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The Mantle Edit September 16: Hermès watches, the best shirts in Japan, and Japanese woodblock art.

The Mantle Edit is a roundup of all the best stories from the previous week, delivered in brief.

We’re halfway through September and well into out monthly theme of Style. Already, we’ve shown you what it’s like to dress for the end of the world, how to wear looks from the runway, and which watches to wear for the season. And for the previous week’s stories, we’ve continued to explore that world.

Whether it’s the whimsical designs of Hermès, the best shirtmaker in Japan, or an ages-old art form that displays Manila in a more tangible perspective, Mantle is here to help you discover people, places, and experiences to set the mood for the month.

Over the next two weeks, we’ll be bringing you along as we visit even more subjects along these lines, so drop by the site daily and be part of the story.


The Man Behind the Moon: Hèrmes’ Philippe Delhotal talks about whimsy and watchmaking

“As one of the world’s most recognizable brands, Hèrmes has been known for its whimsical approach to luxury: more playful and elegant than serious and heavy. Still, how does all this translate into the world of fine watchmaking? Well, to be honest, it translates pretty well.”

What does it take to capture an iconic maison’s spirit ina single watch? Mantle talks to Philippe Delhotal, Creation and Style Director for La Montre Hermès, to find out. 


Rikuou Kukimoto and the best shirts in Japan

“Can you show me your shirts?” I ask him. And then he nods politely. 

He walks over to the back and picks up a package, then carefully lays down a shirt in front of me. And after that, there is no longer a need for so much talk. He speaks the way he’s used to. In the language of patterns and fabric, in the dialogue of needle and thread. He shows me each detail carefully, with just a word or two to explain.”

Rikuou Kukimoto is a second generation tailor from Les Leston, one of Japan’s most prominent shirtmakers. And in a country where there’s no lack of tailoring skill, could Les Leston have made the grail?


Manila Ukiyo-E: Capturing the Heart of the Fleeting Moments

“More than any other aspect of life, it is in art where merges and crossovers between cultures happen. And some of the most beautiful artistic crossovers come from the hands of Marius Black.

Also known in the independent komiks (Filipino comics) world as half of Kuro Saku—the other half being the equally talented artist and writer, Guadix—Marius has turned a traditional Japanese woodblock technique into a modern Filipino form of storytelling.”

Marius Black takes an ages-old form of Japanese art and uses it to depict Manila in a different light. 


Stefan Ramirez: Sharing his passion for racing through the Stefan Ramirez Racing (SRR) Driving Academy

“The Ramirez Family has been involved in racing for as long as professional automotive racing has existed in the Philippines, it seems.”

From karting in the 60s to modern-day racing, the Ramirez Family has had a hand in shaping the motorsports world in the Philippines. And the Stefan Ramirez Racing Driving Academy shares that passion with the would-be track stars of tomorrow.


Survive any jungle, urban or otherwise

“Today, the name Victorinox is practically synonymous with the Swiss Army Knife. And really, you could pick any knife in their stores, and you can survive any jungle. But of course, you’re going to want more than one knife.”

How to be the man who’s ready for anything? Slip one of these into your jacket.

Dining and Drinking

By the Glass: How about some Sangria with your tapas?

“It’s time to make sangria. You probably have all the ingredients lying around anyway.”

Making sangria is surprisingly easy. Break out the tapas and try this recipe from Chef Noel de la Rama and the Maya Kitchen

Long Read

The travels and travails of a marine biologist in the Philippines

“At age twelve, I wrote in my diary:

What I want to be when I grow up:

  1. Marine biologist
  2. Teacher
  3. Jedi

Astronaut, doctor, lawyer: kids have often given the answers you expect when asked what they want to be when they grow up. Here’s a story from someone who answered the question unusually as a kid, and chased the dream as an adult.