Archives for July 2009 | A Continuous Lean.

A Surly Sage, Gun-Toting Minnesotan and All-American Crank

Jul 31st, 2009 | Categories: Americana, Blogs, Books, Camping, Hunting & Fishing | by Michael Williams


The Trad in his infinite knowledge of interesting things points us to one of the most entertaining reads the Sunday Book Review has ever offered up. The gem of an essay is on Minnesota native and epic hook and bullet purveyor George Herter. The titles of Herter’s books alone make me love the guy. The archive includes: “How to Get Out of the Rat Race and Live on $10 a Month,” the popular “Bull Cook and Authentic Historical Recipes and Practices” and my personal favorite “How to Live With a Bitch.”

Colorful Offerings | Burkman Brothers SS10

Jul 30th, 2009 | Categories: Style | by Michael Williams


I get excited to go over to the Burkman Brothers studio for two reasons, first the elevator is manually operated and that is cool and second the clothes are excellent. The word on the street is that the Burkman Brothers collection performed well at stores over these past two seasons and all in a shitty economy. It makes sense to me why the collection does well at retail, the fabrics are interesting and attractive, the fit is good and the details are subtle yet interesting. I first met the brothers Burkman this past February and have been impressed with their collection ever since.

ACL Endorses | Workers Blog & Your Old Pal Jim

Jul 29th, 2009 | Categories: ACL Endorses, Americana, Blogs, Denim, Japan | by Michael Williams

The Japanese outfit Workers is known for producing some of the ultimate reproduction of classic American work wear. The company came to my attention last year and I have been keeping an eye on it ever since. Recently, that voyeurism became much easier with the launch of the Workers blog. While I can’t read Japanese (and don’t bother translating it), I do like to follow the links and it is a good place to get a better look at the Workers goods. It is sort of like Free & Easy, but I don’t have to trek all the way up to Kinokuniya to get a copy.

Another recent discovery (and something that is linked on the Workers blog)  is the old-timey obsessed site Your Old Pal Jim. I had a chance to meet the man behind the blog, Mr. Jim Christensen at The Pop Up Flea and was impressed with his encyclopedic knowledge of all things work wear, denim, garment making and seemingly everything in between. I was really impressed with Jim’s level of interest in this sort of thing and humbled by his command of the topic.

Men cutting fabric at a Manhattan factory from Your Old Pal Jim.

The legend of International Trucks

Jul 28th, 2009 | Categories: Americana, Trucks | by Michael Williams

International 10

The same year Jacobi Press was establishing his tailoring shop J. Press in New Haven, the McCormick Harvesting Machine Company and the Deering Harvester Company combined to form International Harvester. That was 107 years ago and both companies persist today, although Press is owned by the Japanese and International Harvester is now known as Navistar.

International Harvester gained a devoted following recently with a group of retro-loving guys that fawn over the Scout (myself included). Taking the love of International one step further, the Wisconsin Historical Society has an amazing archive of truck images. I spent about five hours on their site looking through page after page of old school trucks. The styling of the International trucks is truly something of marvel. The way that each individual company would kit them out was really special. There is a specific image of a Coca-Cola truck in the below group that is really special. I’d like to get my hands on a couple of those old trucks, they just don’t do it like they used to.

Those Nice Bright Colors, the Greens of Summer…

Jul 27th, 2009 | Categories: Linkage, Obsessions | by Michael Williams

My cousin emailed me today with a link to a story about one of my favorite things in this world, Kodachrome. Earlier in the year Kodak decided to phase out the colorful film in lieu of other varieties and to streamline their production. While I don’t ever want to see the film go away, it makes sense why Kodak would deep six the old workhorse. I’m surprised the company even makes film anymore. In fact, there is only one place in the world that can process Kodachrome at this point, that illustrates how niche the stuff is.


An Updated Lean

Jul 25th, 2009 | Categories: Housekeeping | by Michael Williams

A young lady launches the USS ACL.

There has been talk of updated ACL for quite some time and today that finally came true. While the previous theme was an old friend and a workhorse, it was time to take a step forward. The creative and web design for ACL 2.0 was all handled by Mr. Bobby Solomon of Kitsune Noir fame. So if you say that ACL looks a little like +KN then we are flattered, cause Bobby’s site is top notch. I should also say that Bobby is a dream to work with, so if you need a talented designer, look no further. I’m grateful to him for putting up with my stupid questions and always being game to explore my ideas.

Another exciting development is ACL’s first partner in J.Crew. The barometer for ACL has always been, “would I wear it?” and J.Crew fits that mold perfectly. I have long said that I think it is one of the few companies that is treating guys right (not making them walk down stairs to a small men’s department) with their new men’s shops. Not to mention a few posts on J.Crew (men’s shop #1 & men’s shop #2) are some of the most viewed entries on the site, so it is clearly a company you all are interested in. Hope you like the new site and understand why things have been changed. I tried to keep most of the stuff in the same places, so you still know your way to the fridge in the middle of the night. But keep your hands off of those High Lifes, they’re mine.

Download Right Now


Jul 24th, 2009 | Categories: Housekeeping | by Michael Williams

If you follow me on twitter you would know by now that I have been contributing to on the regular. What is going up on The Q Blog on has been all of the American goodness that you have come to expect from ACL. So if you like what is happening here and aren’t checking GQ, it would be safe to say that you are missing out. On the other hand, if you hate what I am doing at ACL this is just another place for you to go and grind your teeth in disgust. But you know, I’ll take it anyway I can get it. Some ACL x GQ gems below. Bookmark that shit.

The Rose Bowl Flea Market


Craft L.A.