey and charcoal to create the
desired hue. Fox Brothers are well known for their sepia-toned, yellowish shade of grey, which is sometimes
affectionately referred to as ‘urine soaked’ and can be recognised at 20 paces.”
A high-quality pair of grey flannel trousers are usually the most versatile piece of apparel in one’s wardrobe.
Rendered in an understated charcoal flannel, the new Edward Sexton trousers, cut in their contemporary style enable
you to be creative with more tailoring, but due to their restrained elegance you can also be flamboyant with more
informal attire. They’re flat-fronted, and arrive without belt loops which gives them the ability to show off your
physical attributes around the waist. With forward-facing double-pleats, their House style is cut in the more
classic mould with a full leg silhouette – a design reminiscent of the high-rise trousers embraced by the greats of
the silver screen. Hollywood’s definitive leading men such as Cary Grant were not nervous pleat wearers, but if you
are cautious, the textured single-pleated Duke model from Kit Blake is the consummate introduction.
At a time when the back-to-business notion is being actioned, there are few suits on the market that are equally at
home in a professional meeting as they’re in more laid-back surroundings. Made from a medium weight VBC light grey
flannel, the Alexander Kraft Monte Carlo line has the answer with an elegant-yet-versatile three-piece suit. Taking
into consideration the weight of the flannel and the jacket being half-lined it earns the accolade of being a
year-round suit. To be worn as separates, the grey flat-fronted trousers combine with the line’s new navy Signature
blazer that gives your look a healthy soupçon of sporty élan and French elegance. The point is well-crafted grey
trousers rendered in the best flannel can act as the fulcrum for mastering a myriad of enriching outfits.
And that’s not confined to flannel costumes protruding a real rockstar edge. The striking grey flannel chalkstripe
double-breasted suit from Edward Sexton is quintessentially Savile Row, but features libertine broad peak lapels to
exert a touch of hedonism. The trousers are pleated, full-cut and finished with side adjusters. Eccentric and
flamboyant, whilst inheriting complete originality, this flannel suit is one of the standouts in ready-to-wear. And
to add some Hollywood glamour, the grey flannel Hollywood Top design are the go-to pants this winter.
As the democratization of dress codes speeds up, it is grey flannel that eliminates the dressing quandaries that it
brings. Its slightly fuzzy texture, resourceful tone, and soft comfort are all conducive to a range of apparel that
other fabrics are not. From denim shirts to striped business shirts and Oxford shoes to white sneakers it is grey
flannel that perfectly adapts to nearly any item of clothing that is thrown its way.