It seems that the good folks at J.Crew have gotten yet another thing right besides their now longstanding In Good Company collaborations and brand relationships. Joining the pack is Canadian newcomer Homespun Knitwear.
Based out of Vancouver, Homespun Knitwear is responsible for the faithful recreation of 1930s undershirts that are sure to take a beating. Having both long sleeve and short sleeve henleys, they are more versatile that one might imagine. Not to mention they are damn comfortable.
Using unbleached yarns and use of ultrasoft Canadian cotton, these shirts are sure too please. Think a James Darmody look without the skullcrushing tendencies. Do yourself a favor and get yourself a pair while you still can – you won’t be sorry.
Boardwalk Empire is back with a big shotgun bang right through some gangsters back. We are talkin’ the bespoke threads of Costume Designer John Dunn and Martin Greenfield. Now in it’s Second season, the duo are bringing back TV’s best-dressed Golden Boy in new light, and we bring you the style highlights in all their glory. For more images, read on.
Seeing as summer has quietly come to an end, we decided to close it with a last minute salute to an unlikely American classic. The T-shirt, while not usually finding itself at the sartorial winners podium, has a fairly young history. We won’t concern ourselves with the uncertainties of said history, such as its first recorded use, an already greatly debated question. We will however concern ourselves with its emergence as an acceptable form of casual garb not limited to the barracks.
After it’s introduction in the Spanish-American war, the T-shirt found itself exclusively used as a form of underwear for soldiers. Through trickle down it became accepted in American society as a way to keep a gentleman from sweating through those old button downs and oxfords. It wasn’t until WWII, that American GI’s on the European war front, observed both civilians and European soldiers using the t-shirt as a form of casual wear.
If you are familiar to TGT, by now you very well know that we are suckers for things that age well and accouterments with awesome hardware. Enter Filson, part deux. Earlier in the year we discussed the absolute perfection of Filson’s oversized version of their own original briefcase, which they unlovingly dubbed the padded computer bag. Well, here is the best companion a DSLR totting, who-is-carrying-the-ammo?, adventure-man can sling.
Dubbed their Medium Field Bag, it has the hallmarks of a well made Filson: heavy canvas twill, leather trim and rugged brass hardware. Its small enough while remaining perfectly functional, but large enough to carry everything but the laptop, for those days that you are feeling neo-luddite. Ranging from hunting friendly to city slicking, the bag is sure to please. Clearly, Filson has another winner.
Our favorite part? How quickly the personal wear sets in and affirms this is undoubtedly your-own. More shots after the jump.
Few men knew how to stick it to the man like Boy’s Republic alum Steve McQueen. Known for his incorrigible bad boy attitude and troubled youth, Mcqueen was admitted to the California Chino Hills Boy’s Republic at age 15.
Fast forward 17 years later, he struts back in with the swagger he had the first day he set foot in the boy’s academy. With a silk pocket square, skinny silk knit tie, and white button-collar shirt in hand, he was there to visit his young alum. To that day and on, he maintained amicable rapport with the academy and provided friendship to the rowdy youngin’s. Performing regular visits and allegedly responding to every piece of mail addressed to the Bad Boy graduate himself, his run in’s with the academy were frequent and evolved into his own scholarship fund to the excelling roughneck academic.
Still breakin’ the rules, he returns to smoke a cigarette in his old dorm room while entertaining the boys and getting to know his youthful pen pals. Browse the following pictures by veteran Life Photographer John Dominis and digest where attitude and style meet at a crossroad for a full on collision of cool. And if anyone ever tells you, you can’t wear a tie with a button-collar shirt just say, “Yes, I can, I learned it at the Boy’s Republic”.
With a name like R.W. Loveless Knifemakers, how could one not assume they were dealing with a man that pioneered the days of rough and tough knife toting. Among the many knife makers out there that produce disposable and dulling blades, one stands out among the masses – and for lack of a better phrase, has kept its edge. The knives are part art, heirloom and tool – a partner to be held dear and outlive you, only to become a partner to those that follow.
Robert W. Loveless was an Ohio native that was widely regarded as one of the most innovative master knife makers to date. Even though he passed in September of 2010, his creations and art survive and still lasts under the home of R.W. Loveless knives. As a young man, Loveless would join the Merchant Marines during WWII, and become greatly inspired by the knife fights he would watch in foreign ports. In 1953, when Loveless looked to acquire a Walter Doane Randall knife in NYC and learned of the difficulty to obtain one, he set out to make his own. Forged from the hardened steel of a 1937 Packard coupe, Loveless would make his first knife. And it certainly wouldn’t be his last. While his first knife for Abercrombie & Fitch sold for $17, he would find himself producing such a highly sought after product, that his knives would command the coin that most high end watches would.
