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midweSTYLE: Logan Square

March 23, 2011

Seeing as this is my visual debut, I should probably explain a bit about my life as a reporter-at-large. It’s pretty much the best life ever: I’m my own boss, I only work on Pulitzer-worthy stories that I’m passionate about, editors of national magazines are constantly banging down my door, and the money is rolling in. (Pick which one of those things is true). Actually, this article sums it up pretty well, especially the bit about “mostly spending my days watching television, napping, noshing, strolling around, seeing matinees, playing The Sims”…except sub in FIFA for The Sims. Jarred once told me he envisions me sitting around smoking cheap cigarettes and not shaving very much.

Because my office is about 3.281 feet from my bedroom, it can, however, be a struggle sometimes to put pants on in the morning (a confession that once almost got me booted from this site.) Being a freelancer has its perks…namely the flexibility to work from home or pack up the computer and take it to an interview/café/coffee shop/bar/house party. I try to dress accordingly.
Wearing a tie, believe it or not, actually increases my productivity and results in better work. I know, I know—I scoffed, too, when Coach Musgrave made us wear ties on gamedays during high school soccer. But I started wearing them on test days in college, and much to my surprise, I actually did better on exams. So we’ll see how they serve me in my post-collegiate years.
As for the loafers, they’ve pretty much become my go-to slip-ons, so they’ll probably be appearing quite a bit.
Tweed blazer (thrifted, $6) , size “fits-like-a-glove” 36R; grid oxford button-down (gift) by J.CREW; “The Henley” (borrowed from Jeff) by Baldwin Denim, size 30; brown and blue-striped socks (Target, $2.50); woven and stitched loafers (thrifted, $3).

Photography by Jeff Kieslich

midweSTYLE: Springtime catch

March 22, 2011
It was 81º in Columbia, Mo. yesterday when I passed through on my way back to Chicago. Fitting for it being the first weekday of spring. Also fitting that when I drove by, the gentlemen who live at one of my old East Campus hangouts were out throwing the ball around after class.
When I look at this picture of Cam, I get this iconic, 1950s image of a dad playing catch with the ankle-biters after a tough day at work. An escape from the seriousness of adult life—or in this case, class in a stuffy lecture hall—and a way to return to carefree boyhood distractions. (Not that he has any idea what what the real world is like—he’s still living in a college dreamland. Which reminds me: Cam, you’re kicked off the site.)

Untuck that classic white oxford, roll up the sleeves, and pound the glove.
Spring’s here. And soon, summer. Time to open the windows, air out the house, and let the breeze rustle the curtains.
Vintage, U.S.-made oxford (free, from dad’s closet) by Gant, size 15-33; Broken-in chinos (retail, $65) by J. Crew, size 31; braided belt (thrifted, $3); laceless Top-Siders (retail, $70) by Sperry, size 10.

Photos by Seth Putnam.

FAVORITE: Filson Tote

March 18, 2011
In my undergraduate years, I often carried a North Face backpack like any public university student. It was practical: It held my Nalgene bottle, protected my laptop and hauled my books. It was “normal” to have one. However, when I was pretending to be important in my liberal arts classes, I often carried a briefcase, tote or leather bag.
 
 Once I graduated, I knew I wasn’t going to carry around my beloved North Face backpack to coffee shops and travel, let alone to job interviews and formal outings. I needed a new bag that spoke to my “not-so-professional-but-I-want-to-be-a-young-professional” stage of life.
 
Filson tote provided that transition. Practical, functional, and it looks sharp. I can carry it to coffee shop and pretend to look important. I can carry it to a less formal job interview to house my portfolio and laptop. Or even throw some clothes in it and jetset. It’s one of my favorites.
 
Small tote bag ($90 retail, $45 on eBay) by Filson; Salmon puff “lifejacket” vest (thrift store, $4); “The Henley” 14-ounce Karabo dry selvedge (Standard Style, $200) by Baldwin Denim;

Thrifty Thursday: Jack Spade & ties

March 17, 2011
It had been a while since I really scored at Cargo Largo. Cargo Largo, you say? Why yes, my friend. Cargo Largo. The artist formerly known as “RSO” in the lovely Independence, Missouri. Surely you’ve heard of this city before in the Midwest. Noteworthy mentions of Independence:
And Cargo Largo. In short, it’s the island of misfit toys that were damaged freight, marred, on clearance or something to the effect of “Well, I guess we can sell it here.” Enter the glass case in the designer/boutique selection. Overcrowded and scratched, the glass cases house many treasures and bargains. Jack Spade waxwear canvas dopp kit? Alright.
WHAT & WHY SO MUCH? What’s wrong with it? I mean, my last Dopp kit was a Ziploc bag. Regular: $145, sale $60. I’ll have this thing for the rest of my life. It’s sharp looking.
BUT WHAT’S WRONG WITH MY ZIPLOC BAG DOPP KIT? I know. How embarrassing. That was my travel Dopp kit. Until I got this bad boy. Organized, clean—and I’m not going to throw it away at the end of the weekend.
THE ICING: These ties. Cheap, cheap, cheap.

midweSTYLE: Gazebo

March 16, 2011
With the warm weather being ushered in each week, we’re ready for spring.

Then it snows. Then it’s sunny again the next day to melt the snow, followed by another snow.

Welcome to weather in the Midwest. The weather is what you will it to be. Throw a cuff in your khakis and a tie on your button down.

We proudly roll our chinos occasionally. Gotta keep up with the times. Wanna learn how? Check out the Gilt MANual.

Shawl-collar cardigan ($60) by J.Crew; deadstock tie (eBay, lot of seven for $14); khaki pants (Urban Outfitters, $60) by Paul Frank, chestnut Longwings (thrifted, $4), size 10; “The Paulie” Chambray three-quarter sleeve shirt (Standard Style, $90) by Baldwin Denim.

If you tumble, check out our tumblr: www.themidwestyle.tumblr.com

Photography by Jarred Donalson,
great day for a great shoot by a great photographer.

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