Anth(bro)pologie

November 13, 2012
You don’t need a chaperone to walk into an Anthropologie.
You can do it all by yourself, man. And if you’re dragged into the store by your lady or mom, bite your tongue, put away your phone and take a peek around. Sure, it’s a white girl’s haven of Pinterest-worthy finds that she pins and pins and pins away at into the wee hours in the morning. 
But they also carry a hefty amount of home and kitchen supplies with a quirky appeal that will surely bring all you snobby mid-century modern wankity wanks an upturned nose. Well, try on a beatnik hat for a change and embrace the wonderland. She could spend a while in a store, probably just as long as she could pinning and pinning and pinning away her imaginary bedroom.
We totally spend the same amount of time on fantasy football leagues, so I think we can take one for the team.
Being the quintessential friend of the quintessential Pinterest girl, I ventured into Anthropologie this past week and found a few things that you might like as well. I was actually looking for bed sheets and walked out with a candle. So, go figure this post was about to happen.

  • Anthropologie can take a hint that men are filthy booze hounds: 
    • Silver spoon ($7); piece of cake ($8) and horn bottle opener ($30)
  • Pocket square, snot rag or fancy cloth napkin. You decide.
    • Literary correspondance napkin set ($30).
  • Because you’re using your mason jar to drink fancy drinks out of:
    • Besom holder ($70) to hold your blades and fancy pens.
  • Because you already have a tin to hold your pipe tobacco:
    • Classic bike repair tin kit ($14). Hey, it looks cool, and it’s practical.
  • The most masculine candle from a woman’s store:
    • Voluspa “Baltic Amber” glass jar candle ($26). No assembly required.
  • Warm those hard floors a bit, yeah?
    • Festival rug ($78). You can have some color in your house, I swear.
Of all the things I want or need (or think I need to want), the bottle openers catch my eye. For my first two months since relocating to Brooklyn, my bottle opener was a lighter. I just recently upgraded to a shitty four-dollar one from the local bodega. I also spent $26 on a candle and bought the one above.
Punch me or whatever, but then smell my room and you’ll find that it no longer reeks of gym clothes, stale air and seasonal allergies.

FAVORITE: Dog Days Of…Fall?

October 26, 2012
Right when I’m settling into a happy routine of sweaters, wool socks and layering, the temperature spikes up to the mid-80s. I shouldn’t be surprised. It’s just like you to do this, Midwest—every damn year. Ah, well. When summer is as fleeting as it is in the northern half of this region, you’ve gotta cherish every last day even if it comes in the middle of autumn.
And when you find a piano on an abandoned freight railroad track, what do you? You were going to say “take some senior pictures,” right? Right. (You’re all invited to my high school graduation in two years.) Thankfully, the talented Rob Culpepper was on hand and in the mood to shoot some medium format film on the Bloomingdale Trail, Chicago’s undeveloped and still super-secret future answer to New York’s High Line.

A note on the trousers: Dockers? Yeah, you read that right. Your dad’s favorite brand has updated some of its offerings with more tapered silhouettes that look like like khakis but wear like jeans. They’re called Alpha Khakis, and I’ve been wearing the hell out of ‘em. Along with a second green pair, they’ve become fast favorites. 
It’s still fall, right? I got hooked on yerba mate in Argentina and have it with me most days when it gets late in the year.

On Seth: Indian cotton button-down (sale $30, reg. $75) by J.Crew; “Alpha Khakis” in British khaki (sale $59, reg. $68) by Dockers; natural veg leather belt by Cause and Effect; thrifted loafers by Giorgio Brutini; “Weekender” watch ($25) by Timex with Horween leather strap ($95) by Buckshot Sonny’s.
Oh, and if you’re a Mizzou Tiger, you’re headed into a special weekend. Cam and I will see you at Homecoming, suckers.
Photos by Rob Culpepper.

