The Heritage-Hipster Matrix

Discussion in 'Andy's Trad Forum' started by Mazama, Sep 25, 2010.

  1. Mazama

    Mazama Active Member with Corp. Privileges

    243
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    wa
    Winthrop
    An Online WSJ piece today, "Is L.L. Bean Driving the Runway?!" starts:

    "Unbatten the hatches, folks: The Brawny Man is back. He's dressed for the elements, looking as rugged as a lumberjack—and also a tad pleased with himself. Yes, he can hunt, chop trees, mine gold and pull lobsters from frigid waters. But his oil-waxed knapsack of tricks has just grown: He's today's fashion icon"

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB100...90393103166572.html?mod=WeekendHeader_Rotator

    Based on the photograph's these "Brawny Men" look like some skinny guys trying out for a cast opening with the Village People.

    I simply don't get these "designer interpretations of traditional American outdoor and working attire. RL has a $700 ripoff - excuse me, interpretation - of the $250 Filson Cruiser (110) this fall that is made from inferior fabric and not long enough to cover your butt in cold weather. What's the point?

    The chart in the article titled "The Heritage-Hipster Matrix" (Our road map to the strange and crazy lovefest between new-school designers and old-school brands.) is amusing.
     
    Last edited: Sep 25, 2010
  2. Trip English

    Trip English Honors Member

    United States
    Massachusetts
    Natick
    Useless clothing for useless people.
     
  3. PeterW

    PeterW Active Member with Corp. Privileges

    191
    Agreed. I think it is time to err on the side of dandy, rather than fauxberjack.

    This is why I am not pleased with my 20 year old set of Filson luggage. It is not JUST that its trendy, but it lacks elegance.

    But anyway, I (for one) am feeling a bit hemmed in: one side, that horrible southern frat boy look with bright polo, khakis, flip flops, and horrible sunglasses; on the other, skinny boys with beards with rugged boutique clothing.

    On paper, both could come under the American traditional look. In practice, they are . . . well, you get the point.

    I do like that there is more interest in American made clothing, but this hipster movement is marked by a surfeit of smugness and self-parody.
     
  4. hookem12387

    hookem12387 Advanced Member

    ^^ Just keep wearing what you've been wearing. This too shall pass
     
  5. redmanca

    redmanca Active Member with Corp. Privileges

    155
    United States
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    Central
    Hah! I love how wearing a 3/2 sack allows you to make judgments on people's usefulness.

    As if clothes have any connection with morality.

    Conor
     
  6. Starch

    Starch Super Member

    United States
    Washington
    Seattle
    Is "useless" a moral term?
     
  7. Trip English

    Trip English Honors Member

    United States
    Massachusetts
    Natick
    Howz about this: we don't err on any side. We dress in a manner that's appropriate to our immediate situation. That means we don't build a treehouse in a 3 piece suit, don't stroll the boulevard in coveralls, or attend the opera in footie pajamas.

    My major beef with fashion is that it moves clothing into the abstract. That's fine for an art exhibit, but ridiculous otherwise. I even enjoy runway shows where the garments have truly moved beyond costumes into the absurd, but again, they have their place on the runway.

    If I'm walking the dogs through the woods I'm going to be in a macanaw cruiser. If I'm attending a cocktail party here in Greenwich, I'm likely to be in a shawl-collar tuxedo. If I'm at work I'll be in a blazer or a suit. In my workshop I'll be in a chambray shirt and dickies. The garments are contextually appropriate.

    (also, I wear a beard because I have a fat-bottomed head and the beard allows me to employ an optical illusion. I'm not letting my inner lumber-jack shine through)
     
  8. Mississippi Mud

    Mississippi Mud Senior Member

    578
    United States
    Tennessee
    Franklin
    I wear a beard because, as a comedian once suggested, I'd like to maintain the illusion that my hair is migrating to my face rather than abandoning me altogether.
     
