GANT in Lisbon
The city of seven hills not only promises plenty of walking, but usually reliable summer backdrops. On this occasion I was dealt an unfavourable hand, but not even the weather was going to disrupt my first visit.
In paid partnership with GANT Photography by Matthew Spade
Plymouth linen trousers
Whangee cane crook handle in dark navy
You plan trips months in advance and you have an idea of how they are going to play out. You know what you want to see and how the weather will feel on your skin as you stand outside of arrivals. It is funny how we rather intrinsically and almost naively associate going away in May until August with sun. So naturally, Mat and myself endured four drizzly days.
So how do you turn a trip around? A bag packed with linen and light cottons, but most importantly a reliable umbrella I wasn’t expecting to use. Warm yellows, blues and orange roof tiles were now are light sources and we made the most of everything, amassing step counts of 20,000 and more, which in the rain is pretty good going.
It is kind of funny that leading up to the trip I closed my eyes and pictured tile backdrops basked in sun and me strolling about in my GANT shirt and being able to take photos at the hip with every single one a winner. For this was the primary reason of the trip, to celebrate and photograph the new anniversary learning collage shirt in celebration of 70 years. I styled the shirt with some straight leg linen trousers, loafers and felt like I was transported back 30 years, playing roles as one part Colombo and one part Starsky & Hutch extra, parading around the uneven cobbles of Lisbon. All I was missing was a theme tune. While talking about what I wore, I must also touch on the locals, especially the older gentlemen. They honestly looked the part and many of us would benefit from some avid people watching. I think this is a trend of most European cities like Florence and Paris where older gentleman have an experienced carelessness to the way they dress.
GANT has always been a brand to place importance on classic preppy American styles. The shirt I am wearing in particular places its roots in the 50s, taking inspiration from GANT’s original hugger shirts. I have always enjoyed a bold summer shirt as I can find summer dressing lacking a little at times.
The anniversary learning collage shirt showcases some of the campuses where GANT was founded while using its classic banker stripes as a canvas, something I relate closely with the brand. There was something quite empowering dressing like I was, I just ‘felt good’. I reckon there was definitely an element of inspiration from Sangiev and this fit of his that I mentally saved. Who said I was strictly #menswear?
Umbrellas up, we spent a lot of time walking around the neighbourhood of Alfama, a place where everything ordinary catches the eye and soaking everything up like a sponge. An almost deterring fruit and veg shop with tiling worn and aged, narrow side roads that felt reserved for locals and washing hung out to dry. The old tram bell in the distance as I’d be studying the makeshift door fronts of the family homes, one particularly standing out using a collection of classic Portugal football team poster rip outs. Café doors ajar allowing noise to filter onto the streets and a pastel de nata seller on every corner (for the record I only had four). We made the most of everything and enjoyed the ordinary. Maps directing us one way and preceding to walk the other.
I do not think I have ever been as content walking around in the rain than I was on this trip. For all the importance we place on the weather when we go away, maybe it’s more the mental state of going away to relax that we should utilise more. Not wasting the opportunity to reenergise so that when we return home we feel in a good place.jbicon