Tuesday, September 30, 2014

David Gandy talks with Irish Tatler Man (October 2014)

Fine & Gandy

A select few advertisements make an indelible impression. Eva Herzigova’s ‘Hello, boys’ billboard for Wonderbra is said to have been responsible for many a traffic pile-up, while Benetton’s adverts of the mid-90s, which included everything from foetuses to kissing priests, made headlines across the globe for their blatant shock tactics. Then, of course, there’s Dolce & Gabbana’s advertisement from 2007, featuring a photogenic Essex boy on a boat, his modesty preserved only by a pair of barely there white trunks. David Gandy shot to instant fame, initially becoming known as the “white pants man.” These days, however, his real name is arguably the best known in the men’s modelling world and he has proven himself to be far more than just a flash in the pan, as Domhnall O’Donoghue, complete with bitter lips, discovered.

A few weekends ago, an old colleague of mine joined me for something of a drink-fuelled night out. Three sheets to the wind, she proceeded to share with me a secret that she’d never revealed previously to anyone. I assured her that I would take it to the grave. It turned out that when she was just 10 years of age, battling to embrace her freckled face and fiery red curls, she took a dislike to her similarly aged next door neighbour largely on account of the fact that this young girl was the proud owner of beautiful blonde hair, sallow skin and brown eyes that apparently angels would exchange for their wings for one day as they were roaming around the fields of Donegal together.

My friend found herself unable to control her jealousy any longer and flung her leg out, causing the celestial cherub to fall flat on a rock, resulting in a broken nose and scarred forehead. That my green eyed and red haired pal didn’t turn into Aileen Wuornos is nothing short of a modern day miracle. Now, while I’ve experienced my fair share of envy over the years, I’ve never wanted to go so far as to cause them physical damage. Until today, that is.

Not only is David Gandy a global supermodel - the owner of the face and body that helped turn Dolce & Gabbana’s Light Blue into one of the world’s top-selling fragrances - it emerges that he is also a shrewd businessman, an avid philanthropist and an animal lover, as well as being ridiculously well mannered. And to add insult to injury, a recent naked shoot for a Dolce & Gabbana book revealed that, in terms of size, his ‘down below’ is as long as his list of admirers. It is a good job that this interview is being conducted via the old dog and bone otherwise, just like my would be serial killer chum, I might have been forced to stick the leg out.

The 34 year old has trouble ringing my phone and takes two attempts to get through. When he does, he apologizes profusely, taking full responsibility for the error. Needless to say, I don’t mention that it was actually my fault, my fat, clumsy fingers up to their old tricks. I deftly move the conversation forward and talk about something far more interesting than broken phone connections; getting sozzled in Ireland! I’ve been to Ireland so many times - not only for work but also on a personal level,” Gandy reveals with an added air of mischievous “I’ve lots of friends in Dublin, and I’ve been to a fair few stag parties over the years. In fact, I’ve to organise another one in October so I could be over there again soon.”

Ladies of Ireland, start airing and ironing your Sunday Best post haste.

When your body is your temple, and in Gandy’s case, his empire, it’s somewhat difficult to reconcile the idea of him living at large in Copper Face Jack’s, wrecking back one pint of Guinness after the other, though. “I think people have stereotypical views of models,” he concedes. “Being a British guy, I still like my drink, I still like my cakes and my fry ups and everything else. My favourite drink is whiskey." And that’s something that becomes increasingly apparent about the model as our conversation continues. Even though Forbes magazine reported that he earned $1.4 million in 2013 alone, the 6’3” Essex native has steadfastly refused to cut the apron strings with his humble working class beginnings.

His father, Chris, left school when he was just 14 and some time later, along with his wife, Brenda, David’s mother, he opened a successful freight and property company. What is more, his grandfather, James, even worked for a certain iron lady called Margaret Thatcher. This hardworking upbringing has clearly stood Gandy in good stead, and rather than spending his days plucking his eyebrows and thinking he’s the dog’s bollix, he is continuously searching for ways to expand Brand Gandy. Not only has the fitness fanatic created an app called the David Gandy Fitness Guide, but he also acts as a contributor for Vogue, GQ and The Telegraph, and is brand ambassador for Johnnie Walker Blue and Whey Hey ice cream, a company in which he owns a stake.

