The Great European Ascot: Complete Do-It-Yourself Instructions for Americans

Great thing my mom got me at an estate sale, or greatest thing my mom got me at an estate sale?

"Here’s a great new way to tie one on - with the Carre European Ascot Scarf - a silky fashion accessory that ties and knots in diverse ways. The effect? An unlimited scope of sportswear accents, ranging from the classic elegance of the English ascot to the casual insouciance of the French knot. A gamut of individual fashion expressions, decided and defined by your own imagination and a deft flick of your fingers. In a word - elegant. Casual, yet correct. To be worn with a sport shirt, a Leisure Suit or a sport jacket. Masculine flair in pure luxury."

Sierra Trading Post
There are some really good sales right now at Sierra Trading Post. Once you sign up for their DealFlyer newsletter, you’ll be notified of their daily coupons. Lately, they’ve been offering 35% off your whole order, as well as free shipping if you spend more than $100. That gives the following deals:
Derek Rose pajamas: Excellent pajamas available in multiple designs and colors. Starting price is $78. A bit expensive, to be sure, but Derek Rose is one of the better makers out there. 
Falke and Pantherella socks: Two top-tier hosiery manufacturers, though Pantherella’s quality has taken a dive in recent years. Still, you can get over-the-calf wool socks for about $5 right now, which makes this one of the best deals I’ve seen on socks. 
Johnstons of Elgin scarves and throws: Johnstons of Elgin is a 200+ year old manufacturer of woolen and cashmere goods. They’re not as nice as Colombo or Begg, but they’re very good and much more affordable. Johnstons’ cashmere scarves can be had right now for $39, while their lambswool scarves are $13. At those prices, these are a real steal. 
Tretorn sneakers: These aren’t the Nylites that the menswear bloggerotti have been wearing, but I could see this model still working very well for fall. For $45, it’s not bad. They also have other styles for as little as $26. 
Smartwool baselayers: Smartwool makes some of the best garments for cold weather. If you live in a cold climate, it may be wise to get a few of their baselayers and socks before winter arrives. They’re not the most stylish, but since they’re worn under your garments, they’re also not seen. I even recommend wearing them at home to save money on your heating bill. 
Trickers shoes: Trickers are a bit too rounded for my taste, but they’re quite popular among men’s style enthusiasts. Of the ones available at Sierra Trading Post right now, I like this boot the most, and the extra discount brings it down to $316. 
Bill’s Khakis M3 pants: Bill’s Khakis look a bit frumpy online, but I assure you they’re excellent. The M3 is their slimmest model, but it may need some tapering once you get them. That job should run you about $20, but when the chinos themselves cost $52, these are still a great deal.

Sierra Trading Post

There are some really good sales right now at Sierra Trading Post. Once you sign up for their DealFlyer newsletter, you’ll be notified of their daily coupons. Lately, they’ve been offering 35% off your whole order, as well as free shipping if you spend more than $100. That gives the following deals:

  • Derek Rose pajamas: Excellent pajamas available in multiple designs and colors. Starting price is $78. A bit expensive, to be sure, but Derek Rose is one of the better makers out there.
  • Falke and Pantherella socks: Two top-tier hosiery manufacturers, though Pantherella’s quality has taken a dive in recent years. Still, you can get over-the-calf wool socks for about $5 right now, which makes this one of the best deals I’ve seen on socks.
  • Johnstons of Elgin scarves and throws: Johnstons of Elgin is a 200+ year old manufacturer of woolen and cashmere goods. They’re not as nice as Colombo or Begg, but they’re very good and much more affordable. Johnstons’ cashmere scarves can be had right now for $39, while their lambswool scarves are $13. At those prices, these are a real steal.
  • Tretorn sneakers: These aren’t the Nylites that the menswear bloggerotti have been wearing, but I could see this model still working very well for fall. For $45, it’s not bad. They also have other styles for as little as $26.
  • Smartwool baselayers: Smartwool makes some of the best garments for cold weather. If you live in a cold climate, it may be wise to get a few of their baselayers and socks before winter arrives. They’re not the most stylish, but since they’re worn under your garments, they’re also not seen. I even recommend wearing them at home to save money on your heating bill.
  • Trickers shoes: Trickers are a bit too rounded for my taste, but they’re quite popular among men’s style enthusiasts. Of the ones available at Sierra Trading Post right now, I like this boot the most, and the extra discount brings it down to $316. 
  • Bill’s Khakis M3 pants: Bill’s Khakis look a bit frumpy online, but I assure you they’re excellent. The M3 is their slimmest model, but it may need some tapering once you get them. That job should run you about $20, but when the chinos themselves cost $52, these are still a great deal.

