Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Young Man: (of the Hour)

I'm back after a few days of silence due to my apartment getting new carpet (the cable/wireless hookup is right in the middle).

While I was gone, I was apparently named the Man of the Hour by Kempt, for my last post.

Must have been a slow hour in the blogosphere.

But in any case, many thanks to those guys for honoring me.

After a trip to the store I'll be back with a post on my new handmade leather wallet.


Sunday, March 28, 2010

Old Man: Sunday Style

Bright spring look on a rainy spring day.



(look for an upcoming essay post on style vs. looks)

Friday, March 26, 2010

Young Man: Spring Break/Spring Uniform

Spring Break started at exactly 2:45 today (last period planning rules). Came home, and changed into what looks to be the Spring/Summer uniform for this Old man. Oxford with rolled sleeves, rolled jeans (or chinos), and some sort of sockless shoes.

Oh yea and shades.

Goofy face optional.


Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Young Man: The Mullet Outfit

Business up top:

Party down below:

Disclaimer: I did wear socks to school, but mostly because it was 28 in the morning.

Sorry for the lack of updates and responses to comments. If you have something dire to tell or ask me, emailing is best. Sorry again. It will get better in the next few weeks. I promise.


Friday, March 19, 2010

Young Man: Handmade Greenville

Tomorrow morning the wife and I are making the trek to Greenville for Handmade Greenville. I'll be on the lookout for bandanas and pocket squares/scarves, as well as cool other stuff. Should be fun.

I attempted a photo collage of what I plan to wear tomorrow. Not sure how it turned out. Stay tuned tomorrow for pictures of anything I was able to pick up as well the real-life incarnation of the collage.

Those of you who are pros at this give me some feedback on how I did.


Thursday, March 18, 2010

Young Man: Interview Steeze

The aforementioned Norman Hilton suit. I got it a few months ago, but the pants didn't fit me. I've been working out a little and obviously lost a good bit because they fit great now. I thought it was a great outfit. Here's hoping the interviewers did too.

tab collar shirt, JZ Richards tie, white silk.


AE Graysons.

Cuffless with a break, a pretty big difference for me.

I had three interviews, all of which went pretty well, I thought. How well? Not sure. I guess I'll find out in a couple of months.


Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Young Man: Job Fair Steeze

As I mentioned a few posts ago, I had a job fair this afternoon/evening. 250+ college students crowded into a room with 20 school districts in a smaller than needed room.

I got three interviews and gave my resume out to three additional districts that weren't interviewing Secondary - English candidates. Bummer.

Anyways, here are the pictures.


I loved that sock color and thought it looked great with the pants/shoes.

Tomorrow: Interview steeze (preview: medium blue Norman Hilton sack suit, light blue tab collar shirt, red tie and black tassels).

You'd hire me right?

(btw, if there are any administrators in upstate SC, give me a job!)


Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Young Man: LL Bean Signature Line Wish List

There has been a lot of info lately about the new LL Bean Signature line. Some good, some bad. Overall, I like it, just based on the pictures. Here are some of my favorites. I will offer minimal explanation.

This chino blazer looks to be a two button sack, which would be awesome.

This looks like a great casual jacket. I'd like to punch his face because of the popped collar.

This looks to be a really nice sweater. I've seen that style of neck (no idea what it's called) and it looks good.

Cool tattersall shirt. Like the flap pocket.

Nice long sleeve madras shirt. Very nice colors. It reminds me of the ocean.

Fourth of July madras shirt right here.

I really like these pants, for some reason. I probably wouldn't wear them too often because of their color, but they are cool.

I like the duck.

Cool duffel bag. It would be hard to choose between the blue, red, and white.

And of course, the best part of all - and the most discussed part - the shoes.

The oft pictured and discussed canvas Bean Boot. So sweet. Maybe the only Bean Boot I would wear.

But my favorites are the two colors of the Ranger Moc. I obviously love blue suede, so those would be great, but the tan suede would be a lot more versatile.

The price points are decent too. Not great, but pretty good for the quality that I'm assuming.

Too bad I still won't be able to afford any of it.

