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Archive for the ‘Fashion’ Category

Point Break

Tuesday, May 31st, 2016

It’s basically summer, which basically is the season that bores me most. I end up needing especially exotic and chic internet inspiration I’m able to priority ship to myself so the season passes less languidly.

A hot minute ago I impulsively ordered some man babouche shoes. They’re twice as androgynous as might be wise, and I’m probably gonna need some new pajama-y pants to pair with ’em to pull off the Brideshead Revisited world-traveler look I’m leaping into.

Babouche

But what the heck else would I do with myself all summer?

I couldn’t decide if I should get black or indigo. Indigo seemed a little less harshly Helmut Lang, so indigo it was. They’re arriving from London next week and If I end up ballsy enough to wear ’em in real life I’ll upload the evidence to Instagram.

Woolpower

Friday, October 9th, 2015

Woolpower’s been spinning out its cold weather layering garments since 1972. I never heard of the brand, and then in one week I suddenly started seeing it on multiple webshops/sites.

WoolpowerBaseLayerTee

Each Woolpower garment is produced in the company’s Ostersund, Sweden factory where they know plenty about dressing for frigid conditions. As must Minnesotan me. Obviously not as warm as a long sleeve crew or their zip-up turtleneck, I opted to induct myself into the Woolpower world through their Base Layer Tee 200 since the length of its demi-sleeves seemed the most 1960s and Scandinavian.

Woven with polyester, polyamide, and elastane these base layer woolens feel almost like a thin, open-weaved terry; and so softer than they are scratchy.

WoolpowerTee

Every Woolpower piece is sewn by a single seamstress who stitches a tag bearing her name into the finished piece.

Woolpower NavyTee

My nifty little navy number was fully sewn by Eleonor Lubell and knowing that makes me feel like I’m wearing a wink or a friendly handshake whenever I have it on.

 

Pleasure Print-siple

Thursday, October 1st, 2015

While waiting for our server to bring us our food at restaurants, sometimes Hurly and I play this game where we pretend GQ is demanding we each provide our own 10 Essentials list. The products/items/edibles we think are incredible and couldn’t live without.

A slowly realized update to my 10 Essentials list would be the coincidentally named Essential T-Shirts from The Gap (always/only) in Heather Grey. They’re not too thick or thin, or short or long, or tight or baggy. They just read as classic, university athletics department-issued tops, and they look good ‘n guy-ish with whatever. Like the You Don’t Even Care At All type of whatever.

The Gap isn’t exactly anyone’s chic little secret – but I’ve tried a lot of T’s in my years of me-ing along through my materialistic life, and these Gap shirts are the ones I ain’t got no complaints with.

I order them with pockets, and I like them without (although, I’m panicking that as I go to post this they don’t have the seemingly permanent pocket-less version online in Heather Grey. Uh ohhhhh….)

blurBlackWhite

Last weekend I had Hurly help me punch up a few fresh Essential T’s with some screen-printed text that might look military or macho to most, but subversively has a dance-diva source of inspiration. (what about me doesn’t?)

“We turned right and I said wrong which brings us to a stop” is the final clue before I usher you elsewhere to confirm my shirt’s music video muse.

I Shouldn’t Have

Thursday, September 3rd, 2015

I almost didn’t buy it. It was a last-season, last-minute, add-on purchase that my wardrobe definitely didn’t need, and therefore I felt gun-shy and guilty about going for it.

UniqloDownCardigan

But in person, on this person, it looks brag-ily cool and actually will probably get much more wear this fall than the initial item in my Uniqlo cart that I’d ordered with way greater gumption. The v-necked cardigan shape of it is neatly Japanese-y while everything else about the jacket is Maine-y and military and familiar. It’s lean and light and layer-able, to boot – lending it tons of versatility.

So, phew!

More and more I make fashion purchases with such a strategic, slow stringency. It’s a rush to remind myself that careless impulse buys can occasionally pay off as well.

Dot Dot Dot…

Thursday, July 30th, 2015

UnionmadeGitmanVintage

The sun is setting on Unionmade’s spring/summer sale – but in the early dawn of its launch I took a gamble on a dice-like button-up collab with Gitman Bros. Vintage.

GitmanBrosVintage

I made a conscious decision to buy way less clothes this year. I pre-permitted myself just four pieces for spring, four pieces for fall. (And a new coat and pair of shoes for each season.) I’ve more or less stuck to my limits so far, I’m shocked to report – and these limitations have helped me narrow in on pieces I’ll really need, will definitely wear, or are truly distinct.

WilliamScottRees

So though I’m stricter and more sober about my sartorial spending these days, I don’t want my wardrobe to simply stumble into snooze-ville.

