A Continuous Lean. - Page 2

In the Books | PUFSUN 2015

May 12th, 2015 | Categories: Pop Up Flea | by Michael Williams

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A visual tour of PUFSUN in NYC.

This past weekend we held the first Pop Up Flea of 2015. The event featured 40+ different brands offering up a great collection of gear for summer. From awesome swim and sportswear from Onia to Waltzing Matilda’s awesome hand-made leather sandals to all of the new 2015 novelties from TUDOR. Our spring / summer Pop Up Flea is all about discovering new brands and finding something interesting you might not have otherwise seen. With that in mind, Rancourt’s new collection of made-in-Maine sneakers (pictured below) could have been the best discovery of the weekend.

In addition to all of the commerce, Buaisou had a vat of natural Japanese indigo on-hand custom dying bags, tee shirts and all sorts of other good stuff. It’s amazing to see the process of indigo dying in person. It’s an amazing process and Buaisou is excellent at it. They also make and sell some great traditional clothing and accessories — it’s really something special.

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This weekend: Pop Up Flea NYC.

May 6th, 2015 | Categories: Pop Up Flea | by Michael Williams


This coming weekend the Pop Up Flea will be open for business in Chelsea with 40 well-made and interesting brands on offer. Join us to shop some great summertime goods from your old favorites and fresh faces. The full vendor list and details are below. Come and #ShopSmall with us Friday, Saturday and Sunday in NYC.

#PUFSUN on Instagram

123 West 18th Street (2nd Floor)
New York City

Friday, May 8th: 3pm to 8pm
Saturday, May 9th: 11am to 7pm
Sunday, May 10th: 12pm to 6pm

Free Entry. Open to the public. 


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The Greatest Generation | IWC Portugieser

May 4th, 2015 | Categories: Watches | by Michael Williams


Above, IWC’s excellent new IWC Portugieser Hand-Wound Eight Days “75th Anniversary” edition.

If one were to ask me to name my list of favorite brands, inevitably IWC will be there right near the top. It’s the type of company who never stops to impress me with its combination of brains and good looks. The first real mechanical watch I ever owned was an IWC. That was a deliberate and hard fought experience. It took me five years to make it happen — a personal, career and aesthetic life challenge all-in-one. An IWC was something that I lusted after, saved for and eventually came to own. I still have that watch (Portuguese Automatic) and every time I wear it people remark how much they like it. Each time I put it on my wrist I am also reminded of the satisfaction of working hard to get something which I will own my entire life.

Needless to say considering my history, I have a deep connection with both IWC and the Portuguese family of watches. So when the news of the update to the Portuguese family (for the collection’s 75th anniversary) in January, I was a bit nervous for what was to come. Thankfully IWC didn’t disappoint and the new 2015 Portugieser collection managed to get even better. There’s a few subtle changes —smaller case diameters, adjusted case shapes— which add another level of refinement to this already stellar group of watches.


The handsome new 2015 Yacht Club has been sized down to 43.5mm.

The Originals.

May 1st, 2015 | Categories: England, History, Menswear, Shoes | by ACL Editors


After the explosion of interest in men’s clothing that was catalyzed by the heritage movement of the early aughts, we now find ourselves in a pretty tumultuous time for men’s style. Brands fall in and out of favor at the drop of floppy Italian hat. Trends can rise and fizzle out in the time it takes a model to walk the length of a runway. And it is now (relatively) normal for someone to dress like a drop-crotched goth ninja one day and a soft-shouldered Neapolitan aristocrat the next. If there’s one idea that has never seemed to lose steam throughout this all though, it’s that anything made in China is less preferred than things made in Japan, Europe, America or even Canada.

If you ask us, blanket statements like this are easy to say, yet hard to fully comprehend. We don’t really believe that all things made in China are always made poorly, just as we don’t believe that all things made in America are automatically made well. With that said though, it is true that the large-scale factories that make up much of China’s clothing industry do prioritize quantity over quality, and the effects of this can be manifold. Which brings us to the story of Padmore & Barnes.


The Brunello Cucinelli Guide to Life and Business.

