An Updated Lean

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 downstairs 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. I 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.

Comments on “An Updated Lean

    Ryan on July 25, 2009 10:46 AM:

    Looks good. Ace meets KN.

    Looking forward to the shop.

    Jon Gaffney on July 25, 2009 10:50 AM:

    Like the new look! Any teaser on what the shop will entail?

    JP on July 25, 2009 11:59 AM:


    Looks amazing. Can’t wait for the bags… any other tricks up your sleeve?



    joanna goddard on July 25, 2009 12:08 PM:

    love the new layout!

    Paul Pincus on July 25, 2009 12:14 PM:


    the new layout is very handsome. brilliant.

    housekeeping … ha, love that.

    acl shop!!!


    Veronika on July 25, 2009 1:43 PM:

    So good!

    wayne pate on July 25, 2009 2:00 PM:

    Looking good Mr. Williams. I will enjoy the fruits from your labor.

    Dude on July 25, 2009 2:35 PM:

    It’s not formatting correctly, there’s no left/right borders. The text is butting right up to the edge of the browser. Frankly, I don’t see an improvement over the previous format, but it’s your site.

    Ryan on July 25, 2009 2:39 PM:

    Looks great, very clean and the ads aren’t distracting at all, and almost add to the visual appeal, very well done.

    Vadim K on July 25, 2009 3:43 PM:

    Nicely done sir. Cant wait to see the bags/whatever they are.

    jhn on July 25, 2009 4:27 PM:

    I love the new design, but I miss the clean old logo.

    Slamb on July 25, 2009 4:30 PM:

    Love the new site, but loved the old logo. Cheers.

    tinto on July 25, 2009 5:23 PM:

    a continuous blowjob

    Jamie on July 25, 2009 10:45 PM:

    I have been on your site for close to a year now, one of my favorite “surprises” each day. love the new site.

    Andy on July 25, 2009 11:37 PM:

    Looks good. The mp3 is a nice touch.

    Varun on July 26, 2009 3:02 AM:

    clearly a move on for you , the site is amazing, i do think it looked fresher earlier though …

    STREET ETIQUETTE on July 26, 2009 3:09 AM:

    Hey Michael,

    the new layout is great at the same time more sleek and cleaner than the last!

    Keep it up .

    Courtney on July 26, 2009 5:06 AM:

    I absolutely adore it, Michael! I love how it feels really substantial and has a presence when you open the page…but at the same time is not busy or distracting. Love it!

    Rob on July 26, 2009 6:18 AM:

    Looks great, but lack of left border/margin makes it very difficult to read the text on many browsers – try reading it on an iPhone, serious PITA

    Garrett on July 26, 2009 9:58 AM:

    Best of luck with it. Looks great :)

    DrinkMoloko on July 26, 2009 11:50 AM:

    On the right, it says, “Recieve ACL by email”

    Receive is misspelled. FYI.

    Michael Williams on July 26, 2009 11:55 AM:

    Good catch DrinkMoloko — we’re going to fix the typo now. Thanks!!


    Simon on July 26, 2009 1:24 PM:

    USS ACL? No such vessel exists in the American Navy, but we can only hope and pray that if such a ship were ever commissioned that it would be mercilessly torpedoed by the Wolf Pack and its twat-ish crew raked with machine gun fire; the debris littering the sea would be Steven Alan shirts and black wayfarers. Bon voyage!

    Michael Williams on July 26, 2009 1:31 PM:

    That was good. At least you can be creative with your hate.

    Dude on July 26, 2009 2:37 PM:

    And I’m surprised you’re allowing any non-glowing comments to be posted on your site.

    Michael Williams on July 26, 2009 3:44 PM:

    I always allow the haters like yourself to talk shit. But the general crazies (and constantly negative people) get weeded out automatically. It is easy to be a big man and talk the talk in a blog comment, it is another thing to walk the walk.


    Dude on July 26, 2009 4:01 PM:

    “Haters”. What a broad brush you use. It’s just painful when one’s passions get cool-hunted, absorbed, diluted and turned into “Fashion”. But, like, whatever. Looking forward to when you move onto to something (anything) else.

    Michael Williams on July 26, 2009 4:03 PM:

    I bet you are from the Military Watch Forum, right? You are diluting my passion by being here.


    P.S. Period goes inside the quotes.

    Ian on July 26, 2009 4:41 PM:

    Tasteful alterations. A nicely tailored site. I never had an issue with the previous format, but this is an improvement.