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Organic cream polka-dots on inky, thick-linen-like material seemed an art-poppy way to plant some Brandon Flowers-style flair into my newly-parched purchasing habits.

WilliamRees

Strutting around just one bolero-tie away from reading as a full-on Reno casino scenester is a risk I’m in no way afraid to make.

Unionmade

I try to navigate End of Season Sales by aiming for pieces that are gonna work as well, if not better, in the season we’re revving toward as opposed to the one entering the rearview mirror. The crispy duck-cotton-like thickness of this Unionmade x Gitman offering is almost too meaty for summer – it’s gonna feel fantastic, though, against the cool thrust of fall!

Under A Single Sun: Arcosanti

Thursday, January 8th, 2015

Hurly’s been bee-ishly busy lately so the lull between Christmas and New Year’s was our only opportunity for a winter getaway this year. We flew to Phoenix mostly so we could check out an otherworldly architectural/anthropological experiment called Arcosanti.

RTH shot a video lookbook for their clothing/accessories line there last spring and when I first viewed it I thought they had somehow shot in on Luke Skywalker’s home planet. Had two suns appeared in the sky, I wouldn’t have been surprised – that’s how surreal and sublime the place looked.

But Arcosanti isn’t in a galaxy far far away. Just a three hour plane ride and a 70 minute drive was all it took for us two earthlings to arrive.

#rthonetrippassarcosanti from Jay Carroll on Vimeo.

And, in person, in color, it’s not quite so exquisitely utopic. I could show the photos I took, or mention the dozens of tattered thrift stores couches and unwanted VHS copies of Titanic that have come to Arcosanti to gather dust since the mini-city was first formed in 1970. But I’d rather think of Arcosanti the way RTH represented it. Telling the truth through lies of omission is what gives film and life their beauty and their power.

Pep Squad

Monday, December 8th, 2014

I saw this sweatshirt on the Hickorees site and its vague goofiness amused me.

Dubbleworks

So I bought it for myself so I could properly front my own One Man Pep Squad. I’m basically a 67-inch tall exclamation point when I pull it on.

ScottRees

I’ve had a lot of luck with Hickorees this past year, picking up an expanding stash of Japanese-made sportswear with overtly American undergrad-ish graphics inked across them.

HickoreesSweatshirt

They make me look like I’d grown up a member of all sorts of wild and rugged clubs I wasn’t actually quite cut out for.

Metsa Design – Indigo Dyed Henley

Thursday, September 4th, 2014

A clothing label named after the Estonian word for “Little house in the forest” automatically has my attention, and possibly half of my heart.

IndigoHenley

Founded by Markus Uran, Metsa Design is neither bolstered nor burdened by the American heritage hullabaloo because it’s a Canadian label basing its aesthetic off a different (national) backstory and brainstorming its own visual narrative.

IndigoDyedWovenHenley

There’s a freedom and freshness to Metsa’s mindset that men on any side of every border would benefit from, I think. A sense of further off horizons, unvisited yet familiar.

MetsaDesign

All of that, I think is especially evident in the first piece from the line that I purchased, an indigo-dyed woven henley. Lightweight and weathered in its coloring, dyed by hand, rinsed (quite possibly) in a cool Canadian lake, it’s a proper piece for summer or fall, be it 1913 or 2014.

MetsaWovenShirt

With a design originally inspired by the day shirts of field hands in South East Asia, cut and then colored in Canada, tagged in Estonian, these handmade henleys are perfectly suited for a British-born half-German living a boundary blurring version of an American life.

Topo Designs Fleece Jacket

Tuesday, August 19th, 2014

About April or so, though I can’t explain exactly why, I decided I should own a sorta norm-core-ish fleece piece. I wanted it tan or teddy-bear colored and tried (and tried and tried) to find an end-of-season Patagonia zip-up that I quite liked. But that just never panned out so I set my eyes on Topo Designs.

TopoDesignsJacket

Based out of Colorado, Topo’s Made in America mountain-wear treks through the natural-high vibe of 1970s camping gear but with surfy splashes of late 80s and early 90s shades.

FleeceJacketCoyote

Their Coyote-colored fleece pullover was out of stock for most of the spring, and too thick to slip into during the peak of summer. But you can already feel fall in the air round where I live, so this weekend I was finally able to layer up in my Topo. The way it feels in the cool morning wind when the sun shines right on it is sublime – like getting snuggled by cinnamon toast or something.

TopoDesignsJacket

I don’t think I’ve wanted to wear fleece since 1997, but right now it’s feeling really, really right.

