Craftsmanship for the 21st century

On the surface, we seem to be living in a golden age of craftsmanship. Luxury brands are enjoying years of steady growth, hiring and training new artisans and building new factories across the world from Texas to France. Content creators, luxury brands, journalists and influencers sing the praises of craftsmanship or at least mention it …

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Hawaiian shirt fabrics at Fabric Mart. Photo credit: Juhn Maing

Sartorial Honolulu part 2: tropical bespoke

As I noted in Sartorial Honolulu part 1, sartorialism and tropicalism are by no means polar opposites. But pairing the two requires a bit of an effort. Otherwise, if you have your sartorial blinders on, you’d skip the place. The key to finding interesting examples of sartorialism is paying attention to the underlying work that …

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Sleevehead x AuroChronos Festival

I’m pleased to be a media partner with the AuroChronos Festival of independent watch brands. As a matter of transparency, this partnership is a non-monetary affiliation designed to support independent makers and brands. The reality is that we live in a world dominated by corporate brands. The corporatization of brands is here to stay, especially …

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Leather Soul window display - John Lobb shoes

Sartorial Honolulu part 1: can sartorialism & tropicalism mix?

Sartorial is probably not the first word or image that comes to mind for tourists visiting Honolulu or Hawaii. Beaches, swimming and surfing are the more likely associations. Other easy associations would be the savory local island cuisine (poke, plate lunches, shave ice and much more) or the open air shopping at Ala Moana and …

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Ciccio racing shoes. Photo credit: Ciccio Shoes.

Sicilian heritage: Targa Florio & Ciccio Shoes

I first learned about Sicily through its tailoring. There are other more accessible paths to discover Sicily such as its cuisine, wine, literature, history and of course its Mediterranean climate. Yet another avenue is the Targa Florio, one of the world’s earliest sports car racing events when it started in 1906. I recently caught part …

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Just landed in San Francisco and heading to meet our client Ethan. Photo credit: Timothy Archibald

An American in Sicily – what I did after discovering Sicilian tailoring

“For me, clothing is more cultural. It’s about how these things came to be used, designed and created. I’m basically an anthropologist in the supply chain of menswear.” Quoted in Deni Bechard, “The Accidental Maven of Menswear”, Stanford Magazine (July 2019) I learned that this summer’s issue of Stanford Magazine has just been published, featuring …

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Freddy Vandecasteele. Photo credit: Juhn Maing.

An afternoon with shirtmaker Freddy Vandecasteele

Last month I had the great pleasure of reconnecting with shirtmaker Freddy Vandecasteele who recently retired from a 40+ year career as a shirtmaker in Los Angeles. We met in Brussels where he is enjoying his retirement. When I was living in LA about a decade ago, Freddy made the bulk of my dress shirts …

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