The National Motorcycle Race was photo documented in the fall of 1955 by veteran photographer George Silk in the Mohave Valley. There, one of the most compelling series of motorcycle Americana imagery was captured, to become part of the Life photo archive.
Today, we dust off the old prints for a glimpse into a day when infinite-cool wore dirt and grime like a bespoken tuxedo. The images contain fantastic examples of 1950s style, with heavy leather jackets, ankle high boots, and navy deck jackets strewn into the mix. The young child on the motorcycle wears one of the baddest looking canvas and shearling jackets I have ever seen. Other interesting touches found below are the Triumph Motorcycle graphics on the grease barrels and the patched on lettering on the team shirts, as modern shirt printing techniques were just being developed. As a whole the look of the day was one of character and edge – a little reminder to modernity that we need to get ourselves dirty every now and again. And to that we say – challenge accepted.
Be sure to follow through to see the full series of images below. (more…)
When the legendary Argentine motorhead was asked how he won 5 Formula One races, he calmly replied “Very Easy. Accelerate more. Break less”.
Smell like fuel, Have the grit and take the Carraciola Karrusell like Fangio. Accelerate more, break less.
Juan Manuel Fangio, F1 1954-1957 Champion
The Hublots, Cartiers, and Jaeger LeCoultres are all present, however it is the revelations of a select few that grasp our attention. Those contenders are Rolex, Bell & Ross and Patek Phillipe.
Fifty years ago, Sean Connery emerged from the Jamaican waters on the set of Dr. No with his Submariner 6538 and complimenting nylon NATO strap. Ladies abound and Martini in hand, the humble pairing would markedly be dubbed the James Bond watch. However, with the passing of time, the cinematic union of NATO strap and time piece would fall into the dusty recesses of the forgotten, kept alive only in the community of watch connoisseurs and Bond fans.
Fortunately, due to the resurgence of military themed functionality and economically efficient style trends, the NATO strap has ridden the wave back to the shore of the public conscious and can be seen virtually everywhere. Enter Maratac Straps.
Hailed as the premier strap manufacturer among the watch collecting community, Maratac engineers their straps to MIL SPEC standards and the UK’s Ministry of Defense qualifications. Designed for rough and tumble reliability and quality, the Maratac strap of today would have prompted James Bond himself from switching out his ill-fitting 18mm strap for a properly fitting strap.
The Ivy Corner stands to be a discussion of the style sensibilities promoted by the appearance, demeanor, and tradition of the collegiate contender. Having a style that wavers from disheveled and meditated to put-together and methodical. The Ive Leaguer look is of many facets, but ultimately relies on simplicity and tradition. And as such, we begin our discussion about a little tradition.
To piggyback on our most recent discussion on the oxford shirt, it only seemed to be fitting to start with a peculiarity of Ivy Style which now sits in ephemera. Above you see the back of the oxford shirt which commonly is adorned by the Locker Loop. For those wondering what to call that loop all these years, consider that quandary settled. In this case however, the locker loop has been removed.
Apparently, as a way to signal that a man was spoken-for to the campus’ female cohort, the young man would cut his Locker Loop on his oxford or remove it all together and wear it proudly so. Seems simple enough and straight forward, but in my honest opinion it sounds like a waste of a perfectly good shirt.
Either way, with the resurgence of all things prep these days, the cut locker loop isn’t all too uncommon to spot in the post-atomic age. We aren’t saying that we now have guys mangling their shirts at home, but rather that they are coming from retailers with the “going-steady” symbol of the prep days.
For those who aren’t handy enough to mark yourself a taken man with a pair of scissors, you can procure such a shirt at Gant Rugger or patiently wait for the opening of the Gant Yale Co-Op at its original New Haven location.
The hard working hands at Billykirk have a way of taking new materials and giving them the quality that recalls better times. At the helm of Billykirk, the brotherly duo Chris and Kirk Bray are the creative talent behind the remarkably crafted belts, bags, wallets, and other accouterments. Nostalgic for the belongings of a world where you weren’t already wondering when an item you were to purchase would come to break, they had the idea of bringing back something that was distinctly American – Craftsmanship. With the aid of the handed down know-how of a third generation leather maker and the skillful Amish, something old was born again.
Be sure to check them out at Billykirk.com, where you can order there, or at BlackbirdBallard.com, or Polyvore.com, where the occasional rarity not featured on their main page can be found. If you need someone to stand behind their word, I will say confidently that I own two of their belts and they are built to last, like things should.