Brooks Brothers Friends and Family Sale

Brooks Brothers’ Friends and Family Sale begins this Thursday. Nearly everything in their stores will be discounted by 25%. It’s not the deepest discount of the year, but it is a chance to get basic items - Brooks Brothers’ forte - that otherwise don’t go on sale.

There are a lot of great choices. I like their lambswool Fair Isle sweaterarray of scarves, and waxed driving jacket. Of course, you can get very similar jackets through Barbour, but I like the corduroy mock neck collar on Brooks’ design. If you’re on the market for sport jackets or trousers, check out Brooks’ slimmer lines in the Fitzgerald and Milano cuts (eg. this Fitzgerald corduroy jacket and Milano fit flannel trousers look excellent). Lastly, these chukka boots could work quite well for much of the year, and these dot repp ties are very versatile. Of all the ties on the market, I actually think Brooks’ ties, at least when they’re on sale, offer one of the best price/ quality ratios on the market. 

If you’re thinking about getting something, I recommend going in now and having a sales associate put something on hold for you until the day of the sale. If you can’t make it into a store, check their online store between 12am and 3am EST on Thursday. It usually goes live online then. Both of these tactics are great ways to make sure you get the size that you need. 

Lastly, be aware that you can get an extra 15% discount if you open up a Corporate Card and make your purchase on the card. Not all sales associates will stack these two discounts for you, but I’ve found that most do. 

(Special thanks to a reader named Kevin for notifying us about this sale)

Yesterday, I made a trip out to the Pasadena City College flea market here in Southern California. Above: the spoils from the trip. A small hand-held megaphone advertising the deco-era Los Angeles department store Desmond’s ($10), a silk paisley scarf ($15) and a tiny 1940s silver airplane lapel pin ($5). Not bad for a morning’s idyll.

Yesterday, I made a trip out to the Pasadena City College flea market here in Southern California. Above: the spoils from the trip. A small hand-held megaphone advertising the deco-era Los Angeles department store Desmond’s ($10), a silk paisley scarf ($15) and a tiny 1940s silver airplane lapel pin ($5). Not bad for a morning’s idyll.

J Press Sale

J Press is having a sale right now, with discounts of up to 40% off. 

I think there are some good deals to be had. If you’re on the market for ties, I think their garza fina grenadines and knits, as well regimentals, would make for good buys. I also like their navy attache, wine surcingle belt, and collection of pocket squares. Additionally, if you think you might get the itch to buy a university scarf this fall, you might want to do it now while they’re on sale. 

For things that haven’t been marked down, punch in the code PSJUN11 at checkout to score some savings. 

Sale ends on the 16th. 

Christine Cariati has been close friends with my mother my entire life. When they first met, Christine taught my mother to weave, and I grew up with the sound of a loom in the room next to my bedroom. In the 80s, Christine and a friend ran a hand-woven goods company called Cariati & Wainwright that sold clothes and accessories in extremely high-end boutiques. Eventually, Christine quit weaving to pursue a career as a fine artist - several of her works hang in my home.
Recently, Christine has gone back to weaving, and she was kind enough to send me two scarves she wove from deadstock silk she had in a warehouse. They’re spectacularly beautiful, as you can see even in my lousy photograph above.
Hopefully, we’ll offer a very limited selection of the scarves for sale sometime in the next few months. Each will be hand-woven on a mechanical loom by Christine herself, and we expect a price around $150. I’m really proud we’ll get to share these pieces, which are true heirlooms.

Christine Cariati has been close friends with my mother my entire life. When they first met, Christine taught my mother to weave, and I grew up with the sound of a loom in the room next to my bedroom. In the 80s, Christine and a friend ran a hand-woven goods company called Cariati & Wainwright that sold clothes and accessories in extremely high-end boutiques. Eventually, Christine quit weaving to pursue a career as a fine artist - several of her works hang in my home.

