*Bonus: LIFE just posted some previously unpublished photos of Hemingway. Don’t say we never gave ya nothin’.

Saturday was the 50th anniversary of Ernest Hemingway’s death. He wrote. He was succinct. He was part of the Lost Generation. Regardless of what you think about his character, or what you believe about his ideologies, he made an impact. If you’re not familiar with his work, you’re missing out, so we suggest you get that way.

He was, of course, a writer not a sartorialist. But when I look at his writing style, I learn things about my dressing style. In his writing, he was a master of “economy and understatement.” So, too, in his attire.

“We are all apprentices in a craft where no one ever becomes a master,” he famously said, talking about writing, not clothing. But I’d wager it’s applicable. Clothes are the means, not the end.

Hemingway wrote while he was in love, and he wrote when those women stopped loving him. Some quotes:
  • “I’ve been in love (truly) with five women, the Spanish Republic and the 4th Infantry Division.” — in a letter to Marlene Dietrich (July 1, 1930).
  • “All good books have one thing in common: They are truer than if they had really happened.”
  • “There is nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and bleed.”
  • “Forget your personal tragedy. We are all bitched from the start and you especially have to be hurt like hell before you can write seriously. But when you get the damned hurt, use it—don’t cheat with it.”
More bullets. There are a couple of things we like about Hemingway:

Fifty years dead. Let’s remember by reading. We like people who read.

katherinestipanovich - Seth. I love everything about this.

emily - That boxing picture is my fave.

Seth J. Putnam - Agh! I want to see that reeeaaal bad. I heard it was good. Also, “A Moveable Feast” is moving right up on my reading list.

Raquel - Great post- I really love his quotes. My interest in Hemingway was reignited after watching ‘Midnight in Paris’, so this was all in good timing.

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?


  • 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.

Emilio.M - Those shoes look gorgeous it really fits with your attire. Thank you very much for sharing this.
naot shoes online

Plain T-Shirt - Isn’t that camper watch line the truth

KTW - Why yes it is a Peep Show reference. It’s quite possibly the best.

It’s good to know that you also have high cultural & entertainment standards as well. I clap back in your direction!

Seth J. Putnam - Well, shoot. Thanks, KTW! Uh, and if that’s a reference to Peep Show on your Tumblr, I’m clapping over here. Clapping right here in the office.

KTW - Good call on the Fossil belt. I have one myself & swear by it. I don’t need another.

I live in the northeast (CT/RI) but think your site is the best. You’ve turned me onto Baldwin Denim & some other great stuff. Keep up the good work & I’ll keep reading daily.

Jeff - Nate. The sizing is spot on. I’m about a 29/30 and I’m wearing a 30.

Jon – The Topman espardrilles run small. I’d size up.

Luis - Amazing shorts! I might have to snag a pair myself as well.

Jon Wong - How do those topman espadrilles chukkas fit?! true to size? thanks!

Marta - cheers!

nate - love the shorts – thinking about pulling the trigger on a pair myself. how’s the sizing?


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.

kelsey louise - pinky ring = A MUST

oh, Lee

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.

Thrifty Thursday: Fryes with that

I found my summer shoe.
I’ve been looking to get my feet into a pair of wingtips that are a little unusual. Something bright and something classic at the same time. I had found a couple that intrigued me over the past few months but I passed up two pairs of shoes…and regretted it. You know that feeling and you think, “Crap, I should have just bought them.” Both pairs were Florsheim by Duckie Brown. One was a white oxford…
Florsheim by Duckie Brown
And another was a laceless version:
Florsheim by Duckie Brown
I missed my chance and have continued to hunt for a pair of the perfect white oxfords. Damn you, Florsheim, for making such amazing shoes but not in my size that I can try on.
Alas, the search continued for another summer fun pair.
And the search ended at Nordstrom.
Meet the off-white Frye “James” wingtip.
So comfortable and so slick. I thought I was going to walk away with a pair of Cole Haan’s because of the added Nike Air technology, but these Fryes are going to hold up very nicely. More than half-off the full price? Great. By the way, there is a huge summer clearance sale going on at Nordstrom. Didn’t summer just started though? Exactly.
On my feet: Off-white “James” wingtip (sale $98, reg $198 at Nordstrom) by The Frye Company.

odot27 - These are definitely a better buy. Look like they’ll last for much longer than the Florsheim ones.