Editor’s note: The following review was published in October 2013. To get an updated Hunt Club crate review and learn more about the brand, check out this April 2015 post, too.
The Internet has definitely propelled men to think more about how they dress, and it’s also made it easier than ever to pick up great threads at affordable prices. There are some companies who’ve embraced this change wholeheartedly, and others who are new to the game (witness H & M’s first foray into the world of online retail earlier this year). Other companies also have taken advantage of the Internet to pioneer new and innovative approaches to clothing. Frank & Oak is definitely one of those companies. They’re a relatively new arrival to the world of menswear, as it seems they’ve just picked up a lot of steam across the past year-and-a-half. On the other hand, they also seem to produce a lot of polarizing opinions as to the customer service and quality of some of their clothing. However, personal experiences have been nothing but fantastic with the company. Shipping does tend to take a bit longer because of international borders (the company is based in Montreal, Canada), but the quality is on-point.
For those who don’t know, in addition to the online store, shoppers also can join The Hunt Club, a monthly promotional deal that allows members to pick up to three items from new collections released monthly. Hunt Club membership also gets you discounts and special deals on sales. Items vary from month to month and often are extremely seasonally appropriate. Even better? You only pay for what you keep, a system that allows you to try out and wear items before sending them back, with free return shipping. Not a bad deal. The October issue transitions the company’s offerings from the in-between fabrics of early fall to a decidedly more-winter feel. Colors are darker and offerings include some very nice peacoats, thicker sweaters, wool trousers and a few rather unique offerings, like a herringbone zip-up jacket and a corduroy shirt in two different tones.
My selection for this month’s crate centered around some essentials for fall and winter: a pair of their Athletic Sweatpants in Navy, the Newport Chinos in Amber, and a wool tie. The sweatpants (ordered down in a size Small for a slimmer fit) were comfortable and well-constructed, with a sturdy waistband and drawstring ties. Definitely a more unique offering from a clothing company, but F & O aims to outfit men head to toe, and also offers a lot of accessories, like backpacks and wallets. The Newport Chinos in Amber are exceedingly comfortable and slim, but offered only up to a 34″ inseam and 36″ waist, as of now. They fit like an interesting hybrid between a Levi’s 513 from the waist to the knee, and a 511 from the knee down — there’s a fairly significant taper, but the overall fit is tremendous if you enjoy slimmer pants. They’re also the optimal length to be cuffed. The wool tie has not come into the rotation as of yet, but would pair extremely well with a blue OCBD and a herringbone wool blazer, for example.
For the time being, it looks like the items in this crate are all keepers based on quality and price. Have you had any personal experience with F & O? Leave it in the comments below.