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What the actual go is behind Country Road men’s accessories

Dean Malone is the guy behind the sensational range of men’s accessories at Country Road and a name to keep your ear out for. He’s the one who manifests all the cool, neutrally coloured and stylishly minimal designs on your bags, boots, belts and other bits that set the Country Road men’s range apart from the rest.

Coming from someone who prior to working for the multinational lifestyle brand had never heard the name, he brings some great stuff to the table.

 

I had never heard of Country Road before joining the brand from Europe,” he said. “I was working in Amsterdam at Tommy Hilfiger and left to take on the challenge of starting my own company, I said I wouldn’t take any new opportunities unless they were on the other side of the world and out of the blue I received a message from Country Road. I researched the brand and liked what I saw so applied and ended up getting the role, the rest is taking its course as you read this article.”

But why the attraction to a brand like CR? Well, it seems like an obvious match to move from a brand like Tommy to something like the present day. Sure, each has its own schtick, but there was something about Country Road that just had a je ne sais pas that rung-true for Dean.  

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“Country Road is the biggest lifestyle brand in the southern hemisphere, it has a strong history and stands for quality, and we are currently in the process of making a strong stand for sustainability. We use high quality materials and compete very strongly in the market on price for the level of quality we are using, especially in accessories,” he said. 

Combine that with the fact it’s hard to find anyone who has anything bad to say about it and it’s clear to see why you’d relocate to take-on the mammoth.

Within any major role in a company the likes and size of CR with the extensive and highly sought-after range it has are a sliding scale of fairly extensive goods-and-bads, and more-or-less important bits, which Dean has worked down to a fine art.

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“The important thing for the Country Road man to know about our men’s accessories is that they will always be getting a high quality product, designed with deep thought, taste and style. We are always working hard to create men’s accessories that are right for the season and right for the Australian man, hard wearing durable and practical, but stylish and well designed,” he said. And that’s what makes him and the work he does so good. 

But, be as good or bad at his job as he may be, it doesn’t stop the run-of-the-mill Joe from struggle to translate what’s in the shops into what’s going to be on his body, or in his hand; the perpetual struggle of a retailer.

I think the Australian guy is becoming more and more interested and aware of his own style and how he looks and for me a man’s accessories round off his look and can either bring it all together or make you look like you’re not quite sure how to dress yourself,” Dean said.

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“For example if you’re looking for casual accessories to tie your outfit together, the Shawn lace up boot or the Vince low mock boot, alongside the Irwin backpack would be perfect to wear with slim jeans and a linen shirt,” he dropped for a casual style tip.

“If the evenings are getting cooler the ribbed beanie and scarf will keep you wrapped up and warm, but need to be paired back with a strong outdoor looking outfit, like heavy outerwear, over a flannel shirt and t-shirt, with slim jeans and the Joseph gusset boot or Shawn lace up boot. A tip for accessories is to invest in versatile items that will work across most of your clothing and then if you have any disposable income buy things that you think will be timeless or good for the seasons style,” he said. 

At the end of the day, though, a designer like Dean can talk til he’s blue in the face about how and what to do, but it’s down to the gent in the end and the number one rule? Know what works for you!

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“I don’t think the Australian man needs to use more accessories, I just think they need to be more aware of what looks good for them, educate themselves on quality product and be interested in what it is they are buying. We make great product of high quality, but if the customer doesn’t see the product in enough detail or know what to look for, they won’t know what to buy,” he explained. 

Regardless, though of how well or not-so-well people take not only what Dean does, but the whole Country Road brand, there’s no denying that what they do is exceptional, where they’re going is exciting and how they’re getting there is a seasonal eyegasm worthy of buying-out.

“Country Road men’s accessories stands for high quality product, with a future focus on sustainability, to lead the Australian market into a direction of intelligent retailing,” he said. “We have the power to direct the market, so we use our capabilities and knowledge to do the right thing. In Accessories we are building great product for the Australian man and hopefully when he comes in to our store for the new season he can see that it’s starting to take shape.”

Good luck with it, Country Road! See more at their website.

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James Banham
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James Banham

Editor at THE F
James Banham is an Australian lifestyle, fashion and entertainment journalist. His writing can be found on these many topics and more in print and online publications around the country.
James Banham
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