NORTHERNGRADE: Chicago Edition

October 24, 2012

Ladies and gentlemen, NorthernGRADE is coming to Chicago. This edition of the legendary pop-up market will be produced by our friends over at Well Spent and Pierrepont Hicks, so if you’re in town you’ve really got no excuse for missing out on the festivities.
Having been to Minneapolis, the place where it all started, we saw firsthand what all the fuss is about and we can tell you that NorthernGRADE is one of the gems of the Midwest. You can expect beer, camaraderie, and damn fine American-made goods. But don’t believe what you’re reading here: take our word for it. 
When: Saturday, Oct. 27 (10am – 6pm)
Where: Open Secret Studios (401 N Racine Ave)
Who: Made-in-the-USA vendors!
  1. Penelope’s (Sponsor) – Chicago, IL
  2. Haberdash (Sponsor) – Chicago, IL
  3. Red Wing – Red Wing, MN
  4. Tellason – San Francisco, CA
  5. Winter Session  – Chicago, IL
  6. Pierrepont Hicks – Minneapolis, MN
  7. Oak St. Bootmakers – Chicago, IL
  8. Independence – Chicago, IL
  9. Portland General Store – Portland, ME
  10. Field Notes – Chicago, IL
  11. Archival Clothing – Eugene, OR
  12. MidNorth Mercantile – Minneapolis, MN
  13. Stormy Kromer – Ironwood, MI
  14. Sir & Madame – Chicago, IL
  15. Locally Grown – Des Moines, IA
  16. Corter Leather – Boston, MA
  17. Inland Clothing – Chicago, IL
  18. Heritage Bicycles – Chicago, IL
  19. Drift Eyewear – Chicago, IL

GIVEAWAY: And The Winner Is…

October 22, 2012

Alright, you filthy animals! The time has come.
We want to thank you guys for your interest. We’ve loved reading the stories of your old, faithful, ratty backpacks. The new opportunities, the ending chapters. The big-boy jobs and the style transformations. We feel like we know each of you a little better, and that’s a wonderful thing in our book. 
Our winner is Josh Krasovec, the Kansas City police officer who plans to use the Bleecker Utility Tote to schlep around gear for his newborn daughter, and then pass along this beauty of a bag to her when she comes of age. Brilliant. (And we’re already picturing you motoring down the road on your motorcycle with this thing, Josh. Badass.)
To be honest, all your stories were excellent. We especially loved Jerry Stoffl’s hilarious empathy for the duped New Yorkers. Brad Rice’s philosophizing on the process of reinventing his style. And of course, ThreadWise’s courageous husband, who’s soaring above Iraq and Afghanistan and protecting our freedom. A humble thanks to both of you.
BUT: Before you walk away with heads hung low, know that we’ve got several more giveaways just ahead in the coming weeks—everything from winterwear to illustrated stationery. Don’t miss ‘em!
And, of course, a huge thanks goes the team at Coach for their generosity and damn fine bags.

GIVEAWAY: Coach + The Sartorialist Tote

October 18, 2012

UPDATE: Don’t forget to “like” the Coach Men’s Facebook page! Extra props for tweeting at @Coach and @TheMidwestyle, too.

These giveaways just keep coming, eh? And there are even more on the way.

A household name for decades, Coach wanted to reward you guys, our readers, with a new bag as midterms end, new jobs begin and the seasons change. We leapt at the chance, of course. Earlier this year, Coach teamed up with The Sartorialist, who did his usual good work photographing stylish urbanites carrying Coach’s latest Legacy Series collection. Have a look:

The Bleecker Legacy Utility Tote, photo by the Sartorialist for Coach

GIVEAWAY DETAILS:
  • What you’ll get: The tote pictured above.
  • Contest starts: Now, October 18, 2012.
  • Contest closes: Sunday, October 21, 2012 — at 11:59:59 p.m.
  • Announce winner: Monday, October 22, 2012

HOW TO ENTER:

We’ve been fans of Coach for quite some time, and we know firsthand just how well their product holds up over time. Here’s Jeff’s recently acquired Coach backpack:

And Seth’s Legacy Field Bag has become an instant favorite:

Hell, it only gets better as the leather ages and softens, as you can see from the vintage Coach finds we’ve stumbled across. What are you waiting for? Let’s hear it!


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