Wide-Brimmed & Banded

Tuesday, July 8th, 2014

Separately (totally separately, I swear) I bought a giant Sunbody brand straw hat from Ranchlands Mercantile

RanchlandsHat

And a banded collar indigo shirt that’s got a little bit of linen in it.

JCrewBandedCollarShirt

If I wear these separate purchases together I am suddenly an Amish extra from the movie Witness, or possibly a hip hemp farmer in Ojai.

AmishWill

Allusion to either such character isn’t totally unwelcome, I suppose.

Black on Black

Thursday, June 19th, 2014

It was January when they first caught my eye.

February or so before I decided I for sure needed them…

BirkenstockShoes

Late (and still snowy) April before I thought it made any sense for a soul to be buying sandals in Minnesota…

BirkenstockSandals

And then suddenly everywhere/shop that I looked, the austere all-black Birkenstocks they call The Monterey (not Arizona) were sold out, a subversive style from a season or three ago. Seemingly never to be revived or replenished.

BirkenstockMonterey

Then June came, just about the earliest it makes sense to manual-up in Minneapolis, and I found a pair in Germany that only took a week to work their way to me.

BirkenstockMontereyBlack

A happy ending as summer finally gets around to beginning!

They’re my third pair of Birkenstocks in as many years, but the way they bridge hippie-chic with Helmut Lang I thought them wonderfully wearable and insanely un-ignorable.

A Few of My Favorite Things

Thursday, December 5th, 2013

I know all of y’all a little bit, but since I’ve never met your Sweetheart or your Sixteen Year Old Cousin or your Self-Defense Instructor, I wouldn’t know better than you what to go and gift any of them this Christmas. But I love the way Holiday Gift Guides shine spotlights on selections and shops which readers might not come across otherwise – and so I’m issuing out the first ever Treasury-approved Gift Guide, highlighting items I’m sure someone in your life would probably treasure.

HolidayGiftGuide2013

1. Geneva Travel HiFi System
I demand my iPhone speakers white, un-ugly, and non-gigantic, and this is the most handsome little-ish device I’ve come across in my thirteen months of hunting. It’s got Bluetooth, of course, plus an FM clock radio, tuckable within a future-retro travel case.

2. Manjukaza Painting
Far across the sea, Hong Kong artist Majukaza strokes out a never-ending series of affordable ink wash paintings, all of them black on white, each one a little different than those that have come before, and all of them modern masterpieces.

3. Minuteman Watch
I grew up in Swatch Watches, and now tend to wear vintage timepieces off etsy. The aesthetic of Squarestreet’s Minuteman watches span both sides of the spectrum, and then settles somewhere in between. Some designs offer brown lizard print leather bands, others sport see-through candy-like cases. Whether your style is pretty Poppy or more Papa-like, Minuteman’ll tick with every look.

4. Vermont County Store Short-Sleeve Sweatshirt
Short-Sleeve Sweatshirts used to be a thing, then they basically stopped being a thing. And I just LOVE things like that. These sweatshirts appear to be cut a little on the big and baggy side but I’m gonna just go with it (like in the movie Just Go With It) and make ’em look casually cool anyways.

5. Monoi Tiki Tahiti Coconut Oil
The Line is a freakily chic shop in New York that sells some pricy little prizes. These bottles of Tahitian-made Coconut Oil cost but twelve tiny bucks though and they’re just the thing to make you feel dewy and tropical when winter turns you all dry and dreary.

6. Nate Berkus Aluminum Box
Online, almost everything Nate Berkus designs for Target looks lust-able. In person, that’s not always the case. It all comes down to (it always comes down to!) material and finish, and these shining ebony and ivory enameled storage boxes could pass for “good vintage condition” 1977 Pierre Cardin pieces. Hurly-the-Hubby thinks they’re cool too.

7. Cupid Deluxe CD by Blood Orange
iTunes gift cards are a’ight, but a real CD you can handle with care feels so much better un-stuffed from a stocking. Blood Orange’s album (I swear) is like the seductive soundtrack of some Pacific-set romance starring Mia Sara and whichever heartthrob looked hunkiest in bolo ties back in ’88. It’ll turn your half-lame life into a montage of hair-flips in hot tubs and kisses in corvettes. (Wouldn’t “Kisses in Corvettes” be the BEST name for a song? Someone go off and make that happen.)

8. Musco Orange Amber Shaving Cream
I haven’t considered straying from my praise-worthy Proraso brand of shaving cream for six or seven years now. But the Hermes-y citrus-colored tube of this orange and amber-infused Musco cream is telling me it’s time to at least consider letting something new come between me and my Mach 3.

So Happy Holidays, friends! Go give and receive with all your heart.

And for year-round insight into all I’m basically wish-listing, peek at my Pinterest boards.