Recently featured at Hodinkee, we decided to take a closer look at the Seagull 1963 Chinese Airforce watch. While the watch is no Audemars Piguet Tourbillon, it is an affordable and fun little watch that stands out in the sea of Tag and Omega emblazoned wrists these days. More likely, look at it as an improved replacement to the trendy return of the Timex with NATO style bands on them. (more…)
Few men have garnered the mystery and allure that the greatest aviator of the 20th century possessed. As a man of intrigue, and great sophistication, Howard Hughes was characterized as being one of the most brilliant men of our time while pushing the limits of personal achievement. His accomplishments would mark everything from aerospace to film. (more…)
Few men have been able to capture American life as skillfully as Norman Rockwell could. Rockwell had an impeccable ability in depicting blue collar America and being able to convey the emotions of his subjects. Norman Rockwell, by way of his paintbrush, captured some of the most iconic imagery of the 30s and 40s. Unknowingly to many, most of his paintings were staged in his studio and prepared for a scene, at times using multiple individuals from separate studies. [More Inside]
Wolverine boot has endured a history of over 125 years. Founded by G.A. Krause in 1885, the company has been producing quality rugged boots for both work-wear and casual necessity. However, it is their Wolverine 1000 Mile boot that has brought its name back to a modern cultural relevance with its design homage to the classic American work boot. Centered in Rockford, Michigan, the Wolverine brand is one of the many menswear names gaining notoriety today for their “Made-In-America” hallmark. Manufactured by the leathers procured by the hands of The Horween Leather company, an equally historically relevant brand, we find every contour and crevice of this boot finished with the utmost care and attention to quality. Manufactured entirely in Horween Shell Cordovan, these handsome boots are sure to take a good beating and age gracefully like an underdog boxer would.
As its namesake suggests, these are a pair of boots that can be worn to hell and back. And in doing so, you can at least say you turned a few horned-heads along the way.
Alongside the revival of interest in things made to last, is the revival of craftsmanship techniques that have stood the test of time. At Filson, those techniques are alive and well. Using traditional saddlebag techniques and rugged twill, Filson’s luggage and messenger style bags have the weight and reinforced stitching to last a lifetime. The aesthetics and design of their messenger style bags is a happy medium between the stylistically-beleaguered backpack and the all too formal leather briefcase.
My only observation? You are more likely to wear off on it, than it wear off on you. Proof of this statement? – A pleasant union of the hues of brown and blue on the bottom side of the bag from my deep blue denim jeans. But hell, I guess the patina is growing on me.
There is really nothing quite like the sartorial construction by the hands of the British. Gloverall, known for its duffel and toggle coats, was started in 1950 by Harold and Freda Morris. The brand primarily got its footing as a clothier and supplier of industrial-like products for the man that didn’t mind getting his hands dirty. Today, they find themselves producing quality and well-constructed garments with a rugged edge, which has long been familiar in England.
Alongside their line of duffels is a superbly constructed Pea Coat which they refer to as their Reefer Coat. Originally, the Pea Coat was an accoutrement of officers and CPO’s in the Navy and Royal Navy, functioning as a superior manner to keep the sailor underneath warm and dry by the use of high-grade wool. The Reefer Coat, by contrast was exclusively used by Officers and varied by its epaulettes adorning the shoulders and more ornamental buttons. That distinction, however, is lost in Gloverall’s Reefer Coat, but nonetheless is an exceptionally constructed and refined Pea Coat with a more slim fit than the usual sack-style construction of ordinary pea coats.
Pick yours up at C’H’C’M at their much awaited brick-and-mortar store at 2 Bond Street, NYC. You will be pleasantly surprised by the concentration of quality goods in one location while maintaining a wide variety of brands.
A watch is one of the peculiar artifacts of the modern gentleman. The obsession with time holds common between all men, and especially among the great men of our time who strived to master the limited seconds that slip away as we sleep and idle, between our moments of greatness. Fittingly, we begin with the timepiece of a great man, the pocket watch of Simon Bolivar, tattered by that which it paced, time.
In an undisclosed location in South America and from the hands of a gentleman that rather not be named, we hold the timepiece of The Liberator himself. A gift from American Colonel Belford H. Wilson in the final days of Simon Bolivar’s life, this Brillman of London pocket watch is engraved with the words of Simon Bolivar’s esteemed friend and personal aide in appreciation for their long-lasting friendship. Dated October 30th 1830, we find that the movements find themselves intact and well preserved with a face adorned by Victorian scrolls. Simon Bolivar’s life ended in that same year due to a severe case of tuberculosis on December 17th in Santa Marta, Nueva Granada (Modern-Day Colombia).
And so we take a look a close look at one of the items that help refine and calibrate our lives as men, and take a step back to appreciate an item that can make any modern gentleman feel infinitely cool, the fine watch.