Broke and Bespoke

A site meant to inspire penurious sartorialists everywhere... Follow me on Twitter @brokeandbespoke


* Unless otherwise noted, all images and written content are my own. Please credit brokeandbespoke if you use any of said content and link back to brokeandbespoke.tumblr.com
Good deals can be found outside of the thrift shop as well…
Shirt: Uniqlo OCBD (older model), sale $19.90
Sweater: J. Crew Lambswool Fair Isle, clearance ~$40
Scarf: Moon of England Limited Edition Cashmere Houndstooth Scarf, STP ~$30 (these are not as nice, in my opinion, as the Johnston’s of Elgin ones often available at STP for about the same price)
Vest: Lands’ End Wool Blend Down Vest, clearance $50

Good deals can be found outside of the thrift shop as well…

Shirt: Uniqlo OCBD (older model), sale $19.90

Sweater: J. Crew Lambswool Fair Isle, clearance ~$40

Scarf: Moon of England Limited Edition Cashmere Houndstooth Scarf, STP ~$30 (these are not as nice, in my opinion, as the Johnston’s of Elgin ones often available at STP for about the same price)

Vest: Lands’ End Wool Blend Down Vest, clearance $50

Winter Greens and Browns
Jacket: Borrelli, thrifted $50
Shirt: PRL cotton flannel, free
Scarf: Moon of England, STP $12
Pocket Square: Kent Wang, gift

Winter Greens and Browns

Jacket: Borrelli, thrifted $50

Shirt: PRL cotton flannel, free

Scarf: Moon of England, STP $12

Pocket Square: Kent Wang, gift

If You’re Hard Pressed for Gift Ideas…
You can’t go wrong with a plaid or tartan scarf. Cashmere if you’re feeling flush, lambswool if you’re on a budget. They’re both great, and the recipient is sure to be pleased either way.
Clearly, I love scarves. They’re an excellent way to add some color to an otherwise drab or conservative outfit, and they’re extraordinarily pragmatic in so far as keeping your neck warm is essential for keeping one’s core temperature well-regulated in cold weather.
The majority of the scarves pictured above were purchased over the years at Sierra Trading Post, one of my absolute favorite places to buy new things on deep discount. You can always count on them to have Johnston’s of Elgin (Made in Scotland) cashmere scarves in stock (though right now there aren’t a ton of available patterns), as well as lambswool ones. Another brand worth checking out on STP is Moon of England, especially for their lambswool tartan scarves.  Although they’re a little on the short side (50”), they keep one quite toasty and are eminently affordable ($15 w/o any additional discounts). And though I don’t own one, the Moon of England heathered cashmere scarf looks quite nice, and is currently even more affordable than the Johnston’s of Elgin ones.
Additionally, if you sign up for STP’s ‘Deal Flyer’ you are bound to get some nice discount codes, which will bring the prices for these scarves down even further.

If You’re Hard Pressed for Gift Ideas…

You can’t go wrong with a plaid or tartan scarf. Cashmere if you’re feeling flush, lambswool if you’re on a budget. They’re both great, and the recipient is sure to be pleased either way.

Clearly, I love scarves. They’re an excellent way to add some color to an otherwise drab or conservative outfit, and they’re extraordinarily pragmatic in so far as keeping your neck warm is essential for keeping one’s core temperature well-regulated in cold weather.

The majority of the scarves pictured above were purchased over the years at Sierra Trading Post, one of my absolute favorite places to buy new things on deep discount. You can always count on them to have Johnston’s of Elgin (Made in Scotland) cashmere scarves in stock (though right now there aren’t a ton of available patterns), as well as lambswool ones. Another brand worth checking out on STP is Moon of England, especially for their lambswool tartan scarves.  Although they’re a little on the short side (50”), they keep one quite toasty and are eminently affordable ($15 w/o any additional discounts). And though I don’t own one, the Moon of England heathered cashmere scarf looks quite nice, and is currently even more affordable than the Johnston’s of Elgin ones.

Additionally, if you sign up for STP’s ‘Deal Flyer’ you are bound to get some nice discount codes, which will bring the prices for these scarves down even further.

Horsehide and Tweed
Sometimes it’s hard to beat a broken-in leather jacket for a casual fit on a cold day. Especially a horsehide one. It ages so beautifully, and weathers rain much better than cowhide.
As for the hat, I bought it years ago on crazy clearance at Sierra Trading Post. It’s made in Scotland by a company called Failsworth, and if I’m reading the labels correctly the tweed pattern is called ‘Dumfries.’ I can’t remember the exact price but I know it was under $10, and I regret not buying more of them when I had the chance.