"I’m always trying to push the boundaries of what male models have done before or have achieved before,’ he explains. ‘If you look at the models from the 80s and 90s, they didn’t stick to one platform - they expanded, such as Cindy Crawford. I’m always looking for the next challenge, like doing this underwear line." The particular line of smalls he is referring to is the one that Gandy has exclusively designed for popular chain Marks & Spencer. The capsule collection, entitled David Gandy for Autograph comprises of 28 items ranging from boxers and briefs to sleepwear.

"I wanted to do something that was a bit different - decent but different and at an accessible price." Gandy explains. "The whole range has the best quality fabrics as well as the best packaging all of which I worked on. It was an honour to work with M&S on this, after all, they are experts - one in four British guys wear M&S underwear.”

When discussing past times, it appears to be something of a nice synchronicity that Gandy has such a vested interest in the underwear industry, as his own are sure to need frequent changing when pursuing his biggest passion: high-speed racecar driving. But, upon further investigation, it seems that this hardy would be Evel Knievel rarely shits his pants, despite the fact that last year, when competing in Italy’s legendary Mille Miglia race with fellow supermodel Yasmine Lebron as his wing woman, he found himself getting caught up in a nasty accident.

David’s Favourite Things

--- from Inset, last page of article ---
City:  London 
Hobby:  Racing 
Designer:  D&G - because I work with them so much 
Film:  Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid 
TV Show:  The Sopranos 
Album:  Michael Jackson, Off the Wall
Food:  Sushi and Asian 
Drink:  Whiskey
Car: XKSS 1950s Jaguar
Memory:  Being with my grandparents. My grandfather used to build clocks so I loved hanging out with him in his shed.
Favourite pastimes:  I love photography. Writing I love. Directing I like. Fashion, I really like. Food, I really like. I’m kind of all over the place - I have ADD in that way. 
Favourite trait in a person: I know it sounds so lame, but being true to yourself and being true to that is very important. 
Worst personal trait: I am vain, unfortunately. I have banished all mirrors from my bedroom. 
Sexiest trait in a woman: Seduction and elegance has to do with who you are, how you sit in your own skin - people find that as you walk in a room, how you speak to them and that is sexier than anything. All the rest is just accoutrements.
--- End Inset, last page of article ---

And it seems the tormented matriarch of the the Gandy clan is the only woman in her son’s life at the moment, with previous relationships with beauties such as The Saturdays’ Mollie King having gone the way of the Roman Empire. He is also quick to dismiss comments that global superstar Jennifer Lopez made about him recently, when she confessed having something of a crush on him after he appeared in the steamy video for her minor hit First Love. 

“I’ve known Jennifer for a few years,” Gandy mentions. “She’s very down to earth but I also think she’s very astute and a clever business and PR lady so, obviously, when she says stuff like that, people get intrigued about the person she’s [referring to] then they go and watch the video. So, she’s just being a clever business lady, really.”

While Gandy talks a blue streak about his own successes as a businessman, surprisingly, he gets somewhat tongue-tied when discussing his most lucrative commodity - his looks. “It’s strange,” he admits. “I suppose I’m very critical and I look at myself with a very critical eye - no matter what I’m doing, no matter what the campaign is.”

Funnily enough, it emerges that he was something of a chubby teenager, you can imagine that the haunting memory of being Chunk from The Goonies forbids him from ever getting complacent. Indeed, it probably spearheaded his interest in fitness and nutrition in the first place. “There is so much more information, especially in this country. I think the UK is the most obese country in Europe and I think we’re quite inept when it comes to nutrition and fitness compared to the rest of the world.  “It’s very difficult to tell people what to eat and what not to eat. James Oliver is trying as well - he’s doing a brilliant job.” Gandy acknowledges. But he is quick to defend the industry that made him a superstar when questioned about its role in perpetuating unattainable and unhealthy body ideals, particularly among women. 

“When you want to keep yourself in great shape, What we do - we use our bodies - so we should be in the best condition. If you look at Giselle, if you look at Victoria’s Secret models - their bodies are incredible because they work hard at it.” Something else that Gandy is currently working hard at is breaking down the boundaries that male models face on a daily basis. For example, the aforementioned Giselle, who Gandy has previously gone on record saying he doesn’t like very much, earned almost 25 times more than he did last year.

“You have to change the way people talk about male modelling. Most male models get absolutely nothing - they’re sort of second-rate citizens at shoots - separate from the female models and the photographers - so we have to change people’s way of thinking and that includes rates and everything."

