The Friday Read: The Best Sustainable Brands, The Best Swim Trunks for Men & A New Windbreaker

Layer up for the weekend with the best new spring jacket to buy right now — from Grayers,no less.

My friends, welcome to Friday, and to today’s Friday Read, no less. I had originally planned to be in Cincinnati on this very day for the second-ever edition of The National Homecoming, a standout fest curated by my favorite band — of course, The National. But the current state of the world means that fest is no more, so the best I can do is catch a livestream of The National in the meantime, and shop for some of the best new men’s gear. More importantly though, this weekend is Mother’s Day! Make sure you’re getting the ladies in your life something special — I like these Mother’s Day gift suggestions from Valet, as it were. Maybe you also feel like treating yourself, though? On that note, I’ve got my eye on that Grayers windbreaker seen at the top of the — it’s the Grayers Randolph Stretch Windbreaker, to be specific — for weekend adventures (social distancing required). How about you? If you’re going stir-crazy, perhaps the stylish spring jacket shown above can help you get out and about properly. After all, it’s not a spring adventure without one of the best spring jackets in tow, is it?

But, we move on to the rest of today’s post. What have you been reading? Listening to? Watching? I’ve found some serious enjoyment in adding to my vinyl record collection, picking up favorites like “Singles” by Future Islands and the new Hamilton Leithauser record, the soulful and timeless “The Loves Of Your Life.” Might I also suggest you check out some high-quality record player options to spruce up your listening experience — if that’s your jam? Hours of weekend enjoyment await. For now though, let’s get into my picks this week. Be sure to join us for tomorrow’s Style Pick of the Week, and stay safe in the meantime.

But one of the many sustainable, rugged options you should consider shopping from Wellen — via my latest post for The Manual.

Your new favorite dive watch — available now for pre-order.

    • Here’s what you might call a crucial Kickstarter campaign reminder. We’ve talked in the past about how great Martenero watches are, and here’s your reminder to pre-fund the brand’s first dive watch, the Martenero Belgrano, ASAP. The campaign is giving you the chance to snag an exceptionally stylish stainless steel dive watch in four fresh colorways that call to mind classic dive watches. Crucially, if you pre-fund this watch now before May 21st (it’s set to ship this September), you’ll get it for a substantial discount (hundreds of dollars less!) than the retail price of $790. This is one of the coolest watches to buy now — the hardest part will be waiting for it. Again, pre-fund it now ASAP.
    • Let’s keep it rolling on the style and gear front. If you’re fortunate enough to have access to a pool or lake that still happens to be open (or heck, if you can get to the ocean), then this next post is going to be of interest to you (to say the least). Namely, I covered the best men’s swim trunks over at GearMoose, featuring brands like Flint and Tinder in the process. Get ready to hit the water (eventually), my friends.
    • Now, in the midst of all this craziness, I’d wager you’re still looking for ways to keep your style fresh and seasonally friendly. With that in mind, I’m going to direct you toward my ongoing series The List, covering the best new men’s gear for each and every season (and plenty of socially distanced occasions right now). It’s got everything you need to hang at home & explore on your own or with the family.

We’ll keep it focused on the blog here on last time before the weekend begins in earnest. Namely, if you need some stylish sneakers for the weekend, I’d suggest you check out GREATS Brand, and then take a good look at my guide covering how to wear white sneakers this summer. Even in these casual times at home, it still pays to look good. Well, my friends. That’s going to wrap up today’s Friday Read. Thanks for stopping by, and have a safe weekend!

-Beau

See Now, Buy Now: The Flint and Tinder Chore Coat is Your New Favorite Spring Jacket

This could be one of the sharpest jackets you buy this spring.

It’s official — the Flint and Tinder Chore Coat is one of the best new jackets you can buy for spring, and it’s the spring jacket you need on your back right now … period. Things have been a bit different these past few weeks in the land of The Style Guide (Brooklyn), and I’m sure that’s the case for you as well — I’ve still been making time to check out the best spring style essentials, though. And as the season rolls on, opportunities abound to try out some of the most rugged men’s gear on solitary hikes, solo walks & quick trips to pick up to-go beer and coffee. Consider wearing the Flint and Tinder Chore Coat right now as a sort of test run for when things fully get back to normal — and in that case, who wouldn’t want a rugged chore coat for breezy spring days and unexpectedly cool summer nights? It’s the proper way to go, trust me on that.

