Friday Wrap-Up: End of March

Friday Wrap-Up: Posts that you may have missed this work that are worth checking out.

In other news…
When Will asks, we deliver.
It’s just that simple: Friday Presentations, (April) fools.

Jeff: “Slim Jim” dry coat black denim (Standard Style, winter sale $75) by Nudie Jeans, size 31×34; Salmon OCBD (Country Club Plaza, $69) by American Apparel, size small; mustard suede shoes (Nordstrom, winter sale $44) by 1901, size 11; grey charcoal blazer (Halls, sale $220) by Billtornade, small.

Seth: brown woven and tasseled loafers (thrifted, $6) by Giorgio Brutini, size 8; Nantucket “Davis”slim chino (Wicker Park, $68) by Club Monaco, size 29×32; White OCBD ($60) by J.Crew, slim small; Madras spring tie by J.Crew.

Photos by Oliver Drambour. Get on back to Chi soon, son.

Jeff - David – White boys can jump?

Plain T-Shirt - I think the black jeans are making coming around this summer; I’m a fan. Very fitting outfits.

The Thriftaholic (Leilani) - The Midwestyle guys are masters of the jumping shot, I always look like a dork when I try it!

David - Jeff and Seth got hops.

The Common Grounds - Awesome photos. I’d probably sprain my ankle trying to do a karate kick like that!! Those chinos Seth has on are great, and nice for spring/summer. Keep it up!

Best Regards,

Rei Fernandez
The Common Grounds

Thrifty Thursday: ex-roomate’s dad’s friend’s briefcase

In college, I lived all over East Campus in Columbia:

  • Sophomore Year: 1323 Anthony Street Apt. A, B & C
    Statistics: 11 guys, one house, three floors and a dog—a Boxer named Anfernee.
    Highlights include: Throwing bottle rockets under the bathroom door while someone was taking a dump, the summer Seth Putnam came to live with us from the wretched JBU, and having the bright idea of creating an “Orphanage” where we put two bunk beds and a single bed, totaling five people in the one room with AC over the summer.
  • Junior Year at 1403 University Avenue Apt B
    Statistics: 2.5 guys, one floor and a big-ass porch.
    Highlights include: Killing a blood-sucking bat with a wiffle bat, drinking beer each M/W/F before my 19th Century American Women’s Poetry taught by an Emily Dickinson scholar, and my roommate assuring me that vodka would heal a rash.
  • Senior Year at 516 S. William Apt A & B
    Statistics: Five guys, one house and an attic.
    Highlights include: Dance parties with strobe lights, chain-smoking on the porch into the wee hours of the night while working on my senior thesis, and deciding that I never wanted to leave East Campus to graduate.

When you’re moving around from house to house and roommate to roommate, your clothing, accessories and belongings all get mixed up, thrown away or just generally disappear. But if you’re lucky, your roommates will just give you things when they are moving out. That’s what happened with the briefcase.

My roommate told me, “Hell, kid, I’m not going to be using this.”
Well, I used it.
And I did use it for a job interview.
And that job, I was offered.
And that job offer, I accepted.
Thanks, EK.
“The Stockton” navy blazer (Standard Style, $199) by Shades of Grey by Micah Cohen, small; white oxford (retail, $69) by American Apparel, small; Wallabees (Cargo Largo, $40) by Clarks, size 11; destroyed khakis (Halls winter sale, $68) by Gant by Michael Bastian, size 29×34; ex-roommate’s dad’s friend’s briefcase (Elliot, free); throw-away of black sunglasses I stole from Seth (Seth’s note: Finally. Getting some respect around here.); grey wool tie (URBN, $9.99) by BDG.

Photography by Seth Putnam.

ND - Damn it, you guys are pretty awesome.I live in new york city and a girl could only see so many hipsters and not go crazy. This is like a fashion retreat.

Plain T-Shirt - Damn, lucky pick up on your part. Fan of the shoes also.

Seth J. Putnam - Thanks, Brian. We’re glad you like it!

Brian - I just stumbled upon this blog randomly, and I am so glad I did! Keep up the great work guys – lookin’ good!

The Thriftaholic (Leilani) - It’s a lucky briefcase! It’s quite stylish too and I can’t believe you got it for free.

Did you just get a new job? Or did it get you jobs in the past?

Tools of the trade

Leather journal, thrifted sportcoat, J.Crew button-down, Saddleback briefcase, thrifted Giorgio Bruttini loafers and Corona portable typewriter from the mid to late 1920s.

