Dsquared2 Fall 2009- “Puttin’ on the Rips”

The twins put on a show that looked like ‘old world’ tailored formalwear meets Rock ‘n’ Roll rebel.  The looks were very strong, when they stayed on message.  

 The ruggedly handsome leather & shearling outerwear was stunning, but left you wondering if the story really was ‘Estaire does denim’ or ‘tough country squire’?

The layered looks are great, and take a page straight out of Ralph Lauren’s book.  If anything at all, Ralph is the true master at consistency of message and focus.  Dean & Dan Caten should have taken that page too. 

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COOL HAND LUKE | SOMETIMES A CHORE COAT CAN BE A REAL COOL HAND

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Cool Hand Luke starring Paul Newman is a classic film, and without a doubt one of my favorites.  It’s Newman’s greatest performance, in a film loaded with powerhouse acting.  You’ve got George Kennedy, Dennis Hopper, Harry Dean Stanton, Jo Van Fleet, Strother Martin (What we’ve got here is “failure to communicate”) and Dick Davalos, to name a few.  Don’t know who Dick Davalos is?  He played Blind Dick, and is best remembered as Aaron Trask, opposite James Dean’s Cal Trask in East of Eden.

Speaking of James Dean– the role of Lucas Jackson would more than likely been his– not Newman’s, had he not been killed in a fatal car crash.  Dean would have starred in The Left Handed GunSomebody Up There Likes Me and probably Hud as well.  Not to take anything away from Paul Newman, but Dean was definitely the bigger star back then, and his passing gave Newman a clear path to instant stardom.

26469_2Cool Hand Luke is visually rich with incredibly authentic sets, cultural cues, wardrobe and styling. I wanted to live in that prison bunkhouse.  What was so bad?  They got to hang-out, enjoy cold drinks, eat eggs and such.

I became obsessed with the old chain-gang garb, and own several beat-up, RRL denim chore coats because of it.  Chore coats are an iconically American piece– worn by laborers, convicts, artists and plain everyday folk.  And another American icon– the classic chambray workshirt is in there too.

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There was nothing not to like in this film– even the hair.  Carr the floor walker, and Blind Dick had very cool D.A.’s.  And what about the incredible score, Harry Dean Stanton’s crooning, and Paul Newman singing and playing banjo on Plastic Jesus?  The film is pregnant with comparisons of Luke to Jesus. Luke is their leader– his crucifixion pose after eating the eggs– “stop feeding off of me!” alluding to communion– Dragline as ‘Judas’ bringing the cops to Luke in the final scene– on and on.  There are some many famous lines in Cool Hand Luke that I could be here all day– “shaking it up here boss!”

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Samurai 15oz 10 Year Anniversary Jeans

Samurai 15oz 10 Year Jeans

The S0510XX uses 100% Texas cotton which is famous for being a “rough” cotton due to it’s high amount of short fibers.  Normally, the short fibers are removed to make a smoother fabric, but Samurai adds more short cotton fibers to make the yarn even rougher.  The result is a yarn that is highly uneven in size, making the woven fabric very “slubby” (irregular).  Moreover, while most jean manufacturers mix different cottons from various areas, Samurai uses only 100% Texas cotton in the S0510XX.  Even the thread is made of 100% Texas cotton.  This creates a jean that captures the essence and spirit of this tough Texas denim.

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Like all Samurai jeans, the S0510XX uses 100% pure indigo with no fillers, using the maximum amount of indigo that the yarn can hold.  Weighing in at 15 ounces, Samurai also maximized the tension of the weave, so that after washing, the denim actually becomes even more stiff and the weave even tighter resulting in a jean with unprecedented “atari” (fading). 

Link to buy at Blue in Green

Junya Watanabe Spring 2009

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Junya Watanabe’s (of Comme des Garcons) Spring 2009 collection is a very fitted & fresh mix of American menswear “classics with a twist”.  Collaborations with iconic prepster brands- Brooks Brothers, Levi’s, Lacoste and Baracuta made for some funky updates to familiar models, patterns and fabrics.  What also makes it youthful is eye-catching denim pieces and cool hats thrown in.

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VINTAGE 1940s DEADSTOCK WRANGLER 11MW JEANS | SAME LEVI’s ARCUATE

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1940s Deadstock Wrangler

check out the back pockets-


Handsome back pocket- I like the cool leather patch placement.

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Back then, Wrangler jeans (and Lee as well, for that matter) used the same double arcuate stitch design as Levi Strauss on the back pockets.  Tsk, tsk.  I like the Wrangler coin/watch pocket shape and stitching in the picture above.  It looks very clean and modern for it’s time.  Wrangler was button-fly up until 1947 when they introduced a new model- the 13MWZ zipper front.

Link to Wrangler Company History