Hey LL Bean! Send me some Ranger mocs!


Young Man: Stressing

Like I said yesterday, I've been quite busy the past few weeks. I've been teaching first and third periods (Freshman English) for the past month and a half, and this week I took over both second periods (A+B block schedule) so I am super busy. I used to be able to get my grading/planning done during second and fourth, but now I'm down to just my planning period and home time, which obviously cuts into my available blogging time.

Also, I've been trying to prepare for tomorrow night. It's a large Education career fair held at the University. Quite nervous. I will be wearing my BB blazer, a BB oxford, and a tie with some kind of green in it.

Here's whats been taking up my time. (warning, slightly blurry picture ahead. If this offends you deeply skip to the next picture.)

Yay, grading! These are their personal epics, their writing assignments for the unit on the Odyssey we just finished.

Grading in a JPress tweed, BB oxford, JZ Richards tie, RRL chinos, and topsiders (because I was feeling lazy this morning). Also visible is the incredibly exasperated expression that comes from reading every student respond that they liked the movie version better (they say because they can understand it better, I know it's because they don't want to try with the poem).

I saw this and thought it would make a cool picture. (warning, quite clear picture ahead. If this offends you, skip back up to the blurry one.)

Green Sharpie (for grading), plum Hill-Side bandanna (for wiping sweat), and black Moleskine notebook (for jotting down terrible poetry).

I'll have a post sometime (hopefully later tonight but if not then probably Thursday) about my favorites from the LL Bean Sig. line. Another wish list I guess.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Young Man: Recognition

First off, sorry for the lack of updates, here and on Strayaway. It's been very busy and it's only going to get worse. I have my spring break in two weeks so I'll get some really good stuff (hopefully) at that point.

Anyways, thanks to LAS, I was made aware of a list of the "Best Men's Fashion Bloggers." This list breaks the list down into groups. Yours truly is the second "Canonical Example" in the "Hipster Thrifters" category (on the second page). Guess who is the other one? You bet your ass it's Giuseppe. Confused by the "Hipster" title? Me too. I'm sure G will be too. But I'm not complaining. I'm sure it was tough to come up with the list of categories. So thanks Styleite. Much appreciated. I'll try to live up to it with some good posts soon.

EDIT: Sorry to David that they took your photo and didn't credit you.


Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Young Man: Changing Seasons

The past few days have seen temperatures hit the mid to high sixties.

This is good because it feels so great.

This is bad because it's still in the thirties when I leave the house in the morning.

So I want to wear tweed to keep warm enough for the morning, but I want to wear something light enough for sixties and sunny.

I wore this jacket today.

Brooks Brothers two btn. darted jacket. It is a silk/linen/wool blend and felt great this afternoon. I know technically it is too early to wear a blend jacket (rules and all), but I don't care very much.

p.s. Man, that picture makes the tie look super wide. I think it's a 3.75 though so it looks better when worn.

p.p.s. Picture clear enough?


Monday, March 8, 2010

Old Man: Thrift Store Shopping pt. 4 Redux

The blog has had some pretty popular and/or controversial posts lately. I think I'd rather go back to the old days with 100 visits and 2 comments a day. 20+ comment posts are a little much for me. So in the spirit of the "good old days" (and the spirit of fast approaching summer) I'm taking a page from ADG and pulling out a very old post. This shows probably my greatest run of thrift store finds in a while. Enjoy. The pictures should be in focus...

I should be put in blogger jail for not updating in so long with no warning. I was in Charleston over the weekend with my wife and my parents. I hit up the trad stores (Ben Silver and Dumas), but didn't buy anything (the saleslady in BS was pretty darn rude to my wife and me), but I found some great stuff in a local thrift store.

Two shirts (one Gant and one J. Crew) - out of picture and in the wash

AE Leeds

BB 3/2 tan seersucker sack suit (too many adjectives)

Then today I stopped by a local thrift store on a whim and found more great stuff.

