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ESSENTIALS: The denim jacket

You loved your denim jacket in elementary school.
Perhaps even in that grungy ’90s phase you went through (because you had an older brother who lived in the basement constantly blasting Nirvana and claiming to be misunderstood for wearing a ball-chain necklace and JNCOs.)
Ok, maybe your older brother wasn’t the sartorially suave guy you thought he was in hindsight.
Regardless, he wore a denim jacket. As did all of your other favorite (read: terribly awesome) ’90s stars as well as the badasses from years ago. It’s a classic and worth your wardrobe investment.
Rekindle with your beloved hand-me-down again—or throw down the dough for a classic that lasts. Denim jackets are making the rounds again these days on street style blogs and fall runway presentations. Of course, this is nothing new for you denim jacket veterans who’ve had a tried-and-true jacket to show for it (looking at you, Brad).
BUT: If you’re new to the world of denim jackets, opt for a blue then go for a black or grey next. Don’t start with a nearly-cropped bleached denim jacket like I did.

CONFESSIONS: Whole Foods

Fair warning: this post is all over the place. Each season, I always have a wishlist, rather a checklist, of items that I want to get. Some I’ll thrift, some I’ll casually eBay snipe or order offline and others I’ll have to throw down the money to nab.
For spring, I was inspired by these three looks. 
  • Summer wedding or “Is this even considered business casual,  or is it just slummin’?”
  • Casual cool or “Hey kid, you wanna buy some weed?”
  • Night out or “So you’re going to Capsule this year, right?”

  1. Summer wedding: A very casual summer wedding but really just going to Whole Foods after work. Lately, I’ve been really into the idea of having a pair of trousers with drawstrings. But really, let’s be honest. These are tailored sweatpants with a drawstring. I mean, I believe dressy sweatpants function in the same category of striped tees. 
    Example: The T-shirt’s all like, “I’m just a tee, but I have a little jazz to me that is refined and cool” and the slim sweatpants are like, “I’m a skinny sweatpant that hasn’t been slept in and used as a napkin for Doritos.” I wouldn’t wear this to a wedding, but I would wear this to Whole Foods for a 2-for-$6 pizza special.
    • (Seth’s editorial thoughts: Sweatpants don’t strike me as being in any way appropriate for summers OR weddings.)
  2. Casual cool: Last night’s outfit that I slept in after three rounds of ‘gritas at Big Star and now need a morning after hangover cure and my friends want Bongo Room but really I’m just going to Whole Foods breakfast instead of waiting in line for some eggs and sexy salad.
    Striped tees are so versatile. Unlike a plain tee, you can’t just sleep in them because the get wrinkled. The stripes hide wrinkles and stains, so you can easily sleep in them and layer them under shirt and jackets. Roll out of bed and go, bro. Striped-tee-and-anything all spring and summer and fall and winter. All year, baby.
  3. Night Out:  It’s the kind of night where a date showed up an hour late, stayed for 30 minutes then left me with the check because she had to go pick up a “friend” from the airport. 
    Some say that women get dressed to impress men. Others say women get dressed to impress other women. I think it goes the same for men. I’ve been hunting for a double-breasted jacket for a while, and you know I’m feeling the camo anything, like every other menswear blogger. So with the hunt continuing, I’m just waiting to find the perfect mid-weight jacket that I can wear just about year ’round. However, if you want to go hunting for cougars, go to the Whole Foods bar in an afternoon in Lincoln Park. And always get the grab-bag drink special. 
Summer casual sweat suits, jean jackets, striped tees, camo pants and double breasted blazers. Those are my jam right now and what I’m looking to incorporate into my wardrobe. 
What about you? What are you on the hunt for this spring?
Oh, and Whole Foods, holla at me if you want to fund my lunch breaks, hangover cures and impulse snacking habits.

UNIFORM: Denim, stripes. Repeat.

