Archival Clothing - Made in USA

Archive for October, 2008

Archival News: Jitensha Wool Knickers

October 31st, 2008

Hiroshi of Jitensha studio is now selling a lovely, alpine style wool cycling knicker made by a small shop in Japan. Though I’m not a fan of some of the individual details (pleated front or lower buckle clasps), the overall design looks terrific. They remind me of the cycling knickers originally offered by now-out-of-business, Hebden Cord Co. Ltd. I also like the look of the of the Marresi Storica style cycling shoes (worn by the model) but I’m not sure quite how I would ever go about identifying my size or placing an order. Has anyone tried the knickers or Marresi shoes? If not, place an order and let us know.

Archival Gent: (early era) Michael Jackson

October 29th, 2008

I didn’t see this coming but I’ve become a bit of a come-lately fan of Michael Jackson (the early years). It started out with a larky screening of the video retrospective, History Volume I. Now, a week later, I find myself checking out the VHS copy of “The Making of Thriller” and including “Wanna be Starting Something” on a mix tape for my L.A. friend, Mimsy. To keep everything structurally sound and straightforward, I want to say that I’m primarily obsessed with Michael’s proto-MTV sartorial style: black loafers, exposed socks, slim-legged trousers, and sometimes, rolled up suit jacket sleeves. If you’re curious about this fine archival edition of MJ, check out the video to Don’t Stop ‘Til You Get Enough. Though I rejected MJ as a teen, I can now appreciate the homages to Judy Garland, Bob Fosse and Fred Astaire buried in MJ’s videos and dance choreography. On the Making of… video, MJ recounts how Fred Astaire phoned him up after his moonwalking performance on the Grammy awards show and told him that he liked how he [Michael] moved. Endorsement enough from the original archival gent!

Archival News: Filson Seconds Sale

October 16th, 2008

Given my current austerity plan, I doubt I’ll make it up for this sale. However, I keep hatching nonsense plans to wake at 3 a.m. and drive up to Seattle for the 9 a.m. opening. Hoping some tin cloth fans will show up for the sale and document all the heartbreaking deals (stacks of perfect fitting sample garments from the women’s product line for next to nothing) for my flickr amusement.

Archival News: Frost River

October 15th, 2008

7/26/2010 Editor’s note: this post was originally written in 2008. Since that time, a new ownership group has purchased Frost River and brought back its line of waxed cotton canoe packs and shoulder bags.

The new site can be found here:

I’m leaving the original post up as a historical marker of outdoor bag manufacturing in the U.S. I am editing title so folks do not confuse current customers searching on Google for Frost River goods.

After a post about Frost River a month or so ago, I received email inquiries about whether FR was still in business. A quick check on their site directed me to this link. Since FR is such a small shop, I figured that they might have gone on an August long canoe trip and forgotten to renew their site license. However, recent emails to the company have bounced back to me and I just saw a notice on the Northwest Woodsman site announcing the closure of FR. I’m trying to collect additional info on the matter (why, closeout sales, future product developments, recommended vendors) so please post any news to the blog (or contact me directly if you work for Frost River and can place a “Vintage” model pack on reserve for me).

Of course, the FR closure furthers my buy-now-because-the-product-may-not-be available-next-Fall-or-next-Month approach to purchasing decisions. I know that Duluth pack offers a comparable style/type of canoe pack (w/a dry canvas finish) but I’m not aware of any company other than CC Filson manufacturing the style of super sturdy waxed canvas and leather rucksack sold by FR (as if I needed four more super sturdy rucksacks before the apocalypse approaches).

Oregon Manifest Fashions

October 13th, 2008

Sample views of velo-themed menswear seen at the Oregon Manifest handbuilt bicycle show. I should have forged some faux Sartorialist press credentials and requested that people actualy pose for me. My kid pix digital camera w/five second flash delay did not inspire confident spy shot photography. One look (not pictured) appeared to have been art directed for an editorial spread in the Thursday Styles section of the New York Times: fedora hat paired with blue blazer, knickerized trousers and Sidi cycling shoes (I’m imagining a new trend of Sidi shoes doubling as work shoes–even for the non-cyclist).

Not much to speak of in the way of female cycling fashions save for the typical embellishing accessories of raingear, caps and bags (Lemolo!).

Spotted lots of roll-top Chrome messenger bags in shades of grey and black. This bag is one of those accessory items I’ve come to admire (for the metal hardware, rolltop design and generous pocketing) but will most likely never own.

Natty gents from another flickr photostream.

Fellow on left wins top manifest fashion award for his sockless clog and red suspenders look.

Friend Eric of Winter Bicycles offered the best caps of the show created by Portland craft artist Paula Deer. Eric’s bikes were lovely as well.

More Filson for women

October 2nd, 2008

Since I was left off the CC Filson clothing council, I’ve been convening my own private focus groups to test and report on fit, finish, style and sizing of the new women’s product line. Last Spring, I issued a general report of the new women’s product line. In my initial report, I commented on the poor fit/sizing of the Filson garments and noted some disappointing design decisions such as some non-functional pocketing (or coin purse pocketing), balloon arm-styling and one way rather than two way zippers. I was optimistic about the debut of the XS size range–hoping that by slightly shrinking the proportions of the garments, Filson would finally produce outdoor clothing for women with a trimmed but not sackcloth (or overly hour-glassed) proportions. Now, I realize the whole point of the product line was to produce hipster jackets for young urban gents. As it turns out, friend Tom, 6’3 and 180 lbs, fits the women’s xs shelter cloth jacket like it was a fashionably shrunken jacket by Wes Anderson’s tailor, Mr. Ned.