Some of these items are called into action daily. That blazer fits me almost as well as if it had been tailored…one of the best coats I’ve owned, and a steal at $6. The elbow pads actually serve a utilitarian purpose for all the days I’m hunched over my desk. When the coat finally craps out on me, I’ll take it apart and see if I can’t make a pattern from it.

The kind of writing I do (mainly the electronic, 21st century kind) may not be best accomplished on a manual typewriter. But it helps to have one around, if only for the inspiration. Same reason I’ve got pictures of some of these guys (hi-ya, Faulkner) hung around my office. And every so often, I light up my pipe, pour a glass of scotch and thwack the 90-year-old keys to get some thoughts in ink on paper.

The typewriter was going to be a July birthday present for my then-girlfriend, also a writer. I was spending the summer as a reporter in sweltering Mississippi, where the heat is so heavy the lakes become hottubs by the end of June.

I hunted for the damn thing for weeks, finally finding it in a junk shop deep in plantation country. The owner—an old, penny-pinching, Southern fella—was reluctant to part with it and asked for about twice what it was worth. We ended up making a deal we were both unhappy with, which I suppose is the sign of a good trade.

I took it back to the antebellum house where I was living and spent a few hours cleaning it up, oiling it, making it maybe worth what the old fella initially wanted for it. Summer ended, and the word-machine came with me to a big-city newspaper where I covered politics. Now, I’m in Chicago—an even bigger city with different stories—and I’ve still got that old typewriter.

Photography by Jeff Kieslich

Valeria - Love the typewriter. I have a beast of a thing that my parents gave me for Christmas this year. Still need to give it some TLC to get it in working order, but it’s from the ’20s & I love it.

The Thriftaholic (Leilani) - We need some portraits of you at the typewriter, wearing that blazer, looking like an ‘old timey’ writer! Am I right?

I finally caved and bought a typewriter a few months ago at a thrift but it’s only from the 1950s. It’s been harder to find affordable ’20s ones so congrats on finding yours.

midweSTYLE: Old Watertower, Chicago

Seth and I went looking for a suit with our friend Oliver, who’s visiting from Kansas City. We talked about life and love and happiness—ya know, much like the rest of us who are meandering through this twenty-something phase trying to find purpose. You would think finding a slim-fitting suit would be an easy task. However, we’re trying to find one that isn’t going to break the bank. Student loans and entry-level jobs don’t help the situation, but you need a suit for the interview, son.

Oliver is decked out in all J.Crew except the 1901 saddle shoes by Nordstrom.

But, why ALL J.Crew?
Because J.Crew provides menswear apparel that is affordable, accessible and good-looking. That, and his house burned down a few months ago, forcing him to start his wardrobe over from scratch. J.Crew has played a large part in nailing the essentials.

It’s still cold as hell (that doesn’t make sense) in Chicago even as we are nearing the end of March. I wanted to be warm but still have some compartments to carry my wallet, keys, chapstick and iPhone.

But can’t you just carry those items in your pants like a normal person, Jeff?
You think I can fit a dime in this size 28 selvedge denim, let alone a wallet? Please.

To keep warm, I decided to rock the Patagonia Down Sweater under my thrifted J.Crew utility jacket. A little pop of red under my utility jacket—you know I dig it.

Jeff (left): Khaki utility jacket (thrifted, $6.99) by J.Crew, extra-small; down sweater (retail, sale $150) by Patagonia, small; green and white striped oxford (eBay, $20) by Gitman Bros Vintage; “The Henley” dry selvedge 14-ounce ‘Karabo’ fabric (Standard Style, $198) by Baldwin Denim, size 28; blue and green repp crest tie (thrifted, $1); cheap sunglasses I found in my car one day stole from Seth; blue suede bucks (Nordstrom, sale $44) by 1901.

Oliver (right): Grey utility shirt, small slim; wool University coat, small; Timex vintage field army watch; plaited blue cardigan, medium; Oxbow madras spring tie; 484 raw slim selvedge denim—all by J.Crew. Clubmastersunglasses by Rayban; “Saddle Up” oxfords (Nordstrom, $99) by 1901, size 9.5.

Photography by Seth Putnam.

glenmcmurry - Emily: Transparency Boom.

Seth J. Putnam - Leilani: Thanks so much! Happened to have my camera with me, so I thought I’d snap a few shots…harsh light aside. And we’re pumped Oliver was around to be featured. He’s a stylish guy.

Jena: Agree. The idea that you have to shell out a thousand bucks for shoes in order to look good is flawed. If you can afford it and that’s what you want to spend your money on, good for you. Most of us can’t…or shouldn’t haha. - Ummm I think we need to be best friends…thoughts?