SHOP: The Flint and Tinder Chore Coat

Rest assured, the specs on this tough chore coat are exactly what you’ve come to expect from the gear purveyors at Flint and Tinder (the in-house line available at Huckberry, of course). It’s made of garment-dyed Italian cotton for exceptional quality and an exceptional fit and feel, while at the same time, it’s reinforced at key stress points. And as you might hope, the hardware is custom to Flint and Tinder (much like the excellent Flint and Tinder 365 Pants, for example). Adjustable cuffs and riveted hip pockets allow for both plenty of carrying potential and plenty of versatile styling potential, too. You can wear the Flint and Tinder Chore Coat  with everything from your favorite Oxford shirt and faded light wash denim to a rugged henley and equally rugged chore pants. Consider the Flint and Tinder Chore Coat a cooler replacement for your blazer, and yet … it’s the type of jacket you can also wear out on a hike or a quick (socially distanced!) jaunt into town. Again, it’s the perfect spring jacket, and it’ll absolutely perform like it.

SHOP: The Flint and Tinder Chore Coat

 

Style Pick of the Week: Native North Technical Base Jacket

A clean, minimal rain jacket that just plain works for spring.

Welcome to another Style Pick of the Week, my friends (from a brand you might recognize from an earlier Style Pick entry this month!).  To be clear, we don’t often get too technical here on the blog. That is to say, I’d rather tell you about the best trucker jacket to buy now, versus digging into gear that’s made for, say, camping or hardcore hiking or whatnot. But what if I told you the Native North Technical Base Jacket (it even says “technical” in the title!) bridges the gap between both worlds, marrying form and function for early spring? Too good to be true, right? Not quite. In fact, this number here might be the best spring rain jacket. Yes indeed, Native North has pulled off a difficult feat with the Native North Technical Base Jacket, a minimal, stylish rain jacket that’s ideal for chilly, blustery weather. The kicker is this: Thanks to the brand’s Danish style inspiration, it doesn’t look half-bad, either.

You get just the right mix of utility and style with the Native North Technical Base Jacket, from the surface-treated, lightweight nylon-spandex exterior to the windproof coating — and the surprisingly sleek dark  Brown color. Throw in two chest button-snap pockets & two hand-warmer pockets, then consider the fact that the Native North Technical Base Jacket is also triple-layered … pretty impressive, right?

A trusty hood adds another utilitarian point to this jacket.

The point is this: The Native North Technical Base Jacket packs in everything you could want from a spring rain jacket, right down to the cinch-adjustable hood. That means you can wear this functional rain jacket with your favorite menswear essentials, pieces like a classic Oxford shirt or a thermal henley and slim light wash denim, without missing a beat. Isn’t that what spring outerwear is for, at any rate? The Native North Technical Base Jacket also happens to be versatile enough to dress up ever so slightly. You could layer it over a cashmere sweater and pair that look up with slim tan chinos, plus stylish leather brogues, to head to the office — breezy spring weather be damned. And lest you’re worried that this jacket has the potential to turn you into a sweltering mess (like other spring jackets), well, it’s made all the way through with lightweight, breathable material. Check, check and check. The point is, the Native North Technical Base Jacket has the potential to be a go-to jacket every time the weather takes a turn — and even on days when you just need a lightweight, casual spring layer.

 

Online Shopping Picks: The Best Spring Jackets to Buy This Season

Now that we’re flying through March and closing quickly on April, it’s high time to talk about the best spring jackets to buy this season — are ya with me? It’s always a relevant topic as all of us battle showers and blustery winds, plus the occasional spring road trip. So, what type of jacket to buy for those various pursuits? Well, the good news is there are plenty of excellent styles to pick up for all of us #menswear lovers — from a stylish denim jacket to an investment-worthy moto jacket, we’ve got ’em all covered. The key here is looking for a piece that exudes casual-but-crisp and versatile style — so, it’s kind of like shopping for a stylish, slim topcoat. After all, the best spring jackets can be layered up with everything from a marled henley to a slim Oxford, a knit tie and your favorite chinos. I’d wager you’re going to want to pick up more than a few of the below jackets — with that in mind, we’ve looked for a combination of affordability, quality and great looks. So, check out the latest Online Shopping Picks entry, fill up your shopping cart and join me on Twitter to keep the discussion going.

Greats

#1. Levi’s Trucker Jacket — $70

It’s tough to find a spring jacket more classic — and perhaps iconic — than this one.

We’re kicking off this men’s style roundup with a look at perhaps the most essential piece of outerwear in your closet this spring – the trusty denim jacket. Particularly when made by an iconic brand like Levi’s, the denim jacket combines casual cool with functionality. Layer it up over your favorite cotton plaid shirt with slim chinos in place of a blazer, use it as a casual jacket for weekend road trips, and give it a shot over a printed shirt and olive cargo pants. Don’t be afraid to try a lighter-to-medium wash like the one shown – team that bad boy with slim grey denim for rock-inspired style, too.

