AMERICA ANTIQUES & DESIGN | THE LITTLE LAMBERTVILLE, NJ SHOP THAT’S BIG IN JAPAN

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It’s been a personal pleasure of mine getting to know David Teague and Ginger Hall, proprietors of America Antiques & Design, and Compromise Lodge (Ginger’s upstairs vintage hideaway inside America Designs). Their shop full of vintage and custom treasures is nestled in at 5 S. Main Street, Lambertville, NJ– the bucolic Bucks County sister town of New Hope, PA sitting just across the Delaware River. David & Ginger are as unassuming and low key as they come, yet draw a loyal and very notable following. Creatives in the world of furnishings, fashion & film come from around the globe in appreciation of the couple’s discerning eye and uncommon taste level. For anyone looking to get off the homogenized grid and have a true experience of eclectic discovery and one-off finds– this is the place.

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David Teague of America Antiques & Design in Lambertville, NJ.

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HAMMARHEAD x DUNDERDON NYC | BE THERE THE NEXT 3 THURSDAYS IN MAY

The Hammarhead x Dunderdon collaboration events start tonight, I’m checking it out. Hope to see you there. It’ll be cool to see the bike build unfold over the next 3 Thursdays. Spirits provided by our friends at Art In The Age and beer by Sixpoint Brewery. 

WHAT:  Over the span of 3 weeks in May, Hammarhead Industries will design and fabricate a custom motorcycle at Dunderdon NYC.

WHEN:  6-9PM, Thursdays – May 17, 24, 31

WHERE:  DUNDERON 25 Howard Street, New York, NY 10013

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GQ | Getting Questionable

This is exactly why I stopped buying American men’s fashion magazines.  The content is so lean in terms of what is actually meaningful, and so full of off-topic pandering fluff pieces– I can mine any nuggets that may be there in about five minutes or less at the magazine rack, and save my four bucks for something useful.  Case in point–

The magazine: GQ March 2009.  

The title: The 10 Most Stylish Men in America, Starring Justin Timberlake.  

My reaction: “You can not be serious.  Hell, he’s not even a man, let alone stylish.”

GQ— short for Gentlemen’s Quarterly, and once the gold standard for men’s style is now GQGetting Questionable.  Yeah, your credibility takes a hit in my book when you’re consistently extolling the virtues of teeny-boppers and hip-hoppers.  I think of those guys as trend-seeking, fashion-wagon opportunists, not icons of style.  Weren’t they wearing white belts not too long ago?  Give them their props somewhere else– not in GQ.  I used to laugh at what rags FHM and Maxim were, but now everyone is starting to migrate to the shallow end of the style gene pool.

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DESIGNER or MERCHANDISER?

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I have to be honest, I’m always more than a little dubious when someone coming from a Fashion Director or Merchandise Manager-type post throws his hat into the design ring.  As a Fashion Director at somewhere special like Bergdorf Goodman, you have access to the best menswear labels and goods that the world has to offer, and your playground is one of the tastiest retail environments going.  It’s hard not to look good with those kind of resources at your fingertips.  The question is– can you truly create your own vision?

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Brooks Brothers’ Continental Bent (is more like it)

I’m still not getting what I want from Brooks Brothers, and I’m starting to wonder if I ever will.  Bring back the pure, unapologetic, timeless icons of American sportswear & clothing– make it fresh, get the fit right, and roll it out.  It still feels too much like a European (Italian) interpreting classic American style.  It has a very continental feel in these photos from WWD.

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BILL BLASS CLASS

The beauty of being able to draw, or paint, from an early age is that you never feel trapped, least of all by your immediate circumstances.”

–Bill Blass

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From The New York Times

In early December 1999, the mood in the Bill Blass showroom at 550 Seventh Avenue was as gray as the film of dust on a potted plant that sat in the corner and always seemed to be dying.

Blass, arguably the most famous of all the American designers, had shown his farewell collection that September and sold the company a few weeks later.  He had been ill for some time, living with throat cancer for years — he was then 77 — and he didn’t seem much inclined to argue with the new owners about who would fill his oversize shoes.  They wanted a name.  So the future of Blass’s longtime assistants was far from certain.  Laura Montalban, one of two top designers, left to work for Oscar de la Renta; Blass called the other, Craig Natiello, who had been with him for a decade, into his office.

“You’re not going to like the people who bought the company,” Blass said.  He made a phone call, then told Mr. Natiello, who recalled the conversation in a recent interview, that there was a job waiting for him at Halston.  “Here is your out. Do you want it?”

That, Ladies and Gentlemen, is class.  Keep a stiff upper lip, tell it straight, and repay loyalty with loyalty. This kind of character is an increasing rarity, unfortunately. Kudos, Mr. Blass.

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Jimmy Stewart’s Honorable Style

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With seemingly every known sportswear brand with a nickel’s worth of history coming out with an “authentic” or “vintage” line, I’m left wanting to step away and rediscover the “heritage” of dressing well.  At least I won’t have to worry about being stoned to death for not wearing the correct of-the-moment hipster boot anymore.  So I’ll have that going for me- which is good.

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In Like Flynn | A Swashbuckler’s Legacy

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“A boat is like a horse… every ship has her own personality, the tricks she does, the foibles she has.” – Errol Flynn

Errol Flynn was born in the British Commonwealth seaport Hobart, Tasmania, on June 20, 1909. His father, a distinguished marine biologist, introduced him to the sea at a very young age. Flynn always said the one true love of his life was the ocean. Sailing became a lifelong obsession and his favorite escape.

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“I like my whiskey old and my women young.” – Errol Flynn 

A young Brigitte Bardot cooing over 47 yr old Errol Flynn. –1956. He passed 3 yrs later. The phrase “In like Flynn” originated as a coarse reference to his powers as a seducer.  

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Classic Roots

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Menswear designers new and old are tracing fashion roots and embracing brand heritage– whether it’s their own or borrowed.  Ralph is the true master of classic American sportswear, and no one is more in their element at this time than him.

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