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Custom(er) Stories: Kate & Thomas Mitchell

5 April, 2021

We recently caught up with newlyweds Thomas Mitchell of Boss Hunting and Kate Mitchell from Pedestrian Group to chat about lifestyle, fashion and their recent Wedding. 

Thomas, Boss Hunting are obviously at the forefront of men’s lifestyle. When it comes to menswear, what are you seeing more of? 

Definitely a push towards having classic staples as opposed to a large selection of stuff you never really wear. I feel like men used to collect new looks each season, we were the biggest offenders of fast fashion. But it seems now more than ever men want to focus on pieces that are actually suited to their individual style, tailored to their shape and will last longer than a year. 

What do your audience want to hear about?

As above, I think men are no longer interested in playing second fiddle when it comes to fashion and lifestyle. There used to be a misconception that this space was reserved for women, while men would just wear whatever they were given. But we’re seeing a real interest in men wanting to know the backstory of the brand they’re wearing; where is it made, how is it made, what’s the origin of the materials. 

How do you think the changes in how men are working and living - with various stages of  lockdown - have shaped trends in menswear? Are we dressing more casually? Do you think productivity and confidence is tied to maintaining some tie to tailoring and quality? 

I think the initial knee jerk reaction to life in lockdown was to retreat to comfort clothing - tracksuit pants, tees, shorts - but I also think that was met by an equally rapid pushback. People cottoned on pretty quickly that the way you dress reflects your headspace and output, so spending everyday day in chill-wear was never going to be sustainable.

That being said, I do think the legacy of all that time Working From Home can be seen in our return to the office aesthetic. Maybe we’ve found a happy medium, comfort and quality in equal measure. So you’re not rocking up to the office in a tee shirt and chinos, but maybe you’re not doing the full suit everyday.

For something as important as your wedding, why did you land on InStitchu? Tell us about your experience. How did you dream up and then design your wedding suit?

I’m the kind of person who in order to really enjoy myself (as you want to on your wedding day) I need to feel really comfortable, so getting a tailored suit was a no brainer and I had only heard good things about InStitchu’s Made to Measure service. 

I knew from the get-go I wanted to look for something in a really dark navy, not quite black but in that space. But that was about the only criteria on my list and then heading into the showroom, and particularly working closely with Loris Michelletti really helped extract the half-baked ideas I had in my head and bring them to life. I had a vague desire to maybe wear a waistcoat, and it was Loris who helped me pick the one I wore on the day, guiding me (thankfully) to the double-breasted waistcoat with the square cut off. 

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Talk us through some of the challenges and silver linings of planning a wedding during the pandemic?

Haha where to begin. Our wedding was once cancelled, twice postponed which was incredibly taxing. Planning a wedding is stressful enough but when you factor in a pandemic it becomes a whole new situation to navigate. 

Once we decided to scale back our wedding from 140 people to 50 it became easier to manage, though it meant alot of our close friends were unable to be there on the day. However on the flip side, having a more intimate wedding meant we could spend quality time with the guests who were there, we didn’t have that feeling of constantly working the room and not seeing anyone.

Also, after such a long lead in to finally walk down the aisle, it made the whole thing feel even more special, like a proper achievement. Married in a pandemic, not many people can claim that.

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When it came to the wedding planning, did you share duties, or did one of you take the lead?

It was pretty much 50-50, with Kate handling more of the design side of things (table settings, invites, menus) while I took care of more logistical matters (hiring a generator, booking the buses). Also, we seriously leaned heavily on Kate’s parents who were invaluable in the leadup. 

Any advice for those recently engaged on how to best approach planning a wedding particularly during a pandemic? 

Prepare to be flexible, don’t get too married (ironically) to any one idea because in a single press conference everything can change. Also, it sounds incredibly cliched but if things turn against you and your wedding looks in jeopardy, then take a step back and remember that these are the exact moments you get married for, so you can rely on that other person in the most brutal of circumstances. I certainly think there has been no better preparation for married life than planning a wedding during a pandemic. 

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Kate, tell us about your job. How has the pandemic affected your reader’s habits?

I’m a managing editor at Pedestrian Group and up until the end of 2020 was leading the POPSUGAR Australia team (side note: we are no longer publishing the brand but have something very exciting in the pipeline, so watch this space!).  

Our audience had always come to us for content that inspired and informed them to live a healthy, considered lifestyle, but when COVID-19 really started to take hold, the appetite for this kind of content only increased. Mental health advice, at home workouts, recipes, sustainable fashion brands and clean skincare recommendations became our focus, and our readers trusted us to deliver it daily.

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