  9. Starch

    Starch Super Member

    United States
    Washington
    Seattle
    Strange as it may sound, that is an aspiration of mine.
     
  10. Trip English

    Trip English Honors Member

    United States
    Massachusetts
    Natick
    Clothes have everything to do with morality! I, for example, wear a 1.75" cuff on my pants to indicate that I'm a remorseless sinner.

    The point of that comment is that if you're dressed like a lumberjack in SoHo, you probably have less than a passing acquaintance with trees and their many uses.

    As someone who works with, and has a tremendous respect for the building trades, it irritates me that someone can put on "workwear" and approximate, if only visually, the reverence associated with such garments. This is why I call them useless. They are impersonating people with tremendous societal value while having little or none themselves.
     
  11. Trip English

    Trip English Honors Member

    United States
    Massachusetts
    Natick
    As long as there's grosgrain along the zipper I suppose it would be fine.
     
  12. Wisco

    Wisco Senior Member

    682
    In my opinion it's not about morality, rather a critique of slaves of fashion adopting a "lifestyle look" that they at best parody by their insistence in wearing those styles with touches such as low rise trousers, "curated" labels and following whatever blogger they worship as their maven.

    Call me a curmudgeon, but fashion is cyclical and driven primarily by marketing. The workwear / heritage crowd will move onto something else in a few years while the rest of us keep on doing what we are doing.
     
  13. MidWestTrad

    MidWestTrad Active Member with Corp. Privileges

    200
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    Amen.
     
  14. phyrpowr

    phyrpowr Honors Member

    United States
    North Carolina
    Charlotte
    Dave Barry did a great (and humorously brutal) article on this fashion once long ago, when it first struck. I wonder how much of that stuff would actually hold up when working outdoors for any length of time, and how much ( $1300 cotton parkas) is actually dangerous.
     
  15. Orgetorix

    Orgetorix Honors Member

    United States
    Kentucky
    Louisville
    [​IMG]
     
  16. mayer

    mayer Starting Member

    17
    Orgetorix,you are so great.i learn much experience.
     
  17. redmanca

    redmanca Active Member with Corp. Privileges

    155
    United States
    SC
    Central
    So working in the building trades is the only way to contribute to society?

    Tell you what, call me tomorrow after I finish teaching High school English and you can tell me how wearing RRL jeans means I am useless and contribute nothing to society.

    Conor
     
  18. eagle2250

    eagle2250 Connoisseur - Moderator

    Harmony, FL
    United States
    Florida
    Harmony
    In reading the article, I must admit being mildly enthused by the mention of Woolrich, Pendleton, etc...all preferred brands from my past...from my past staging a comeback but, this excitement was tempered by the memory of shopping the Woolrich Store located in Woolrich, Pa., just two weeks ago and being unable to find a single item that had been 'made in the USA!' These venerable brands may be staging a comeback but...'it ain't the same!' :(
     
  19. Trip English

    Trip English Honors Member

    United States
    Massachusetts
    Natick
    Oh please.

    The trend is workwear. That's why I bring up the building trades. If it were lab coats and stethoscopes then a doctor could be irked.
     
  20. Mazama

    Mazama Active Member with Corp. Privileges

    243
    United States
    wa
    Winthrop
    It's not just that Woolrich is made offshore but for a number of years the quality of the wool they use has been absolutely awful (recycled Chinese army blankets?).

    Bemidji Woolen Mills still makes a close approximation of the former Woolrich products in their U.S. facility for what passes these days for a reasonable price. Their Stag Jacket is still made in numeric sizes (40,42, 44...) and is made from 18 oz. 85% wool blend versus Woolrich's 11.5 oz. (low quality) 80% wool. Of course you'll pay more, ~$160 v. $115. Bemidji also offers a number of models in heavier 85% and 100% new wool. Good stuff.

    http://www.bemidjiwoolenmills.com/category
     

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