    Jon Gaffney on July 26, 2009 5:13 PM:

    It never ceases to amaze me that people inevitably take the time to tell you how much they hate what you (in general, not specific to Michael) do, or even more hypocritical take the time to tell you what you do is a waste of their time. Really?!? Inevitably these comments are encouraged by the anonymity provided by the internet. Everything gets “cool-hunted” at some point in history, everything is cyclical. Find a new passion if you feel so diluted. Or here’s a novel concept stick to what you like till it’s not cool again and stop worrying about everyone else. I’m in no way defending ACL, it just drives me nuts seeing people do this stuff.

    Russell Sprouts on July 26, 2009 5:21 PM:

    Hey “Dude”



    Pitboss12 on July 26, 2009 5:58 PM:

    I like the new layout. I don’t know what it is, but even the pics look cleaner and more vivid. I’m anxious to see what the Shop will offer.

    Mallard on July 26, 2009 6:33 PM:

    Dear Michael Williams,

    I suppose hanging Old Glory on the wall of your financial district condo is ‘walking the walk’, right?

    Michael Williams on July 26, 2009 6:34 PM:

    Would it be better if it was in your Polo offices or maybe a Polo store?


    P.S. Comma goes inside the quotes.

    Lesli Larson on July 26, 2009 6:46 PM:


    Good luck and thank you for the blog link to Archival Clothing (I think you send me more readers than Google).

    Anticipating the debut of your bags, etc. I’m working on my own low grade manufacturing project right now and I’m astounded by how many small details/decisions go into the production process. We need an American List of the remaining (dwindling) US vendors still selling US made, best quality, cotton webbing, canvas fabrics, brass hardware and leather trim, etc.



    RGS on July 26, 2009 7:51 PM:

    Love it, but miss the old links layout. Straight down the side and easier to spot new ones.

    Steve on July 26, 2009 9:42 PM:

    Like the site, Michael. Good pick on the photo, as well.

    Off The Cuff on July 26, 2009 10:34 PM:

    Michael – great new look, nice job.

    STREET ETIQUETTE on July 26, 2009 11:14 PM:

    Damn Michael is a G lol like the way he handles the hate.

    Nic on July 26, 2009 11:55 PM:

    The new site looks good. Definitely getting a KitsuneNoir vibe. Looking forward to your future endeavors.

    christopher on July 27, 2009 8:21 AM:

    Is it just me or does there seem to be a lot more of the typical inane negativity on here you typically find on forums and on sites like Hypebeast.

    I guess that’s the price of success.

    Sam on July 27, 2009 8:26 AM:

    Mike – the new layout looks great. I like the splash of orange (it goes well with my blue tool bar). Get it? GO METS!

    Chris Bryer on July 27, 2009 8:31 AM:

    The new look is clean…just like your style in general. Definitely very cool.

    Dave Savoie on July 27, 2009 8:32 AM:

    Fantastic job on the new site. Saw your article on Craft LA and was reminded of a great store in Toronto called Klaxon Howl. If you haven’t been – and your travels ever take you up this way – by all means pay them a visit. Aside from it being among Toronto’s few (only?) stockists of Sugar Cane & Buzz Rickson, Matt Robinson’s a fascinating guy and his collection of vintage military apparel is exhaustive.


    Trotta on July 27, 2009 8:48 AM:

    Great job on the new site layout!

    jk on July 27, 2009 9:33 AM:

    new site looks awesome. and v cool re: the j. crew partnership. Congrats!

    Mark on July 27, 2009 10:47 AM:

    Are you really surprised at the ‘hate’ that is coming down on you, Michael? The J.Crew ad seems like the culmination of the past 3-4 months of entries. Personally I have felt more like I’ve been reading advertisements over those past months rather than what your about page suggests (If you read about something on the site, it is because I think it is cool. Pure and simple.). The ad makes it that much harder for me to believe that statement.

    P.S. You’re right, Street Etiquette, correcting one’s grammar is definitely ‘G’ like behavior.

    P.P.S. How was my grammar?

    andrew on July 27, 2009 11:15 AM:

    brush ’em off. keep up the good work…

    Adam Christopher on July 27, 2009 11:20 AM:

    Why do some people have to write rude and negative remarks on other people’s websites? It’s beyond me the level of immaturity and ignorance on some people’s part, like they have nothing better to do then talk shit… I guess I was always raised with: “If you have nothing nice to say, don’t say anything at all.” (period inside the quotes)… New layout looks amazing… Looking forward to more great things to come, congratulations!