Horsehide and Tweed

Sometimes it’s hard to beat a broken-in leather jacket for a casual fit on a cold day. Especially a horsehide one. It ages so beautifully, and weathers rain much better than cowhide.

As for the hat, I bought it years ago on crazy clearance at Sierra Trading Post. It’s made in Scotland by a company called Failsworth, and if I’m reading the labels correctly the tweed pattern is called ‘Dumfries.’ I can’t remember the exact price but I know it was under $10, and I regret not buying more of them when I had the chance.

Layers

Shoes: Andrew Lock double monks, review here

Pants: Dockers Alpha Khaki corduroys, ~$35

Scarf: Johnston’s of Elgin cashmere tartan, Sierra Trading Post ~$35

The Gloverall Duffle Coat

I almost froze to death last night watching the Bears’ inglorious stomping by the (much hated) Ducks. Having managed to teeter back from the brink of hypothermia by this morning, I thought it might be worth posting about one of my favorite and warmest winter jackets, the Gloverall Duffle Coat, which I wish I’d had the foresight to wear last night.

The Gloverall Duffle Coat is arguably the original duffle coat, and the label says as much. Much like the pea coat, the duffle was originally designed to keep military men warm at sea. Though the duffle coat has enjoyed a resurgence in popularity over the past couple of years, it is, like the pea coat, a timeless classic. And unlike the pea coat, the duffle coat is not as ubiquitous, and even has the added functionality of a hood to keep out cold winds and protect your delicately coiffured side part from the rain, hail, sleet, and snow. The longer length of a duffle coat relative to a pea coat also makes it, in my opinion, a better design for truly cold climes.

Jesse Thorn of PutThisOn! recently wrote an informative post about what to buy at Sierra Trading Post (STP), and I might add Gloverall duffle coats to that list. Although there are, oddly, none in stock right now, I have watched them in consistent and plentiful supply over the last decade or so and have little reason to doubt they’ll get more in stock. And while the Gloverall Duffle Coat retails for around $600, they can be purchased for $100-$150 at STP at least once or twice a year when clearance prices and discount codes align perfectly. I bought mine around 2005 for $85 via an extraordinarily serendipitous sale/coupon stacking moment, and I wouldn’t be surprised if that same price could be had if you’re patient and diligent in your stalking of the STP sales.

And, as always, if you don’t mind buying used and or vintage, Gloverall Duffle Coats are in plentiful supply for great prices on ebay and probably Etsy as well. If you live in a place that has harsh winters, there may even be a few in your local thrifts.

#mensroomwear 11/9/12

Scarf: Johnston’s of Elgin cashmere, Sierra Trading Post ~$35

Yesterday’s Scarf and other Scarf Deals…
I own a lot of scarves, and most of those are either cashmere or lambswool winter scarves. I love the combination of a soft hand and substantial warmth that only cashmere can provide, but they are generally prohibitively expensive. The Barbour cashmere scarf pictured above likely retailed in something like the $150-200 range, but I picked it up four or five years ago from Sierra Trading Post (STP) for about $35. I never pay more than $40 for a cashmere scarf, and in order to do so I troll STP a lot. 
Every year they have tons of cashmere scarves by Johnston’s of Elgin, which are quite nice, and they sell for ~$70 or so. Sign up for STP’s ‘Deal Flyer’ email alerts and you will frequently receive coupon codes which, when combined with sale prices, can bring the scarves down to about $30, which is as cheap as I’ve ever seen them and I’ve been watching them for almost a decade.
Lambswool scarves by Johnston’s of Elgin (currently $30) and Moon of England (currently $15) can often be had for as low as $12 if you stack coupon codes and clearance sales wisely. The current selection is quite varied and nice, and should be able to fulfill any and all F/W scarf needs.

Yesterday’s Scarf and other Scarf Deals…

I own a lot of scarves, and most of those are either cashmere or lambswool winter scarves. I love the combination of a soft hand and substantial warmth that only cashmere can provide, but they are generally prohibitively expensive. The Barbour cashmere scarf pictured above likely retailed in something like the $150-200 range, but I picked it up four or five years ago from Sierra Trading Post (STP) for about $35. I never pay more than $40 for a cashmere scarf, and in order to do so I troll STP a lot. 

Every year they have tons of cashmere scarves by Johnston’s of Elgin, which are quite nice, and they sell for ~$70 or so. Sign up for STP’s ‘Deal Flyer’ email alerts and you will frequently receive coupon codes which, when combined with sale prices, can bring the scarves down to about $30, which is as cheap as I’ve ever seen them and I’ve been watching them for almost a decade.

Lambswool scarves by Johnston’s of Elgin (currently $30) and Moon of England (currently $15) can often be had for as low as $12 if you stack coupon codes and clearance sales wisely. The current selection is quite varied and nice, and should be able to fulfill any and all F/W scarf needs.

