One of my favorite groups

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Where’s the belt?

I’ve noticed that people like to point out that I don’t have a belt on typically when I have tailored clothing on like I’m breaking some kind of rule.  My response to them usually is I prefer not to wear a belt since my pants fit properly without a belt.  It sounds kinda snobby and I struggle with finding a way to say it as gently as possible since most men are accustomed to wearing belts whether it’s need it or not.

What is the purpose of a belt?  
Practically speaking a belt’s purpose is to prevent your pants from falling down.  For all of my dress pants and chino I make sure they fit without the need for a belt.  I do have a need for a belt with some of my jeans.

Aesthetically speaking belts can be used to:
1. Break up your body visually.  When an outfit is color blocked (top and bottom are similar colors), throwing in a belt will help add a subtle detail and breaks up your body from top to bottom if you prefer. I’m not a tall fella so adding something that visually cuts my body in half is usually not desired.

2. When you want to complement other accessories.  Occasionally when I do wear a belt, I’m more inclined to wear brown belts because browns are more interesting especially when shoes and watches are thrown into the mix.  I realize that this is probably why most well dressed men wear belts and I have no issues with that.

Take away: If your pants fit properly wearing a belt is usually redundant and I’m just too lazy to find a belt to put on every morning.

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Fall means the cords are back in play!

Fall means the cords are back in play!

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Pass it on

Growing up as a young immigrant boy in America meant that there were a lot of things that I had to learn on my own. I’m not ashamed of my experiences or moments of cluelessness growing up but I must admit that it certainly would have been easier at times had I been taught certain things before confronting situations for the first time. Many of the more important things I would have liked guidance on are burned deep within me and I pray that I get to shared those things with my boys as they grow up.

But there are also many small, seemingly insignificant things about being a man that should be taught to boys as they grow up.  I am by no means an authority about how a man should dress but there are some very basic things every man should know when they are required/expected to don a suit. This is NOT about style or how clothes should fit and I am not interested in debating about what you or I personally prefer sartorially. I’m generally not a fan of rules anyway but there should be no debating these 3 common mistakes that are seen frequently.

1. Don’t leave the designer/fabric labels attached to the jacket sleeve of your suit jacket/sportscoat.

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(Unless you are you planning on returning the suit after you wear it.)

2. Don’t wear athletic socks with dress shoes. If you need thicker socks there are thicker dress socks available.

3. Remove the stitching to the back vents of your suit jacket before wearing.  The stitching is there to prevent tearing the vents before the suit is sold and not meant to be left on.
   * (optional) remove the stitching of the jacket pockets (chest and 2 side pockets). Some people prefer not to undo the stitching to help maintain shape of the fabric but most men that don’t do it usually just don’t know that they can be removed.

That’s it!  Any other rule you may or may not have heard of, feel free to break as you please or continue to live in your blissful state of not knowing about them.

Peace!

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Shooting tips

http://www.swish22.com/assets/fixing.html

#4 was a recent revelation for me. Helped increase my range by a lot.

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12ent:

#training #workout #gym #phenincityal #columbusga #manhattanks #basketball #AI

12ent:

#training #workout #gym #phenincityal #columbusga #manhattanks #basketball #AI

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The Magic of Steam Stations

Was going to write something similar.  Derek saved me the effort.  Thanks.

I just picked up a refurbished Rowenta one up last month for ~$70.  Highly recommended especially if you can find a similar deal.  You can pick up a new Rowenta for under $200 from Macy’s or Bed Bath and Beyond.

dieworkwear:

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Most menswear reviews go something like this: a ridiculously trivial problem is blown out of proportion, and some expensive item is proposed as the solution. The slightly uncomfortable experience of being caught in a drizzle, for example, can be solved with a handmade raincoat with bonded seams; the slightly-off fit of ready-to-wear shoes can be solved with something bespoke; and any difficulty in understanding Four Pins can be solved with someone young and hip, serving as a personal translator. 

In reality, most things have a steep diminishing returns curve, and much of what you need can be satisfied for not too much money. For ironing, I recommend Black & Decker’s D2030 iron, any kind of non-countertop ironing board, and a basic spray bottle (since most irons are terrible at spraying mist or steam). All three can be had for less than $100. 

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I think he posted this a few years ago but it’s very good reference for those who ever wondered about how your suits should fit.

mostexerent:

COVER YOUR ASS

There is no actual quantum science or emperical measure as we are all blessed with different body proportions as shapes.

