Archive for August, 2009

Hall of Famer

Monday, August 31st, 2009

Once you reach a certain age, if you were ever, on occasion, wise or lucky or brave in your younger years, then certain selections in your wardrobe end up older than you maybe care to admit. For many of us bopping around these blogs, however, a decade(s) old, well-worn wardrobe winner is something to be cherished, to be celebrated, I would think.

Today, on this last day of August, 2009 I’m proudly founding a personal Wardrobe Hall of Fame whose members have proven over the many years, in the face of changing trends, through risk of shrinkage, loss, fading and fraying, to possess enduring style and unrivaled wearability.

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The first inductee is a beat-up black Orlando T-shirt. Already vintage when purchased pre-fall of 1996 for six or eight bucks, this shirt pre-dates the official vintage/graphic T trend that launched soon-after and to this day has not ceased.

This was the shirt I’d wear in my youth on rare visits to clubs where everyone watches each other, meat-market style. It’s cool, it’s authentic, but it’s quiet and helps to hide that I try so hard.

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Admittedly, I haven’t worn it often in the past few years. The collar’s disintegrating, there’s holes in both armpits, the black has bleached to brown in spots on the front, and the lettering reads ORL only, instead of ORLANDO.

I don’t usually dress so distressed and a mess and I didn’t want to damage the piece irreparably through further wear, but unless I’m gonna turn my Hall of Fame into an open to the public museum (which I’m not), I might as well just wear the thing until it or I entirely die.

Closer, clearer look at the first inductee, after the rare jump.

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I’m The…Hunter.

Friday, August 28th, 2009

I’m going…Hunting.

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(Actually, I would never – not ever. I’m just singing Björk to myself.)
And thirsting, just a little, for a cool canteen.

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I’ve Gone North…

Thursday, August 27th, 2009

Jack may have the answer.
Love,
Audrey

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From TPA:

“One of the scenes from episode 10 involves the filming of a drugged up Audrey Horne by Emory Battis and a 52-Pick Up girl for the purposes of blackmailing Ben Horne. The tape in question is in fact the original tape from inside the camcorder. What’s fascinating is that the tape stays on to include the scene setup, cast and crew joking around, multiple takes, direction from director Lesli Links Glatter and so on and so forth. Considering the age of the tape, it is fine condition.”

Signs of the Times

Wednesday, August 26th, 2009

After fifteen years I finally went to a drive-in movie again this weekend and loved every second of it. Ninety-nine point nine percent of my enjoyment came courtesy of the adorably dated signage hanging around my old haunt.

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What a good old obsolete logo, sans serif font, or product shot of cola chilling in an icy forest scene won’t do for a guy’s soul.

The world may as well have stopped designing itself entirely after 1986, and I’d have been just fine.

Pass The Buck

Tuesday, August 25th, 2009

My favorite friend came back from a business trip with a mad stack of expensive, imported men’s mags for me. My favorite was the British-based BUCK.

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I find the majority of higher-priced men’s mags rather irrelevant to my life. Waifs with chin-length bangs, shirtless on sand-dunes, slinking around in seven-hundred-dollar cigarette jeans just does not dial anywhere near my frequencies.

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BUCK chucks away with all that junk and instead offers pages upon pages of street-style standouts, low-cost covetables, sartorial showcases of pseudo-celebs, and even retro-tinged recipes.

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If I still lived across the pond I’d be certainly swapping pounds for BUCKS month after month.

American Legion Chorus – 1948

Friday, August 21st, 2009

Sometimes I’ll see an old black & white photograph of soldiers and think about taking it home and tacking it up on my wall. But it seems slightly insensitive, turning their wartime tasks and troubles into trend-ified decor.

Photographs of rugby or rowing jocks seem safer and equally as stylish, but, really have no place padding the walls of anywhere I live – there’s nothing about me that’s ever been slightly sportsman-like.

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So it was such a score to come upon this American Legion Chorus image. Former soldiers singing on stage, dressed up to the nines – that sits with me just fine.

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I’m really hypnotized by the regal pomp of the image. It has such a magical mood to it that today is all but extinct, I think.

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If directors of Jenny Lewis or The National music videos don’t read this and cop the concept themselves, I’m gonna dress one of my gal pals up in a Lady Liberty look and set her on stage with some white-tuxed tenors and baritones and shoot something similar myself.

