Archive for September, 2010

Blanket Statements

Thursday, September 30th, 2010

(Sometimes the headlines just write themselves.)

Vintage military blankets infiltrate civilian life in the shape of this Carpenter’s Bag from Cockpit, creating an Army-tough tote that’d look remarkably right even in the company of cream-colored cashmere and crisp khaki corduroys.

The rare bag for both an officer, and a gentleman.

Wardrobe Resolutions: Vadim, Saucy & Matt

Wednesday, September 29th, 2010

Batch three of the Fall Wardrobe Resolutions – the most international aesthetes yet!

Fashion Fan #7: Vadim K.

Claim To Fame: Taught me how to order cool clothes from Japan using proxies. Plus he’s Russian!

Resolutions:
1) Take more chances with clothes – be less safe. Even if that means dressing in the dark now and then.

2) Get a perfect grey suit. Wait – no…Get two perfect grey suits.

3) Spend less – save more. Check myself into the rehab for shoe addicts. Right after I get that pair of those perfect white Common Projects.

About the image: No matter what I enjoy seeing on people, in lookbooks and on runway, as far as my own closet – I always get inspired by somewhat times past. Therefore lads from The Specials, Mr Hedi Slimane (here – most American I’ve ever seen him) and unknown to me japanese gentleman, shot by Mr Scott Schuman about a year ago – all of these guys define what I try to see in the mirror when I dress in the morning. Now whether I succeed or not – thats a different topic.

Fashion Fan #8: Saucy

Claim to Fame: The Australian, acidic diarist behind Cigaratte Jeans. Surely you remember when I first introduced her to you.

“I know a lot of people don’t like resolutions because they make you feel like it’s added pressure to just trying to live your everyday goddamn life, but I like the idea of setting them and not calling them something zen like “milestone achievements” or “personal goals.” The fact that William asked me to do a mid-season resolution makes me even happier as now I am just not limited to the end of year epic-ness of December 31st. Seasonal goals seem much more manageable and won’t result in me screaming apologies at my external hard drive for not having any new work to load onto it.

Resolutions:
1) Somehow obtain and wear this cape.

I am not normally a huge fan of capes, I don’t like a lot of hanging, draping, potentially irritating the shit out of me fabric in my arm waving area, however this one is kind of the shit. Right? I mean, it’s like you could be some super human crime fighting sexy genius in this cape.

2) Learn how to grow lavender without killing it.

In case you are unaware, I live in the other hemisphere to most of you, which means Spring is springing all over the place and it makes me want to get my hands into some earth and strut around in a large floppy hat singing the virtues of home planting. However, despite being raised by essentially a Plant Jesus, I have had very little luck at successfully growing this delightful specimen. Fingers crossed.

3) Find a replacement for the Swedish Hasbeens I wanted that are now DISCONTINUED.

I have been pining after a pair of size 10 Swedish Hasbeens in the peep toe super high style in mustard (what a mouthful) since last christmas and about midway through this year discovered they were discontinued in the colour. Why is mustard such an unpopular colour? I have started a mission to find a replacement pair, and one that does not cost the $280 that the SH’s would have cost me. I am thinking this pair from Wittner might do, but am wondering if they will just make my canoe feet look like hooves? Either way I am kind of digging the image of myself climbing a mountain and singing about lonely highland goats.

Fashion Fan #9: Matt Fox

Claim To Fame: Really fine and really dandy Shopkeeper of the FineAndDandy shop.

Resolutions:
1) Wear more hats. I have a terrific collection of hats: fedoras, pork pies, newsboys, ivys. Many of them are vintage and some of them belonged to my grandfather. And yet I wear hats rather infrequently. The weather is getting cooler, and what better time to vow to wear more hats?

2) Be more adventurous in mixing patterns and colors. Theoretically I love mixing it up but many mornings I get caught in that “does this work or does this hideously clash” mentality. I need to take the risk and just go for it, even if I have doubts.

3) Edit my wardrobe. I am so fortunate to have a packed closet. But it’s too packed. I need to edit so my closet its more organized and I’m more able to locate the good stuff.

Wardrobe Resolutions: Damien, Jeremiah & Kwannam

Monday, September 27th, 2010

Batch two of Fall Fashion Resolutions from far-off internet friends. A three-pack of dudes doing it their way.

