Thank you so much to the inimitable Miranda Birch for such a wonderful blog about our company – published just before we re-branded to Vervate (published here with her approval of course). 

Yes, images can speak a thousand words. But you need the right photographer.

Picture by Brighton Togs/Skye Brackpool - 07973677017 20150318 Brighton and Hove Chamber of Commerce Spotlight Supper at Silo Restaurant, Brighton. With Gresham Blake being interviewed by Miranda Birch.

They’re used to being parachuted into any situation. They size it up in seconds and take shots that quickly capture the story. There’s no fuss. There’s no wavering. Blink and you’ll miss them – although they miss nothing, of course.

Reading this back, I make them sound like a creative version of the SAS. And they are rather special. They’re unobtrusive stealth photographers whom you don’t really notice at the time, but make a big impact afterwards.

I’ve worked with Brighton Togs (soon to become Vervate) at several live events.

Now I’m a wordsmith, so I say this grudgingly. Yes, images can be as, and sometimes more powerful than words.

But there’s a health warning.

You must find the right photographers.

For me, the right photographers are people with eyes in the back of their head and lightning reflexes. They spot a detail or angle that most people would miss. And they catch it before anyone has had time to notice and put on a default smile. (Or, in my case, stretched grimace. A grimace I’ve nurtured since the age of five. It doesn’t look good.)

Brighton Togs’ photographers do that. They all have a photo-journalistic background, so they’re at home in any situation and they make their subjects feel at home. And because you feel comfortable enough to be yourself, there’s a naturalness about a Togs photograph that’s instantly appealing.

Take these shots of the Spotlight Supper event with Gresham Blake. Organised by the Brighton and Hove Chamber of Commerce, you can see Gresham is telling a succession of brilliant stories about his design tailoring company.

Vervate: Brighton and Hove Chamber of Commerce Spotlight Supper at Silo Restaurant, Brighton. With Gresham Blake being interviewed by Miranda Birch.

Brighton and Hove Chamber of Commerce Spotlight Supper at Silo Restaurant, Brighton. With Gresham Blake being interviewed by Miranda Birch.

Was this the one about making a jacket for his Action Man when he was only five years old? A jacket complete with breast pockets and lining. Very, very fiddly. It might have been sweatshop labour had it not been a labour of love.

Gresham Blake laughs with Miranda Birch with Vervate

Was this the one about the South American dictator, stomping around in his heavy fur coat, complete with solid gold buttons, in soaring summer temperatures?

I could witter on, but Brighton Togs’ photos say it all. They bring to life Gresham’s quirkiness which is at the heart of his brand:

I try to keep a sense of humour in what I do. I don’t take fashion seriously in that supercool glamorous way. At the end of the day it is just clothes! So that gives me a slightly relaxed approach to what I do. It stops me from being over pretentious.

Especially in menswear, I just want people to have a bit of fun. They can dress really sharply and really smart. I take pride in the fact that when you see people in my suits, they looked like they want to be wearing a suit, rather than they have to be wearing a suit.

That’s the definition of my brand in some respects. You wear my stuff because you want to wear it, not because you have to wear it.

Vibrant images that do all the talking for you.

And if you’re not sure what you want or if, like me, you’re twitchy about having your photo taken, then just talk to Susi, founder of Brighton Togs.

She’s lovely. Have a tea with Susi and in the space of an hour she’ll help you see what you really need from your visuals. She also has an Advanced Project Management setting in her creative brain which means she’ll sort it all out for you from start to finish: the stealth photographer to capture the most important bits; the editing and clever cropping; the strategy, so your photos are seen in the places that matter, by the people your business needs.

And just for the record, I didn’t get paid to write this post. I just like their photography and thought you ought to know about it.

This is their website:, and this is Susi’s number: 01273 275 162.

You know what you have to do.

(And if you’re reading this after June 1st 2015, you’ll find them under ‘Vervate’. Now you’ve got no excuse. Banish those stretched grimaces forever.)


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