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Putting It All On The Table: A Wood&Faulk DIY.

Nov 27th, 2013 | Categories: Portland Oregon, Sponsored Post | by Michael Williams

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To celebrate design, craft, style and the entrepreneurial spirit, Timberland in partnership with ACL set out to highlight the guys that take matters into their own hands, to not only make great things, but to inspire and teach others the skills to do it yourself.

Wood&Faulk started as a hobby, it continued to grow as a blog and eventually it emerged as a full-fledged label. Founded by Matt Pierce in Portland, OR in 2011, Wood&Faulk now offers a full collection of interesting leather goods and operates out of an amazing shared workshop called Beam & Anchor that overlooks a massive Union Pacific switching yard next to the Williamette river.

What really propelled the line forward has been both the whimsical nature of the stuff Wood&Faulk makes and Matt’s openness about how everything is made. To this end, it began publishing the DIY process for making a lot of the stuff the brand sells on its blog and that has been an almost visceral and overwhelming response from people all over. In fact, that is how I discovered the Wood&Faulk, through its blog and I was drawn to the fact that it wasn’t trying to hide anything and it just put everything out on the table (quite literally).

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The ACL Guide to Giving Good Gifts.

Nov 18th, 2013 | Categories: Gift Guide 2013, Sponsored Post | by Michael Williams

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The idea of gifting can be exciting (fun stuff for you) and terrifying at the same time (the pressure of needing to impress and delight those you care about most). To help solve this problem, I spent several (enjoyable) hours combing through the vast offerings at Barneys New York to create the ultimate gift list for all of the people in my life. This includes everyone from my fiancé (pro tip: Louboutin is fool-proof) to my parents, and my faithful Springer Spaniel even gets in on the action. (Here’s the look book for all of those gifts.) Not to be overlooked, there are even some selections that a guy like me would covet. People say it’s the thought that counts, but we all know people are expecting you to deliver great gifts on top of all of that thought. So this guide should prove handy.

Barneys has long been my first and last stop when it came to shopping for the Holidays. The famed New York store has such an amazing selection of nice and special things that can make everyone happy — and make you look smart in the process. It’s a powerful destination for all of the gift giving and gift getting happiness that the holiday season brings and the Barneys box is the one that everyone wants to see, me included. [THE ACL x BARNEYS GIFT GUIDE]





Shopping New York | Timberland SoHo.

Oct 30th, 2013 | Categories: New York City, Shopping, Sponsored Post | by ACL Editors

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Walk into Timberland’s Soho flagship and you’ll instantly realize that the storied workwear brand isn’t just selling boots anymore, they’re about the total package. Creating a stylish yet rugged footwear collection has always been Timberland’s bread and butter, but the shop on Broadway in SoHo also houses  the brand’s complete collection, covering everything from their iconic yellow boots, to their more contemporary street-ready pieces. Well-crafted leather coats, forest green backpacks, and military style field jackets grace the tabletops, while Timberland’s line of legendary shoes and boots is prominently displayed along the expansive shoe wall. This includes the handcrafted Timberland Boot Company collection, the Timberland classic boots that have become a symbol of the company and all the other good stuff like the Abington Collection, and the Earthkeepers line. The space is a fitting flagship for a storied brand with style, ruggedness and a distinct point of view.

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Celebrating 40 Years | Inside the Timberland Brooklyn Workshop.

Oct 22nd, 2013 | Categories: Brooklyn, Footwear, Sponsored Post | by Michael Williams

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To celebrate its 40th anniversary, Timberland set up an interactive worksop on the Brooklyn waterfront to celebrate the brand’s past, speak to the future, and to gather a panel of creative people to explore how creativity and style exist in the present. The event was a nice amalgamation of Timberland’s history and the current expression of its fall style that was on display throughout the space. In an upstairs auditorium, Timberland assembled five creative individuals to talk through modern creativity and speak about how style intersects with their lives. The group consisted of photographer Noah Kalina (who along with some of the guys from the Rig Out made a short film that celebrates the limited edition pieces from the Timberland 40th Anniversary), Complex Style Editor Matthew Henson, Christine Cameron of My Style Pill and myself. In addition to the conversation on style, each of the panelists and myself reflected our own personal style and taste in a physical space on the main floor of the Timberland workshop. Timberland’s Design Director Chris Pawlus gave insight into how Timberland’s style, performance and ruggedness have dovetailed into one of the world’s most respected brands.ACLSPONSORED_041613_OMG-1-1





The British Invasion | Bloomingdale’s Style.