Fashion Fan #4: Damien Davis

Claim To Fame: Merging together grit with swank on his Junctioned blog.

Resolution: I would have to say my fall resolution is to embrace my inner prep. I’ve really been influenced by the 60s, 70s, and 80s style-wise and over time have tried to build a wardrobe based around those eras in menswear. The simple idea of well worn basics that grow, and mature as you do really appeal to me and my aesthetic.

Fashion Fan #5: Jeremiah Simmons

Claim To Fame: New kid on the blogging block as author of A Headlong Dive.

Resolution: My resolution this autumn is not to break in a new item, but re-unite with what I consider a couple of old friends… my Clark’s Wallabee and Desert Boot. Simply put, they go with anything and mine have gone everywhere. Though I see nothing wrong with desert boots being worn pretty much year round, something about the deep brown hues, worn suede uppers and dirty from wear crepe soles always evoke autumn. Inventive or fashion forward, they are not. What they are… timeless, understated and like an old friend… good to be with again. A man couldn’t ask for better footwear to walk with into fall.

Fashion Fan #6: Kwannam Chu

Claim To Fame: Jet-setting fashion photographer behind We Could Grow Up Together.

Resolutions:
1) To find a perfect fit benton sailor striped sweater, yuo know the ones with buttons on one side of the shoulders!
2) Actually to be less obsessed with getting a certain something fashionable just because a new season is coming.
3) We should all have new adventures and embark new journeys in lives as a new season approaches…

The wardrobe resolutions are just getting rolling. More to come, later this week!

Frame Work

Thursday, September 23rd, 2010

Having bought and worn-well an item from the Levi’s Vintage Clothing line earlier this summer, I’m not at all trying to give the impression with this entry that the wares offered in their collection aren’t excellent. They really are.

But nonetheless I’m gonna stick my neck out and suggest picking up either a boxed chambray Sunset shirt in black, or a sleeve of the Milk White Pocket Ts – not so much for the wearables inside, but to present their packaging behind glare-free glass in an oversized wooden frame as household art.

Hung over your dinged-up dresser above a metal tin full of nickels ‘n tie-pins and your bedroom would instantly read two hundred percent cooler.

Wardrobe Resolutions: Nicolas, Yuko & Michael

Wednesday, September 22nd, 2010

Resolving to work-out regularly or snap a self-portrait every single day is what the fresh promise of January is for. But when it comes to fashion-fueled folk, we’re used to improving ourselves aesthetically based on the school year calendar. And even after we’ve escaped our academic years it’s come September, when shops are stocked with both their toughest and most luxe-est items, that we strengthen and re-set our sartorial goals.

I wanted to celebrate this season of wardrobe reinvention by asking some of the coolest cats I’ve crossed paths with online to share their one, two, or three mini Fall Fashion Resolutions here on The Treasury. I thought it’d be inspiring to see the little shifts or secret ambitions floating around in the fashion air right now, and hoped that, by sharing our Wardrobe Resolutions with one another, that we’d create a stylistic support system of sorts that will hold us all accountable for sticking to our clothing-oriented goals.

I’ve let many a wardrobe goal die out of fear, habit, or laziness. Maybe by signing our intentions down in internet ink, fashion failure just won’t be an option this fall.

Over the next weeks I’ll be uploading, in batches, the Fall Fashion Resolutions of friends near and far. First on the floor are a pair of East Coast coolios, and a Mister from Minneapolis.

Fashion Fan #1: Nicolas Lazaro

Claim To Fame: Blogger behind The Bengal Stripe, and master of favorite tumblr tower Nickel Cobalt.

Resolutions:
1) More outfits of sportcoats and wool trousers
2) Wear more patterns and colors
3) Dress like (N. Marcus/Bergdorf’s men’s fashion director) Nick Wooster (pictured below).

Fashion Fan #2: Yuko Kosaka

Claim To Fame: Wide-eyed wanderer of New York City, her online entries capture a big city life that’s sweetly serene.

Resolution: What I’d really like to do this fall/winter is: A cinched waist. I tend to wear very blousey, shape-less, muu muu-esqe dresses and shirts. I’d like to still wear them but get a good belt (or 2 or 3) and cinch up my waist. I know I’m a little late to this game.

I really like all the belted looks (from Margaret Howell), but I’m really into the look on the very right (below).

