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'Norwich men are the best dressed they have ever been' - Are our men really bad dressers?

PUBLISHED: 10:30 15 March 2018 | UPDATED: 12:26 15 March 2018

J&B Menswear in Norwich. Picture Archant.

J&B Menswear in Norwich. Picture Archant.

Ioannis Koussertari Photography

A survey this week revealed Norwich is home to some of the worst dressed men in the UK, but is this really fair?

We spoke to Norwich-based men who are involved in the fashion industry, to see what they thought of the survey’s findings.

MORE: Is Norwich home to some of the worst dressed men in Britain?

Rafayyele Ali, a menswear blogger and stylist, said: “I feel that men’s fashion in Norwich has evolved a lot in the last five years. From the rise of independent stores such as Phillip Brown, Dogfish, Sevenwolves, Elements, Mainsource and many more, to the stores available at the Chapelfield shopping centre.

“These stores have allowed men the change to elevate a range of clothing that they did not have the chance to ten years ago. Being around fashion myself I have definitely seen a significant change in men’s fashion in Norwich. I see more creativity, more self expression and a lot more high pieces worn. Men’s fashion in Norwich is constantly evolving.”

Darren Hoggett, CEO of J&B Menswear on Magadelen Road, said: “I think the survey is a little unfair as every town or city will have badly dressed men. However, we would say that Norwich men are the best dressed they have ever been.

J&B Menswear in NorwichJ&B Menswear in Norwich

“There has always been a tendency for them to be set in their ways, but we are noticing in particular then men are dressing more contemporary, but without trying to be a victim and here we whelp them pick a look that suits them.

“Male grooming has seen a huge increase in recent years and that has had a knock on effect to clothing, as you want to look the best you can from head-to-toe.

“I think Norwich gets a bad wrap for being seen as a backwater and there will always be an element of that, but it has come a long way and there is little comparison of how people of their same age dressed a generation ago.”

Eto Badu, a male model and student at UEA said: “I can definitely see how Norwich would have fallen into the badly dressed category. Although I don’t necessarily see it is a bad thing.

“Norwich is not really a place where what you’re wearing is actually assessed and thought or talked about, at least not to the extent that London is.

“It could be the fact that a lot of it is largely made up of a bunch of students from all over, so there is not very much consistency to the ‘style’ in the city. That said, all the international students at UEA know how to dress well though.”

Martin Turner, from Working Title Clothing on Bedford Street, said: “I disagree that Norwich is one of the worst dressed. People often just lack the knowledge needed to create a perfect outfit and need a little help and inspiration.

“The issue is that men often just wear what is most comfortable or what their mates are wearing and it is not always right for them or age appropriate. However, at Working Title Clothing we have something for everyone and all styles.”

Jordan Wake, a menswear fashion blogger, said: “I’ll admit, having lived in Norwich, that perhaps there is not a variety of men whose sense of style would catch the eyes of many. But I have witnessed some stylish individuals from time to time there.

“I would struggle going anywhere in the UK and finding a demographic of men who I would class as well dressed. There is variety everywhere you go, Norwich included!

I have a seen a major advance in menswear, from high street retailers to independent designers, who are all adapting to the current demand of consumers wanting more choice. With that in mind, and with the added advantage of Norwich being an extremely fashionable city, we may see a change in the way Norwich men dress.”

What do you think? Are Norwich men badly dressed, or are the survey findings unfair? Let us know in the comments below.

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