Recently, Christine has gone back to weaving, and she was kind enough to send me two scarves she wove from deadstock silk she had in a warehouse. They’re spectacularly beautiful, as you can see even in my lousy photograph above.

Hopefully, we’ll offer a very limited selection of the scarves for sale sometime in the next few months. Each will be hand-woven on a mechanical loom by Christine herself, and we expect a price around $150. I’m really proud we’ll get to share these pieces, which are true heirlooms.

eBay user Lulabel167 is offering cashmere scarves this year - she lists them as by a “luxury Scottish mill,” but we happen to know they’re by Begg, which is one of the finest “luxury Scottish mills” in existence.  These often go for quite reasonable prices, and the UK-based seller is willing to ship worldwide.  Check out her stock here.

eBay user Lulabel167 is offering cashmere scarves this year - she lists them as by a “luxury Scottish mill,” but we happen to know they’re by Begg, which is one of the finest “luxury Scottish mills” in existence.  These often go for quite reasonable prices, and the UK-based seller is willing to ship worldwide.  Check out her stock here.

It’s On eBay
Drake’s London Angora & Cashmere Scarf
Starts at $23.25, ends Thursday

It’s On eBay

Drake’s London Angora & Cashmere Scarf

Starts at $23.25, ends Thursday

I made something.
A few months ago, my wife and I decided to learn to sew.  Our ambitions, to begin, were modest.  She would maybe make a skirt, or a romper.  I would make a scarf.
Of course, the sewing classes at my local community college were all-female affairs (with the exception of yours truly), and they were dedicated to making skirts.  Luckily, I was able to pick up enough skill that when my mom found us a sewing machine at an estate sale, I achieved my dreams: a scarf.
First, I bought some Harris Tweed yardage on eBay.  The color is tough to see in the photo - it’s sort of a gunmetal gray, with a tinge of blue and flecks of green and blue-green.  Then I headed down to my local fabric superstore (Michael Levine, in downtown LA) for a lining.  I initially intended to go with silk, but was struck by a beautiful linen woven in Italy by Armani.  I’m not a huge Armani fan, myself, but the fabric was undeniable, and had the heft to stand up to the tweed, along with the softness to be next to my tender neck.
I cut the fabric (the scarf is about 6”x70”), pinned it, sewed the edges to bind them, then ran a straight stitch down three and a half sides.  Got my fingers in there, pulled it right side out, and pressed the seams flat with my iron.  Then I closed the hole I’d pulled it through with a bit of Tear Mender, and voila!
Who knows… maybe if you’re lucky I’ll start a side business.

I made something.

A few months ago, my wife and I decided to learn to sew.  Our ambitions, to begin, were modest.  She would maybe make a skirt, or a romper.  I would make a scarf.

Of course, the sewing classes at my local community college were all-female affairs (with the exception of yours truly), and they were dedicated to making skirts.  Luckily, I was able to pick up enough skill that when my mom found us a sewing machine at an estate sale, I achieved my dreams: a scarf.

First, I bought some Harris Tweed yardage on eBay.  The color is tough to see in the photo - it’s sort of a gunmetal gray, with a tinge of blue and flecks of green and blue-green.  Then I headed down to my local fabric superstore (Michael Levine, in downtown LA) for a lining.  I initially intended to go with silk, but was struck by a beautiful linen woven in Italy by Armani.  I’m not a huge Armani fan, myself, but the fabric was undeniable, and had the heft to stand up to the tweed, along with the softness to be next to my tender neck.

I cut the fabric (the scarf is about 6”x70”), pinned it, sewed the edges to bind them, then ran a straight stitch down three and a half sides.  Got my fingers in there, pulled it right side out, and pressed the seams flat with my iron.  Then I closed the hole I’d pulled it through with a bit of Tear Mender, and voila!

Who knows… maybe if you’re lucky I’ll start a side business.

When working with a lathe, always wear a neck scarf.  Always.
(From a beautiful film on the design process at Walter Landor & Associates in the 1960s.)
(Thanks, Conor)

When working with a lathe, always wear a neck scarf.  Always.

(From a beautiful film on the design process at Walter Landor & Associates in the 1960s.)

(Thanks, Conor)