Archival Clothing - Made in USA

Archive for February, 2011

Shopping from Japan/UK: Quality Gunslips

February 23rd, 2011

Quality Gunslips is a UK bag brand that I know best via Japanese web shops. Per company literature, all Quality Gunslips bags are “hand-made using the highest quality British materials at our workshop in the small rural hamlet of Sarnau, Mid Wales.” Their main line of fishing and game bags are made from our favorite materials: double texture proofed cotton canvas, leather strapping, solid brass hardware and the mil spec webbings England produces without effort. The bags clearly share a familial link with other UK bag brands like Brady, Hardy, Billingham and Chapman.

Here are a few views of the Quality Gunslips Japan-only bags and their UK equivalents.

Flap tote bag (Japan)

Flap tote bag (UK)


New tote fishing canvas shoulder bag (Japan)

Marquis economy range (UK)

S Net Messenger Bag (Japan)

Game bags w/rot proof netting (UK)

Archival Equines

February 22nd, 2011

Shopping from the Present: Duchess Clothier

February 18th, 2011

Editor’s note: Duchess Clothier, located next to Winn Perry in Portland, Oregon, offers custom and ready to wear clothing. In addition to stock patterns, Duchess can produce custom garments based on vintage patterns or photographs, using fabrics sourced by the customer. While I continue to contemplate the perfect Duchess project, AC friend Tiffany Thorton moved forward with an order for a pair of trousers inspired by a Sears catalog circa 1933. She documented the custom ordering process for Archival.

by Tiffany Thorton

Ready to wear jackets at Duchess

Lookbook

Jacket sample in the shop

A good pair of trousers is hard to find. Elusive fits, unsatisfactory materials and disappointing color selections have frustrated my search for a decent pair of trousers for a long time. Over the past few years, I’ve expended an embarrassing amount of time and energy looking for The Appropriate Trousers. I really wanted something of quality material and construction; trousers that would be comfortable, durable, and dignified. I nearly resigned myself to existing without these dreamt of trousers, until I spotted an Archival Clothing blog post referencing Duchess Clothier.

Original inspiration

I have long admired the cut of certain species of wide-legged men’s trousers from the 1930’s and 1940’s, and I spotted a couple of examples of such things on Duchess’ website. I was very attracted to the idea of having custom made garments that referenced these past styles, especially from a local establishment. I contacted Duchess and asked, a little sheepishly, if they could make trousers for women. Before long, I was headed to Portland, with a photocopied trouser reference from a reprinted 1930’s Sears catalog.

Correspondence

On the day of my appointment, I was greeted by Seyta Selter, one of Duchess’ friendly and knowledgeable founders. Seyta asked if I would like a reproduction of those specific trousers, and seemed as excited by the prospect as I was. We looked through the sample books, focusing on heavy weight wools, and I selected a dark brown herringbone fabric and an anthracite grey flannel (the anthracite flannel later turned out to be unavailable). We discussed fit as I was being measured, and talked about details like wide waist band that could handle a fairly large belt, a zip fly with three functional buttons on the waist band, and cuffs. I had never felt so supported in my sartorial preferences before.

Finished trousers.

Wide waist band with double loops (belt shown for scale)

Wide cuffs

I was really pleased with the first pair of trousers I got, and decided to commission more. I love the fit and form of these trousers. They are my favorite among the garments I have owned. They seem durable and sturdy, and I’m not worried that they’ll incur a lot of wear or weather damage. Wool is known for doing pretty well in most weather conditions, and Duchess has a large sample of wool fabric to select from. However, I wanted to try an experiment. I wanted to see if the trouser pattern that Duchess had constructed for me could be applied to a super heavy weight wool fabric that could be worn in truly awful winter weather conditions.

Heavy melton wool for winter weight trousers

After conducting some research, I decided that 100% wool melton fabric would be an interesting choice. I had a conversation with Ariel, another of the Duchess ladies, about bringing fabric for them to use, and she advised me on the amount of fabric it would take to construct a pair of trousers using my pattern. The next task was to find some. In the interest of supporting local industry, I felt that Pendleton would be a good source to tap for the melton wool fabric. It took a couple of e-mail inquiries to get a phone number for fabric sales, and when I finally made the call, I was pleasantly surprised to be told that the black melton wool I was interested in was on sale, and yes, they could ship it to Eugene. In July, I brought the wool fabric to Seyta, and we finalized a few details. It felt a little strange to be carrying around a bolt of heavy black wool in the summer heat, but any mild public humiliation is worth it; I can’t wait to put these trousers to the test.

