Put This On wouldn’t be possible without the support of our sponsors. So, twice a month, we like to give them a special shoutout. Doing so allows us to thank them for their support and update readers on our sponsors’ special happenings.
Summer is a brutal time for dressing. When it’s too hot for layering, you have to make the most of what you’re wearing. Our sponsor Proper Cloth has a near-infinite selection of comfortable shirtings rendered in cheerful plaids and unique prints, which can add visual interest to simple outfits. Since their shirts are available for custom order at prices starting at $79, you can get them cut and sewn according to your measurements and made in any style — popovers, snap-button Westerns, button-down collars, and the like.
The company also has unique cotton-Tencel blends for their polos. The fabric is a little more refined than the pique cotton polos you can find at your local mall, and the fabric’s reverse side is kitten soft, thanks to that Tencel blend. You can wear them with Proper Cloth’s custom jeans, which are available in various washes. Remember that Proper Cloth offers a free remake on all first-time orders, which helps you nail down the fit. Additionally, fabric swatches are available for just $1 (we always recommend ordering swatches before you actually order a shirt, as this allows you to get a better sense of whether you like the fabric in hand). However, that $1 gets banked away as store credit. This means that, if you end up ordering a shirt, the swatch service is essentially free.
For being such a basic garment, the t-shirt represents so much of our cultural history. It’s just four panels with a ribbed neck, but within such a simple construction, you can see the shifts in post-war power and the spread of American culture. Next to Levi’s 501s and Brooks Brothers button-downs, no piece of clothing is more quintessentially American or even prevalent in the world.
T-shirts were never meant to be worn as outer garments, but they became so in much the same way that chambray shirts, denim jeans, and other working-class staples entered our day-to-day wardrobes. In the early-20th century, the US Navy picked up the tee to be part of their uniform. They chose white tees because they were cheaper to manufacture, as the yarns didn’t have to be dyed, and the pristine color helped promote a sense of self-discipline and cleanliness amongst their sailors. Just before the US entered the Second World War, a Sears, Roebuck & Co. advertisement declared: “You needn’t be in the army to have your own personal t-shirt,” suggesting that the garment carried a certain sense of heroism and machismo. Those associations lifted the tee out of people’s underwear drawers and put them in their closets. Style icons such as Marlon Brando, James Dean, and Elvis also helped add a dash of rebel allure.
Next week, Wolf vs. Goat is getting a large shipment of summer-ready tees, which will add to the company’s already available online stock. The new shipment includes t-shirts made from various fabrics, including heavyweight 325g cotton, lighter weight 165g organic cotton, and a unique 165g fabric made from a 50/50 blend of cotton and modal fibers. If you’ve never tried modal, the material is hard to describe online. The words that might be used to describe it — soft, silky, slinky, and comfortable — have been so thoroughly overused in menswear writing that they don’t adequately capture how modal-blended fabrics feel in hand. Suffice to say that modal-cotton is often used for high-end underwear because of how comfortable it feels next to the skin. It’s also more breathable than pure cotton and keeps you feeling dry. Wolf vs. Goat founder Mauro Farinelli tells us he’ll give readers a 50% discount on these t-shirts if they use the code “putthison.” Of course, if you sign up for their Reward Program ($25), you also get this 50% discount on all full-priced items for life.
A reader once asked me why raw silk ties are considered only for spring/summer and ancient madder ties for fall/winter. There’s no real reason besides tradition. In the cooler months, the chalky, matte texture of ancient madder neckwear nicely complements materials such as tweed and flannel. But in the warmer seasons, you want to swap those ties out for things made from linen or raw silk.
Chipp has been making affordable neckwear for as long as we’ve known them. They’re an offshoot of Winston Tailors, a pillar of Ivy Style during the aesthetic’s heyday and once the clothier to titanic menswear figures such as JFK and Andy Warhol. They make all of their ties in a small workshop based in New York City using the same Italian grenadines and English silks found at other companies. The main difference is the price. Instead of selling ties for $150 and up, their ties retail at prices starting at just $45. Their raw silk ties are made from a hand-spun Indian-woven Matka cloth, which has a slubby, burlap texture that gives visual interest to summer suits and sport coats. These are not business ties — unless you’re in the business of menswear — but they’re great for weekends, afternoon outings, summer weddings, and other celebratory occasions. Think of them as a more seasonal version of grenadine – something textured, but solid-colored, which makes it easy to pair them with a wide range of shirts and jackets.