So inspiring…

Fall Forward pt. 3

Thursday, August 20th, 2009

The next selection on my next season wardrobe list: A hooded boater’s parka in either cadet-like blue or gingered orange.

The Voyage By Waste(twice) take.

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The Albam take.

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Via England or Japan, such coats can be rather expensive, but when I imagine them topping my white jeans, I immediately cease concerning myself with fiscal responsibility.

J. Crew – I Got Your Number

Wednesday, August 19th, 2009

It wasn’t my intention to tattle on the marketers at the JCrew.com team…but I’m totally going to anyway.

Although the nifty notched numbers next to each of their English Leather Equestrian Belt’s holes are (eventually) explained on the product’s webpage, the sole shot of the belt obscures entirely this key, crave-inducing selling point.

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It’s a lose/lose situation for their company and for myself. Had they better presented their piece, I would’ve noticed it and bought it back when it was full price – and hopefully in a size that would’ve fit me better. Now I’m off to see if I can shrink my size 34 belt down toward a 32 by tossing it in water, then toasting it in the oven.

Premiere Party

Friday, August 14th, 2009

I think it’s required by law that your Style Blogger’s license is revoked permanently if you don’t post about Mad Men at least once a season. I’ll spare us all yet another synopsis of the skinny tie, slicked-hair style that the impeccably produced program has pushed back into the mainstream.

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Instead I’ll offer this cliffhanger-style confession: Out of all the sly, city studs strutting around the show, I think it’s actually broody Betty Draper I identify most with. (Read into that whatever you will…)

In honor of Betty and this weekend’s season 3 premiere, I’m gonna serve something retro-suburban for Sunday supper while dressed up in my very best.

Though I’ll try my damnedest not to (deliberately) destroy any dining room chairs.

Tourist Trap

Thursday, August 13th, 2009

Who didn’t want to hole up in a Tokyo hotel after watching Lost in Translation? The super-city’s swiftly ascending to the top of my list of vacation destinations lately, although my revised itinerary won’t allow for much moping and mooning in my high-rise suite…

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I’ll be stalking the streets down below for killer vintage shops like Suntrap.

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I honestly have dreams about stores that don’t exist but that I wish did. Many of them look quite like this.

Time Capsule Tower

Tuesday, August 11th, 2009

To escape the intense weekend heat, I retreated to the 18th floor of the Foshay Tower – the first skyscraper west of the Mississippi.

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Modeled after the Washington Monument and completed just before the stock market crash of 1929, the historical building is now the first W hotel in the Twin Cities.

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The W furnishings and lighting are all nouveau nightclub glam – Carrie and Samantha chic, I guess. But the buildings original detailings remain as they were eighty years ago and were the true signals of style at the hotel.

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The elevator doors, the ceiling, the original mail slot…why is nothing today fashioned with such detail and dignity?

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Another retro rush of the Foshay tower is its observation deck above the thirty-second floor. To this day the tower remains one of the tallest concrete skyscrapers, second only to the Empire State Building.

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Wandering around the Foshay’s narrow decks from way up above in the warm August winds was supremely cinematic.

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A gigantic gorilla, second in size only to King Kong, might as well have crawled on up to paw down propellor planes.

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It’s good to look at your world from a new vantage point, and to look at your world the way it once was. My hometown W was pretty perfect for doing both.

Case Closed

Monday, August 10th, 2009

There’s a year-old shop in town called Martin Patrick 3 that stocks men’s personal and home accessories with a great-grandfatherly twist. It’s where the walking cane I requested for Christmas came from.

On a recent visit to the shop I noticed a bowl of lovely little coin pouches (not pictured) in oblong pucks of brown tanned leather. They were hard though, like a Vuitton travel case, and their sturdy flying-saucer shape and structure was really intriguing.

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I stopped back a month later to pick one up and they were still lovely, but somehow, less so. So I went for a less revolutionary business-card case in navy blue instead. (But am gonna collect coins not cards in it nonetheless.)

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The slimmer profile and blue color would better fit and contrast inside and within my tan briefcase, and it struck me overall as a bit more Billykirk-y.

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As seen in the first photo, I also picked up two more bars of imported Italian soaps. They’re great for scenting my t-shirt shelves before I break open the boxes for actual use in the bathtub.