A leading supermodel. A charity worker. An animal lover. An accomplished sporting enthusiast. A polite and hardworking businessman. And now, it seems, an equal opportunity rabble rouser. Sad that, the next time I see the cad, I’m tripping him up.

David Gandy talks with Metro World News in Paris

David Gandy on his new underwear line, 
fitness routine and more

David Gandy is on the last leg of his promotional tour that’s seen him travel from London to Dublin then onto Hong Kong and now Paris, and yet he shows not a sign of jet lag. The so-called “male supermodel” looks as fresh as his crisply packaged new Marks and Spencer underwear and nightwear collection called “David Gandy for Autograph”. It’s difficult not to stumble into cheesy chick-lit territory when describing just how handsome the 34-year-old Englishman is, so I’m just going to get on with it: he’s in a fitted double breasted pinstripe suit, a light blue shirt with two buttons undone (oh, he beats Colin Firth’s Mr. Darcy) and those azure blue eyes are enough to leave any onlooker floundering in his gaze. Then there are the half-naked pictures of him in skimpy underwear all over the Parisian hotel room. Where’s a girl to look? Back to the chest, of course and into Gandy’s pants… not literally.

By Elodie Noël

Not only are you the face of this underwear collection but you were also deeply involved in the creative process. In what way exactly?
This range is the first thing I have put my name to styling and collaborating-wise. I was always very much involved in the creative side with M&S when it came to shooting the campaigns. So first, I came in and told them what I wanted: a very premium line, made from great material but at an affordable price – I was pretty stubborn about it. I had a very high input in everything, including the packaging, the material used and the fits. I didn’t just sign someone else’s designs.

Why did you decide to design underwear? And not shoes or ties, for example?
I’m well-known for the famous Dolce & Gabbana Light Blue fragrance campaign I did back in 2006, and I had many offers from many brands to put my name on underwear, which is a huge and highly lucrative part of men’s clothing. But my collection isn’t only underwear, it’s also nightwear, and there will be cashmere coming out in October and as soon as I go back to London we will start working on the spring collection, since the reactions have already been so positive on this one.

What can we find in your own personal underwear drawer?
I’ve kind of chucked everything out and all I’ve got is my own range of underwear, and I’m not even joking! I’ve been working on it for months, so I’ve had all the underwear to test myself. But usually, I go for the hipster style, which is kind of a mix between a boxer and a brief.

Do you think more men or women will buy your collection?
[Laughs] I think so far, it’s been a mix of the two. A lot of women buy underwear for their guys but we know that women have been buying the dressing gowns and some of the t-shirts for themselves, which I find lovely. I think men in general are taking more time in choosing their own clothing, especially in the UK. Before it used to be their wives, girlfriends or mums’ task.

You recently said that you were “an advocate of Britishness”. What does it mean?
I think it’s about heritage. In Britain, we started tailoring with Savile Row: it’s where the tailored suit genuinely came from. In the collection, I’ve incorporated a bit of houndstooth and that’s how you can distinguish my range because there is no branding. It’s very discrete and elegant and for me it links back to British tailoring. I’m very proud to be British and I kind of push that Britishness with everything I do.

What are your top style tips for men?
Be an individual. That’s something that’s getting harder and harder to do, thanks to globalisation. I think most importantly you have to work out what works for you – I don’t really believe in following trends. I pretty much follow the old English traditions of suits and I look back at some Hollywood greats like Cary Grant and take my inspiration from there, simply because this is what works for me.

What is your daily health routine in terms of diet and exercise?
I just had a couple of croissants. In France, my diet isn’t as good as normal [laughs]! I’m probably not as strict as people would think but I’m very nutritionally aware. Basically, I try and stay away from any processed food, any white carbohydrates, but I still eat sweet stuff. If you want a biscuit for example, don’t go for the triple chocolate-coated cookie, have a couple of biscuits that don’t contain saturated fat. I eat quite cleanly — a lot of fresh fish, vegetables, which I love anyway because my family brought me up to eat very well. Fitness-wise, I used to play every sport available but now it’s only down to the gym, four or five times a week for an hour approximately.

You shot a video this year with Jennifer Lopez, which left quite an impression on her. She said afterwards that you were “almost perfect”. So how is it to know that you are totally J-Lo’s type?
I’ve known her for a few years and we had a good laugh on set. I’m honored that she would think that, then again, maybe if she spent more time with me she wouldn’t. But that was very kind of her.

