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INTRODUCING: THE COLLECTIVE QUARTERLY

January 13, 2014

Collective Quarterly — Issue Ø: Marfa from Collective Quarterly on Vimeo.

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I’d like to introduce you to what I’ve been working on for the past year of my life: The Collective Quarterly. Simply put, it’s a lifestyle print magazine that journeys to one city per issue and reveals how art and goods are made there. We meet characters on the ground and tell their stories, but we also take our own team and watch them create unique products. In our first issue, we went to Marfa, Texas, where we slept in teepees in the desert, met a saloon keeper with an eyepatch, and almost got stuck overnight in Mexico. Every page is also fully scannable with your smartphone. So, if you see something you like, we’ve made it very easy to obtain. But it’s more than a magazine; it’s an attempt to connect with cities and people who are living well. One thing I carry with me throughout my projects is the worry that the real message will be missed—that people will be distracted by the clothes, or the booze, or the food—and miss the larger point: that all of these things, while delightful, are mediums for human connection. In Marfa, we found the inspiration to make some products you may be interested in. Pre-orders are now available, so if you like what you see, be the first to snag these while they last.

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Faribault Woolen Mill x Collective Quarterly “Marfa” Blanket

backpack

Faribault Woolen Mill x Duluth Pack “Scoutmaster” Laptop Bag

bracelet

Collective Quarterly “Marfa” Turquoise BraceletvestFaribault Woolen Mill x Fischer Clothing Vest

One last thing I should say: I wouldn’t have found myself involved in this project if it weren’t for the Midwestyle. Through some stroke of good luck, my partners Jesse Lenz and Jay Gullion came across this site and liked it. Eventually we began talking via Instagram, they decided that I’d be a bearable fit for the magazine. And for that, I’m forever grateful.

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What I Can’t Take Off: Denim—and Life After It

November 21, 2013

5EE41390-9CAB-4C6B-BB97-75B0FEA920FFIs there one thing (or three) in your closet that you keep going back to once the weather gets cold? Throughout all of fall and part of winter, that’s usually denim for me. That’s certainly the case this year, but are two other items that I haven’t been able to quit wearing.

  1. The first is an ultra-comfy terrycloth sweatshirt from life/after/denim’s line last year. Sadly, it’s gone from the lineup this year—although this one is similar)—but this year they’ve got an Iroquois cardigan that looks badass. (Between the two options, I dig the heather navy pattern.) Part of it’s even made out of yak.
  2. The second is this Faribault x Ebbets Field ballcap, which was given to me by my friend John Mooty from Faribault Woolen Mill (who supplied the wool for this bad boy). And I’m not even a hat guy. Or I wasn’t before this season.

Ball cap by Faribault x Ebbets Field; terrycloth sweatshirt by life/after/denim; “Suck it, Trebek” T-shirt; “Stanton” 14.5-oz selvage jeans by Rogue Territory; natural leather belt by Cause + Effect; “Desert Trek” shoes by Clarks Originals.

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WARBY PARKER: The Winter Collection

November 4, 2013

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Because Warby Parker makes some of our favorite glasses, we wanted to introduce the new Winter Collection, debuting today. We’ve long been fans of this transformational eyeglasses company, and they’ve gone and surprised us again with a tasteful offering for the chillier months, featuring brand-new colors as well as staples with updated cool-weather hues.

But enough from us. We liked this imagery:

“They make good companions for rooting around a bookcase, dashing through the snow, getting up to indoor mischief. The possibilities stretch on as shorter days give way to longer nights.”

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“Edgeworth” in Whiskey Tortoise, $95.

Every Day Carry: Coach Field Bag

October 24, 2013

 October marks one year since I encountered Coach leather goods firsthand. Since then, the Legacy Field Bag has become the carrier I reach for nearly every day. Each dent and ding it picks up seems to add a little character, and in spite of a few scuffs it’s held up remarkably well. If that’s a preview of the quality, I’m should be in for a couple of good decades. (Side note: My one complaint with the bag is that both of the iconic Coach turnlock fasteners have popped off at one point or another. The folks at Coach quickly replaced the first one [+1 for customer service], but I have yet to call about the second. Hardware aside, the leather is top class.)

Let’s have a look under the hood and see what’s inside. Spoiler alert: There are a lot of nerdy magazine writer/editor things in here.

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Top to bottom, left to right. First row:

Second row:

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Adieu to Summer: The Scotch Malt Whisky Society

October 22, 2013

On a day that’s starting out at 30 degrees in Chicago, all I want to do is pretend it’s summer. Turns out, our friend and photographer extraordinaire Nathan Michael just released this video of a poker night he organized at Heritage Bicycle and General Store. In Nathan’s words: “There’s no grander way to say goodbye, than with a glass of bold whisky and a game of poker.”

Food came from Trenchermen; booze came from the Scotch Malt Whisky Society. It was an evening of cards and merriment, and on this blustery morning I’m feeling nostalgic for warmer days. (Although, I have it on good authority that a few fingers of good scotch can indeed take the bite of winter.) See for yourself below, then read on.

Adieu to Summer from Nathan Michael on Vimeo.

The Scotch Malt Whisky Society has been ramping up their American outreach over the past year, and we’re actually pretty blown away by the concept. They bottle their own limited edition single cask whiskies from famous distilleries across the world (think: Laphroaig, Balvenie, Glenfiddich, etc.), except there’s a catch. Instead of labeling the bottles with these well-known names that might prejudice your taste, they use a numbering system that simply informs you which region the spirits came from. Then, they list off-the-wall tasting notes. For real. Check this out: “The reduced nose turned out apple and rhubarb crumble, banana loaf, gingerbread men and oranges in a canvas kit-bag.” Elsewhere, you’ll get “millionaire’s shortbread” and “saunas.”

Thus, they let you create your own relationship with a rare whisky that won’t be seen again. And for a drinking tip? They recommend “any time at all.” We can get behind that.

For more of Nathan’s work, follow @nathanmichael on Instagram and Twitter.


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