We feel extremely fortunate to have sponsors who support our work, so twice a month, we like to give them a special shoutout. Doing so allows us to recognize them for their support, as well as update readers on our sponsors’ latest happenings.
As millions of Americans are adjusting to a near-constant life at home, many are trying to figure out how they should dress for their environment. Some are finding comfort in getting out of their pajamas, at the very least, in the morning. Others need to find ways to look presentable for Zoom conferences. If you’re looking for ideas, Proper Cloth has a new page up this morning on how you can look your best on camera. “Take a second look at your video conference background and make sure it’s clean and minimal,” they write. “Try to avoid strong lights directly in view as they can throw your computers video cam.” You can check out the new feature on their website.
Long-time readers know Chipp supplies the most affordable grenadine neckties. They source their silks from the same Italian mills as top-end brands, but their ties start at a much more affordable $45 (grenadines are $60 and, like everything Chipp sells, made in New York City). Paul Winston, the shop’s owner, tells me he can’t imagine charging much more because he remembers what neckties used to cost fifty years ago, back when his family’s business dressed men such as President John F. Kennedy, Andy Warhol, and Joe DiMaggio.
If you’re looking for your first grenadine, consider three colors: black, some sort of dark blue, and silver. Black can look severe in certain contexts, which is why it’s often not recommended for suits or socks, but the color manages to be neutral for grenadines and knit ties. You can wear a black grenadine with navy suits, tobacco linen suits, and brown tweeds. Dark blue, either in a shade matching your navy suits or one shade lighter, is equally versatile (a dark blue tie can also be a good way to visually anchor a light-colored sport coat, which could otherwise float away from you). Lastly, silver grenadines are for guys who only wear ties on special occasions — weddings, fancy parties, and other formal gatherings. Silver ties look less like office-clothes than their dark blue counterparts, and the textured grenadine weave here keeps these from looking cheap and shiny.
For years, Dapper Classics have been tinkering with their machines and developing a better model that would complement the rest of their dress sock line. The term no-show, of course, refers to how the sock sits low on the foot, which makes them ideal with slip-on shoes such as loafers. By wearing a sock, you get a bit more comfort and protection than if you were to go sockless. But no-show socks are notorious for slipping off the heel. Dapper Classics’ are made with an internal gripping material, as well as a hand-linked toe, which makes them like the invisible version of a high-end dress sock. Dapper Classics is currently offering six options — three in cotton and three in wool. As with all their socks, Dapper Classics knitted these right here in the USA at a third-generation mill.
Rowing Blazers has started producing masks in its workshop in Manhattan’s Garment District, using leftover scraps of blazer, suiting, and shirt fabric. “Since the magnitude of this global crisis started to become clear, we’ve been doing everything we can both to protect our workers and our own small business, and to give back to those in need and those on the frontlines helping to fight the pandemic,” says Rowing Blazers founder and former national team oarsman Jack Carlson. “We’ve wanted to make masks for several weeks now, but logistical, health and safety considerations prevented us from doing so until now. So instead we made a donation to Save The Children, and earlier this week we joined Brands x Better — a coalition of brands united in an effort to give back to those affected by COVID-19 (now through May 1, we’re donating 10% of proceeds from all online orders to Direct Relief). But making these masks is the most exciting step we’ve been able to take. We are donating some directly to workers at NYC’s Food Bank, and the rest are available on our site now, either to purchase or donate.”
Rowing Blazers has undertaken other efforts to upcycle scraps of unused fabric in the past — using small pieces of “wastage” that would normally be thrown away after a production run to produce its American-made “End-of-the-Day” rugby shirt program. “I’ve always been a big advocate of using the leftover scraps of fabric from anything we make,” says Carlson. “As someone who came into this industry from a completely different world (sport and academia), I was horrified to see how much waste the industry produces. So as soon as we had the green light to start making masks, I knew exactly what we were going to do.”
Rowing Blazers’ masks are made in New York and available in madras patchwork, Gordon and Black Watch tartan, Italian wide wale corduroy, Japanese Oxford shirting, club and rugby stripes woven in England, seersucker, and the brand’s signature croquet stripe. They’ll be available on their site Thursday, April 23rd.
Working from home doesn’t afford many opportunities to wear your favorite jackets and suits, but it can be a time to wear fragrances. After all, many men are hesitant to wear a fragrance because they’re worried about offending work colleagues (no issue with that at home, as your cat can’t protest — at least too much). But smelling something nice can be a deeply comforting experience. Many scents are calming and relaxing, or at times even make you mentally travel to a different place.
Our friends at LuxeSwap just put up dozens of new fragrances on their webstore, which are heavily discounted from retail. The good thing about buying from LuxeSwap is that you know these aren’t fakes, as the company only sources their inventory from reputable places. However, you may need to do some background work. If you’re wondering how a fragrance smells, you can purchase samples through The Perfumed Court or Surrender to Chance. Basenotes is an excellent fragrance forum, and you can find note breakdowns at Fragrantica. Dig around and see what you like. Who knows, you may find your new favorite fragrance.