Black Loafers by Johnston & Murphy, thrifted ~$10
Jacket: W.W. Chan, estate sale $1.50
Shirt: Lands’ End Tailored Fit, clearance $12
Tie: No-name silk rep stripe tie, thrifted .50
Pocket Square: Banana Republic, clearance $8
In honor of the best-and-most-hilariously-named thread on StyleForum, “Show us your Chan”…
mrdannyfactz asked: how do you feel about Zara's oxfords?
I am, for no particular reason, going to assume you mean their shoes and not their shirts…That’s a tough call. Many of their shoes look quite nice on the website, but I’ve found that they look a little cheap in person. If you’re just looking for shoes that you can run into the ground for a season or two, then I think Zara shoes are fine. They’re not, however, ‘high quality’ shoes—they’re designed to be essentially disposable. If you want something that will last you a long time and can be resoled for a longer overall life, you might look for something in the same price range on ebay. Slightly used Allen Edmonds shoes are always available for a good price if you search patiently. For simple oxfords though, older USA-made and Goodyear welted pairs (often NOS) by Dexter, Hanover, Cole Haan, and Johnston & Murphy can be had for a song.
Now for the #menswear answer: Zara shoes suck. They’re made with corrected grain leather and are not Goodyear welted. They are not made by true craftsmen somewhere in the Eurozone. Buy better, buy less. Edward Greens and Crockett & Jones are the only shoes I wear. Anything else gives me athlete’s foot and corns, even if I wear clean socks daily and use Dr. Scholl’s corn cushions. I only smoke one pack of cigarettes a day now, and cut foie out of my diet so I can save up for some MTO Lobbs. Once I have those, I am sure I will no longer even be able to recommend EG or C&J…
Glen Plaid and Stripes. Khakis and Monks.
Pocket Square: Vintage Vera, thrifted $2
Brooks Brothers, Brooks Brothers, and Brooks Brothers.
Go ahead and clash a little.
Hard at work…
Yesterday was, I think, the hottest day of the year so far. I couldn’t stomach the notion of wearing a tie, and wanted to wear a shirt that would keep me cool in the heat. Seersucker is a great fabric for such an occasion, but the contrast cutaway collar on this shirt has made me never wear it without a tie before. I decided I’d go for it, and am quite glad I did.
Though the shirt (by Lands’ End, and purchased on clearance for ~$17) is a bit trendy, in that it’s made of seersucker but also has a contrast collar in a cutaway shape, it is those very disparate and incongruous elements which make it a shirt that dresses down fairly well. I’ll probably wear this shirt several more times this Spring and Summer without any neckwear.
Legendary…one for the annals of thrifting history, or, as I’ve just called it: thriftstory.
The Man Who Thrifted A Ferrari
Who’d have thought you could thrift a Ferrari?
Matthew R. is an inveterate thrifter. He says he works seventy hours a week, and he’s been buying and selling second-hand clothes since 1998. Not long ago, he started a consignment service, Luxeswap, and not only do their auctions often crop up in our eBay picks, but I’ve personally trusted him to consign a number of clothes in the past. He’s one of the best menswear sellers on eBay. But truly: I had no idea.
This week, Matthew bought a Ferrari. With thrift store money.
Here’s how it happened…
Matthew started thrifting in the late nineties, and quickly learned that when he found something good that didn’t fit him, he could sell it on eBay and make a little dough. The first item was an Emporio Armani sportcoat. It sold for fifty bucks. Like most of us, Matthew took the extra money and spent it on clothes and small indulgences.
In 2007, he read a book called One Red Paperclip. It was written by a man, Kyle MacDonald, who traded a paperclip for a pen for a doorknob for a camping stove and on and on for a year until he had traded for a new house. Matthew thought: how could I turn my own little hobby into something special?
So he started a savings account.
His business money went into a business account. His personal money - the money from his own personal purchases - went into the savings account. And year after year, that money grew.
Then, last week, he took the money and bought a Ferrari.
Matthew says: “This car was born of things that nobody else wanted. Things that people discarded. I wanted to be able to say I thrifted a Ferrari. And I did.”
A genuinely remarkable achievement.
Herringbone and Repp Stripe.