Crucial care and feeding instructions

Shopping from the Movies: Christopher Strong (Arzner 1935)

February 13th, 2011

Newspaper subscriptions

Trenchcoats

Tennis rackets

Silver coffee service

Party costumes

Telegrams

Speedboats

Console radios

Jackets & jodhpurs

Bracelets

Field dogs

Steamer trunks

Aviatrix garb

Hats & overcoats

Nautical tops

Vacations abroad

Weekend rabbit hunting with the William Brown Project

February 11th, 2011

by Tom Bonamici

VIEW FROM THE HOUSE.

Last weekend, I skipped out on the pile of work waiting in the studio and headed upstate with a friend and fellow blogger, Matt of the excellent William Brown Project. It was a quick trip but we fit in plenty of activities and planned plenty more.

DEEP SNOW.
DEEP IN THE BRAMBLE.

NICE HAUL FOR A SLEETING AFTERNOON. WE BAGGED TWO EACH.

RABBIT KIDNEY TOASTS, EATEN JUST 2 HOURS POST-HUNT.
VAST DINNER FOR HUNGRY HUNTERS.
A FINE RESTORING BREAKFAST
INSPECTING OUTBUILDINGS & PLANNING A SAUNA.

HEADED FOR TILLY’S IN MONTICELLO, NY. THEIR BLT WAS RIGHT ON TIME.

Archival Update: A.C. Web Belts & Bracelets

February 9th, 2011

A few updates from the AC web shop. We’re now offering our military spec cotton webbing belt in navy. We’re also bringing back the red bartacking of our original khaki belt. Cotton webbing for both belts comes from the same UK narrow fabrics mill where we source the webbing for our bags. We’re also introducing a few cuffs for casual wear: a stainless steel and rubber chain maille bracelet by a Portland craftsman and an abstract leather cuff by Billykirk.

EXCLUSIVE COLLABORATION WITH THE WILLIAM BROWN PROJECT

February 7th, 2011
VIEW FROM THE HOUSE.

Last weekend, I skipped out on the pile of work waiting in the studio and headed upstate with a friend and fellow blogger, Matt of the excellent William Brown Project. It was a quick trip but we fit in plenty of activities and planned plenty more.

DEEP SNOW.
DEEP IN THE BRAMBLE.

NICE HAUL FOR A SLEETING AFTERNOON. WE BAGGED TWO EACH.

READY FOR CRYO-VAC AND FREEZING.


RABBIT KIDNEY TOASTS, EATEN JUST 2 HOURS POST-HUNT.
VAST DINNER FOR HUNGRY HUNTERS.
A FINE RESTORING BREAKFAST
INSPECTING OUTBUILDINGS & PLANNING A SAUNA.


HEADED FOR TILLY’S IN MONTICELLO, NY. THEIR BLT WAS RIGHT ON TIME.

Archival Football Uniforms

February 6th, 2011

Lawson Fiscus (one of the first professional football players)

Here’s a quick survey of exemplary historic football uniforms from the late 19th and early 20th century. The photos sum up my ideal of the perfect sports uniform: basic solid or striped tunics, all wool knit cardigans or pullovers and knickerized canvas duck trousers. Belts, lacing systems and leather boots complete the look. Although the uniforms are over a 100 years old, I propose they be adopted for modern use–by athletes and non-athletes alike. All the figures below could exit the field, ditch their metal cleats, and wear their outfits to work or campus. With a few rotating layers, one could have a single, signature uniform made from long wearing, best quality materials.






All images courtesy Library of Congress’ Flickr Photostream.

Shopping from the past: Barbour jackets

February 2nd, 2011
Aspirational layering (zippers, webbing, waxed cotton and wool)

For a little winter cheer, I’m reprinting pages from my favorite Barbour print catalog from the early 1990s. Compared to current offerings, the catalog presents a minimalist collection of jackets. Each has a specific, distinctive feature making it unique to the line. Once you memorize this catalog you’ll be able to distinguish between models based on fabric weight (light or heavyweight waxed cotton), lining (wool or cotton), pocketing (size, type and placement), length and snap gusseting (none, double or single). Synthetics are non-existent save for the quilted waistcoats and shooting jackets meant to be worn as jacket liners. The catalog’s visual presentation of the product line is exemplary. Female models are mixed into the story world without overly feminizing their looks. Almost every jacket is paired with a signature bag and breed of dog. For instance, I’m thrilled to see that the Moorland, a Barbour favorite, gets the Weimaraner treatment. Sadly, many of my favorite, more exotic models have disappeared from view including the Solway Zip, Longshoreman smock, Northumbria and Spey wading jacket. Let’s see if we can pester Barbour into bringing a few back in broader size range.

Take a look.

An all time favorite

The pockets on the Border are vast

Proposing a Barbour reissue in sizes down to XXS






Synthetic exceptions
I’d like to recreate this bag tangle with my own collection