In the last few years, many customers have shifted their spending from made-in-the-USA products to those produced offshore. To be sure, many good things are created abroad. But as American factories have fallen like dominos, it’s worth revisiting what makes buying American so special.
Dapper Classics’ socks, for example, are produced at a third-generation, family-owned mill based in North Carolina. The company is so dedicated to American manufacturing that they even invested in machinery at this mill. By producing in the United States, they can offer high-quality socks that rival the best in the world, but offer them at a much lower price. Dapper Classics’ socks are just as well-made as those from Bresciani and Marcoliani — their dotted socks even hold up better in the wash — but instead of charging $40 for a pair of over-the-calf wool socks, Dapper Classics’ socks start at $20. They’re able to do this because they don’t pay for import fees and international shipping. When you purchase something from Dapper Classics, a larger percentage of what you’re spending goes towards higher-quality materials, top-end construction, and higher labor standards.
If you’re looking for conservative patterns to supplement an already full rotation of solid colors, try Dapper Classics’ selection of pin-dot, grenadine, and nailhead designs. Those can be an excellent way to add some visual interest to an outfit without going too quirky. Remember that navy socks go with everything. Otherwise, match the color of your socks to your trousers. This will help visually elongate your leg line (e.g., grey socks with grey trousers, brown socks with tan trousers, etc.). To sweeten the deal, Dapper Classics is also offering a free pair of decorated tan socks (their “sock of the month”) if you purchase at least three pairs at full price.
Almost every important American fashion innovation has moved international dress towards casualwear — the lounge suit for boardrooms; the two-piece suit for daywear; patchwork madras, seersucker, and the button-down collar; belted trousers and jeans; Rugged Ivy and the rebel look; and the tradition of repurposing sportswear as everyday attire. In terms of footwear, nothing is more American than slip-on shoes. Whether made as a penny or tassel loafer, camp moc or boat shoe, slip-ons convey the comfort and ease that have always been hallmarks of classic American style.
Rowing Blazers has a huge range of slip-on shoes this season. Recently, they dropped a new collaboration with Sperry. They’ve remade the Cloud Authentic with shock-absorbing lug soles and 100% certified rPET materials (a type of recycled plastic taken from discarded soda bottles and food containers). They come in colorful colors such as cherry red, sunshine yellow, and ocean blue — a perfect complement to Rowing Blazers’ loud preppy aesthetic. They also have Cloud CVOs made from cotton canvas decorated with their Warm & Wonderful sheep motifs; Artemis’ velvet slippers; and quieter, more discrete Sperry boat shoes that have been a staple of American prep for generations. The great thing about these shoes is that they get better with age. During the heyday of Ivy, college students used to take such great pride in their well-worn shoes, some were known to put fake duct tape around the edges to affect the “patina.”
We all have clothes in the back of our closets that haven’t seen the light of day in years — and things this season we want to buy. To solve this problem, LuxeSwap has partnered with No Man Walks Alone and Epaulet to develop a “trade-up” program, which allows you to sell your old clothes through LuxeSwap’s consignment service and turn those profits into No Man Walks Alone or Epaulet store credit.
The program is straightforward. If you send your clothes to LuxeSwap, they’ll do all the hard work of selling them for you through their eBay webshop. And if you’re willing to take your profits in the form of store credit at NMWA or Epaulet, they’ll reduce their commission from 40% to 30% — and those stores will top off your profits with an additional 10%. Effectively, that means 30% more value than you’d get otherwise. Store credit gets posted not long after the auction closes, and it never expires.
LuxeSwap also offers free inbound shipping for anyone in the United States, as well as a 50% reimbursement for folks abroad. That means that you can ship them your items and they’ll take care of the cost when it comes time to pay you for your auctions. With such a hassle-free process, cleaning out your wardrobe has never been more rewarding.