You’ve probably already switched out your leather watch strap for a ribbon one on your wrist—and the same logic applies to your waist.
Which means ditching the thick leather belt for something breezier. There are plenty of options out there—from the surcingle to the Southern Hemisphere favorite faja—so we took the liberty of rounding up the best on the market this season.
The finest sweaters were born out of cultural necessity: the fisherman sweaters of the Fair Isles, the hieroglyphic-like knit Cowichan sweaters, J.Press Shaggy Dogs...
And if you were to combine them all into one sweater, you’d get something close to the Andean alpaca sweater. Coincidentally, this new collection of Bolivian alpaca sweaters from Industry of All Nations has some especially handsome examples of the 3,000-year-old craft. Here’s what else you need to know.
The Story: The gents at Industry of All Nations have traveled the world, seeking out small factories and co-ops of local artisans making quality wares—from espadrilles in South America to jeans in India. Their latest discovery was this small knitting collective in Bolivia that’s making authentic alpaca sweaters the same way they’ve been doing it for centuries—except with an updated fit and exclusive color patterns—while giving back to their community.
Who to Channel: A turn-of-the-century backpacker, hiking up Machu Picchu; a worldly philanthropist with a penchant for hypoallergenic wool; Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid.
When to Wear It: Consider this the holiday sweater you can wear year-round (as long as it’s cold enough outside).
Degree of Difficulty: With such a versatile piece, there should be little to no difficulty subbing this in any sweater-related situation—over an oxford, under a blazer, with jeans, with trousers. Just go for it.
These days, we’re pretty much living on linen pants and camp shirts these days. And since that doesn’t leave much room for thick leather belts, we’ve had to get creative with our trouser support.
Our solution of choice so far is Industry of All Nations’ Faja, a strap of woven cotton Argentine gentlemen have been using to hold up their trousers for ages. It’s light, casual, and a much-needed breath of Southern Hemisphere style. But since there’s no buckle, first you’ll have to figure out how to tie it.
Industry of All Nations is mostly known for their fair-trade espadrilles, but they’ve spent 2010 cooking up something a good deal more exciting. Next week, they'll be bringing a batch of Indian artisanal denim to Ron Herman at Fred Segal. We’re not sure if it’s the local dyeing process, their rickety loom or the notable absence of deep indigo, but it comes out looking softer than anything you'd see out of Japan. And the factory’s certainly unlike anything we’ve seen stateside. Check it out after the jump: