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midweSTYLE: A block away

Button-down shirts are an essential in a man’s wardrobe, or anyone’s wardrobe for that matter. Fit comes first, next the texture and weight and finally the print.
For summer, try a linen blend and then go from there. We’re digging this horizontal color-blocked shirt from Topman right now. It would even look nice paired with a navy or olive trouser going into fall.
How dope are these khaki-colored shades? A great alternate for the typical tortoise that we love.
The rucksack is a solid find, especially great for hauling items with a little more construction to them than the bag itself. Alone, the bag is a little floppy—but throw a blanket in it and bottle of wine inside the blanket and you’re good to go.

On Seth: Lavender block-stripe shirt ($56) courtesy of Topman; off-white tailored shorts ($70) courtesy of Topman; khaki circular sunglasses ($28) courtesy of Topman; canvas and leather rucksack (thrifted, $5); 106 “moc” leather shoe ($60) courtesy of Vans Shoes.

Photography by Jeff Kieslich.

midweSTYLE: Yalie duds

Two summers ago when I visited a buddy of mine who went to Yale, I checked out the thrifting scene. Thrift stores and microbreweries. Those are the first places I check when visiting a new town.
Shoes and belts galore, I found—although at separate stores. The shoes and the belt matched each other so well in color and texture. Rich and buttery. The shoes were from a hole-in-the-wall thrift store a block or two away from Yale’s campus for $8, and the belt was about $2 belt at another location that escapes my mind.
Probably some Yalie’s duds. Now mine.
Is that a purse? Listen, on my beanpole frame I wear slim jeans, slim shirts and slim jackets. Hauling around a wallet, phone, house keys, Motorola pager, roll of quarters, sunglasses, compass and other goods in my pockets kills the sleek silhouette. And “No, I’m not going to carry a cross-body.” I loathe those scoliosis-inducing, foul creations. Not for me.

Ok, a clutch?
I had been looking into clutches/dossier/pouches for a while and stumbled upon one while looking at garage sales over the summer over in West Plaza. It’s an original Coach clutch, in horrible (read as: “great”) condition for $2. Sold. I’ll carry it to weddings, running errands or throw it my tote to hold my planner.
Look, function over gender. It’s like a big leather wallet, really. It may be woman repelling, right next to my dress shoes with the inch heel. Somebody hand me a fur coat and I’ll be ready for Halloween.
On Jeff: Cotton oxford shirt (retail, $58) by American Apparel, small; charcoal welt-pocket trousers (retail, $69) by American Apparel; woven leather belt (thrifted, $2); leather dress shoes (thrifted, $8); vintage clutch (garage sale, $2) by Coach; grey sportcoat (reg. $680, sale $220 at Halls) by Billtornade, small (Halls for $680, sale $220); light grey tie (thrifted, $1.50).

BONUS: If you like sports photography, check out Jarred’s latest updates to his photography blog.

midweSTYLE: Tribal

I’ve been looking all summer to find a pair of tribal shorts. Sure, I could make a pair from some thrifted deadstock Zubaz, but I’ve yet to get my hands on a sewing machine in Chicago.

Instead, we stumbled across these from FLC International. Limited edition and handmade? Do I have your attention?


HOW TO: WEAR TRIBAL SHORTS

  • Shoes: Pair them with a summery shoe, like an espadrille or a boat shoe. Hell, even a moccasin.
  • Shirt: Go neutral with this one. A nice oxford button down goes a long way in your closet. Mix it with denim because…well, you can.
  • Accessories: Leather belt, canvas bag, maybe something with hemp if you’re feeling liberal.
One of my favorite accessories is this scarf that my friend, Marta, gave me from Italy on her travels. It’s a great summer weight that breathes and adds a little punch.

Jorge Shorts: We’re excited about these bad boys. A great fit for the slim or regular build. They’ve been rolled twice and will really fit on any build. Seth tested them on his soccer player thighs. I tested them on my runner’s thighs. Also, the Jorge Shorts have a nice medium rise so you can kick coin slot dryness to the curb.

A new bag, Jeff?
I never got around to finding my summer bag with obnoxious colors, like yellow or orange. So, I pulled the trigger on this Jack Spade tote. I’ll make it festive with scarves or something candid like that.

If you don’t have a Timex Camper watchby now, you should think about sacrificing three Chipotle burritos and going for it.
It’s amazing. It’s classic. I wear mine everyday. The face is neither too big nor small, even on my scrawny wrists. A nice olive does the trick all year round.
  • Want more summer accessories? I cut and braided some faded yellow leather into strips and used my big brother skills. Summer zest.
  • Don’t have scrap leather laying around the house? Ask your friend who’s a textile major for some extra fabric, canvas or string. Scraps, yo.

On Jeff: “Jorge” tribal shorts ($78) courtesy of FLC International; canvas wax-dipped tote (Ebay, sale $100, reg. $200) by Jack Spade; “Terracotta” T-shirt ($15) by J.Crew; white espadrille chukka shoe ($30) courtesty of Topman; my favorite leather belt that I’ve had since sixth grade by Fossil; indigo denim shirt ($60) courtesy of Topman; Camper watch(Amazon, $18) by Timex; scarf from an Italian street vendor courtesy of Marta.

Photos by Seth Putnam.

‘Merica

My fellow Americans, as is my gift to you every year on this day, I present the bard of our time: Lee Greenwood.


Extra points for all that plaid. And because I love you and America so much (and because two is only a fraction of the times I listened to this song while thinking about this post) here’s another one. Twice as nice. The flag still stand for freedom, and they can’t take that away.




You can glean what sartorial inspiration you will, but I’ll say one thing. White collar, blue shirt, red tie: Prime.
Pinky ring optional.
Happy Independence Day, y’all.

Suit yourself

It began innocently enough. There was a wedding. I needed a suit. I heard an advert on the radio promising 3-for-1 suits at a—and I struggle to type this—reputable(?) men’s store called Jos. A. Bank.

Then where shit got real.

Trust me when I say it: shopping for a suit is terrifying.

Text conversation:

I’m trying to buy a suit this week.

Me too. Plain black.

Where are you looking? I want to get something sexy, but it’s not like I can throw out a grand.

Haha JC Penny. Mom has a discount.

Don’t forget to get it tailored.

Haha nah.

Midwesterners and suits:

$500 is “exorbitant.”

Sorry, guys. In the words of Max Wastler (LINK), “Suits, sadly, are a grand.”

Agreed. But we also know what you’re going through, guy who just graduated college and has never bought a suit before. And for you, there a couple of options that, while not ideal, will help you ease into the water instead of dashing headlong into the scrotum-tightening waters of the suit sea.

A conversation with my mother:

Well, keep in mind your body is going to change.

You can find a nice men’s suit for 100 to 200.

I know they’re models, but you have that kind of body.

I think people are going a little bit overboard.

Alfani, Calvin Klein, Izod (shudder).

pick something, move on.

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