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The Wes Anderson Collection: The Grand Budapest Hotel

February 17, 2015

The trouble with writing a comprehensive book about a living artist’s work is that as soon they release their next piece, you’re book is out of date. The Wes Anderson Collection was a huge tome, covering films from Bottle Rocket up to Moonrise Kingdom. Jumpcut a few months later and The Grand Budapest Hotel is released. Rather reprint the book with an additional chapter, author Matt Zoller Seitz wrote a separate “companion” book to accompany the original. Like the original collection, Matt created a video essay for the book:

Wood N’ Stream American Classic Chukka review

February 7, 2015

Over the holidays I picked up a chukka boot from Wood N’ Stream’s American Classic line. I had my eye on them for a few months, but after the UnionBootPro had a 35% off special just before Christmas, I couldn’t resist.

The boots have a padded in-sole for comfort and are made in Wisconsin with full-grain Horween leather and a Goodyear-welted Vibram sole. These have the sturdiness of workboots but can easily pair with chinos or jeans. The boots are solidly built but after about a week of wearing, the soles were completely broken in. As of this writing, I’ve had them a month and only the heel remains a little stiff. Overall, I’m pleased with the boots and looking forward to years of wear.

These pics are of the boots fresh out of the box, pre-wear:
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The History of Weinbrenner Shoe Company

March 7, 2015

In 1974, Lester H. Schoenke retired after 47 years of working for the Weinbrenner Shoe Company in Wisconsin. He wrote a history of the company that was published in 1983 and later updated in 1992 on the 100th anniversary of the company. It’s an interesting look into the history of a company and American manufacturing. Weinbrenner still continues today manufacturing footwear in Wisconsin. My recently acquired chukka boots came from their Wood N’ Stream line.

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Here are some covers from various Weinbrenner catalogs throughout the years. From 1955:
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From 1964:
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From 1939:
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From 1943:
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Thanks to Matt Bahlow from Weinbrenner for providing the images.

The Cutler of Milan

January 16, 2015

Dunhill acquired the archives of G. Lorenzi after the store closed in 2014. The are currently exhibiting some of the archive at the Bourdon House in London from 12-21 January, 2015.

From the press release: Founder Giovanni Lorenzi, began life as a cacial or knife grinders assistant, before opening the store together with his wife Lina in 1929, selling and repairing knives and scissors. The couple soon established a network of artisans and commissioned them to make objects of their own specifications.

After Giovanni retired in the 1950ā€™s, his sons Aldo and Franco took the reins, and Aldo and his wife Edda further expanded the network of specialist suppliers, from all over the world, including 500 for knives alone. Inside the wood lined, copper framed exterior, G. Lorenzi had become a Mecca for men, packed with exquisite, one of a kind tools for men, crafted from forged Damascus stainless steel, brass, nickel, silver or gold and finished in precious and rare natural materials such as crown stag, buffalo or ox horn, ivory, fossilised walrus, Makassar ebony, briar root, tortoiseshell or crocodile.

The offer grew to include anything and everything a gentleman might need, knives for carving, fish, oysters, all types of cheese and multi-blade pocket knives. Pipes, cigar cutters and cases, lighters and humidifiers, all the requisites for smokers. Shaving brushes & bowls, razors, mirrors, manicure and grooming sets, shoe horns, hair and clothes brushes for impeccable grooming.

The exhibit will later travel to other Dunhill Homes around the world.

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images courtesy Dunhill

Kingsman: The Secret Service by Mr Porter

January 11, 2015

The folks at Mr Porter are launching a collection of clothing in collaboration with the costume designer from the new movie, Kingsman: The Secret Service.

Sid Mashburn at Plywood People

November 20, 2014

Plywood People run a lecture series in Atlanta called Plywood Presents, where they invite innovators to come speak. A few weeks back, they had an interview with Sid Mashburn, who gave an insightful talk on his background, fears and failures he faced, and how he and his wife run their companies.

M.Nii Surfwear – GQ Menswear Designer of the Year 2014 Finalist

August 25, 2014

One of the finalists of GQ’s Menswear Designer of the Year for 2014 is John Moore and his revival of the M.Nii surfwear brand. I bought a couple of t-shirts from them and every piece I have seen has been well-made and not over-designed. Unlike a lot of major surfwear labels, M.Nii seems really focused on classic American looks from the mid-1960s with clean graphics. A lot of the t-shirts would look as fine in Nebraska as they would on Oahu.

The line is a higher price point than most surfwear, as M.Nii is a small label made in Los Angeles. As has been the case for the past few years, GQ has partnered with the Gap to have each of the finalists design an affordable capsule collection to be sold in select Gap stores. This allows smaller companies like M.Nii to have a wider exposure that they otherwise might not have (though typically these collections are made in Gap overseas factories). Look for the collections to debut in September.

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