Archive for July, 2017

J.Crew’s new Old -School OCBD

New J.Crew OCBD

While J.Crew continues to drop off of everyone’s radar they decided to drop a new throwback OCBD. Leading with an unlined collar, smaller buttons, and box pleat J.Crew is playing up the 60’s Collegiate look (even though they mistakenly say late 60’s). This should be a good thing as it speaks directly to our interests, but the question on all of our minds is, will the shirt be anything special? Lucky for us the good crew over at PTO has reviewed the shirt for us.
J.Crew Unlined CollarToday, guys have more options for a decent oxford button-down shirt than they did a decade ago, but few seem to meet to the standard of casual American cool we associate with the design. And those that do are often expensive (Brooks Brothers now sells the basic oxford for $140) and/or otherwise not super accessible (Mercer is a favorite but it can take some communication to get what you want). So we were excited to see J. Crew touting a new OCBD, modeled on “hand-me-downs from long-shuttered men’s shops,” for a relatively reasonable $64.50. We like J. Crew overall, and J. Crew shirts have a rep for being decent but having wee collars.  So have they made a new contender for wallet-friendly oxford?

Overall, I’d put the new J. Crew oxford in the same category as, say, Ralph Lauren oxfords. It doesn’t have the pedigree or details of the old school makers, but it’s also <$100, which they no longer are. The marketing copy may have been a little overstated, but the shirt is fine. J. Crew has the advantage of being broadly available, so trying one on in store to see if it’s right for you will be easy for most Americans, versus something like Kamakura, which I would say is overall a better buy, from a value and styling perspective.

Read the fully story here: Put This On

A White Summer

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We are familiar with old adage,  “No white before Memorial Day or after Labor Day.” We are all also probably on the same page when it comes to admitting that these are little more than rules are relics of the past. While we may (almost) all agree on this it does not mean that there is nothing to be learned from this rule. There is, and it is that white is a great choice for summer outfits.

I tend to avoid wearing white in general. I find it a little bright to wear in the office. It also provides a wonderful canvas for my food and beverages to display themselves and even though this rarely happens it does give me pause. Despite all of these apprehensions I have been sporting more white than usual this summer ranging.
White Popover
IMG_8295White Polo in Summer In summary white looks summery and looking seasonal is almost always a good thing. It can also help to keep you a bit cooler than other colors. It was actually the humidity that inspired this post as I have been living in the white popover this week. So whether you are trying to fight the heat or simply look cool white is a great route to get you there.

On the Green

Olive Chinos and Tartan Shirt

It is no secret that I am a fan of green. In fact, I have 3 blog posts all about my love of green (Green Ties, Green Sweaters, and Green Cord Jacket). My affinity for green used to be mainly limited to ties, but that has all changed. Earlier this year I picked up a pair of green chinos from J.Crew and they have been in heavy rotation ever since.

The pants that I picked up were made for summer. First of all they are constructed out of a lightweight oxford cloth which is great in the heat. Second and what should have probably been first is the color. The green is sorta of an olive, but can appear brighter depending on the lighting. I have had success pairing them with a blue OCBD, blue sweatshirt, tartan shirt, patchwork madras, a white polo, and even my guilty pleasure grey t-shirts. Basically, they are very versatile.
Olive Chinos and Patchwork Madras
Olive Chinos & White SweatshirtNot only did I pick up these chinos to be worn in the summer, but I also selected them for casual wear. What this means to me is that I do not intend to wear them with my business casual rigs, ties, or even a tucked in shirt…most of the time. I mention this, because it played a large role in my fit selection. I generally wear J.Crew 1040 which is what their classic fit is now called, but because I knew that these were for play I went with the slimmer 770 fit. I like my casual clothes to be a little less full than work gear. I also sized up from a 29″ to a 30″ waist. In hindsight I may have been able to stick with my normal size, but I am happy with the fit.
Olive Chinos and Tartan Shirt
IMG_7882 99.99% of the time I am wearing a pair of Khaki chinos so it is good to be able to mix it up. Plus, I can’t tell you how many compliments I have received while wearing them. If you are considering a pair of green chinos I recommend sticking with olive or a close variation to convey the tradliness that you want. I love these chinos so much that I am already searching for another pair of olive chinos that I can wear when the weather turns cool!

New to Me: Arnold Steiner

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A few years back it seemed like every other week there was a new company peddling preppy and trad wears. That trend seems to have slowed to a trickle which is probably an indicator that the winds of fashion are changing. Nonetheless I have been noticing up and coming company that continues to drop some solid looking products. This company is Arnold Steiner.
Image of MULTIP STRIPE REPP - REDMy interest in Arnold Steiner all started with the tie pictured above. I saw this regimental tie on their IG account (Arnold Steiner Instagram) and my first thought was, “That is my kinda tie.” It had everything that I look for in a tie which is a color palette consisting of colors like, red, yellow, and green, but most importantly is a color contrast that pops. This tie has it all. The only downside for me is that it is a bit on the skinny side being all of 3″, but it will get worn with my slimmer lapels and I will also do my sweater & tie combo with it.
Image of VARSITY
Image of CAMPUS #5

Image of SKULLSArnold Steiner offers a few other cool looking products besides the tie. There are the JFK style socks that seem to be gaining in popularity at the moment. There are also a variety of striped socks. My favorite pair are the (of course) the sold out Campus #5. I have a pair with the same pattern from Rugby and they get worn on the regular. There are also some cool caps like the mallard or skull & bones for those of you like me who sport the occasional baseball cap.

When it comes to new companies most of the time I don’t know if I am ahead of the curve or struggling to keep up. Regardless, I like to keep my eyes peeled for new sources of clothes and when I find them share them with you all. I just ordered the tie in this post so lookout for the upcoming review!

Golfing Again

Golf Shoe Search

This will be my 3rd year trying to learn how to play golf. I slowed down a bit last summer as my discouragement outweighed my progress, but this year I am moving in the right direction again. For any reader that is considering getting in the game I wanted to share a couple cool posts from the Red Clay Soul blog. This guy knows a thing or two about golf and that includes how to get equipment on the cheap.

Scotty Cameron Before & After: Putnam Putting
I’ve done a few Scotty Cameron putters in the past, and have been very pleased with the results.  I like restoring a putter, rather than buying one off the rack (for a premium).  It gives me the opportunity to make the putter mine, and mine alone. Remember the one I found at Goodwill?  And the… Read more

Refurbished Footjoys – Follow Up
In a follow up to the ‘Footjoys – In need of a retread‘ post, here are the results. I couldn’t be more pleased – Footjoy recognized that the warranty did apply to these shoes, and completed the work at a $0 cost. The shoes were totally rebuilt. What happened during the process what that Footjoy… Read more

While golf is challenging it is also rewarding. It can also be very frustrating, but this year I am doing my best to minimize that frustration by remembering that the reward is playing the game not the score. It will take everything I have in me to get there, but I will do my best.
Casual Golf