Corbin 3/2 (mis-pressed into a 3 btn) sack suit

Seven cotton madras ties


Thursday, March 4, 2010

Old Man: On “Made In America”

Let me preface this post by admitting that I am guilty of what I’ll be lambasting here. I won’t pretend to be above it or that I haven’t done it. So don’t hunt the blog looking for examples. I already know they’re there.

I will also preface this by saying that this post was inspired and informed by these posts:

This post is about the cult (fetish might be a better description) of “Made in America” clothing that is trendy for “Americana” right now, and has always and probably always will be important to the trad guys. It is so trendy and so important, that many people will refuse to buy an article of clothing if it isn’t made in America. I am particularly reminded of an AAAT thread about the new Bean Signature line, where most posters expressed outrage at the idea of that line being made somewhere other than America. Another thread about the new Ranger mocs was filled with disappointment at their being made in El Salvador.

Some objections were more legitimate than others. For example, a few posters said that it makes no sense to exploit “Americana” and then make things elsewhere than America. But that excludes most Americana clothing (particularly the Japan-made pieces, though Japan seems to get a pass for some reason). And a piece of clothing doesn’t have to be made in America to look American. Aesthetics aren’t nationally exclusive.

But there were an outrageous number of posters who tried to use the argument that something that isn’t made in America necessarily has to be lower quality. And most didn’t (and don’t) make any kind of distinction in that accusation. What do they mean? Lower quality materials? Lower quality craftsmanship (quality of sewing, etc.)? Less skilled workers?

Lets take these one at a time.

Lower quality materials. How does the country of construction say anything about the materials? Most materials are obtained from different countries than the place they are assembled in. For instance, my RRL jeans were sewn in America, but the denim is from Japan. The thread is from somewhere else and the buttons are probably from somewhere else entirely. Materials have nothing to do with the country something is made in. LLBean would probably use the same materials if the Ranger mocs were made in America. Would that make them somehow magically better? Probably not.

Lower quality craftsmanship. As was pointed out in the SuFu post above, a sewing machine is a sewing machine, and thread is thread. Every country has access to the same sewing machines (to some extent). America doesn’t have inherently superior sewing machine to China, and most of the higher quality sewing machines are made in countries other than America.

Less skilled workers. This is really what it all boils down to. I won’t go so far as in the FNB post above, where the posters equate it to “subtle racism” (though I do think they have a point), but there is a logical fallacy in assuming that only workers in America are skilled enough to make your Americana or Trad clothes.

First of all, if you are basing your argument on nationality, you are not only displaying that subtle racism, but you are not thinking clearly. What if a Chinese person makes your clothes in America? Does that automatically mean that they are up to standards? What about an American making your clothes in China? Would that mean your MIC clothes are or aren’t good enough? They were made by an American, but they were made in another country. So which is the most important point? Nationality of the worker or geography of the factory? Do you see how this is a damned if you do, damned if you don’t situation? Either answer to this question makes your point fall apart.

Secondly, does the nationality of a worker automatically equal skill? Is an American inherently better at sewing than a Chinese person or a person from El Salvador? How do you know the Bean shoe factory in Maine is filled with workers who know more about shoe making than the factory in El Salvador? Actually, I would venture to say that since many of the workers in factories in other countries were probably former sweat-shop workers, they probably have more skill and experience than the average American.

Like I and others said, a sewing machine is a sewing machine, raw materials are raw materials, and a talented seamster/ress is a talented seamster/ress. It doesn’t matter where any of these are or where any of them are from. Sure, they all add up to make a garment good or bad quality, but country of origin has nothing to do with it. America can make some pretty low quality clothing, just like other countries can, and other countries can make some fantastic quality clothing just like America can.

So, what is your reason for only wanting/buying clothing that is made in America? I suspect that it has nothing to do with quality (whether you think it does or not). I think it’s that we are a bunch of sentimental SOB’s who like looking at a tag that says “Made in America.” Let’s face it, we like looking at the past in our clothing choices, and Made in America points to that past that we enjoy looking to. Like I said, I am guilty of it to. But let’s not pretend that it has anything to do with quality. Because that is offensive to the merchants who sell these clothes and to those men and women who have made a living out of skillfully making this stuff.