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An UrbanDaddy Publication

A Head Start on Your Summer Kicks

  • Kempt Staff


You might recall that about a week ago we broke the good news of Todd Snyder’s latest collaboration with SeaVees—resulting in the finest city-to-beach footwear you’ll find all summer.

Now we’ve got even better news: our comrades-in-style over at UrbanDaddy Perks are giving you essentially 30% off anything in the SeaVees webshop (including the aforementioned collaboration).

The Snyder stuff is decidedly more #menswear, with its Japanese twill and herringbone patterns, but there’s plenty more to like from the surfer-y shoemakers—including some beach-faded plimsolls, rubber-soled suede mocs and Baja-striped slip-ons.

Get a closer look at our favorites after the jump.»

Stat Sheet: Blue Blue Woven Herringbone Vest

Herringbone Vest

Ah, spring. It has a special way of keeping us guessing.

Near-freezing in the morning. Up to the high 50s by lunch. And then right back down to nippy, just in time for the evening commute.

Luckily, this hand-dyed herringbone down vest by Blue Blue Japan that’s just made the transpacific voyage to SF’s Unionmade is one of the better solutions. Lacking that synthetic sheen that so often plagues quilted vests, it’ll prove a handsome weapon in your arsenal to stave off that early-spring chill. Here’s what else you need to know.

The Story: Blue Blue, a Japanese brand founded in 1990 on the love of indigo and denim craftsmanship, continues their Japanese-interpreted Americana streak by using “natural materials and natural [blue] dyes that are related with traditional Japanese aesthetics and the beautiful four seasons of Japan.” In this case, those natural materials are cotton, but Blue Blue has been known to dabble with “rice-paper yarn” (the mere concept of which leaves us speechless).

Who to Channel: Robert Redford surveying the beauty of his Utah estate with his morning coffee; David Beckham walking the streets of London, avoiding puddles and paparazzi; a stylish urban lumberjack in need of brachial mobility.

When to Wear It: An early-spring day when the temperature is such that your overcoat seems like overkill, but wearing your blazer au naturel would leave you a bit too exposed to the wind.

Degree of Difficulty: Easier than you might think. If it’s warm enough, the down filling should handily fulfill all of your outerwear needs. If you need to add a layer of removable warmth to your cottony spring blazer, though, you could up the degree of difficulty by either wearing it like a waistcoat or going full Wooster and just watching as the flashbulbs go crazy.

A few moments of inspiration after the jump.»

Edita Vilkeviciute Is Ready for the Ball

  • Kempt Staff

My Tie: Some well-deserved love for the herringbone tie—with some solid options, to boot. [Put This On]

Snow Business: Recounting the haunting tale of an avalanche in Washington—replete with impressive embedded GIFs of the snow and Doppler radar. [NY Times]

Another Look: Slate rounds up their top 10 most viral photos of 2012. [Slate]

Sheer Malice: A doctor diagnoses the injuries sustained by the “Wet Bandits” in a holiday film that just barely missed our list, Home Alone. [The Week]

Clark Gable’s Jacket Goes Up for Auction

If yesterday’s icon gave you a yen for classic Clark Gable style, we’ve got good news.

This weekend, Gable’s riding jacket from Gone with the Wind goes up for auction, and for a specimen of 80-year-old style (masquerading as a specimen of 150-year-old style), it’s remarkably on point. The herringbone hasn’t aged a day, and the long tails aren’t that different from the style Monitaly’s been mining in recent collections.

Naturally, it looks best while you’re riding a horse...but a Vespa should do in a pinch.

Welcoming the Fall/Winter Tie

You may have noticed a certain shift in neckwear over the past few weeks, with shantung and linen ties giving way to herringbone wools and rough flannels. It’s one of our favorite seasonal shifts, and the source of some of the best stuff in our closet. So we thought we’d take a moment to recognize the bucolic charm of the fall/winter tie... and highlight a few of our favorite specimens below.

Eight of our favorite cold-weather ties...»

The Kempt Guide to the Winter Coat

via Mighty Sword

You can take or leave most of the style advice we dole out. As cool as they are, you don’t need a checked blazer. You don’t need an advice-giving pen. But if you’re living anywhere that sees snow on a regular basis, you’re going to need a winter coat—and you’re going to be living with whichever one you choose for quite a while.

So choose wisely.

And to help you survey the territory, we’ve broken the world’s winter coats into three easy categories and singled out the best items in each one—starting with the most classic item in the bunch, the overcoat...

The three kinds of coat that matter...»

The Fall Jacket

The perfect fall blazer is a beautiful thing. Pick up the right one, and it’ll be the most versatile item in your closet through to December—equally at home with denim and wool, wingtips and sneakers. As for finding the right one, we’d opt for an outfit that’s either very old or very good at faking it…

For instance, Southwick—a New England shop that’s been stitching together made-to-measure jackets since the 20s.

And since Jack Spade just drafted them for a mini-collection devoted entirely to blusterproof suiting, you won’t have to bother with the measuring tape. The full collection includes camelhair topcoats and hopsack blazers, but the prize is this wool herringbone jacket—a prime example of one of the best fall pieces out there.

Now all you need is a scarf and a pile of leaves to walk through.

Sophia Loren Is Scowling at the Beach

Sofia Lorenvia WBE

Rounding Up: A thorough roundup of the season’s wool pants. Our money’s on the Rugger herringbone…as soon as it’s on sale. [Valet]

Get Quilted: Nic from the Bengal Stripe runs down his favorite trends, including old-man ties and quilted jackets. A fine crop. [Details]

Baseball Gloves and Red Wings: A tour of NothernGRADE, Minneapolis’ own pop up flea. Taylor Stitch makes a pretty great showing. [The Midwest Style]

The Faces of Beer: In case you were wondering, Germans get pretty sloppy at Oktoberfest. Here are the photos to prove it. [The Atlantic]

The Herringbone Pant


Billy Reid just kicked off his fall/winter sale and, perhaps predictably, we’re headed straight for the thickest pair of pants he’s got.

In this case, it’s the autumnal classic known as the herringbone pant. (Take a closer look here.) It’s the lower-body equivalent of the tweed jacket: a rugged, woodsy take on an essentially formal item. That also means it’s thick enough to light a match on—and more importantly, stand up as one of the toughest non-denim trousers in your arsenal.

There’s a matching suit and waistcoat in the wings if you decide to double down. But by our lights you’re better off just pairing it with flannel and boots and comporting yourself in as rustic a manner as possible.

Notes from Abroad


The second in our ongoing series on Tom Ford’s Italian jaunt, this herringbone silk jacket takes things in a new direction.

The broad, curvy peak lapels give it the playful feel we’re used to from Mr. Ford, but it’s flashy in a whole new way. The silk is the kind of excess he usually chases, but combined with the vertical herringbone, it has a sense of texture we’ve never quite seen before. It’s the kind of item that looks a little different every time you see it.

Not unlike the man himself…