BADASS TUESDAY: Joseph Gordon-Levitt

I know that being a badass is not specific to actors, but… this week, I’m giving you another actor: Joseph Gordon-Levitt. (Editor’s note to Jeff: One more of these, and Cameron’s out.)

When I started to think about badass dudes that were closer to my own age, I struggled a little bit. That badass distinction is often earned through retrospection of someone’s life and career. Honestly, I think JGL has the earned the title. Why? First off, his meditated and careful acceptance of roles has manifested itself in a pretty stellar acting career thus far. He has the forethought to be judicious in selecting his roles, and I respect a guy who turns down millions for big budget films in lieu of smaller budgets and often more difficult roles. Quality over quantity.
Plus, he gets props for being a child actor who actually turned out to be a decent human being. That’s rare enough as it is. You all saw “Inception.” You’ve probably seen “500 Days of Summer.” You might not have seen “Brick,” but you should go see it ASAP. The man is good at what he does. At 30, he has successfully carved out a rather attractive niche in Hollywood. He’s also got that quirky-handsome thing going for him, and he’s sartorially sound. A future icon? Perhaps. A current badass? Absolutely.

ladyemmy - very nice pick! I love him:)

JNRS - Joseph Gordon-Levitt is without a doubt my favorite male fashion go-to. If I were a dude I would totally copy his style. I just found your blog and I’m totally digging!

Jessica @ wrinkled dollar

Josh - I think “The Lookout” was maybe his finest piece of work to date for sure Aimee C.!

Amanda - Brick was an UHMAZING movie, one of my favourites along with 500 Days of Summer. His style is pretty sharp too. Definitely loving Baddass Tuesday today!

Gina - Love, love, love him.

Aimee C - Don’t forget “The Lookout.” Great movie!

FAVORITE: Shearling-lined Bean Boots

(I topped the whole thing off with this here waffle henley. Hey, it’s casual day at the office.)
I’ve had these puppies less than a week, but they’re fast becoming a huge favorite. Spring may have gotten here on Sunday, but it’s still colder than a well-digger’s ass in January, so I’m getting everything I can out of these boots. And I’ve been waiting long enough—when I ordered them earlier this winter, there wasn’t a pair to be had until March. (Something about the demand being through the roof…L.L. Bean had to make more pairs.)
I first came across the 10-inch shearling-lined Bean Boot about a year ago in Minnesota when I saw hot-mess-and-theologian-in-training Marta Douglass flouncing around the cold Rochester streets in them. (She’s since fled the country to be with some Englishman, but I have no doubt the boots are serving her well in the London fog.)
At $149, they’re admittedly pricey. But quality is worth a Benjamin to me. In the review section, a guy posted a picture of his 30-year-old boots next to his brand new ones, and the only thing noticeably different was that the old boots had weathered character. Seems like a fair price for kicks that are going to last me three decades.
A word to the wise: Bean Boots run huge. Per the site’s instructions for half-sizes to order down, I selected the 7. When they showed up, they were still about two sizes too big. (My brother, a size 9, fit into them comfortably.) Thing is, the 7 is the smallest men’s size available. Womp, womp.
I’m not one to sacrifice fit, so I called the company and exchanged them for a women’s size 8. Let it be known: L.L. Bean’s customer service is fantastic. They took the order with zero ridicule about my baby-man feet, and shipped them off about a month faster than promised.
Marta wore them rolled down like so:
She totally pulled it off, and L.L. Bean advertises the roll-down as one way to wear them, but I’m not sure it’s for me.
10-inch shearling-lined “Bean Boots” (, $149) by L.L. Bean, women’s size 8–I’m over it; “1969″ jeans (retail, sale $44, reg. $64.50) by Gap; grey waffle henley (Walmart, $5) by Fruit of the Loom.

Seth J. Putnam - @Unknown:

It’s from Walmart. 5 bucks, if I remember correctly.

Unknown - I like the waffle henley, where is it from?

MansMan - Great review, really helpful. I think tucking them is the look. Just straight the Jean and cuff it whilst also loosening up the top 2-4 laces.

Marta - just found this. i love you guys.

it doesn’t really snow in london and i’m living in the leafy suburbs so there’s not a lot of street-kudos for the boots. but inside i know…and my feet are toasty warm.

dick - the reagan country campaign poster is a three chevron’s-on-the-sleeve badge of thrift-store experience. enjoying the blog.

Andrea of House of White - These boots are amazing! As a Toronto gal, I can appreciate a great boot. (And I’m liking the tucked jeans, personally). If I wasn’t so preoccupied with spring shopping I would grab a pair for next winter :)

The Thriftaholic (Leilani) - I understand the tucked in jeans, the bottoms would get wet otherwise, right? Personally I like the boots laced up, the roll down is kind of hard to pull off in the city (maybe would work if you were out hunting in a muddy flat somewhere).

