On a Rescue Mission | A Continuous Lean.

On a Rescue Mission

Oct 31st, 2008 | Categories: Japan, Men's wear, Style, Vintage | by Michael Williams

My trip to Japan wasn’t really a sightseeing holiday, I was actually sent to Tokyo on a covert American rescue mission. I went in search of American goods that wanted to be returned to their rightful home, back to the motherland. The greatest find was a vintage red Woolrich hunting jacket that was “saved” from Free & Easy’s Rugged Museum. The Rugged Museum store by the way, is excellent. In addition to stocking some awesome brands Post O’ Alls, 68 & Brothers, Mister Freedom, Buzz Rickson, etc., the shop had an AMAZING selection of vintage goods. Chore coats, flannel shirts, vintage chambray. My head was spinning. In the end settled on this vintage Woolrich jacket that fit like a glove and was a bargain at ¥13,780 or $152.71.

Comments: 17

17 Comments to “On a Rescue Mission”

  1. james fox
    on Oct 31st, 2008
    @ 1:21 PM

    the trick on these is getting one where the game pouch has not been used… they get pretty rank… an absolute classic you got there.

  2. wayne pate
    on Oct 31st, 2008
    @ 3:51 PM

    Nice piece. Your a brave man, that’s a lot of red to wear. I’m curious to see what you would wear it with. You must’ve been in Rugged Museum saying to yourself “so hears where all the great vintage is that I can never find back home!”

  3. r
    on Oct 31st, 2008
    @ 6:01 PM

    The great vintage items are here….if you get to the Rose Bowl flea market, (or rural America), before the Japanese dealers that is!…last month the vendor talk was about how the domestic/European customers for us vintage/denim items were out pricing the Japanese buyers, and that “we would all be in Japan buying the stuff back in a year”
    rescue missions etc.

  4. Michael Williams
    on Oct 31st, 2008
    @ 6:03 PM

    R,

    I have been to the Rose Bowl! It is really amazing. You make a really good point, and I think Japan is flooded already. I know for a fact that if I bought that coat in NYC it would be much more expensive. Also, most Japanese vintage stores were edited better than the better ones here in the states. Oh course, maybe I don’t go to all the right places. Thanks for your insight!

    ACL

  5. r
    on Oct 31st, 2008
    @ 11:11 PM

    I think for sure there’s a sense of a ‘curated’ collection of clothing in the stores in Japan…and the various remakes of American workwear over there are of higher quality than whats happening here…they are just such devotee’s of style and functionality , and the attention to detail and crafting is…well, something to aspire to.

  6. Ian
    on Nov 1st, 2008
    @ 4:16 AM

    Love it. Brilliant color.

  7. pitboss12
    on Nov 2nd, 2008
    @ 1:16 AM

    Great coat. I hope you also got some back issues of Free & Easy while you were there.

    The japanese buyers get the early admission tix at the Rose Bowl and are in and out before I even get out of bed.

  8. joanna goddard
    on Nov 2nd, 2008
    @ 9:34 AM

    love that color.

  9. Ol' Sport
    on Nov 2nd, 2008
    @ 7:44 PM

    This is a picture of my Father and Grandfather wearing the same jacket, on an elk hunting trip in Idaho, circa 1967.

    http://sportinglifemag.typepad.com/.a/6a00e5504d95998833010535d34ee1970c-pi

    I bought one for myself @ Cheap Jacks in NY, for about $45 in 1998. Vintage hunting clothes were cheap ’til they became de-rigeur. Now everybody wants to look like an “Outdoorsy-American”.

    -Ol’ Sport

  10. Mary-Laure
    on Nov 2nd, 2008
    @ 10:38 PM

    Divine jacket! I love a red piece in an outfit.

    You’re lucky to have been to Japan. I spent a summer there years ago and it changed my life… Loved it.

  11. Heavy Tweed Jacket
    on Nov 3rd, 2008
    @ 1:12 AM

    Nice find! A new one would surely be more expensive as well. I used to have a black and red checked Woolrich hunting coat with game pocket. I had it relined in canvas for about 30 bucks and wore it until it was falling apart. I wish you well with yours!

  12. I. Ponder
    on Nov 3rd, 2008
    @ 3:11 AM

    C.C. Filson (the man) created that style coat in 1914. Filson still makes it in wool in a bunch of colors and plaids, and in Tin Cloth (heavy waxed cotton). Woolrich copied the design. It’s called a Cruiser. Originally created for Forest Cruisers, forestry surveyors who selected the trees for cutting. The back pocket was used for carrying surveying maps. It’s not a game pocket.

    I’m a huge fan of Free & Easy. In the interest of full disclosure, I’m the Senior Graphic Designer at Filson. In addition to Men’s garments, we launched a Women’s line this year.

  13. james
    on Nov 3rd, 2008
    @ 11:04 AM

    I Ponder; great nugget about the map pocket… i knew that acruiser was a forsestry surveyor but assumed the pocket was for game. in the UK they are often used for rabbits…

  14. Jesse
    on Nov 3rd, 2008
    @ 4:04 PM

    Can you buy any of these Japan only goods online and have them delivered to the US or is a visit to the land of the rising sun required?

  15. Michael Williams
    on Nov 3rd, 2008
    @ 4:06 PM

    Jesse — I’m not sure. My guess is that you need a proxy or its a no go. Wayne Pate, what do you think?

    ACL

  16. wayne pate
    on Nov 3rd, 2008
    @ 6:31 PM

    Hi Jesse,
    I would say buy a ticket. There are no on-line shops
    in Japan that I know of that will ship internationally. The best way to go about getting product from Japan besides physically going there is to get yourself a broker (I have one) who will order the items for you, receive them and ship them to you. All that for a broker fee of course. The risk is getting something that’s the wrong size, bad fit, etc.
    because the items are nonreturnable. But worth it for the most part. Remember shoe sizes are pretty much consistent, clothing that’s another animal all together. With clothing a good rule of thumb would be to always order one size up, do to Japanese brands running smaller in sizing. After a few miscalculations you get it right really quick!

  17. wayne pate
    on Nov 3rd, 2008
    @ 6:33 PM

    type correction do s/b due in last comment. I can spell damn it!