But in my opinion it is best to understand your body proportions & shape then adhere to some certain guidelines not rules to make you look your best:

Jacket MUST cover your ASS

Sleeves of jacket should be no shorter than the natural flex point - where your hand meets your wrist (I will elaborate on my technique later) & not past where your thumb meets your hand

Jacket MUST cover your ASS

Shoulder of jacket not sit before or no more than 2cm from the end of your natural shoulder

Jacket MUST cover your ASS

Body of jacket not be so tight that you look like an extra from some bad commercial shoot of certain ‘FASHUN’ brands or Men’s “STYLE” magazines

Jacket MUST cover your ASS

The actual buttoning point at your natural waist (give or take a cm, lower is better) & you natural waist is roughly where your belly button is. DO NOT GET CONFUSED with wearing jeans as they tend to sit on YOUR HIPS, unless you have progressed to Grown Man Style dungarees ;)

Jacket MUST cover your ASS

Pants should sit as close as possible to your natural waist (see above) - pants are not jeans

Jacket MUST cover your ASS

Good tailoring is not tight fitting, good tailoring provides movement

Jacket MUST cover your ASS

As mentioned in an earlier post, Patrick Johnson (tailor) & I changed a few minor measurements with this suit to keep it as ‘classic’ as possible compared to my other suits.

Jacket is nearly 2cm longer (see comparison to yesterdays flannel chalk stripe) to add an unbroken line
‘Roped’ versus ‘soft’ shoulder or ‘con rollino’ v ‘spalla camicia’
Waist points or buttoning dropped by 1cm & retained circumference measurements

Higher sleeve hole to add elegance & to lengthen the torso

Sleeve shape & length the same
Different pocket treatment (actually tucked in the flaps)

Pants are same

What do we see?

Other than the grey suit looking more English & the navy chalk looking more Italian - see the difference.

Where the (sleeve) ends
“My method” as no tailor I know uses this but agree it works for me
Stand “naturally” & let arms hang “naturally”

Raise hands so that they are parallel to the floor - yoga helps

Jacket sleeve kisses back of hand with no break, this is ‘my’ natural flex point & where I try & make sure all my sleeves finish

Ask tailor to pin or take measurement

Walk around & start again to make sure it is the same

Now have a look at the full body shots & see the consistency & the effects this gives me.

Is there a natural flow from shoulder to arm to wrist point & where the jacket finishes.

Finally - if your jacket body is too short (as in not covering your ass), your sleeves will look too long & hence throw the whole visual proportions out & the above will make no impact.

FWIW (this series was from back in 2010 when I wasn’t riding or doing anything for fitness):
5’7” or 168cm. Not of model height
160 lb or 73 kg. Too many burgers & dumplings

18.5” or 47cm across the shoulder. So wider than what my height dictates if I was ‘average’

Rather not disclose my waist. Too many burgers & dumplings

The most important message - find a GOOD tailor that you connect with & TRUST him or her.

Details | Suit - P Johnson for GW | Shirt - Ascot Chang for GW | PS - Facconable | Tie - 15 YEAR OLD Channel (sheesh I have an old passport picture of me wearing this same tie) | Hoofs - John Lobb “Phillip II” on 7000 last for Leather Soul

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First attempt at cold brewing coffee at home

I love to try DIY things.  I don’t mind trying and retrying until I get it right so last night I made my first attempt at cold brewing coffee.

I ended up using about double the amount of grinds that I normally use for hot coffee.  Approximately 30 heaping spoonfuls of grind for 5 tall mug’s worth of water.  Result is it came out too bland.

Pitcher of my first batch after 12 hours in the fridge.

I used cloth tea strainer.  I might try it without this next time during the brewing and just use this to do the straining when it’s ready.

Used the coffee maker’s basket with a paper filter to strain the really fine coffee mud at the bottom of the pitcher.

Since this batch was bland I did not have to dilute the coffee concentrate as you would normally would.

Next try I will use 45 spoonfuls for the same amount of water.  I can see this getting really expensive really quickly.  Now I can kinda understand why they charge $4 a cup!

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De-Stink your watch

Having a smelly wrist makes me self conscience.  For the longest time one of my watches smelled really bad and no matter what I tried I couldn’t get rid of the smell.

I tried using liquid hand soap and a tooth brush to scrub the watch and bracelet.  I tried freezing it for a couple of hours.  I even switched to nylon straps but the smell would return within a day or two.

Then I tried soaking the watch and all the straps and bracelets I used with it in a 50/50 mix of distilled vinegar and water for 15 minutes.  I then rinse the watch with water and hand soap.  With the nylon straps I soaked in tap water for a few minutes to get rid of the vinegar smell.  I am happy to report that the smell is gone and it’s been about a week.

* I would not try this with a leather strap.

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