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Going Long: The (Busy) Gentleman’s Guide to Gifting

  • Jason Wire

As you’ve recently learned, winning the holidays is not easy. It requires things like good penmanship, moderation and, obviously, a mistletoe state of mind.

But for those of you inclined to go for the haymaker, we’d like to present the holy grail of competitive gift-giving—something we here at Kempt HQ like to call “Going Long.” (Trademark pending.)

Think of Going Long as the ultimate showcase of confidence and thoughtfulness—an Oprah Winfrey-an approach to appeasing the masses. You find one tremendously bold, unquestionably useful yet wholly unexpected piece of property, and you buy one for everyone. That’s it. No gift diversity here.

Done right, your generous persona goes viral, ensuring you invitations, favors and godchildren for years to come. Possibly even a LinkedIn referral. Done wrong, and... well, let’s just say your refrigerator door might be a bit bare next winter.

Thus, we humbly present our suggestions for those of you willing to Go Long this holiday season—in decreasing order of safety (and thusly, increasing order of ambition):»

Mikaela Carlen is Ruining Your Sweater

Early in the Morning: G. Bruce Boyer offers a dissertation on the dressing gown, from its 17th-century origins to the contemporary golden age. [Drake’s London]

The Shop and the Man: Gear Patrol sits down with the gentleman behind Richmond, Virginia’s Need Supply Co. [Gear Patrol]

Game of Cats: The bad news: there’s still no basketball. The good news: the feline-agility-test circuit is really heating up. [NYTimes]

Give ’Em the Palm: Would you like to see a slap fight between Bobby Knight and Mike Krzyzewski? Of course you would. [Sports Illustrated Photos]

The Robe to End All Robes

  • Najib Benouar


Suddenly, unexpectedly, you need a little extra shelter for your morning pilgrimage from your bed to the shower. Some calf-length shelter. And just like that, it’s robe season again.

After examining the options, we’ve managed to find the gold standard of sleeved drapery: this silk-lined satin-piped cashmere model from Brooks Brothers. It’ll set you back more than a suit, but after you’ve spent the morning nibbling toast, sipping orange juice and perusing financial newspapers the rest of the world hasn’t even heard of, you’ll know where the money went.

In the unlikely event you’re not ready to dig quite that deep, you’ll always find adequate shelter from the brisk morning cold in a trusty cotton flannel robe like L.L. Bean’s. There’s also this new offering from Pendleton, but we’re still skeptical on how comforting wool can really be in the morning—let alone any time bare skin is involved.

Get Comfortable


Different clothes celebrate different states of mind, so while a suit may not make you the captain of industry you were hoping for, don’t be surprised if you’re standing a little straighter thanks to the clothes on your back. Of course, if you’re after the opposite effect…there’s always the bathrobe.

This particular model comes from Wings + Horns, and it’s the best celebration of indolence we’ve seen in some time. It was commissioned for the Ace Hotel’s New York branch, but Seattle’s Blackbird managed to get their hands on a few of them for sale. The slanted pockets are a particularly nice touch, for those times when your phone is ringing and you can’t be bothered to reach all the way over to the nightstand.

Sunday morning, here we come.