You’re making me feel like I have giant feet, I wear a 9 1/2-10 in women’s! I’ve done the opposite of you and bought men’s cowboy boots before.

Seth J. Putnam - Haha I know, I know. I did it to show the whole boot, but I think the tuck-in works okay in the first picture. The picture where the boots are rolled down, though, not so much. In normal practice, I’m not sure if I’d wear the jeans in or out. To each his own, I suppose.

leadbyexample - noooo! The boots are great, but what is going on with these jeans, why are you tucking them in like that?

Thrifty Thursday: Varsity jacket

Ever since my friend Daniel told me that he and Ryan Plett picked up the Gant Rugger Homerun jacket, I’ve wanted to get my hands on one. (Red option or blue option, either would do.)

But Jeff, didn’t you have a varsity jacket in high school?
The answer: No, I didn’t. I didn’t take myself seriously in high school athletics to merit awards that could be worn on my jacket at Friday night football games. Womp, womp. When the Jostens mafia came to my school to sell class rings, I opted for a class ring like any other kid who hated the weight room, lacked any athletic finesse or “swagger.”

Moving forward, I finally got my varsity jacket in Lawrence after a tip from Katy of Kansas Couture at Wild Man Vintage. I walked in and went straight to the jacket rack and found this beaut sitting right at the end beckoning my name.

$18 for a size 36, wool and leather varsity jacket. No tag. It fits so damn well, and it’s in fairly good shape. A little short, but hey, I’m 6’2.

I haven’t taken it to the dry cleaner yet, although I probably should before I skip town…
Oh, and get this: It was 50 percent off jackets that day since they are trying to flush through their overstock of winter apparel, so I picked this guy up for 9 bones. That’s just more than a Chipotle burrito, friends. The jacket boasts a slim cut made of wool and leather, much like the Gant Rugger.

I wanted to mix up the look and throw on my chambray pants instead of a chino or denim. I’ve also been trying to find a way to wear these pants differently. My chambray pants are my dress-up sweat pants: They feel comfortable but look sharp. The sizing is a little off since they are from American Apparel with one inseam (31) and have a high rise, which is surprisingly flattering, gentlemen.
Wool and leather varsity jacket (thrifted, $9); White oxford button-down (retail, $50) by American Apparel, size small; Blue and yellow repp tie (thrifted, $1); Chambray Welt Pocket Pant (retail, $69) by American Apparel, size 31; Cap-toe shoes size 11 (thrifted, $5.99) by Bass; Women’s “Boyfriend” gold watch (Target, $30?) by Merona.
Oh yeah, and then there was that one time I came home with a gold watch from Target only to discover that my dear friends Emily and Molly had purchased the same “boyfriend” watch the week before. Whatever.
Photography by Jarred Donalson

gcuprogrammingfundamentals - I’m enligtened about something new every time I come here. look into your gorgeous brand name promotion

Charles - just came across this website,

there varsity jackets look awesome!!!

Marta - i’ve been noticing a lot of guys and gals in london wearing letterman jackets lately. probably saw it on here first and then followed suit.

mamacita - The jacket makes this guy look so dapper, but the fact you gauge frugality in terms of burritos and not dollars and cents is even better.

James - Obessessed with this jacket! My actual varisty jacket is waaaayyy too big for me now, and I’m looking to find one like that.

What’s on the back? Is it an actual varsity jacket or just stylized?

Think Twice Style - The length of these pants is genius! I love the no socks look too. Dressy, but still keeping it casual.

Seth J. Putnam - Mr. Andy —

Thanks, my friend. That means a lot. Have enjoyed keeping up with your traveling adventures. Hope all’s well.

patton.andy - I think this blog is so cool—love that its for men. Linds and I are reading from Paris and cheering you guys on! -Lindsey and Andy

corkgrips - for some reason every time i find a nice varsity jacket in a thrift/vintage store everything fits perfect but the length, don’t know what it is- i’m only 5’9″!

Cindy - Great jacket. Can you tell us what’s on the back of it? Any sport listed or decals? I also found a great looking one but it had the varsity debate team across the back of it, I decided against it in fear someone might approach me to debate…

David - Awesome, the provenance and price make it about a thousand times better than the Rugger version.

Jeff - 3 Column Grid – Actually, I snagged for 9, but I was planning on paying 18 for it. Good story. The watch is womens, so I’m not above wearing something if it fits well, regardless of the item’s “intended” gender.

Jeff - Clotheshunger – Agreed, I’m pretty stoked about, along with being able to wear it year round hence the Midwest weather changes every 5 minutes.