Apr 27th, 2015 | Categories: Italy | by Michael Williams


Four years ago I had the privilege of meeting Brunello Cucinelli at his company’s home office in Solomeo. It sounds cliché to say, but it was a day that fundamentally changed how I see the world as a consumer, a businessman and as a human. More philosophical than anyone you will ever meet in the clothing business (possibly in life in general), Brunello is a catalyst for fundamental positive change. It’s just his nature. It sounds contrived when you read some blogger say it, but in reality, Brunello Cucinelli (the man and the company) is one of the most compelling people I have ever met. If character and integrity took the human form it would be Brunello Cucinelli. The fact that he sells some of the finest made and best looking clothing is almost just a happy coincidence.

My pal the esteemed writer Om Malik made the pilgrimage to Solomeo himself to meet Brunello and learn more about the man his billion dollar enterprise operating quietly in Italy’s green heart. His interview is as important and compelling as any I have read. The coversation stands out because of both Om’s beautiful perspective and Brunello’s equally unique world view.

With a nod to the tech world (and John Gruber), below I pulled out my favorite bits and pieces from this great conversation between two men of considerable respect. Here’s the original interview which is a must read.

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Spring Into Pop Up Flea.

Apr 27th, 2015 | Categories: New York City, Pop Up Flea, Shopping | by Michael Williams

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Our ever-changing short-term (summer) shop Pop Up Flea is popping back up in Manhattan this coming May 8th through the 10th in Chelsea. Our annual spring/summer event has become the perfect warm weather counterbalance to our long running and extremely popular December event. It’s a lighter and brighter version of PUF with a nice mix of brands you know (Alexander Olch, Fred Perry Laurel Wreath, Ernest Alexander, Leather Head Sports, Rancourt & Co, Freemans Sporting Club and TUDOR) and a bunch of brands you need to know (Dom Vetro, Corridor, Canvas Bag Machine, Martenero and Accompany). And it’s all here in NYC for one short weekend. We’ve made a point to keep the schedule tight so every event is interesting, unique and full of great brands. So in addition to our two NYC events and our annual trip to Tokyo, we’ve added a new city this fall to round out our 2015 Pop Up Flea events. Hey Los Angeles, we’re looking at you. More to come on that and a complete vendor list for PUFSUN will show up soon, so keep an eye on this page for more info.

We’re also excited to see the reemergence of Mister Mort who returns to PUF with his offbeat collection of things after a short five year hiatus. And for the first time, one of our favorite swimwear brands Onia will be selling their excellent collection of swimwear and the company’s new expanded collection of clothing. It’s going to be a great room full of well-made and interesting things that will help get your summer started off right. See you at the Pop Up Flea.


123 West 18th Street (2nd Floor)
New York City

Friday, May 8th: 3pm to 8pm
Saturday, May 9th: 11am to 7pm
Sunday, May 10th: 12pm to 6pm

Free Entry. Open to the public.

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Living Vicariously Through Other People’s Junk.

Apr 23rd, 2015 | Categories: Americana, Antiques, Art, Books, Brimfield | by ACL Editors


With her stomping cowboy boots, men’s riding jackets, and worn-in leather vests, Mary Randolph Carter doesn’t dress like any executive we’ve ever met. And yet, since 1988, Carter has been a creative director and executive at Ralph Lauren, following stints as an editor at Self, Mademoiselle, and New York Magazine.

On the Ralph Lauren spectrum, Carter is more RRL than Polo. In fact we’d even take it one step further and say that Carter’s aesthetic is really closer to Polo Country, the now defunct precursor to RRL which was more South, than Southwest. Carter is well-known (possibly even more so than for her association to RL) as a collector of what she calls “junk,” but what would more kindly be described as folksy flea market collectibles. It’s this widely documented collection which has made Carter a legend in her own right, as everyone from The Washington Post, to The New York Times, to The Selby has explored Carter’s massive collection of rusty signs, hand-painted family portraits, curling photographs, yellowing books, Lady of Guadalupe bracelets, and just about every other obscure knick-knack imaginable.