#2. Taylor Stitch Moto Jacket — $1,075

Taylor Stitch Moto Jacket

Quite possibly the best leather jacket on the market right now — hands-down.

Jacket No. 2 comes to us via the fine folks at Taylor Stitch … boy, it is something else. Now, before you send me a bewildered email calling out the investment-level price tag, bear with me. There might not be a better, more versatile or more durable leather jacket on the market. Based off a classic café racer design, you might recognize the same silhouette (the Taylor Stitch Whiskey Moto Jacket) from a past entry on this site – however, we’re sticking with the slick Black Moto Jacket for spring style that’s at once sharp and effective. The weight and construction mean you can wear it with everything from a crewneck tee to a short-sleeve chambray shirt and even an Oxford and knit tie. Pick up the Black Moto Jacket ASAP and let me know what you think.

NOV CAMPAIGN: Photo of black boots with logo (no border)

#3. Bridge and Burn Northfork Woodland Jacket — $198

A combination of utilitarian function, toughness and great looks.

While a stylish leather jacket or a rugged denim jacket are always effective #menswear moves, there’s something to be said for reaching for a spring jacket with functionality top of mind. That’s what you get with the Northfork Woodland Jacket in a classic shade of olive green. The lightweight cotton makes it ideal for layering on chilly spring nights, and the plethora of pockets — say that five times fast — gives you plenty of space for your everyday carry on spring weekend adventures. Match this guy up with suede Chelsea boots and perhaps a pair of the best light wash denim for spring the next time you head to your local watering hole – trust me.

#4. Abercrombie & Fitch Bonded Mac Jacket — $99

A versatile overcoat that’s at once functional and stylish.

As we’ve written about often here at The Style Guide, Abercrombie & Fitch consistently continues to up it men’s style game. From surprisingly hard-wearing outerwear like this Bonded Mac Jacket to vintage-inspired layering pieces like the Abercrombie & Fitch Wool Shirt, each piece is injected with DNA from the brand’s illustrious past – yet it all feels very modern. This waterproof jacket gives you both a tailored, slim silhouette – ideal for wearing over a navy suit on weekdays – and go-anywhere versatility (equally perfect for matching up with slim sweatpants and sharp leather sneakers on weekend coffee runs).

#5. Iron and Resin Academy Bomber — $149.98

Iron & Resin

A sturdy bomber jacket — just the style you need this season.

If there’s one silhouette that’s stuck around the menswear world with no signs of stopping, it’s the bomber jacket. And if there’s one brand this spring that’s taking a rather unique approach to the style staple, it’s Iron and Resin. Known for its road-ready moto gear, the brand is offering the crisply designed Academy Bomber in a versatile colorway just in time for spring – bingo. Rock this one with navy chinos and brown leather loafers atop a classic chambray shirt for a mix of high-low style, and match it up with a marled short-sleeve henley and rugged dark blue denim for a little bit o’ Saturday night cool.

Frank & Oak

Honorable Mention: K-Way Claude Laminated Solid Jacket — $59.98

Nothing too fancy — just a basic, functional and subtly stylish windbreaker.

For all this talk of the benefits of owning a stylish moto jacket or a versatile bomber jacket, there are just some times when you need to stay dry in the rain and get from point A to point B. That’s where the K-Way Claude Laminated Solid Jacket enters the equation. It plays off the brand’s original mission – outfitting Frenchmen in the rain – and it does so at a great price. The Claude Jacket is effective and head-turning in its own way – it’s perfect for tossing on for a bike ride or an outdoor hike, then packing into, say, a heritage-quality leather weekender on spring road trips.

Now, am I encouraging you to go out and buy each and every one of these jackets? Maybe. Budget permitting. But in all seriousness, finding the right spring jacket boils down to your lifestyle – if you suit up frequently and need to fight the rain, a bonded mac jacket is going to be the way to go. If casual, crisp style is your thing, snag the Iron and Resin Academy Bomber. If you move quickly from place to place and want something simple and stylish, pick up the K-Way Claude Laminated Solid Jacket. And if you want a piece of outerwear that really can do it all, I’d highly recommend grabbing the Levi’s Trucker Jacket or the Taylor Stitch Moto Jacket – especially the Moto Jacket. I guarantee you certainly won’t be disappointed once you get past the price. Let’s not forget the benefits of owning a stylish utility jacket such as the one shown from our friends at Bridge and Burn. With all that being said, I hope you’re as excited to dress for spring in style as I am – let’s get out there and get to it!

