world of men's style / fashion / grooming

An UrbanDaddy Publication

The Buy Line: $300 Benchgrade Shoes

  • Kempt Staff

060214_Grenson_Marcel-Tassel-Loafer As you may recall, we introduced “the buy line” a couple weeks ago with the new breed of $500 suit.

And now we’re moving on to another menswear staple that has become more attainable and readily available lately: benchgrade shoes. While it’s a loosely defined term, depending on which shoemaker you ask, it’s generally accepted that benchgrade means you're getting welted soles, shoes made in smaller batches and hand-finishing during some if not all stages of construction--while not necessarily made-to-order or custom. And we’ve been noticing that the going rate for a quality budget-conscious pair has settled right around $300.

Naturally, you could spend much more, but here are your best options for about three large ones...»

The Weekend Sales Report Card

  • Kempt Staff


We’ve filtered through all of the online sale noise and graded your best options out there, should you feel inclined to do any menswear browsing this weekend...

For the Exclusive: For the next 48 hours, Bench & Loom is giving Kempt readers an exclusive 25% off when checking out with the code UD25. Discount: A Sizes Available: A Selection: A+

For the Southern Kinship: Alabama shop Lyonstate is giving friends and family 20% off with the code FALL20. Discount: B+ Sizes Available: A Selection: A

For the Basics: East Dane is knocking 25% off just about everything, with the code INTHEFAMILY25. Discount: B+ Sizes Available: A Selection: B+

More of the good stuff on sale from favorites like Grenson, Billy Reid and others, after the jump.»

Get Your Grenson, 30% Off

  • Kempt Staff

We thought we’d help you start off 2013 on the right foot—by putting your feet in some smart shoes from legendary British shoemakers, Grenson.

And, fortuitously, our comrades in style over at UrbanDaddy Perks have a handsome selection of Grenson shoes for 30% off. There are boots, wingtips, the perfect pair of starter-double-monks and some suede for when the snow comes off the ground.

We’re already confident in predicting this big trend in 2013: wearing shoes.

The Three Kinds of Boot

Bootspic via Ethan Desu

It’s a safe bet you’ll be kicking through some leaves in the near future, and you’re going to want to be dressed for it.

So we thought we’d break down the vagaries of rugged footwear into three distinct categories. Each one has its own brands and its own rules—from the rugged Red Wing to the gentlemanly cordovan equivalent—and we’ve got a favorite in each category.

Ladies and gentlemen...the three types of boot»

The Designer’s Guide to Grenson

Tim Little of Grenson

One of the perks of the blogging life is that we occasionally get to sit down with brilliant designers. Now is one of those times.

The gentleman in question is Tim Little, the Creative Director at Grenson, a mastermind of broguing who happens to have a few exclusive vibram-soled items available exclusively from our friends at UrbanDaddy Perks. We sat down with Mr. Little to talk boots, heritage, and the intersection of British and American workwear.

What’s your philosophy for designing these boots?We try to take the essence of what the company is—the heritage, the history, everything we're good at—and make that relevant for today. Everything comes from a very long line of what we¹ve done over the years. We use all the same styling from the past 100 years of Grenson, but we updated it, changed the materials slightly, to bring it up to date.

Hear more from Mr. Little...»

Karl Lagerfeld’s Pirelli Calendar is Surprisingly Tasteful

Horsemen: A history of the unlikely love affair between Ralph Lauren and 90s hip-hop. [XXL]

Shoe Lust: Grenson’s online shop opens for business. UK pricing and tasteful broguing abound. [Sartorially Inclined]

We Assume He’s Well-Dressed: A peek into a newly minted archetype: the gentleman hacker. Basically the Scarlet Pimpernel with an iPhone. [TechCrunch]

Internet Rules Everything Around Me: And just because it’s Friday: a semi-satirical guide to becoming fabulously wealthy on the internet. Hey, we’ll give it a shot… [Fast Company]

The Elusive Boot


If you direct your attention to the column on the left (and maybe down a little bit), you might notice a brand new set of must-haves dropped in for fall, with this Italian Army boot from Grenson leading the charge.

Sadly, the shop where we found it has already sold out of the boots, but after a little digging, we’ve found a place where you can preorder from the next batch. Anyone who’s curious can place a special order with Black Dog Showroom by email or at 212-956-1425. It should be worth the trouble.



On the off-chance you’d gotten tired of American, British and Canadian heritage brand revivals, Grenson has a new trick for you. This waxed canvas and leather boot (spotted at the recent Compass Show) is modeled off Italian infantry boots circa World War One. That means they’re a lot lighter than your average American steelworker boot, and almost as tough. Think of it as a loose translation.