Who is your own celebrity crush?
I worked with Christy Turlington many years ago. When people talk about “supermodels”, you realise what that means when she walks into a room. She’s almost kind of superhuman. She has this beauty, presence, radiance, and an unbelievable magnetism. That was a huge crush, but not only physically, I also admire what she has done in the industry, and her involvement in charity.

What’s your type when it comes to women?
Someone I can laugh with! If she makes me laugh and laughs at my awful jokes, that’s appealing. But, no, I won’t tell you any jokes, I would embarrass myself…

Source: Metro.us

Monday, September 29, 2014

Highlights of 2014 'Gandy for Autograph' Worldwide Tour

David Gandy finished his first 'Gandy for Autograph' Worldwide launch tour in Paris. After these exciting days, here are the highlights we've gathered from the last few weeks from the 4 locations along his Marks & Spencer Collection tour.

We would also offer our sincerest thanks to Melek Nazenin & Nazreen Tajudeen from David Gandy Fans Australia  (@DGFansAustralia) for kindly allowing us to incorporate their recording of the Hong Kong event. Thank YOU so much and congratulations!

Friday, September 26, 2014

David Gandy on the 1 2 3 Show for Radio 3 Hong Kong (Audio)

Rounding out his Autograph tour in Hong Kong, David Gandy stops by Radio 3 for an interview with Noreen Mir. On the 1 2 3 Show, the two discuss his design thoughts for the M&S Autograph collection, how a Supermodel turned into a Designer, and his ability to suit up an alter ego while modeling as actors do to capture the moment on film.

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Meet & Greet with David Gandy during the launch of his underwear range for M&S in Paris

In Champs-Élysées this morning, David Gandy arrived at Marks & Spencer Store in Paris to share his Autograph collection with his Parisian fans. Following with the expectancy generated by this worldwide tour in its previous stages, the Essex-born model, now designer, signed pictures and met fans as the final stop on his 'GandyforAutograph' tour.


One admirer of David Gandy's asked him to pose with two best-selling books in the romance genre. As many fans consider him the embodiment of their main characters, needless to say these photos have been circulated among the readers.

Our many thanks to Mr. Gandy for granting us this indulgence.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

David Gandy Covers ShortList Magazine (September 2014) (Picture Update)

David Gandy covers this week ShortList Mode issue, the fashion and grooming issue of the popular British magazine. The British model is captured wearing clothes of Dolce & Gabbana, Paul Smith or Alexander McQueen among others, in a confident and relaxed attitude by the photographer Richard Stow. David Gandy also shares his perspective on individuality sharing childhood memories in this personal editorial entitled, "The Model of a Man."    

Pick up this issue at your nearest tube station in London or online at Newsstand.
David Gandy with Annabeth Murphy-Thomas (Select Model Management)
(Scan courtesy of Denise Woodcock - London)


Girls, classic cars and, erm, luxury underpants. Male supermodel David Gandy ushers David Whitehouse into his very own fantasy world.

Maybe we are all kneaded into shape by a divine baker of people, but if so, he or she is at best inconsistent. Regardless, 19 February 1980, the day of David Gandy’s birth, can be considered a remarkable day in the kitchen, not just by the baker’s wobbly standards, but by any. Popularly considered the world’s biggest, perhaps only, male supermodel, Gandy is in person as he is in portrait – immaculately proportioned, part sculpture, part human – a man set apart by the alignment of muscle and bone beneath skin. To be in the same room as him is to hop the red rope that parts punter from exhibit. People edge around the walls as if mindful of the signs, ‘do not touch’.

Instantly you assume that because he looks like, and indeed is, someone somewhere’s fantasy, he’s living out a fantasy version of a man’s life. Then you see the great watch and the sharp suit and the fast car and the beautiful girlfriend, and you realise, the knife of jealousy twisting in your gut, that he is, he actually is. He’s the James Bond no one is trying to kill.

“I have [all those things],” he says, “but that’s just because they’re my loves. My expensive habits that I can fulfil. I’ve just restored a Sixties Mercedes-Benz. It’s a hobby, the enjoyment of something classic and old-school. I appreciate design, and design for me doesn’t stop at clothing. It’s architecture, materials, everything. It’s a lifestyle. I’m not going to be able to do it forever. One day I will have a family and responsibilities. Hopefully I’ll have a boy, and he’ll be seriously kitted out when he’s older.” Never before has something been uttered that so many men wish they could truthfully say.


