There isn’t a thing called a small creator, but sometimes between the millions of Instagram accounts you find a small feed which begs for more exposure. And one of those feeds is the feed of Alex Bilton a.k.a. @alexbilts. Alex is a master of showcasing his personal style in a consistent way with lovely soft tones. One thing that really stood out for me is his continuous development of style and composition while remaining consistent in quality. Curious about how Alex looks at Instagram, Fashion and lifestyle I knew Alex had to be the one to kick of this new series on the blog!
Alex, can you tell us what made you decide to start an Instagram account?
The primary reason for creating my Instagram account is to improve my skills in photography, editing and storytelling. I decided Instagram would be this ideal place to upload my work as the community has an inbuilt feedback loop for my work to be assessed.
If you had to pick one photo on your feed you are the proudest of, which photo would it be and why?
Since starting an Instagram can you share with us how Instagram has impacted you?
When you’re creating content at the rate I try to maintain on my account, I find myself constantly keeping an eye out for great locations, activity or places to go and visit. It makes you get out of the house, explore and experience things you otherwise wouldn’t in your average day to day life.
What are your ambitions for your Instagram account in 2019?
As I have with photography, I’ve experimented with video in the past but I’m yet to attempt that again. It’s a medium I find really intriguing so I’d love to start creating some short lifestyle clips to share on IGTV. I’m occasionally asked technical questions about the photography and editing side of my profile so there’s definitely some demand to create some how-to videos.
If you had to give one tip on Instagram, what would it be?
To those who are having a moment of creative block, remember Instagram is a social network and everyone is here to be social, learn and help each other. If there’s someone’s content you think is great, slide into the DM’s and tell them, you’ll be amazed how often people are willing to share their tips! I only started posting again in May 2018 and it’s amazing how much you can learn within a really short space of time. Just have fun, get out and be creative!
What has sparked your interest in men’s fashion?
I’ve always been obsessed with how things look. I work full time as a product designer and as a result have a deep appreciation for shapes, finishes and textures. It’s almost impossible to not translate this fascination to almost every detail of my life which is why I enjoy the lifestyle aspect of my account. It enables me to explore my style in a variety of contexts.
On your journey of developing your personal style, who have been major style influencers?
My personal style has evolved to primarily focus on investing in high quality, long lasting pieces that are minimal in style and as a result pair together easily. I only realised I had essentially created a capsule wardrobe once I began engaging with the men’s fashion community on Instagram. I find Fredrik Risvik an inspiration because of his ability to execute a capsule wardrobe particularly well.
Has Instagram influence your own personal style?
Definitely! Instagram has allowed me to discover small brands doing great things much faster than I otherwise would have.
What would you describe as your go-to outfit?
On an average day I wear something smart casual. I’ve got a favourite chunky knit fisherman jumper in a light grey colour that pairs perfectly with a pair of black chinos and my Adidas Stan Smith trainers.
What is one item every man should have in his closet?
If you can give on style tip, what would it be?
Create a capsule wardrobe and invest in key pieces from great brands that believe in creating quality products. It’s very easy to purchase fast fashion but try and resist the temptation and wait slightly longer until you can afford to purchase a quality piece that’ll be part of your wardrobe for years to come.
Which brands should we check out and why?
Although I haven’t been able to invest in any of their pieces yet, I love the mission Asket are on. They have completely disregarded seasonal collections and put all of their focus on building one timeless permanent collection. Their level of transparency on everything from manufacturing to costings is unheard of in the fashion industry and I can’t wait to purchase some of their pieces in the near future.
What has been your best and worst fashion purchase?
You can never go wrong when buying the essentials and there are few pieces more versatile than a pair of black chinos. Whether its smart or casual, summer or winter, morning or evening they’ve got you covered.
I have a pair of army green coloured trousers with an elasticated waist and ankle that can only be described as a cross between a pair of sweatpants and a pair of chinos. Somehow (I’m not quite sure how) they’ve managed to survive my wardrobe clear outs over the past four or five years!
Is there one dream wardrobe pieces you still need to get your hands on?
The key piece I’ve been desperate to get my hands on since they were first announced are the Raw Denim Jeans from Asket. I’ve been watching the journey from prototyping to production by signing up to the mailers and following the social media channels. As with all of their products, they look like a great piece that the Asket team have put a lot of thought into.
Name three Instagram accounts that inspire you and tell us why?
It always amazes me how many great creators there are on Instagram, particularly in the mens fashion and lifestyle space that all inspire me in their own way. I try and follow a real breadth of accounts because something a travel account might publish could prove to be some really unique fashion inspiration and vice versa. If I had to pick three they’d be:
1 – fredrikrisvik
One of my main goals for this year is to move out. Fredrik regularly posts interiors shots of his stunning flat in Norway which will be a key source of inspiration for the Scandinavian inspired space I’d like to create. It’ll be a great opportunity to take my followers along for the process of furnishing mine and Hannah’s first home, there will be updates incoming autumn/winter this year.
2 – marcusvaleur
Although not a creator in the men’s fashion space, I love the way Marcus captures action and emotions in his post. Not so secretly I’m really into cars which is something I’d love to talk more about on my account, Marcus shoots them in a much more lifestyle driven way than most photographers.
3 – wouterkaan
If ever I’m looking for a recommendation for a particular garment or an outfit idea, Wouter’s account is one of the places I’d begin. He’s obviously invested in some of the finest quality essentials for his capsule wardrobe and it’s inspiring to see the range of different outfits he’s able to create.
all photos courtesy of @alexbilts