3 Column Grid - $18! What a find. I bought a vintage varsity jacket a few years back which fit me perfectly. I was ecstatic, you don’t find gems like that too often. It was only a few days later that I noticed the patch on the arm said “Denise”, which to be honest made me love the jacket even more.

clotheshunger - great find with the jacket. it’s good you found one that was fitted, any bigger and it would’ve looked too high school.


midweSTYLE: Logan Square

Seeing as this is my visual debut, I should probably explain a bit about my life as a reporter-at-large. It’s pretty much the best life ever: I’m my own boss, I only work on Pulitzer-worthy stories that I’m passionate about, editors of national magazines are constantly banging down my door, and the money is rolling in. (Pick which one of those things is true). Actually, this article sums it up pretty well, especially the bit about “mostly spending my days watching television, napping, noshing, strolling around, seeing matinees, playing The Sims”…except sub in FIFA for The Sims. Jarred once told me he envisions me sitting around smoking cheap cigarettes and not shaving very much.

Because my office is about 3.281 feet from my bedroom, it can, however, be a struggle sometimes to put pants on in the morning (a confession that once almost got me booted from this site.) Being a freelancer has its perks…namely the flexibility to work from home or pack up the computer and take it to an interview/café/coffee shop/bar/house party. I try to dress accordingly.
Wearing a tie, believe it or not, actually increases my productivity and results in better work. I know, I know—I scoffed, too, when Coach Musgrave made us wear ties on gamedays during high school soccer. But I started wearing them on test days in college, and much to my surprise, I actually did better on exams. So we’ll see how they serve me in my post-collegiate years.
As for the loafers, they’ve pretty much become my go-to slip-ons, so they’ll probably be appearing quite a bit.
Tweed blazer (thrifted, $6) , size “fits-like-a-glove” 36R; grid oxford button-down (gift) by J.CREW; “The Henley” (borrowed from Jeff) by Baldwin Denim, size 30; brown and blue-striped socks (Target, $2.50); woven and stitched loafers (thrifted, $3).

Photography by Jeff Kieslich

The Thriftaholic (Leilani) - Hey Seth, I definitely like the idea of a thrift summit– it would be fun to round up some of the Chicago area bloggers. I’m over at and my email is thriftaholic (at)

Seth J. Putnam - Ha thanks, Jena…that would be nuts.

Leilani — Agree. Summit when Jeff gets into town? - Love this blog. Obsessed with this post. The first photo needs to be in a magazine…asap :)

glenmcmurry - hot. hot was the word I was going to use too.

mallory wiegers - so. hot.

The Thriftaholic (Leilani) - Ah yes, the life of a journalist. I too have a journalism degree (from USC) but do more copy editing than writing as of late.

Your blazer is sharp and I’ve always liked the jeans/tie/blazer combo on gentlemen. Great thrifted finds as well, we should share thrift store tips (I live in Ukrainian Village so I’m on the west side too).

Seth J. Putnam - Thanks, Gina!

@lferguson — the tie clip was thrifted for $6.

lferguson - where is the tie clip from?

Gina - Love it.

midweSTYLE: Springtime catch

It was 81º in Columbia, Mo. yesterday when I passed through on my way back to Chicago. Fitting for it being the first weekday of spring. Also fitting that when I drove by, the gentlemen who live at one of my old East Campus hangouts were out throwing the ball around after class.
When I look at this picture of Cam, I get this iconic, 1950s image of a dad playing catch with the ankle-biters after a tough day at work. An escape from the seriousness of adult life—or in this case, class in a stuffy lecture hall—and a way to return to carefree boyhood distractions. (Not that he has any idea what what the real world is like—he’s still living in a college dreamland. Which reminds me: Cam, you’re kicked off the site.)

Untuck that classic white oxford, roll up the sleeves, and pound the glove.
Spring’s here. And soon, summer. Time to open the windows, air out the house, and let the breeze rustle the curtains.
Vintage, U.S.-made oxford (free, from dad’s closet) by Gant, size 15-33; Broken-in chinos (retail, $65) by J. Crew, size 31; braided belt (thrifted, $3); laceless Top-Siders (retail, $70) by Sperry, size 10.

Photos by Seth Putnam.

Lily - Love the chinos, so pretty

Lily @ wear with chinos

nancerthedancer07 - I came across your blog recently, and I just wanted to tell you guys how much I enjoy it. Especially all the Mizzou references…I live on College Ave (only for a few more months though!) Keep it up.

Christina - I love it when men wear rolled chinos. This is such a great look.

Seth J. Putnam - I have old-man strength.

Cameron - I swear, Seth, if you try and kick me off the blog one more time…

Just remember, I’m bigger than you. Way bigger than you.