Turkey time: Celebrating a Florida Thanksgiving

A sporty, stylish combination. Polo by QOR. Capital Shorts by OLIVERS Apparel. Gratton Sneakers by Fronteer. Calypso Watch by MVMT Watches. Sunglasses by Nautica.

A sporty, stylish combination for a sunny long weekend in Florida. Heather Merino Knit Polo by QOR. Capital Shorts by OLIVERS Apparel. Gratton Sneakers by Fronteer. Calypso Watch by MVMT Watches. Sunglasses by Nautica.

Whenever I hit the road, I always look forward to packing in style. And when I get the chance to head south to Florida, visit with family and chow down on amazing Thanksgiving food? That’s all the better. Spending the holidays in a warm-weather locale like¬†Florida is a change of¬† pace from your Style Guide author’s past holidays growing up in Michigan, so the garb I packed with me has changed accordingly over the years. It’s a bit disconcerting sometimes to go from rugged fall style in NYC¬†to spending time on the beach in Florida, but I always look forward to doing so. And just as with my August trip to Florida, I loaded up plenty of warm-weather gear fit for versatile style situations — including Thanksgiving dinner, brewery-hopping and lots of time spent in the sun.

Gear for the office, a flight and Florida style. Crosstown Bomber by Public Rec. Slim-Fit Tapered Leg 5-Pocket Pants by Dickies. Strayhorn Mid Sneakers by JackThreads. Waterbury Chrono by Timex x Red Wing Heritage. Sunglasses by Nautica. Chapter Travel Kit by Herschel Supply Co.

Gear for the office, a flight and Florida style. Crosstown Bomber by Public Rec. Slim-Fit Tapered Leg 5-Pocket Pants by Dickies. Strayhorn Mid Sneakers by JackThreads. Waterbury Chrono by Timex x Red Wing Heritage. Sunglasses by Nautica. Chapter Travel Kit by Herschel Supply Co.

As always with traveling from NYC to a warm climate like Florida, I sought to pack gear that would move seamlessly from a chilly NYC work day to breezy Florida in style. That meant selecting the ever-versatile, comfortable Public Rec Crosstown Bomber— it’s the sort of jacket that layered easily over my classic Old Navy chambray shirt. And my Dickies Slim-Fit Tapered Leg 5-Pocket Pants were more than ready for a day at the office and a flight back home, as were my new CLAE x JackThreads Strayhorn Mid Sneakers. The chukka-style hybrid silhouette and grey wool upper proved stylish for the work day and helped me breeze through security. And, I had to bring along my Timex x Red Wing Heritage Waterbury Chrono for a dash of rugged-refined style for the office and fall travel. On the footwear front, I had to break out my Jack Erwin Cooper Boat Shoes from¬†storage —¬†the next¬†time you’ve got to¬†tackle¬†warm weekend weather in style, you should look to pack a similar pair.¬†Of course, I took along toiletries from the likes of Nivea for Men — the brand’s Creme works¬†as a¬†hand, body and face moisturizer, so it’s a do-it-all travel essential. And throughout my trip,¬†my retro-inspired Nautica sunglasses and the slick, new MVMT Watches Runaway Aviators proved stylish accessory options for the Florida sun. Seriously, never underestimate the power of a stylish pair of men’s sunglasses.¬† So, with stylish travel gear in tow and a quick flight home in the books, it was onto a fun Thanksgiving holiday weekend.
Huckberry
The day on Wednesday — as one would expect — dawned sunny and pretty hot. With that in mind, I reached for the stretchy, stylish and tailored OLIVERS Apparel Capital Short, as seen at the very top of the page.¬†The versatile color paired up well with another sport-inspired, hybrid piece — a new Heather Merino Knit Polo from performance apparel purveyors QOR. Its tailored look¬†is offset by¬†the merino blend fabric, which wicks sweat and dries quickly. And the comfortable combo paired up well with a new¬†set of kicks¬†— the FRONTEER Super Gratton high-top sneakers, provided courteously by the FRONTEEER team. With their unique design and a silhouette inspired by functional outdoor boots, they’re a nice lifestyle hybrid sneaker. They worked for grabbing a delicious Maple Bacon Donut at the renowned Bennett’s Fresh Roast and hitting the beach. For hitting up Fort Myers Brewing Company later, the brand-new Calypso Watch from the recently launched MVMT Watches Modern Sport collection was a prime,¬†affordable¬†pick. It was also a nice chance to break out a stylish pair of retro-inspired sunglasses from Nautica, and the combination of sport-inspired and functional pieces held¬†up well for Florida exploration — and a few outdoor brews!

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Hanging out in classic Florida fashion. Thomas Pacific Latitude Shirt by Bridge & Burn. Slim Chinos in Light Stone by Taylor Stitch. Cooper Boat Shoes by Jack Erwin. Runaway Aviators by MVMT Watches. Waterbury Chrono by Timex x Red Wing Heritage.