Fashion Fan #3: Michael Levy

Claim To Fame: The husband half of the husband/wife Minneapolis style blog LoveShip, and way man enough to try out hi-liter yellow Florsheim longwings.

Resolution: Co-authoring LOVESHIP with my wife, I am in a unique position: my style sensibility is increasingly informed by women’s fashion as much as it is by men’s.  Because of this, I envision an updated masculinity through layering, color, texture, draping, and minimalism.  For Fall/Winter 2010, I plan to continue exploring alternate style avenues commensurate with the recent collections of Nicholas K and Umit Benan, with key pieces including a vintage leather jacket, pleated pants, and a color-blocked Native Son shirt I picked up on the cheap from the recent Blackbird sale.

(Further Fashion Resolutions will follow from equally chic peeps. And if you’d like to offer up your Wardrobe Resolutions as well, e-mail me the swanky specs and include (at least) 600 pixel wide images of your Autumn Inspirations.)

Hamilton 1883 Shirting

Monday, September 20th, 2010

What a way to start the week!

The good people behind The Hamilton 1883 Shirt Co. sent to my doorstep one of their new Camo shirts in a size Small for me to mug around in.

Before I’d even un-boxed my new recruit I was (shocked ‘n) awed by the earthy elegance of its acorn-colored buttons set against the sly and subversive pattern of the shirting material.

The shirt’s fitting me trim and slim; I wouldn’t alter an inch. When labels opt not to offer their shirts in an X-Small size, as is the case with Hamilton 1883, then sometimes even a Small can slouch sloppily on me. But a Hamilton Small truly wears like a Small. So phew!

My wardrobe finally stocked in the classics, I’ve been looking to perk up ‘n quirk up my wardrobe these past months with braver, statement pieces that can instantly angle any outfit into an unexpected direction, and this Hamilton Camo piece will accomplish that easily.

It effortlessly attacks the elegance of a bow-tie, it’d easily edge up a blazer, punch up a puffer vest, obliterate the ordinary-ness of an old pair of jeans. I’m gonna bravely wear it every which I can, testing the limits of camo as considered a neutral. (Will it work against red, will it pair up with prints?)

Thanks again to Hamilton 1883 for the coolest shirt me and my closet now salute!

Roll With It

Friday, September 17th, 2010

At the risk of sounding great-grandfatherly, “I do remember a time…” when there were at least three flavors of LifeSavers stocked for sale next to half the cash registers around town.

I guess that was before we all felt the need to ultra-whiten our teeth while sucking anything sweet.

These days, an airport newsstand is about the only place I’d trust to offer a full roster of rolls, but the swankiest chain of Minnesotan food markets, Lunds/Byerly’s is now stocking period-packaged LifeSavers in Wint O Green and Fruity Five flavors.

I didn’t see Butter Rum ones anywhere though. That’s how I always rolled.

On The Scene: Junk Bonanza

Thursday, September 16th, 2010

The beat-up best from around the country is once again up for grabs just south of the Twin Cities in Shakopee at the fifth annual Junk Bonanza.

Vendors and vintage-vultures alike are known to descend upon the epic event from as far away as Australia to witness hundreds of booths worth of weathered old wonders.

From emptied bottles of fizzled out soda pop brands to tattered telegrams to faded dressmaker’s forms the event is more or less an antiques assault on all one’s senses and a one-stop shop for battered but beautiful bargains.

The Junk Bonanza continues through September 18th down at Canterbury Park, so if you can see Minnesota from out your front window, you best U-Haul it on over there and stock up on other people’s old stuff.

Coming Attractions

Tuesday, September 14th, 2010

I figured I should forge into the very best time of year, fall, with my best foot forward – so I’m sprucing up my system a bit here at The Treasury to take things to a better place for all of us.

The site’s just received a Non-Extreme-Makeover up around top, with larger article images to be embedded down below. Also, I’ll be entering exclusive updates of additional Treasures on Twitter ’cause it’s finally time I let little Bieber influence how I’m living life, electronically.

Best of all, I’m assembling together a slate of illuminating new entries that’ll showcase the stories and style behind some of the coolest companies and internet comrades I’ve had the pleasure to cross paths with in my past year ‘n a half of online Treasuring.

