Even though I do 98% of my reading online in some way, shape or form, I still have that special reverence for books. I go through phases of being obsessed with print every once and a while, and after finally cracking the copy of Wisdom I got for Christmas the other day, I have the '-itis' again. This time I'm hankering for various photography and illustrated books. Anyone else? Armed America: Portraits of Gun Owners in Their Homes by Kyle Cassidy is a pretty self-explanatory book. The photos of the subjects are so good and it's interesting to see the different responses from the subjects which range from justifiable to mind numbingly stupid (in my opinion). James and Karla Murray's Store Front: The Disappearing Face of New York shows the evolution of the city over the years. I really just love seeing all the old typography on the shops. I also want a copy of Max Ernst's Une Semaine de Bonte to go through and maybe frame some of his illustrations. Last on my list is Frank Miller's Ronin because well, I'm kind of a huge nerd.
You can probably put this one under function, rather than fashion. I saw a couple bags by Porter in Las Vegas that were utilizing this tote bag/ruck sack combination. The technical closures, very durable canvas and synthetic materials and functional details make this bag pretty solid for everyday laptop, camera or clothing carrying, as well as pretty useful for weekend camping trips. I prefer carrying a tote bag while I'm walking around, but being able to throw it on your back if you have a bike is a pretty good option as well. I don't think I would ever consider this bag in anything other than all black, so it's a good thing that's the only color it seems to come in.
h(y)r collective favourite Mjolk by Lars Stoten recently finished up a successful Paris showing of the upcoming Autumn-Winter collection. Entitled "Cameras For Eyes and Horses For Hearts." It is a collection of garments which have been given the customary Mjolk twist in tailoring and finishing. Like the fall landscape, the line is presented in muted earthy tones of brown, grey, navy and oatmeal with hints of yellow, red and blue here and there. Aesthetically the line is nice as usual but it also looks super cozy for the fall which I'm into. I'm impressed again with how good the suiting looks for a ready to wear line, the jackets seem near perfect and the fit of the trousers looks awesome. Other standouts for me are the herringbone overcoat, the cream merino wool knit sweater and all the accessories, those packs are amazing.
I'm a younger guy that's been living on my own for a while now, I just never really taught myself how to cook. I can't be the only one though otherwise, one of my new favourite blogs Cook to Bang wouldn't exist. The premise of the site is pretty carnal; nowadays we don't cook for loved ones instead we spend our hard earned money on going out for a meal "only to end up with a doggy bag and blue balls..." I'm sure there are plenty of cooking/food blogs out there, but none are as funny and as good as this one and I'm not even trying to bang. I just want to eat better! The recipes are good and simple. The writing is crude, witty and therefore interesting. It might just be the perfect 'cookbook' for bachelors whether we're eating potato fries alone or making blueberry waffles for that special someone the next morning. Looking good is only half the battle...
Robert Geller's collection has been highlighted with some great frames in the last couple seasons, fortunately for us, he decided to keep them coming. The Marcello and Joseph frames come in black, matte and tortoise with a darker sun-glass lens or a clear lens. I like all of them. I missed out on the matte black Marcellos last fall and then I missed out again on the tortoise frames, so I am trying to make a point of not doing it again this spring. Nomad has a great selection of the spring eyewear now in their Toronto shop. One of the big selling features beyond the great shape and look of the glasses would have to be a very reasonable retail price. The Marcello frames come in at $245 CAN which is pretty tough to beat.
Speaking of shirts with a chest pocket flap, some of my favorite Japanese only retailers are receiving some spring items including this Sassafras 'Green Thumb' shirt. I'm not exactly sure why it's called that, but I am pretty sure the shirt looks pretty nice. I like the stitching details along the back for a subtle twist on a pretty basic shirt. While plaids and patterns aren't going anywhere any time soon, I am leaning towards more micro patterns these days rather than the big more obvious patterns. It offers a casual shirt that isn't just monochrome, but it's still not as loud and can work better with more combinations of pants, vests and jackets.
J Press have updated their website with some nice spring items. They had some really nice looking madras and chambray blazers, great neck and bow ties, and of course some really nice spring shirts. J Press make nice quality, very classic, fairly affordable pieces. All of these shirts retail for about $80 US which is pretty tough to beat these days - for anybody. They make a really nice looking flap pocket oxford as well, which happen to go great with some worn in dirty bucks - just ask Mr. Williams over at ACL. Gingham's are always a great option in the summer. Last year I was on a serious hunt for red gingham, and now it seems to be everywhere. Short sleeve, long sleeve, madras, gingham, tie, unbuttoned - whatever the pattern or color or style, I prefer a button down collar 110%. All of these shirts are good, but its the BD collar, casual materials and even the fact that I like J Press's tag that make these stand out for me. All available online, except you have to wait for the restock on the madras shirt.
I've definitely gotten used to the more loose fitting pants Engineered Garments have been producing, and I am really enjoying the comfort and casual look. This spring however, they are offering a much more slim fitting madras pant. They come in a khaki and this really nice looking navy blue and black plaid. The pants feel nice and light to the touch and would be really ideal in the summer months if you are less inclined to wear shorts. I like the look of the cinch in the back and the split waist band, as most EG pants have. Plaid pants can look really great at times, but are another item that can be easy to make look bad as well. These are probably some of the most subtle plaid pants you'll find, and with the lightweight madras cotton, probably one of my top picks for the season ahead. *These are just begging to be rolled and worn with some broken in loafers