Thanks for your readership and support in 2010. It has been a ball to start producing our Archival Clothing goods, and we’re looking forward to plenty of progress in 2011. As always, don’t hesitate to email us with questions, comments, and dream projects. Happy New Year!
Paul Petrov, backstage on New Year’s Eve 1931 (via)
Heads up, chino lovers:
Context Clothing is blowing out the exceptional Dickies 1922 Collection trousers at half-price. See our thorough review. Highly recommended, if you aren’t looking for a slim fit.
Also, the gent on eBay with a container full of vintage Hunting World clothing is still selling those terrific chinos for only $25. Don’t pass these up! UPDATE – from our experience (5 pairs between the two of us), the brown chinos are made in the USA, and the khakis are made in China.
Instead of stocking up more on these great garments, I’ll shop from myself and keep dreaming about Patagonia re-issuing my beloved, slim-fitting Stand Up Pant from the early 1990s in the same 8oz Cramerton Twill as the above Dickies (and making them in the USA).
Evidence of ideal trouser
I first spotted the Rising Sun & Co Outdoor Vest at Man Up last January. John, Howard and Jeremy were all wearing versions of the vest: one in canvas duck and the other in indigo dyed canvas.
John in his Rising Sun & Co vest at Man Up
1952 LL Bean catalog
The Rising Sun vest’s design is inspired by vintage hunting and shooting vests. Traditional fishing vests are cut short so they can be worn into a stream with waders. The addition of an internal game or poacher’s pocket makes them useful for upland game hunting too.
Filson makes its own Original Hunting Vest out of a heavier weight waxed canvas. I’m still waiting for Filson to introduce this garment in their collection for women. As it stands, the vest is cut long and wears more like a shelter tent than a vest. I do love all the strategic internal pocketing (and reinforced wool shoulder panels).
Rising Sun & Co vest available in indigo dyed canvas.
A recent production model in black duck canvas and white herringbone twill.
Since Man Up, I’ve been asking Rising Sun to produce a version of the vest in XS for women. This December, for a larger production run, Mike cut a few higher for a women’s fit. I finally own my own Outdoor Vest. Next to the super short, snug monkey fit, I love the vest’s deep front utility pockets. Most clothing for women skimps on functional pocketing (see recent Barbour Utility jacket for a glaring example). For daily wear, the Rising Sun vest easily carries a large smart phone, pocket camera, notebooks and writing utensils. For revision, I wish Rising Sun would add two rear carrying pockets (per LL Bean vest) and ditch the back cinch. Since the fit on the vest is so snug, the cinch has no real use value. And for me, the cinch shifts the look of the vest from field clothing to western wear.
I’ll be testing the vest for bike commuting later in Spring when the weather permits a formal transfer from wax & wool to canvas duck outerwear.
Next to Fanny & Alexander and Brazil, A Christmas Memory (Perry 1956) is my favorite holiday film. Narrated by Truman Capote and starring Geraldine Page, A Christmas Memory proposes seasonal rituals I’d like to reenact: paper kite construction, Christmas tree salvage, serving nips of Whiskey to minors and mass fruit cake production (funded through the staging of a “fun and freak show”).
Our family VHS copy of A Christmas Memory has warped and color shifted to blue. However, I locate a copy on YouTube (in 6 segments!). Watch it before it disappears from view.
“Oh my,” she exclaims, her breath smoking the windowpane, “it’s fruitcake weather!”
Together, we guide our buggy, a dilapidated baby carriage, out to the garden and into a grove of pecan trees.
But before these purchases can be made, there is the question of money. Neither of us has any.
Thirty-one cakes, dampened with whiskey, bask on windowsills and shelves.
“Giveya two-bits” cash for that ol tree.”
But when it comes time for making each other’s gift, my friend and I separate to work secretly.
My friend has a better haul. A sack of Satsumas, that’s her best present. She is proudest, however, of a white wool shawl knitted by her married sister.
“This is our last Christmas together”
Over Thanksgiving, I finally made it up to the mecca of dusty gold that is Tent City. If you’re in Boston and even remotely considering buying any kind of outdoor gear, do yourself a favor and go bug Jason and the gang.
I dropped off a small shipment of Archival Clothing bags and belts, and then Jason gave me a tour.
My jaw dropped lower every time Jason opened another hidden door, or dug into another crumpled cardboard box, or pulled another something amazing down from a nail.
Tent City was started in the 1940s as an army surplus store, but soon expanded into civilian outdoor gear. Now they carry a remarkable selection of modern gear, but look between the hangers and you’ll find some pretty special stuff.
I grew up going to the old downtown McKenzie Outfitters and Berg’s Ski Shop in Eugene, and Hilton’s had a similar feel – four floors jammed with tents, bags, jackets, new stock, dead stock, you name it. They even had a dead stock pair of the same Aku boots that I’ve had for ten years (and will soon need to replace).
I walked away with a jacket I had been saving up for and a hat that took me by surprise. Be sure to visit Tent City next time you’re in Boston!
Since I live in the wet Pacific Northwest, my idea of winter outerwear is a waxed cotton or tin cloth jacket. I’ll add a supplemental wool vest or quilted jacket if temps drop below 40. For readers shopping from ice pack climes, I offer some expedition grade parkas from the past and present.
Shopping from 1965: Eddie Bauer
(Hold your brands against their original creeds)
Last weekend, Archival Clothing was in San Francisco for Showmanship, a holiday pop up show hosted by the gents at the Durable Goods Concern. I’m starting to think San Francisco might be my favorite city. I cannot think of another place that better localizes my obsessions for coffee, bicycles, and clothing. Not an hour off the plane, I had my first pourover coffee, visited a bike shop with a Velo Orange mixte in the window and browsed hickory striped chore coats at Al’s Attire.
At Showmanship, we had a great time meeting AC readers, flickr contacts and Bay Area friends. We also reconnected with a few of our favorite retailers including Taylor Stitch, AB Fits, Box Dog Bikes and Unionmade.
Here are some snap portraits of folks we met over the weekend:
Riv list friend in Filson Trucker jacket. Future Redwing Heritage boots owner.
Barista wearing custom denim apron by by Holly Samuelson.
Michael (Taylor Stitch) in A.C. shawl collar cardigan.
Design and marketing student fit testing A.C. shawl collar cardigan.
Wm J Mills & Co.
rep, Tom Beatty, and his family of bags.
A.C. shawl collar cardigan in navy multiweave, XXS fit (coming soon).
modeling our gray shawl. Not pictured: his envy inducing Lumix GF1.
He looked handsome in every shawl collar colorway.
Me in Showmanship shopkeep ensemble: Mubec/Dry Bones jacket, Saint James scarf, Filson whipcord trousers and Crockett and Jones Yarmouth lace-ups.
Nathan in unidentified plaid shirt.
And some additional visual data points:
Woolrich John Rich and Bros. wool shadowplaid jacket for women at Ab Fits.
Bob Jackson custom and A. Homer Hilsen bicycles parked outside Showmanship.
Bradley’s Ricoh GR.
Pack basket at the Embarcadero Center.
A hearty thanks to the show organizers (Taylor Stitch’s Barrett, Jeremy, Michael & Co.) and everyone who came by to say hello or provided restaurant and digital camera recommendations (Ricoh GR or Lumix GF1?).