Gandy lounged to fame aboard a yacht in 2007 as the face of Dolce & Gabbana’s Light Blue fragrance, a campaign that saw his image loom over Times Square and on billboards worldwide, putting paid to the idea that wearing white pants is a fundamentally bad idea. Having charged the public imagination with the kind of sexual fireworks that makes people crash their cars, he set about trying to achieve a parity between his career and that of female supermodels, whose pay and treatment in comparison to male counterparts represented a topsy-turvy version of the struggle for equality in every other workplace on Earth. He wanted to capitalise on what he’d won in the genetic lottery, to become a brand, and in turn has morphed into an ambassadorial figure for the billion-pound British fashion industry, both here and abroad. A statesman for Savile Row. We meet him at a point in his life where he has gone full circle, in underpants terms at least, as Marks & Spencer launches David Gandy For Autograph, a 28-piece underwear and sleepwear range that he has helped design.

“Everyone has their go-to underwear. You can have 20 pairs, but you have your favourite. I wanted to create your favourite underwear,” he says, and his success – indeed, any man’s success – might be measured by the fact that his mother doesn’t buy them for him any more. “Not for quite a few years. Though ironically, if she did, they’d probably be from Marks & Spencer.”

Back when his mother did buy his underwear, the posters on the teenage David Gandy’s bedroom wall were not of bands or the cast of Baywatch (“I never had pin-ups,” he says). Instead he had pictures of the things it was his goal to one day own, starting with an Amiga 600 computer, and moving on to far more stylish aspirations: a Ferrari F40 and a Porsche 959. But it took a while for his sense of personal style to catch up with his desires, as evidenced by an old photo of him outside 10 Downing Street, where his grandfather worked on Margaret Thatcher’s staff.

“You’d laugh at this picture of me and my sister,” he says. “My grandad took us up there one Saturday. Now we look at that picture and ask our mum if she actually knew what we were doing that weekend. Why did she not dress us properly? We were wearing hand-me-down ankle-high tracksuit bottoms, the most awful trainers in the world and sweatshirts that didn’t fit. But there is something lovely about it. Now we live in a world where we’re judged on what we own and what we look like, not on what we do. And that grinds on me a little bit nowadays.”


Gandy is evidently uneasy with our new culture of vanity, and he might well be. Here is a man whose image is his trade, yet whose image is taken and shared every time he sits down in a café next to someone with Instagram on their phone. In a world where everyone is posting their own photographs online, where does it leave the man who is paid to do it best?

“I do envy people in the public eye and stars of the Sixties and Seventies and Eighties who could still have a lot more privacy,” he says. “You’ve now got people Instagramming you in the street and tweeting saying you might be in London when you’ve told someone you can’t go to a meeting because you’re not in London. It sounds strange, but I still don’t like having my picture taken. I am still quite naturally shy, which is something I’ve had to overcome. I sort of switch. I always say that my suits, when I wear them… it’s almost like a suit of armour. I put it on and it’s protection for my real self.”

This dedication to privacy means he doesn’t appear on panel shows. He doesn’t take the countless offers he’s had to appear in films, or host his own TV programmes. Instead he endeavours to embody a lifestyle as tailored as his Savile Row suits. The watches, the cars, “the creation of an iconic image”, unsullied by our modern obsession with celebrity. He fronts a number of charities, has twice spoken on the subject of style at the Oxford Union, and even appeared in a part of the 2012 Olympics’ closing ceremony devoted to what was best about Britishness. He’s also a loud advocate of an aspect of homegrown dressing that he feels we’ve lost.

“Before globalisation, before the internet, you could have a really individual style. Don’t get me wrong, you can still do that with a good tailor. But back then, everyone could be an individual with their style. Nowadays a trend is set overnight. It’s been Instagrammed, it’s been tweeted, then it’s in the shop and suddenly everyone is wearing the same thing.”

Individuality, though, is what Gandy does best. It’s a flair much coveted by the current incumbent of the Downing Street address he once stood outside, and those fighting to replace him in it. “The Labour party particularly,” he says. “In choosing the other Miliband they’d have had a much better face. But that goes back to JFK. When JFK and Nixon had the TV debates in the Sixties, Nixon was sweating a lot and JFK was a good-looking guy, and just like that the vote changed to JFK. Nixon might have had the better policies, but people weren’t looking at that.”