Thanks for reading and stay stylish,

-Beau

Online Shopping Picks: Best Spring Jackets

Just a few weeks ago on this very site, I wrote about great boots to get you through what was looking to be a long winter slog. Since then, things have taken a turn for the better weather-wise. But we’re not out of the woods yet — there’s a good chance rain and blustery winds are still on the way. And that’s where the below jackets should come in mighty handy. Although this is by no means a definitive list, the following picks feature lightweight materials and sharp, streamlined silhouettes for layering over casual or dressy outfits. Have a look and let me know your thoughts below!

#1. Grayers Russel Baseball Jacket — $155

The blue herringbone blends a cold-weather pattern with warm-weather construction.

The blue herringbone blends a cold-weather pattern with warm-weather construction.

Grayers is in a somewhat enviable spot as far as menswear brands go — they’ve gotten some great early press coverage and exposure, they’re sold in a major retailer nationwide (Nordstrom) and to boot, they make awesome staple pieces that blend the prep appeal of the Northeast with the continental vibe of England. This cotton knit bomber jacket features sporty striped cuffs and comes in an eyecatching blue herringbone pattern. It would be ideal for wearing over a white henley and lightwash jeans on the weekend.

#2. Wallace & Barnes A-2 Bomber Jacket — $198

Colorblocked and in a trimmer fit than Top Gun.

Colorblocked and in a trimmer fit than Top Gun.

The second pick on this list is yet another bomber jacket, but for valid reasons. The silhouette is a classic one that’s been slimmed-down and given a slightly more fashion-forward slant thanks to the colorblocking. It’s also in a not-too-dark, not-too-light shade of medium blue (or abyss blue, as they call it) that’ll wear well even with dark denim and other shades of blue. It’s on the pricier side from J. Crew’s workwear-inspired Wallace & Barnes line, so the quality’s there, too. Note that GAP also has a dark navy bomber jacket for $100 less.

#3. Bonobos Crosstown Trench in Grey — $328

A belted trench coat that manages to be understated at the same time.

A belted trench coat that manages to be understated at the same time.

Before the bomber jacket became a ubiquitous style piece, there was the trench coat. The style never really left the scene and perhaps became even more iconic thanks to brands like Burberry, but this Bonobos trench coat has a more minimalist vibe in charcoal. It’s got a belted back and a no-frills front with a covered button placket and a collar that can be popped up for maximum rain protection. The price is a bit high, but if you throw it on every day in the rain, it should hopefully begin to pay for itself. And it should fit on the trimmer side knowing Bonobos. Finally, the neutral dark grey color gives off a city-ready, noir-ish vibe …. right?

#4. Ben Sherman Harrington Cotton Jacket — $27.99

A stunningly low price for an iconic style.

A stunningly low price for an iconic style.

Yes, you read the above price right — Saks Off Fifth has this Harrington cotton jacket available in sizes running from small to 2XL (as of post time) for less than $30. While the light beige color isn’t for everyone, the price is probably favorable enough to make a few of us change our minds. And when you consider that these same jackets are going for more than $100 more over on the  … well, this is one of those things you almost have to buy. It would work best with neutral colors in terms of pants and shirts — think black, navy and white — as opposed to earthy tones like olive.

#5. Forever21 Quilted Bomber Jacket — $24.90

Moody stare not included with jacket purchase.

Moody stare not included with jacket purchase.

While Forever21 isn’t known for the highest-quality pieces, let’s say you’ve already got one or two styles mentioned above and want something even more casual and easy-wearing. This would be that coat — the colorblocking and quilted details keep it on-trend without looking gaudy. It’s not water-resistant or waterproof so it loses some points there, but over a short-sleeve henley and some colorful shorts, it should work well enough. It’s also available in an olive-and-black color.

Honorable Mention: 

Sometimes round-ups aren’t big enough to include every possible style of jacket — you’ll notice military jackets weren’t featured heavily, for example. Consider these listings below a best-of-the-rest.

Frank & Oak Kingston Bomber in Charcoal, $125 — A new addition to the site courtesy of this month’s Hunt Club that gets a lot of things right — including the price, the color and the lightweight nylon-poly blend.

Ben Sherman Harrington Jacket, $140 — The original and best. Also linked to above. A simple, go-anywhere silhouette, the iconic blue-and-red mini-check pattern lining, and plenty of colors.

Old Navy Lightweight Anorak, $40 — Perhaps the biggest combination of functionality and affordability on this list, it lost out on a spot because the best color option was blue — and sometimes, there is such a thing as too much blue.

What’s your take on the picks above? What jackets are in your arsenal for spring and any that were missed above? 

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