Would never think you guys dressed on a budget based on your photos…I guess that’s always a good thing :)

The Thriftaholic (Leilani) - The photos look kind of like stills from a movie– I also wouldn’t have guessed this was Water Tower Place, I can kind of see a bit of the base in the background of the second picture.

Sadly I can’t afford J Crew (even on sale) but have been lucky enough to thrift a few pieces. Love the saddle shoes on Oliver!

mallory wiegers - NICE EMILY LEWIS NICE

Gregory - Love love love the J. Crew outfit and 1901 shoes are some of my favorites!!

Plain T-Shirt - I have a J.Crew outlet by my house and I absolutely clean the place out every time I’m home. It’s hard not to have numerous items from them in outfits because of the affordability and the good look. Big fan of the blog and the J.Crew mention.


The Common Grounds - I need that utility jacket that Jeff has on! Great work guys. Keep it up!

Best Regards,
Rei Fernandez
The Common Grounds

emilylewis - by “cheap throwaway sunglasses i found in my car one day” do you mean “cheap target womens sunglasses I bought one day with emily when she talked me out of buying both the floral print AND teal varieties”? Because thats how I remember it.

Andrea of House of White - Equally stellar looks, fellas. I’m especially loving the shades!

midweSTYLE: Campustyle

The Midwestyle Boys reunited on Park University’s campus (where none of us went). We mixed up classic looks and pieces with something fresh, new and unexpected:
Chambray pants, Dad’s old jacket and a pair of Red Wing boots.

A blazer to dress it up, a varsity jacket to keep cool and a windbreaker for purpose.

WHAT JEFF’S WEARING: A clean varsity jacket matched with chambray pants is an unexpected look I’ve grown to like. Instead of the regular denim, I often try to see how I can incorporate these chambray pants into a look. I think it turned out well, even when blending the textures and patterns.
WHAT SETH’S WEARING: When wearing a lighter jacket, it’s not a a bad idea to create a high contrast. The dark denim suited him well against his Dad’s glorious “Mizzou ’68″ windbreaker. Pair this look with a neutral tie, and you’re looking sharp. Is he breaking the black/brown rule? To that we say, “What rule?”
WHAT CAM’S WEARING: Navy blazer and khaki chinos are a pretty standard go-to outfit, but we mixed it up with some boots. Preppy but practical. That’s what we like.

Jeff (L): Varsity wool & leather jacket (Wild Man Vintage, sale $9) by Butwin; Chambray welt pocket pant ($69) by American Apparel, brown captoe shoes (thrift, $5.99) by Bass; blue and yellow repp tie (thrifted, $1); gold “boyfriend” watch ($12.99) by Target.
Seth (C): “Slim Jim” dry black-coated denim (Standard Style, sale $75) by Nudie Jeans; wool skinny tie (Urban Outfitters, sale $9.99) by BDG; retro “Mizzou ’68′” windbreaker (father’s jacket in college); brown woven-and-stitched tassle loafers (thrifted, $9).

Cam (R): Suede Irish Setter boots by Red Wing Shoes; faded khaki chinos (Urban Outfitters, $50) by Paul Frank; navy “Captain’s Blazer” (thrifted, $10); pink plaid “Sunday’s Best” tie (thrifted, $2).

Photography by Jarred Donalson

Lily - All of you look sharp! Great outfits!

Lily @

Seth J. Putnam - @MalWiegs – You can GET OUT.

@IndiaMorgan – We’re soooo offended. (Recommended reading: The shearling boots post in which I’m forced to buy women’s boots from L.L. Bean.) Naw, it’s all fair game as long as it works for your style.

IndiaMorgan - how do you boys feel about a girl (or girls?) saying “woah i would kill for that lettermen / that windbreaker / those boots”? because, you know, i wouldn’t want to offend you.

Jeff - Mal – We know.

Jarred – #tallfriendproblems

Leilani – Thanks friend!


sophiadiarrhea - Jeff-Jeff, would it kill you to smile? You have such a pleasant grin.

Well done, you’re all beauties.

The Thriftaholic (Leilani) - All of you look sharp! I like how your outfits seem made for the setting, the vintage varsity jackets give the pictures a retro ‘man about campus’ feel. Well done.

Jarred D. - @mallory wiegers he looked so out of place otherwise. It’s the price you pay to have tall friends.

mallory wiegers - in the nicest way possible, i dying that seth is standing up a stair