Oct 18th, 2013 | Categories: Sponsored Post, Video | by Michael Williams

To celebrate the 50th anniversary of The Beatles coming to New York and the start of the British Invasion, Bloomingdale’s has looked to Britain for inspiration this fall. The iconic retailer has assembled over 50 British brands like Turnbull & Asser, London Undercover and Hardy Amies. to create more than 30o excellent exclusives for the season. You can shop it all here.

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My Friend Jack and Other Adventures in San Francisco.

Oct 16th, 2013 | Categories: Shoes, Sponsored Post | by Michael Williams

Jack Purcell

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This fall Converse tapped San Francisco’s Unionmade, a store that has emerged as one of America’s best sources of well-made and good-looking menswear, to showcase the life and style of the Jack Purcell sneakers. In addition to being one of the best merchandised and art directed independent shops out there, Unionmade has mastered the art of mixing brands and showcasing an evolved sense of style and taste that serves as a source of inspiration for many. Much of this comes from the store’s founders Todd Barkett and Carl Chiara, both vets of big brands (Gap and Levi’s respectively), but Unionmade’s Brand Director Spencer Lemon also brings an interesting dimension to the team. I took the chance to catch up with him and talk about classic kicks, finding a hassle free beer and his favorite book shop in San Francisco.

What’s your favorite way to wear Jack Purcells?

Any way is typically a good way.  Part of the beauty of a classic style and silhouette like the Jack Purcell is that it’s incredibly versatile.  They look great brand new or worn in and pair well with most outfits.

Talk to me about where Jack Purcell takes you on the weekend. What’s your favorite brunch stop?

Bar Tartine.  Friend and owner, Chad Robertson (who also owns Tartine Bakery) has been re-imagining his restaurant over the last couple years and it’s been really exciting to try and visit regularly as the menu evolves.  Drawing heavy inspiration from Eastern Europe and working primarily with local produce, there’s often a new seasonal offering to try and a number of staples to indulge in.

What neighborhood in San Francisco is your favorite?

Alamo Square.  I’m biased because I also live in this neighborhood, but it’s relatively low key and central to most of the other areas I get to regularly.  There’s a lot of change happening right now, some interesting and some not so interesting, but it’s always a game of pros and cons.





Levi’s®: The American Uniform for Generations of Pioneers.

Oct 14th, 2013 | Categories: Denim, Sponsored Post | by Michael Williams

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When we think of the uniform of the American frontiersman, one brand comes to mind: Levi’s®. The brand’s iconic Trucker jacket, Western shirt, and 501® jeans have been synonymous with the American working man for generations. And just as the people who originally wore these garments helped pioneer America as we know it today, Levi’s® pioneered the American wardrobe by creating clothing sturdy enough to stand up to the toughest jobs. But it’s no longer just cowboys, miners, and farmers wearing Levi’s®. Today’s unknown exists within our ideas and creativity, and Levi’s® is still working to outfit the explorers of this modern frontier.

As we arrive on the cusp of fall, none of these items are more necessary than the Trucker. Originally introduced in 1967, the Trucker is the third generation of Levi’s® denim jackets. The most recognizable of the three, it follows on the heels of the aptly named Type I and Type II.

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The Type I, the first iteration of the Levi’s® denim jacket, was created in the 1900s and relied upon a cinched buckle back to provide a better fit for the wearer. Made with raw Cone Mills denim, it was a jacket that men earned the more they wore it. A little over fifty years later, the Type II improved upon this style by adding two patch pockets with flaps on the front chest and swapping out the buckle back for adjustable buttons. Apart from these and a few other details, however, the Types I and II were relatively similar in design. But the Trucker is an entirely different beast. Unlike its boxy predecessors, it has a slimmer fit with higher, narrower flap pockets. And instead of the heavy, raw denim used on the others, it’s rinsed and preshrunk denim made it more comfortable and instantly accessible.