Category Archives: Outerwear

Meet Wilson and Willy’s: American Made

I’m always excited when I find a new (or new–to-me) company making clothing here in the USA. Wilson and Willy’s is the latest of these companies. In addition to their own brand of men’s pants, shirts, and outerwear, they also carry a well-curated selection of other American items from companies like Oak Street Boot Makers, PF Flyers,Duluth Pack, Faribault Woolen Mills, and more.

Here are some of our favorite items:Waxed Anorak in Tobasco.
The Raglan Trench Coat is made from Faribault Woolen Mills Military blankets in NYCThe Waxed Rambler Coat features a mid-weight, wind- and water-resistant 8 oz Martexin waxed-canvas and is lined with moleskin.

Manufactured by Hackwith Design House with material from Faribault Woolen Mills, the Madeline jacket is 100% wool.The Melbourne Pajama dress is made from 100% cotton and made in L.A. by Maison Du Soir.The flannel boxy tee is beautifully shaped.The Stephen Kenn Foot Soldier Sofa is made in CA. and features material from Faribault Woolen Mills.

For those in the area, Wilson and Willy’s has a brick and mortar store in Minneapolis, MN.



Motorcycle Jackets from Schott NYC: A True-Blue American Success Story

I took a motorcycle safety class with my daughter a while back and the instructor asked, ‘Why do we ride motorcycles?’ Then she answered her own question: “to have fun and look cool!”This is on my mind because I’m preparing to buy myself a new motorcycle jacket. I know that safety comes first, but looking good kind of matters to me so I have been searching for just the right style. One of the brands that I’m considering is  SchottNYC.

Before we look at the jackets let’s consider Schott’s history. The company was founded over 100 years ago by Jack and Irving Schott, brothers who started-out making raincoats but quickly moved into leather goods. The Perfecto name, now synonymous with Schott jackets, was borrowed from Irving’s favorite cigar. From WWII (bomber jackets and Navy peacoats) to the Wild Ones (Brando in a Schott Perfecto One) to the Punk Rock movement (the Ramones and Blondie wore the Perfecto), Schott has been there. An interesting factoid: After the Wild Ones debuted, Schott’s sales suffered when high schools banned the jackets due to the hoodlum image portrayed in the movie. Schott has been a family-owned business for 4 generations and their USA-made garments are also  Union-made.

Enough history. Here are the goods:The classic Perfecto. I doubt I could make it look as good as Brando did!My personal favorite is the Cafe Racer. The Cafecto above has styling queues from both the Perfecto and the Cafe Racer jackets.

Whatever your style, these are beautiful jackets made by artisans. While they  don’t accept body armor, they are made from very heavy hides so the abrasion protection will be there. You can also wear a padded shirt underneath, which I’m looking at.
Not only does Schott make a very nice line of motorcycle jackets but some of their other jackets do a great job updating classic looks. The Peacoat above features leather trim around the hand warmer pockets.Classic Shearling BomberA unique take on a Plaid Hunters Jacket.

If you explore the Schott page there are some imported items but most of the jackets are Union Made here in America. If you want to take a quick visual tour of the factory you can click this link.



The Empowerment Coat: Warmth for the Homeless; Made In USA

(The Americanologists will be on vacation until January 4. See you in 2017!)

Let me start off by saying we wish you a very Happy Holiday Season and a healthy and enriching New Year.Now that you’ve bought gifts for what seems like everyone under the sun, we hope you will indulge us as we suggest one more gift for a person in need. This product, called the Empowerment Coat really struck a chord with us, and we have purchased one.
Designed to provide basic protection from harsh weather for homeless people, it is also designed to act as a sleeping bag. The Empowerment Coat came about as a school project by now CEO Veronika Scott to create a product that filled a need in her community.
The Empowerment Coat is built in Detroit. Not only is the coat made from water resistant fabric from Carhartt, it also uses up-cycled insulation from General Motors.The photo above shows the coat with the sleeping bag attachment.One of the best parts of the Empowerment Coat story is that the people being put to work making the coat are typically homeless single parents who are trained and educated to help end the cycle. To date, 34 homeless individuals have found employment working on the Empowerment Coat and over 15,000 coats have been made and distributed.

