The Big Announcement – HODINKEE
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The Big Announcement – HODINKEE

Well, here is the big announcement: I have signed on as associate editor at HODINKEE. Click through to read more about HODINKEE’s relaunch, what you can expect to see from me over there, and what the future looks like for Simply Refined.

Chris Despos – World Class Tailor in Chicago

Chris Despos – World Class Tailor in Chicago

Posted by: on Nov 7, 2011 | 4 Comments

On Chicago’s Oak Street, in an unassuming third-floor office space nestled in amongst the usual-suspect brands, you’ll find Chris Despos.  There are no racks or cases of “luxury” products.  Just bolts of cloth, spools of thread, and drawers of buttons.  And with these building blocks, Despos is making some of the finest tailored clothing in the country.

Chester Jefferies – A Look at Family Craft

Chester Jefferies – A Look at Family Craft

Posted by: on Nov 4, 2011 | One Comment

Real cottage craft is a tough thing to find these days.  Even most small brands are being forced by technology, the economy, and customers’ demands to mechanize and expand these days.  But Chester Jefferies, a small custom glove maker if Britain is keeping things close to home.

Paul Stuart Holiday – Goodies Galore

Paul Stuart Holiday – Goodies Galore

Posted by: on Nov 2, 2011 | No Comments

I wrote a few weeks ago about the fantastic Ben Silver catalogs.  I’ll admit that I also get giddy waiting for the new Paul Stuart catalogs to drop.  This year’s Holiday catalog leans towards the fanciful, but it’s still full of those eminently-wearable superlatives we all expect.

Let’s Talk About Last

Let’s Talk About Last

Posted by: on Oct 31, 2011 | 2 Comments

When talking about shoes, the first two things that usual come up are styling and materials.  A double monkstrap in brown scotch grain leather, or a Norwegian split toe in snuff suede for example.  But let’s not forget what might be the most important aspect of a shoe: the last.

Escorial – A Flock All Their Own

Escorial – A Flock All Their Own

Posted by: on Oct 28, 2011 | One Comment

Not all wools are created equal.  Such is the, um, nature, of natural materials.  Different sheep give different wool and people have been trying for centuries to get the best off our fuzzy little friends.  Interbreeding and dietary changes are commonplace.  But the Escorial flocks have remained nearly untouched for hundreds of years.