1. Decide that quality matters and pay for it. In the end, it will save you time and money.
2. Before you buy, be selective. Scrutinize items for build quality, fit, finish, functionality and lasting style. If an item is not perfect, catch and release it.
3. Do more with less. Add a few key pieces to your wardrobe and wear them until they dissolve.
4. Shop from yourself and from thrift shops. Repurpose strategic items from the past.
5. Support apparel companies that manufacture their products in the US. Buy products still proudly made in their traditional country of origin.
6. Contact manufacturers and let them know what they should offer. If you’re a woman and you love classic heritage styles, ask them to offer their products in your size.
7. Find out what products are manufactured in your region. Visit factories and publish reports.
8. Wear wool and linen year round. Experiment with summer weight woolens, and heavier linens.
9. Come up with a signature uniform. Wear it once a week.
10. Read historical newspapers and magazines. Learn about lost brands, fashions, and manufacturing traditions.
Photograph of the nose of the USS Akron being attached
Sailor at the Bow Mooring Post
Emergency Control Station
Catwalk on the USS Akron
USS Akron in the Goodyear-Zeppelin Dock
From the US National Archives
, here are some photographs submitted to the 1933 Joint Congressional Committee to investigate dirigible disasters. According to the Archives, “the Joint Committee to Investigate Dirigible Disasters was created to investigate the cause of the USS Akron disaster and the wrecks of other Army and Navy dirigibles and to determine responsibility.” Seventy plus years later, these images no longer read as evidence from a disaster report, but rather, lovely snaps of a lost transportation and housing system. Not pictured – dirigible kitchens and close up views of air ship appliances and leisure time.
Per Archival Resolution #9, here is the November edition of my Archival uniform. While our resolutions recommend that you come up with a signature uniform that you wear once a week, mine has seen active use on multiple days.
Archival striped tee women and Centralia multiweave cardigan. Here, per usual, I follow my own rule of wearing at least two layers on top. In another month, I might add a kerchief or a fine gauge wool scarf as a neck garnish.
Engineered Garments Upland Vest. Inspired by the Japanese, I love to finish my uniform with a vintage Upland style hunting vest (the pocketing doubles as a purse). Since I’m so small, it’s hard to source an authentic hunting vest that fits properly so I opt for updated versions – sized for women and petite gents – by Rising Sun, Post O’Alls or Engineered Garments.
Red Cloud & Co. Denim. Howard Gee, the denim guru at Ab Fits, introduced me to Red Cloud premium denim made in mainland China. The Red Cloud cut is close to a pair LVC Levis 1947, my go to denim on alternative outfit days.
Alden Cape Cod Beefroll Penny Loafer. Not much visual variation here. I wear Alden Cape Cod loafers – in black and brown – nearly everyday of the year. My statement on loafers.
If you have a signature uniform, please post your notes to our Archival Facebook page or send me a note at firstname.lastname@example.org. I’d love to repost more visual examples (other than mine) on the AC blog.