David Gandy is a man who understands what people are looking at, because usually, it’s him. And you do look. Too much. This arrangement of flesh and skeleton makes his an otherly presence. The shoot’s attendees try to act naturally, but the truth is Gandy seems to be, physically, on a different step of the evolutionary ladder, one of the X-Men, but not magnetic or blessed with flight. Just handsome, to an extraordinary degree. Some bakes just turn out better than others.

Source: Shortlist.com

David Gandy talks with 'The Irish Times'

You may not recognise his name, but you probably recognise his face. With his gentlemanly style, piercing blue eyes and soft manner, David Gandy is often referred to as THE male supermodel
By Dominique McMullan


Three words to describe your personal style?
Contemporary but traditional and discreet.

Who are your style icons? 
 James Dean, Steve McQueen, Paul Newman. I look to history for inspiration.

Did your mum dress you well? 
Not at all. She dressed me in some awful stuff – think tracksuit bottoms three inches too short. Mum has always said I was very specific about what I wanted to wear, so she mostly just let me at it.

What’s your beauty regime?
I use Dr Lancer moisturiser and rose oil when my skin gets dehydrated. I also trim my beard. That’s pretty much it.

What one beauty product should men have?
A good-quality moisturiser.

What one style tip would you give to the men of Ireland?
Be an individual. Find the unique style that suits you and that you feel comfortable in.

Do you ever feel pressure to maintain your physique?
I feel pressure but it’s from myself. I feel better having a muscular physique and after going to the gym. It’s just a natural thing for me.

The rise of the more masculine man or the machosexual has been attributed to you. What does that phrase mean to you?
I think it describes men who are comfortable being men. People like Steve McQueen and Paul Newman, who had style, but were more interested in restoring old cars than getting their hair dyed.

You are known for wearing suits. How does one become a modern gentleman like you?
I just feel the most comfortable in a suit. I don’t think it matters so much what you wear, though, it’s more about how you treat people; your family, friends and strangers alike. Being a gentleman is about having an opinion and standing by your beliefs.

What do you think it is about you that people find attractive?
You’d have to ask them!

You are best known for the Dolce & Gabbana ad in which you appear in quite small white pants. Do you ever feel uncomfortable on shoots like that?
You learn to be comfortable. I’ve never been great at being the centre of attention but when you’re in the modelling industry, sometimes there is just a necessity to strip off. It’s part of it; if you don’t like it you shouldn’t be in the business.

Tell us more about the Dolce & Gabbana shoot.
I didn’t know what was going to happen. I hadn’t seen any creative, I hadn’t seen any mood boards, I just had these small white trunks thrust upon me and that was it.

Describe the perfect pair of pants for a man.
Comfortable with a good fit and made of good material. You should never really realise you have a pair of pants or boxer shorts on, they should be that comfortable.

David Beckham did the white pants thing after you, do you think he should have kept his trousers on? No, I don’t think many women would have been happy if he had!

If/when you settle, where will that be?
It would be nice to have a few locations: sun, ski and somewhere in the UK.

Have you ever been to Ireland?
Many times, for work and for pleasure. I actually have a stag do in Dublin next month.

Any plans to get married and have kids?
I don’t see marriage as a necessity, but children are a definite – I absolutely adore kids. When it happens it happens; it’s very hard to have a relationship when you’re never there at the end of the day.

Describe your perfect woman.
Humble, fun and with a great sense of humour. Someone who you feel like a team with, like it’s you and that person against the rest of the world.

What’s next for David Gandy?
A holiday would be nice.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Meet & Greet with David Gandy during the launch of his underwear range for M&S in Hong Kong

David Gandy landed this past Monday in Hong Kong, "The Pearl of the Orient," the third stage of his worldwide launch tour of his highly anticipated men's underwear and sleepwear collection for M&S #Gandyforautograph
The international male model arrived at the M&S flagship store to meet and greet customers and fans who were waiting in a queue for hours.


While getting to know their impressions about the range by first hand, David Gandy was also interviewed by Esquire Hong Kong and we will look forward to showing you the interview as soon as the published edition becomes available.

Monday, September 22, 2014

David Gandy talks with 'Sassy Hong Kong'

Gandy first caught our eyes in his famous Dolce and Gabbana Light Blue fragrance ad – his smouldering good looks did not go unnoticed! He’s modelled for every major fashion house you can think of and now he’s teamed up with one of our favourite British brands, Marks and Spencer, to create his own men’s underwear and sleepwear range for their Autograph collection. And did we mention that he’s modelling them too? Phew! Is it getting hot in here? The collection launches in Hong Kong on 23 September, and includes a selection of eleven underwear pieces in four different styles, eight different vests and jersey nightwear… all in slimming and sophisticated styles using premium materials.

