The Brooklyn shop Epaulet recently took a trip up to Middleborough, Mass. to visit the factory of the venerable American shoemaker Alden to finalize the details on the shop’s new special edition Brixton boot. In addition to coming back with a great looking pair of boots, Epaulet owner Mike Kuhle and filmmaker Tom Eaton put together an interesting look at the Alden operation including the video below and a nice photo gallery. American boots and a factory tour? Sounds like a perfect Thursday to me.
When it comes to the Life photo archive I seem to be stuck in the year 1942. The mining always begins at random places and seems to inevitably end up around WWII. The Brooklyn Navy Yard has long been a fascination of mine, and these pictures of war-time industry help to scratch that itch. One day when ACL is a massive corporation (with interests in everything from ladies undergarments to heavy equipment; just like the Japanese!) the world headquarters will hopefully be at the navy yard in good ole Kings County, Brooklyn USA.
Last night I headed out to Union Hall in Brooklyn to see one of my new favorite bands, U.S. Royalty. The Washington D.C. based group first appeared on my radar after I photographed the lead singer John Thornley at South by Southwest in Austin. Let me start this off by saying that I haven’t been this immediately drawn to a band in a long time — one listen and I was hooked. I wasn’t sure what to expect live, but twenty seconds into the set at Union Hall and the deal was done, these guys are good. John was dancing around, rocking the tambourine and the music flowed like the three dollar domestics. What else could one ask for on a Thursday night. The good news is, U.S. Royalty is doing it all over again tonight at Webster Hall. So you don’t have to take my word for it, go see for yourself. If you aren’t in NYC keep an eye out for these guys — worth the price for admission for sure. Two tracks from the band’s self titled EP and more images after the jump.
The New York Times City Room blog (and the omnipresent Sewell Chan) have a nice feature and interview with artist / photographer Paul Lacy about his new photography book of independent Brooklyn storefronts. New York is fortunate to have so many independent shops and restaurants. It is something that makes me love living here. The chains have gained a lot of ground, but the independent, family owned merchants are the inspiring and unique places that make New York special. Anyone that has been to B&H can attest. My own little collection of storefronts can be seen here.
Below: images from Lacy’s book.
This weekend a friend and I went to the first Brooklyn Flea in Fort Greene, Brooklyn. We didn’t make it over until around 11am (my fault; hangover) but we still arrived to lots of ironic preppy hipsters and some good flea market action. It is nice that they do start things off later than the normal 6am craziness. Gives you time to get a bagel and some coffee before heading over. After checking things out I still prefer the Elephant’s Trunk Flea in New Milford, CT. I do however give Brownstoner and the others involved credit for organizing everything. I’m sure in time, the Brooklyn Flea will be a mandatory Sunday outing. Some high points, low points and pictures after the jump.
Until recently I was not much of a fan of Mid-Century Modern design. The irony of my newfound-interest in throwback American office furniture is the source – a Japanese magazine called Free & Easy. The book is essentially a How-To guide to live like a preppy American guy. They go so far as to break down every material thing you would need to live “the lifestyle”. Watches, umbrellas, cars, suits, accessories and even dogs! All of it is distinctly East Coast preppy Americana. The Japanese have become in many ways, the holder of the key to many parts of the classic 21st century American lifestyle. Case in point, this Japanese blog devoted to Dazor and other vintage lighting. I see the trend mostly as a positive, the Japanese have become a sort of library of classic American brands and traditions. More on that later.