Archive for January, 2017

What are Polo Belts?

I want to get a leather belt that is thinner than 1.25″. The reason why is that I have grown very accustomed to the thinner front of surcingle belts. I don’t want it to be a dress belt as I plan on wearing it with my 5-pocket cords. This search led me to Sid Mashburn. While looking at their selection of 1″ leather belts I noticed a belt (pictured above) that they referred to as a “polo” belt. I had never heard the term and thought nothing of until I saw a post on polo belts on Red Clay Soul.

I’ve been digging on the polo belts lately.  I love the idea, as well as the culture from which the polo belts originate.  Born in Argentina, they are typically leather belts with color-specific designs woven in to represent a team or a location.  While they’ve been around forever, they were made popular, maybe even mainstream, by royalty:
Polo Belts

Head over to Red Clay Soul for more examples of the polo belt, where to find them, and a few ideas on how to wear them. Read the full post here: Polo Belts by Red Clay Soul


I am probably getting a little ahead of myself, but I could not help it. I pulled these OCBDs out of their packaging and I knew that I had to share them. If you remember a few months back I posted about blowing out the collar on one of my OCBDs (The Ragged, Tattered, and Torn OCBD). Fast forward and I have two new OCBDs from Michael Spencer.
IMG_2329If you aren’t aware of Michael Spencer it is a newer source for Trad approved OCBDs (and an appreciated sponsor of the blog!). This means that there is plenty of collar for roll in their OCBDs and you can choose from other features such as the much beloved flap pocket and locker loop. I chose a Red Candy striped OCBD with a lined collar, flap pocket, and locker loop. Michael Spencer graciously offered to  match me a Blue OCBD with an unlined collar, flap pocket, and locker loop as they really wanted me to be able to compare the collar types.

I have not had the chance to launder my shirts let alone wear them which is why I said that I was getting ahead of myself. I will hold off on reviewing them until I get a few to wear each shirt a few times. Until then you can revisit reader Steve’s review of Michael Spencer here:

The Life of a Beard

I shaved my beard off on January 1st. I thought that it would be a good way to start the new year. There was a brief moment after I shaved where I wondered if I had done the right thing. That concern faded as I adjusted to my hairless face. I don’t regret the beard nor do I long for it. It was a good experience. For those of you are considering a beard I have included a set of pictures documenting the life of my beard.

Before I go I wanted to ask for some recommendations. While shaving my beard I started to think about my after shave and cologne. I currently use Brooks Brothers Classic. I like it, but there may be something else that I like more. I just don’t know what that is. Thanks in advance for all of the suggestions!



Day 1








PSA: JPress Shaggy Dogs for $147

Our beloved shaggy friends from J.Press are currently on sale (see here). At $147 this is still in the upper echelon of sweater pricing, but when you consider that full retail is now a staggering $245 the sale price is looks a lot more attractive as this is just south of a $165 Shetland from O’Connell’s. While I don’t find my Shaggy Dog as versatile as my plain Shetland sweaters it is still in a league of its own in when it comes to warmth.
J.Press Shaggy DogIf you do not have a Shaggy Dog let me warn you that they are very very warm. This can be a bad thing. For instance, it is a challenge to wear one in the office without immediately over heating, but this week it was a savior. With a cold spell keeping the temperatures in the single digits my Shaggy Dog helped keep me warm as I trekked from the parking lot to the office which was great. What was even better is that when I lost heat on Friday the Shaggy Dog allowed me to fend off the cold until the furnace was repaired Saturday evening. It is times like this when the Shaggy Dog really shines.

When you head over to J.Press to check out the Shaggies keep in mind that both the J.Press mainline (traditional fit) and J.Press Blue (slim fit) are on sale. Outside of the slim fit difference the Blue line sweaters have raglan sleeves while the Mainline version have set in sleeves. The Blue line sweaters are also lighter and less brushed than the mainline versions which is not necessarily a bad thing. If you have been wanting a Shaggy Dog in your life this may be the time for one to follow you home.

Full Confidence

Although I do not know what 2017 will bring I am excited for it and as you can infer from the title of this post I am feeling confident. I am confident that 2017 will be filled with OCBDs, Shetland sweaters, plain front khakis, and 3/2 sack blazers.

In a niche where the sky is always falling and things are never as good as they used to be it is nice when you get a bit of encouraging news. I was doing some post-Christmas shopping for myself and noticed that O’Connell’s has a full-size run of 3/2 sack blazers (see here). While this may not fill others with the sense of hope that it gave let me tell you that seeing so many sizes in such a trad cut is not common. It is not common at all. It is a sign. 2017 is going to be a good year. Happy New Year!