Last fall, I talked a bit about the “uniform”: your go-to outfit staple. 
You know, when you’re in a rush and not sure what to wear before you head out the door for another mundane Monday. Your weekends should have uniforms too, so you can pack in five minutes, throw your toothbrush in your back pocket and skip town for a few days. The spring and summer seasons call for those spur-of-the-moment getaways to the cabin, countryside or lakeside. Be prepared.

My spring uniform consists of a denim shirt, a light-weight sweater and not-so-blue-jeans.

Layer and unlayer as needed until the temp hits that point-of-no-return muggy Midwest swelter we all know and love/hate.


On Jeff: waxed Bedale jacket by Barbour; denim shirt from Urban Outfitters; lightweight wool Breton-stripe sweater by A.P.C.;  “Max” slim-fit denim by Acne; heavy-duty wingtips by Walk Over (similar); dirty knapsack.

midweSTYLE: Put a bird on it

Go ahead and get your comments out of the way with “Put a bird on it!
Bring it on.
When I walked into the London store, I saw one of the sales associates wearing this shirt and asked if they had my size is stock.  Bummed that they didn’t have my size to try, the guy took the shirt off his back and let me give it a go.
Talk about customer service, people.

The shirt has an interesting story behind it as well:
The Jackdaw print was created by Edwyn Collins, best known for his hit ‘A Girl Like You.’ A former member of the band Orange Juice, Collins suffered from a double brain hemorrhage in 2005. As part of his rehabilitation, Collins created these individual illustrations. Having heard his story, Liberty immortalized his illustrations for SS12.
It’s rad when brands develop product with a story behind it.

 On Jeff: “Jackdaw” shirt by Barbour, available at Need Supply; green cotton military blazer from Urban Outfitters; scarf from Italy; dirty grey beanie from Target; slim dark navy “Thunder” wash in “Max” fit by Acne, available at Opening Ceremony; beloved Plainsman’s tan “Zachary” boots by Walkover Shoes; skinny railroad spike cuff by Giles & Brother; “Weekender” watch by Timex.

Photography by Yewon Kim

Backpacks, y’all

Here’s an all-points bulletin. You don’t have to be among the freshly admitted undergrad masses roaming college campuses with North Face backpacks. (Can I get a witness on them Jansport ‘packs, too?) It may also be time to retire the ratty patches and band pins from your more angst-filled youth.
We sent help. If a tote or a messenger bag isn’t your jam and you like to be hands free, throw one of these backpacks over your shoulders for your daily commute. 
But before you scroll, can we talk about one-shoulder backpacks? 
They just don’t make sense. It’s like wearing a jacket with one sleeve.
I already have a minor case of scoliosis; do I really need to further that curvature? Hell no.
I digress.
Here are our picks for this spring. They’re across a variety of price points, and they’re organized in no particular hierarchy. I should add the disclaimer that some of these should be filed under “pure fantasy” (cc: the Billykirk rucksack at the smooth total of $440)—at least until we all get jobs managing hedge funds.

Top row:

  • Convertible backpack ($240) by Beams Plus x Kelty, available at Mr. Porter
  • “Kanken” 15-inch laptop bag ($110) by Fjall Raven, available at Need Svpply
  • “Little America” 20-oz backpack ($140) by Herschel Supply Co., available at Need Svpply
  • Rucksack ($440) by Opening Ceremony x Billykirk, available at Opening Ceremony
Bottom row:
  • “Pathfinder Wanderer” ($175) by Duluth Pack , available at Duluth Pack
  • Digital camo backpack ($60) by Herschel Supply Co., available at Urban Outfitters
  • “Scoutmaster” laptop pack ($175) by Duluth Pack, available at Duluth Pack
  • Canvas rucksack ($260) by Filson, available at Park & Bond

I’ve toyed with each of these and haven’t made my decision on what I’m gonna sling over my shoulders once warmer weather makes afternoon sessions at the beach regular occurrences. I’m sporting this rucksack right now and it’s on its last leg.

So, interwebz: What kind of bag do you carry?