This post is part of an effort to diversify my content, and not only have pictures of the clothes I’m wearing. I don’t want to fall into the trap of reblogging products that have already been widely circulated around #menswear—especially if they’re prohibitively priced for the majority of us who will probably never be able to afford a kit by the likes of Kiton, Isaia, RLPL, Brioni, Belvest, John Lobb, St. Crsipin, etc. I love looking at well-turned out and stylish dudes as much as the next guy, but I can only take so much of someone wearing an outfit that literally costs more than my car, monthly rent, and total bills and expenses combined. As far as I’m concerned, if someone spends between $5-8K on a single outfit, they’d better look amazing!

While I understand the inherently aspirational nature of #menswear, a dose of pragmatism can, I hope, be of some use as well. I’m going to try to post some links to deals I’ve come across on the interweb or in stores, and pass them along to you should you be interested in acquiring clothes that I myself would love to own, and at price points I would consider fair. I apologize in advance if this is presumptuous…But my hope is that there are enough of you out there now who like the way that I dress, and would enjoy being led towards some deals for the same or similar items.

These won’t be thrifted items though, mostly just things that have gone on deep enough sale that I would consider buying them. I will, from time to time, also post some things that I hope some of you may find affordable, but that for whatever reasons don’t fall within my budget at the moment. Like these amazing striped Pantherella socks on Sierra Trading Post. With a coupon code, you could probably get these for about $10 a pop. A deal to be sure, but I usually try to spend less than $5 on socks. Such may not be the case for you.

The original reason for this post was to share a sale going on right now at Brooks Brothers (it’s been on for some time, and may end soon). I felt compelled to write this post because I’m currently sitting in my apartment awaiting the FedEx delivery of two pairs of Brooks Brothers Slim Fit 5-Pocket Garment Dyed Stretch Chinos. If you use the code “reg1x” you can get an additional $10 off an order of $50 or more, and the pants are ~$35, which is about as cheap as they usually get. My understanding is that there are many covetable items on sale right now on the BB website, so reaching $50 shouldn’t be too tough.

I own a pair of these pants in a light grey, and they’re a great staple. Casual enough to be worn as a jean, and can do the work of being dressed up with a nice sport coat. See top photo of me wearing a pair in the latter configuration.

Taken with instagram
I love scarves. And it’s another chilly day here, so I broke out the big guns. This one is extra-warm, as it’s both wide and long. Once again, this was purchased on epic clearance a few years back at Sierra Trading Post, and I used an extra 35% off coupon code. I believe it was around $25. 

Taken with instagram

I love scarves. And it’s another chilly day here, so I broke out the big guns. This one is extra-warm, as it’s both wide and long. Once again, this was purchased on epic clearance a few years back at Sierra Trading Post, and I used an extra 35% off coupon code. I believe it was around $25. 

One of my faves…

One of my faves…

Sierra Trading Post. $13. No. Joke.

Sierra Trading Post. $13. No. Joke.

Jacket: Beijing bespoke, from my 2006 trip, $40. For whatever reason, this corduroy jacket was made differently from the green tweed jacket I had made at the same time, which is to say it has softer shoulders, a nice roll to the lapel, and a floating canvas rather than a fused one.
Scarf: Johnston’s of Elgin lambswool, Made in Scotland, ~$13, STP
Pocket Square: piece of scrap cotton tartan fabric from a local fabric shop’s free scrap box, .00

Jacket: Beijing bespoke, from my 2006 trip, $40. For whatever reason, this corduroy jacket was made differently from the green tweed jacket I had made at the same time, which is to say it has softer shoulders, a nice roll to the lapel, and a floating canvas rather than a fused one.

Scarf: Johnston’s of Elgin lambswool, Made in Scotland, ~$13, STP

Pocket Square: piece of scrap cotton tartan fabric from a local fabric shop’s free scrap box, .00


Here’s today’s work outfit. 
Jacket: Brown wool w/ navy and orange windowpaning, my secret Beijing tailor (more on this at a later date), $60
Scarf: Lyle and Scott cashmere tartan (can’t remember what clan), made in Scotland, STP ~$20
Shirt: Beijing bespoke, $12
Tie: Robert Talbott rep tie, thrifted $2
Pocket Square: Nordstrom Rack, $8

Here’s today’s work outfit. 

Jacket: Brown wool w/ navy and orange windowpaning, my secret Beijing tailor (more on this at a later date), $60

Scarf: Lyle and Scott cashmere tartan (can’t remember what clan), made in Scotland, STP ~$20

Shirt: Beijing bespoke, $12

Tie: Robert Talbott rep tie, thrifted $2

Pocket Square: Nordstrom Rack, $8