Like many of you, as we get to the end of the year it is time for us to write a few checks to our favorite charities. I think the Empowerment Plan is a very worthy cause.


Paul and Kathy

Baby It’s Cold Outside: Wool Plaid Outerwear Made in USA

This morning the thermometer registered a frigid 16 degrees, so I knew I needed to dress warm to take our dog for a walk. I immediately collected as many wool items as I could find, including my go-to outerwear, a vintage wool Mackinaw Hunting Jacket from Woolrich (from a time when most items were actually made in USA). I absolutely love the classic plaid pattern – the fact that it keeps me warm and shuts out the wind is really appreciated on days like today. There are plenty of vintage American-made pieces around (check out eBay or the nearest rummage sale) but if you want new, here are five possibilities:woolrichwoolrich_mackinawcolorsThese wool shirt-jacs from Woolrich, which are unlined, are on the lighter side. They can be used as outerwear or under a coat.schottSchott offers a wool plaid jacket based on the Perfecto line of motorcycle jackets, which features a slimmer cut and leather trim.

11010043redblack-main_1_6Filson’s Mackinaw Cruiser was patented back in 1914 and the design still holds up. It comes in two other colors.

filsonvestA matching vest is also available.
stormykromerThe Mackinaw from Stormy Kromer not only comes in the traditional plaid but also a charcoal and Woolen Mills‘ take on the Hunting Jacket features their Red and Black Muted Plaid pattern.

Whatever your reason for venturing out on a frigid winter day, you can’t go wrong with the classic styling of a wool plaid jacket.



60+ American-Made Gifts for Men from Huckberry

I like the online men’s shop Huckberry because of the wide range of products that speak to me and suit my lifestyle. Their Made in USA page has so many things I’d love to own, from clothing and accessories to home goods and travel items. Here are a few of my favorites:gihf3xecxb_north_coast_shirt_jacket_2-0_5_originalouterwearHaving just walked the dog in 20-something degree weather, I figured I would start off with this North Coast Shirt Jacket 2.0 (top) from Edgevale. Made of polyester, wool and  acrylic, it s both wind and water-resistant. Other outerwear options are shown.iklppeu0co_steel_firepit-large_6_originaloutdoorsThe 3/4″ steel Fire Pit from Stahl adds a bit of artistry to the act of hanging out with friends and staying warm.  And there are other products on the page for the outdoor adventurer.otwi1yuxxo_the_chapter_knife-serrated_5_originalSpeaking of the outdoors, this drop point serrated Charter Knife from the James Brand is made from stainless and titanium.bge6w4bfle_6_service_boot_2_originalbootsMotorcycles and boots, perfect together. These are  6″ Service Boots from Chippewa but you can also find classics from Red Wing and Danner on the site as wellnpwplhlb6o_g-i-_joe_duffel_0_originalbagsGotta go somewhere? You’ll find a nice selection of bags and duffles, I can easily see throwing the canvas and leather GI Joe duffle from Hudson Sutler on the back of my bike. izgftzu4ib_travel_kit_2_originaldoppsThe Travel Kit above is from General Knot and features a subtle pattern on the water resistant canvas.
rcrjxrihwc_three_strikes_bat-flamethrower_5_originalDo you need something to claim the space as yours? these bats from Pillbox Bat Co. are too good looking to actually swing at a ball but will look great in your man cave. The Three Strikes-Flamethrower is featured above.06gm2hcunk_quad_wallet-_limited_edition_5_originalwalletsFinally, there is a very broad range of leather goods available on the site: The Quad Wallet is from Tanner Goods and is made from English Bridle Leather.

The above is just a sample of what Huckberry has to offer in American made goods. Once you’re on the site, you’ll see that Made-in-USA items have an American flag designating country of origin, so check it out.