Sassy Hong Kong chats to David about his new collection, what he looks for in a woman, his work for Comic Relief, his love of cars and whether the film Zoolander has any real life parallels… there’s more to him than being just ridiculously good looking!

How have you found the design process? Do you think that modelling has helped you to be a better designer?
As this is my first venture into designing, there have certainly been challenges, but working with the experts at Marks & Spencer has made the process a lot easier. There’s a lot to learn, but I have also been very focused on how I want the collection and the packaging to be. Though I’m not sure modelling in particularly has helped with designing, being in the fashion industry and observing the many creatives and designers that I’ve worked with certainly has helped. When it came to brainstorming the ideas for the campaign shoot, then of course my experience with photographers helped too. I’ve learnt what works and I’ve learnt from mistakes that have been made in the past.

What is your favourite piece from the collection?
My favourite pieces are the trunks and the houndstooth dressing gown. We have packaged them beautifully, in high-quality boxes with a houndstooth print – they have a very British feel to them!

What do you always buy from M&S?
I wear everything from M&S – from the t-shirts and the cashmere, to the dress and casual shirts and the suits. The quality and attention to detail is, in my opinion, the best on the British high street.

In your opinion, do women have more of a preference when it comes to men’s underwear? Boxers or briefs?
Everyone has a different preference, men and women. At M&S we are all jokingly taking bets on what will be the most popular…  Most of the women there prefer men in the hipsters or trunks. Within the range I’ve designed, there is a classic pair of woven cotton classic boxers that I nick-named the ‘Girlfriend Boxer’, as I think it’ll be the pair that your girlfriend will steal and wear around the house.

What’s been your most challenging modeling moment so far? 
There have been many challenges to modelling. The main one being trying to change the stereotypical ways that people from within, and outside, of the fashion industry see male models.

When did you know you’d ‘made it’ in modeling? Do you ever get used to seeing yourself plastered on billboards?
I always wanted to create an iconic image. Dolce and Gabbana and Mario Testino definitely did this with the concept for the Light Blue fragrance. I’m not sure you should ever believe you ‘make it’; I believe you should always try to better yourself and to evolve.  You have to adapt and never become complacent as there is always so much competition – not just from other models, but now celebrities, actors, sports people and musicians.

Apart from modelling, you’re also a bit of a petrol-head. You’re an official car reviewer for British GQ… that must be fun! What exactly does it entail… apart from driving around in fancy cars (wink!)?
It doesn’t always mean the cars are fancy! They may be classics, hybrids… really anything that I think is a clever piece of design or engineering. I have total freedom in what I talk about, but GQ isn’t a motoring magazine, so I try to appeal not only to fellow petrol heads but also to the reader who has little or no interest in cars. For me, that’s a real challenge.

What do you look for in a woman? What are your ideal qualities in a partner?
Someone who is humble, funny and doesn’t take themselves too seriously!

What makes a girl ‘sassy’?
I’m sure that women are born sassy. They are bold, strong, and full of life. I also think they can be sassy through fashion – what a women wears says a lot about her.

You started the ‘Blue Steel Appeal’ for the charity Comic Relief in 2013 – how true to life would you say the Zoolander film is… can you relate in anyway or is it purely comical?
It’s definitely a highly exaggerated, comical take on models and the fashion industry. I can’t say I relate to it, no! But there are certainly a few characters that I can recognise… and the film is fun.

Will you continue with the ‘Blue Steel Appeal’ and are there any charities that you regularly support or want to work with?
The Blue Steel Appeal will certainly continue to raise money for Comic Relief through the fashion industry. I am also ambassador for Battersea Dogs Home in London and Style for Soldiers, as well as many other charities that I try and support as much as I can.  I recently donated my fee from the campaign I shot with a Filipino brand, SM, to the Yolanda housing projects which will help build 11 new homes for the victims of the typhoon.

Source: Sassyhongkong.com

Meeting David Gandy (by Victoria Isa Daniel)

We would like to give a very special Thank You to Victoria Isa Daniel from Carlow (Ireland) for sending us the touching story of her exciting adventure to meet David Gandy at M&S Flagship Store in Dublin last Thursday. Thank You for being so kind and Congratulations!