Over the summer I’ve come to realize just how much we can learn from each other when it comes to sourcing and celebrating the happy and handsome things in life – and so that’s going to be a major new mindset as I move forward with my little ol’ site.

So…stick close by, friends. Good (looking) times are just ahead!

On The Scene: Northern Grade Men’s Market

Saturday, September 11th, 2010

Sitting smack-dab between the two coasts, Minneapolis isn’t often invited into the big fashion action, but Saturday’s Northern Grade Ad-Hoc Men’s Market proved that both the men and the makers of Minnesota are sturdy and style-minded supporters of the Made-In-The-USA movement.

With manufacturers Red Wing Shoes, J.W. Hulme, and Duluth Pack but three of Minnesota’s revered and revived brand names, there really was no better state in the Union to celebrate the return of American Style to its rugged, well-made roots on a September afternoon.

Hosted within the Architectural Antiques store in Northeast Minneapolis, local mens boutique MartinPatrick3 anchored the handsome action with checked selections from Gitman Bros. Vintage and luscious leather overnighter bags from J.W. Hulme.

A black-to-brick rainbow of Red Wing boots rose over a salvaged fireplace mantle and past two rows of pre-war, movie theatre seats. (I hadn’t seen so many crepe soles in one place since I stomped out of my closet just three hours earlier.)

The Kansas City boys behind Baldwin Denim were among the friendliest at the retail event, offering expert advice on achieving the perfect dude-denim fit.

One of the brands I hadn’t recalled bumping into on the boy blogs before, Taylor Stitch, showcased the fine fabrics behind their shirting with a stash of swatches set all around our big, black world.

The rocking and most of the rolling at Northern Grade was provided by Erik Kosinken and his back-up band, featuring Your Lord Jesus Christ on (invisible) drums.

These two-toned Hulme bags were my favorite find at all of Northern Grade, although I hadn’t realized it until after I’d left. Soft and unstructured like a weathered old windbreaker, they couldn’t look better had you dug some out of the trunk of your Dad’s sedan and snatched ’em without telling him.

The Rock-Ola jukebox wasn’t up or running during the event, but with Dolly Parton and Dean Martin both trapped somewhere deep inside, don’t think I didn’t consider plugging the old puppy back in.

Carefully curated vintage watches and antique books on topics including sailing and stables were stashed near the back of the MartinPatrick3 station. Their mix of old and new items, as at their North 1st Street shop, always emphasizes the beauty of both yesterday and today’s goods.

I’d received a reminder e-mail from MP3 halfway through the afternoon making me wonder (then full-on worry) that the event wasn’t going so well, attendance-wise. But when I arrived I was plum pleased to see how buzzy and bustling the mini-market was.

Man, oh man, the place was alive!

Minnesota, you done made me proud.

On Military Time

Friday, September 10th, 2010

Treasury reader Peter wondered about the watch I was wearing in yesterday’s post, so I figured I might as well aim my Canon at it and devote an entry to it as I have come to wear the piece quite a bit over the past year and half.

The good news about the watch is it isn’t one of those pricy, Timex/J. Crew ones. The bad news is, there’s no identifying brand name or marking on the watch to provide us with any clues as to its origin. The word “Quartz” is as specific as this stealth little number cares to get.

What I can say is I had asked for a $30 dollar military watch for Christmas a few years back. The piece I had wanted was nearly identical to this but had a date dial as well. Apparently it was on back-order until after the holidays, and so this one was chosen for me instead as it was very similar in style and price. I believe it was purchased from some ordinary military/outdoor gear shop, and so a similar watch shouldn’t be too hard to track down via Froogle or Amazon.

Despite its lack of a date dial and my initial disdain for the piece because of that, it ends up on my wrist all the time as it is smaller and subtler than my other watches. I suppose its generic stealth-ness is the very strength of its style.

Case Closed

Thursday, September 9th, 2010

After many entries, and endless online investigating, I’ve ended my autumn search for a leather document case with this vintage piece from Murray Leather.

It’s a little shorter than the best one I’d had on hand previously, which is a plus, and its structure is sturdier and free from flop which I also appreciate.

It’s essentially perfect, I only wish it bling-ed a bit more in front with some sort of brassy clasp. So therefore, although this drawn out case appears to be closed, if you read between the lines you’ll surely surmise that a new one has already been opened.