A Continuous Lean. - Page 2

The Maine Flea Way.

Jul 22nd, 2014 | Categories: Maine | by Michael Williams

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Driving on US1 in Maine this past weekend I happened upon the Montsweag Flea Market. I hadn’t planned on stopping at this particular flea market, but I had some time to kill before we could get the keys to our summer rental and I knew there’s a lot of good stuff on US1. Once I found this place, I was not disappointed. (I didn’t know it at the time, but this flea is coincidentally listed on the map of flea markets that I made way back in 2009.)

Having given up on the Brooklyn Flea some time ago (partially because I’m not in New York all that much when it is going on and partially because it’s a bit too over-thought for my liking) it’s not always easy for me to get to a good flea market. I’ve spent more than a few early weekend mornings going to the Elephant’s Trunk in Connecticut and have found some great stuff there, or have at least had a great time hunting. Most of the time looking is what these things are all about. There’s a challenge to dig and find the cool little things that are really worth taking home. There’s a sense of adventure and hopefully a surprise around the corner. That’s keeps me coming back and what always makes me pull-in if I spot a flea while driving down the road on a beautiful Saturday in Maine.

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These were my only purchases at the flea. There’s a guy in a Pharrell hat and a bunch of Maine beach beauties.





Blue Blue Japan | The Indigo Obsessives

Jul 21st, 2014 | Categories: Jake Gallagher, Japan, Menswear | by Jake Gallagher

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A good friend of mine, upon being questioned about the lack of color within his wardrobe, replied that he “wears lots of colors, they just all happen to be blue.” His answer, aside from being a prime example of a good ol’ dad joke, could also be an unofficial mantra for men’s style in 2014.

From Carolina to cobalt to cerulean and every shade in between the men’s clothing spectrum has officially been (dip) dyed blue, and no brand is relishing in this indigo obsession quite like the aptly named Blue Blue Japan. Not all of BBJ’s broad collection is blue, but their most intriguing pieces feature at least one, if not many shades of the color.





Arnold Palmer | The Swinging King of the Polo

Jul 20th, 2014 | Categories: Americana, Jake Gallagher, Menswear, Sports, Style | by Jake Gallagher

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With seven major golf championships, a Presidential Medal of Freedom, a spot in the PGA Hall of Fame, and one helluva refreshing beverage to his name Arnold Palmer has racked up quite the cache of accolades in his day, but we think he’s deserving of just one more – The King of the Polo Shirt. During his dominating run through the professional golf circuit in the late fifties and sixties Palmer was best known for three things: his immaculate swing, his unflappable attitude, and his endless supply of polo shirts.

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Journeying to Space with Tom Sachs.

Jul 18th, 2014 | Categories: Americana, Art, Design, Jake Gallagher | by Jake Gallagher

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Helmet, 2007.

The visor looked like it had been coated in gold tin foil bought from a suburban supermarket. The helmet itself was oddly shaped and each crack was writ large upon the surface. The hardware was exposed. A red band adorned the bottom, one of the few actual references to a true NASA item.

This was Tom Sachs’ vision of a space helmet, a brilliant bricolage work that prioritized artistry rather than function. The scientists at NASA had their flight paths, but Sachs was on his own, navigating through visions of space that existed more in his own mind than in our physical galaxy. And Sachs was just getting started.

Helmet was part of a larger Tom Sachs exhibition titled “Space Program,” which made its debut at New York’s Gagosian Gallery back in the late summer of 2007. The press release that accompanied this show explained that Sachs, like many children of the sixties, was fascinated by the Apollo Space Program. Throughout his life, this interest blossomed into an obsession and in the late nineties Sachs began creating space inspired artworks using his recognizable bricolage technique.

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John Elliott’s Elevated Basics.

Jul 17th, 2014 | Categories: Jake Gallagher, Menswear | by Jake Gallagher

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If you ever question the extent of American menswear’s New York bias just try to name a handful of Los Angeles based labels. If you’re actually able to hit number five, than you’re a better man than I, but regardless of how many brands you’re personally able to recall, it’s undeniable that when it comes to men’s clothing L.A. is New York’s little brother. While some might view this secondary status as a negative, it only seems to fuel the fire of budding designer John Elliott. Elliott, who got his start sourcing denim for Simon Miller, started his eponymous label in 2012 in San Francisco, but soon moved to L.A., and when he speaks of his adopted hometown he does so with a fervor that’s infectious. He describes L.A. as “the last wild west” for creative entrepreneurs such as himself, and even though my East Coast inclinations run deep, I catch myself nodding in agreement.





Hand-Made in Napoli | Salvatore Piccolo

Jul 17th, 2014 | Categories: Made in Italy, Sponsored Post | by Michael Williams

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Earlier this month I flew to Italy to cover the new spring / summer 2015 collections being presented at the trade show Pitti Uomo. But before heading to the Fortezza da Basso, I made the trip down to Naples to see my favorite Italian shirtmaker (and tailor) Salvatore Piccolo and witness first-hand how he creates some of the finest hand-made shirts in the world. Having been to factories in Italy before, I knew this would be a great opportunity to document this unique process and partnered with Canon to tell the story behind the photographs.

When ACL began, it wasn’t with a specific plan in mind. I never thought I would be seeking out well-made things, or visiting factories. In fact, I never really expected the site to be anything more than a journal of the things I personally was interested in, it never seemed possible that any quantity of people would actually be following what happened here. At the same time I never intended to become a photographer. I understood the importance of photos on the web, but up until 2007 I never really took any pictures, ever. As I went to discover new things for ACL, my camera played an increasingly important role to the success of the site, and I started to find that I became increasingly interested in becoming a better photographer. My camera and ultimately my knowledge (and desire to own) different lenses helped raise the bar for ACL dramatically. I was quick to discover the importance of a good camera and quality lenses with great optics.

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North Menswear | Shopping Anytown USA

Jul 16th, 2014 | Categories: California, Made in the USA, Shopping | by Michael Williams

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The excitement was palpable. The feeling of exhilaration was present because of the unexpected nature of it’s arrival.

While on a weekend trip to Southern California I was pleasantly surprised to meet North Menswear in Laguna Beach and I probably got more excited about it than normal. Surprised and delighted to be exact. Part of this is due to the fact that North is a great shop, but the real reason I was aflutter is because I wasn’t expecting to see anything like this in Laguna. I was expecting to languish in the Real Houswives vibes and here I was browsing a great collection of menswear.

Over the past few years something amazing has happened: A version of North (basically a cool men’s shop with an Americana slant i.e. Unionmade) has opened in cities across America. If you expand out from Laguna Beach you’d get Orn Hansen in Long Beach, Lone Flag in San Diego, Berkeley Supply in Denver, Askov Finlayson in Minneapolis, Willy’s in Detroit, Cincinnati has Article, there’s Supply & Advise in Miami, Reserve Supply Co. in Houston, Federal in Washington D.C. and a million stores in the Northeast.

Five years ago there were only a few shops keyed in on this. Steven Alan, Context in Wisconsin and Need Supply in Richmond to name a few. What was very much the of the blog world for a period of time seemed to have given rise to a new market for menswear. And it wasn’t until I stepped into North that it really made sense. I knew there were a lot of people all over the place interested in this stuff, but when you’re a little off the beaten path (not that LB is really out of the way, but it’s not TriBeCa) and you see a shop as good as North do you really realize the scope of this thing.

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North Menswear founder Pete Surprenant.