On my birthday of 9th of September I was surfing the web as I do every evening around 8pm. Suddenly I came across a campaign of David Gandy for Autograph. I reflected back to the time when I first laid my eyes on the British supermodel, it was the month of May where he made a guest appearance on my favorite late television show “Alan Carr Chatty Man” I was in awe by him. David was a pure English gentleman; he looked elegant and sophisticated in his three piece grey suit. He was so entertaining to watch and soon became my favorite male model; even so I bought the D&G perfume he had promoted.

Through the months, I have admired David and his lifestyle and have become a fan of his work. His name became very well known and I considered him to be the most successful and well known supermodel of 2013 onwards. Referring back to my laptop it said that he was going to launch his new underwear collection in M&S called David Gandy for Autograph. I scanned through the promotional video and the line, it was amazing to see Gandy work hand in hand with designers to form the product and then model it. His Facebook soon showed where he would be to promote his collection, and to my surprise one of them was Ireland! I was delighted with the news and was determined to show up for the meet and greet.

The day soon came, the 18th of September, my plans to get to Grafton Street by 12:30 the time Gandy started the meet and greet was sabotaged by the times of the train from where I lived into the city. As I am a student, I left school at the earliest I could and traveled 2 hours with my mother on the train to Dublin to meet David Gandy, the British Gentleman of the Century. I had told my close friends about my journey and they knew how long I have talked on and on about him! It felt like a late birthday present.

When we arrived in Dublin it was 12:50 and it was typical Irish weather - dark and gloomy with rain falling from the clouded sky. My mother and I took the luas quickly to Abbey Street and raced to Grafton Street arriving outside M&S for 1:20. To my disappointment the line was closed and they wouldn’t let anyone else in. A steam of disappointment clouded my face. Just a few seconds ago I was full of excitement racing through the streets of Dublin with joy and now it felt as if that joy had been taken away from me! A security man approached me with some workers wearing the logo of M&S, I explained how I had traveled for the event and that I had been a fan for about a year since his Dolce and Gabbana ad campaign. They took pity on me and let me into the line. I was thrilled. 

One of the other workers came up to my mother and I and told us there was no guarantee that we would get an autograph or our picture taken with Gandy because he only wanted to meet the first hundred and he was leaving in an hour. As the hour passed we saw many people turned away from the line and others who were in front of us left the line because they so no point in waiting. My mum and I had friendly conversation with the security guard, he had grey hair and a broad smile. He believed he was lucky and so got me to rub off him for luck. He thought of an idea, I should leave the line and he would hold my place while I go into the main shop like a customer and take pictures from afar, maybe if I didn’t think it is worth the wait and the disappointment I should leave.

I strolled into the shop; it was very crowded many people waiting in queue to talk to and snap a shot with the handsome supermodel. I stood there and took a handful of pictures. I went back to join my mum at the end of the queue and I had hope that maybe just maybe luck was on our side today. I decided to wait till I hear the officials say he has left the building. Every so often a woman would come and do a head count of those who were left, my mother and I being the last ones. It was up to the PR team to decide whether he leaves on time or stays to do everyone in line. Gandy had already been there 20 minutes over his appointed time and I was starting to fear that he would leave with just 10 more people to go.

As we stepped inside the store, I gripped my mother’s hand with excitement I could see him clearly! He looked so elegant in his crisp blue shirt with a beige cardigan and grey suit with white stripes. We drew closer and closer to him. I prepared my phone for pictures and handed it to one of the workers. I felt very nervous, I approached him looking at the ground he immediately got up and kissed my cheek. I was in utter shock. He had a welcoming smile and a great handshake. When he took a seat, he asked about my day and what I did, I explained the whole situation of the day to him and he regarded me with his full attention, occasionally turning away to sign his autograph on the flyer for his campaign. He was very intrigued by my story and said he appreciated all my efforts to come and see him, laughing at his joke about keeping it our little secret about missing school as a student. He was everything I expected: charming, handsome and funny. My mother became so emotional when he shook her hand and embraced her and since we were the last people to meet him he took time to converse with us and offered to take pictures of my mum and me separately and together.

It was a great day for the both of us and taking the train back I was glad that I waited and hoped. It was definitely the highlight of my year! This leaves me with my first item crossed out of my bucket list; Meet a celebrity – David James Gandy