    Tintin on July 27, 2009 11:37 AM:

    Very nice indeed. I’m a little hurt but live by the sword – – die by the sword.

    Jose on July 27, 2009 11:58 AM:

    Looks great. Congratulations.

    PS – I second Klaxon Howl. Matt’s a great guy, really knowledgeable. Doesn’t get enough credit in this city. I think you’d appreciate what he’s trying to do.

    Andrew K on July 27, 2009 12:00 PM:

    I like the new site! My only (friendly) suggestion would be a typographic/legibility one: I would not “justify” the type (meaning each line of text is spaced so that the right edge of each is aligned. This works well in very narrow columns of text where words can be manually hyphenated, such as in a newspaper and other printed contexts where the control over each line is guaranteed. However, in wider layouts with dynamic text flows, the justified right edge actually increases the difficulty of reading. The ragged right helps the eye track from line to line. I’m sure I’ll get a punch in the loafers for making this comment, but I want to stress that I have no negativity for this great site or the great new design. I like it!


    STREET ETIQUETTE on July 27, 2009 12:21 PM:

    Mark : Being that this is Michael’s blog there is numerous ways he could of handled it without making it such a big outburst like it did. There is always someone somewhere to say something negative about you , its all about how you handle it. It puzzles me how people actually sit on there computer in their free time just to spread hate.

    Agree with Adam Christopher.

    Keep up the good work on ACL Michael.

    sam on July 27, 2009 12:39 PM:

    I actually prefer the new links bar/cluster – all in everything looks great

    Michael Williams on July 27, 2009 1:53 PM:

    To the Billy who’s comment I deleted. If you would have framed that better it would have survived. As it was, that was too questionable. Sorry. You are missing the point of ACL a little. Re-read that thing I did with The FADER about made in the USA, etc.

    To anyone that had a link on the old site and don’t have one here, it is just a switch over issue. Email me to remind me. Please don’t email me if your site was not linked on the old ACL.


    David Hart on July 27, 2009 2:29 PM:

    Hey MW,

    The site looks great. All of your hard work has paid off. Keep it up!


    Dude on July 27, 2009 3:22 PM:

    Glad to see you fixed the formatting problem. My goodness these comments are fun to read. Am I allowed to be concerned that your alliance with J. Crew might mean you’ll not blog about the competitors of J. Crew?

    Llywarch on July 27, 2009 6:29 PM:

    Great re-design. Good choice of designer. A serious lol at the sad-o haters.
    Keep doing what you’re doing ACL!

    Cory on July 27, 2009 6:42 PM:

    To all the people that are so angry with ACL:

    This is capitalist America. Go read an Ayn Rand book.

    Good job Michael.

    Don Guss on July 27, 2009 6:55 PM:

    “P.S. Period goes inside the quotes.” HA!
    Classic! Hate the hate. Keep it up, brother.


    wayne pate on July 27, 2009 9:54 PM:

    Simon, Dude, Mallard, Tinto Gentlemen your not. Assholes undeniably so. You truly are a unsavory type.

    Nick on July 28, 2009 3:01 AM:

    “Get rad or get lost.”

    Greg D on July 28, 2009 10:35 AM:

    As resistant to change that I am, Congrats Michael and I will continue to check this out regularly. Thanks again for your efforts – it looks like it’s paying off. on July 28, 2009 4:27 PM:

    Oh dang, you finally stepped off the fence and went corporate. Nicely done, if not entirely subtle.

    eric on July 29, 2009 1:42 AM:

    is that a smiley face at the bottom?
    i love what Bob did.
    looks nice.

    denimaniac on July 29, 2009 3:49 AM:

    Congratulations on the beautiful new theme! It look mighty fine to me…

    Steve on July 30, 2009 5:48 AM:

    Having been a regular reader of your blog for the last few years, I think the new layout echoes its identity extremely well. Good work Sir! As for the ‘haters,’ I’d love to read one negative comment from someone who leaves their own blog information behind.

    David Higdon on July 30, 2009 9:53 AM:

    Love the new look. Can’t wait to see the store.

    pgayed on August 4, 2009 9:43 PM:


    I have no doubt that you will continue to bring us high quality work, regardless of official endorsements. You deserve to be making some green on this site anyhow — you’ve put in a ton of work, guy.

    Looking forward to the future,

Comments are closed.