And with an enjoyable Wednesday in the books, it was onto an even more enjoyable Thanksgiving. Now, unlike dressing for a casual fall day, our Florida Thanksgiving celebrations required significantly fewer layers than an NYC November day. With that in mind, it made it easy to reach for the Thomas Pacific Latitude Print Shirt, also from Bridge & Burn. Although that shirt is sold out, you can’t go wrong¬†reaching for any of a selection of¬†similar stylish short-sleeved shirts the next time you find yourself in a warm locale for a holiday. The same goes for the ever-classic Taylor Stitch Slim Chinos in Light Stone¬†— any chance you get to pick up durable, high-quality and classic Taylor Stitch menswear (especially the brand’s lauded chinos),¬†I’d recommend you take it. I found the combo worked quite nicely once again with my Jack Erwin Cooper Boat Shoes¬†and the always-stylish ¬†Timex x Red Wing Heritage Waterbury Chrono for eating second (and third) helpings of Thanksgiving dinner.¬† And the whole ensemble was polished-yet-casual enough for family Thanksgiving — no expandable waistband in sight on those Taylor Stitch chinos, although it would’ve helped.

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Brewery hopping in the Florida sun. Vesper Polo by Mack Weldon. Stringer Dune Shorts by Bridge & Burn. Cooper Boat Shoes by Jack Erwin. Mod Watch by Timex x Todd Snyder. Vintage ballcap by Goorin Brothers. Glasses by Frameri.

Of course,¬†Friday¬†presented another absolutely beautiful Florida day, and a prime chance to break out some of my best warm-weather menswear again for a little in-person Black Friday shopping and strolling. (And, let’s be honest — a trip to the excellent Big Blue Brewing was in order). The lightweight, breathable and slim Vesper Polo from the fine folks at Mack Weldon was just what the doctor ordered — and it teamed nicely with my ever-essential Stringer Dune Shorts from Bridge¬†& Burn.¬†It was a bit strange to wear warm-weather gear after a chilly NYC fall, but I adjusted easily thanks to stylish pieces like¬†the always-reliable¬†Jack Erwin Cooper Boat Shoes — they’re the rare type of boat shoe that’s refined, and exceedingly easy to wear for both beachside and city exploration. What’s more, my always-reliable Timex x Todd Snyder Mod Watch had to make the trip, too — I think if you pre-order one for yourself, you’ll be mighty surprised at just how much you’ll be reaching for this casual-yet-versatile timepiece. I’d also recommend you reach for an upgraded, subtly designed ballcap if you need to protect your face from the sun — my Goorin Brothers vintage ballcap (unfortunately sold out now) is¬†a perennial favorite. To snag a similar style for yourself, check out the Huckberry Explorer’s Cap. With that gear in tow, it made for a fun, easygoing day¬†strolling around the neat artists’¬†village of Matlacha¬†— and if ever you find yourself in the Fort Myers area, Point Ybel Brewing is worth a stop to cap off your day.

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In awe of the amazing creations at the American Sandsculpting Championship. Anything Shirt by Strongbody Apparel. Chambray shorts by Canvas by Lands’ End. Cooper Boat Shoes by Jack Erwin. Mod Watch by Timex x Todd Snyder. Vintage ballcap by Goorin Brothers. Sunglasses by Nautica.

And no Florida trip would be complete without a little beach relaxation¬†and a trip to the American Sandsculpting Championship on Fort Myers Beach — right? I made sure to bring along stylish beach gear for some fun in the sun. That gear included¬†the comfortable, sweat-wicking Anything Shirt by Strongbody Apparel, plus a pair of tailored chambray shorts from Canvas by Lands’ End. Of course, my Cooper Boat Shoes helped me out quite nicely for navigating the sand and the city, as did my Nautica sunglasses. If you’ve got to pack relatively light, versatile accessories and footwear that work for multiple situations can undoubtedly help ease the burden of lugging around a heavy weekender bag.

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The durable Calypso Watch from MVMT Watches teamed nicely with my SeaVees Legend Sneakers.

I also switched up my outfit for an evening out and about in Fort Myers (including a requisite viewing of the new “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them,” an excellent Harry Potter film). That meant reaching for a tailored short-sleeve gingham shirt from Banana Republic, along with a pair of tailored Canvas by Lands’ End shorts. I also looked forward to breaking out my crisp white SeaVees Legend Sneakers, a go-anywhere set of kicks that works for both casual and business casual situations. My durable, stylish Calypso Watch¬†from MVMT Watches was once again up to the task — I’ll be getting a ton of use out of that timepiece in the weeks and months to come.¬† And as to the movie? If you’re a Harry Potter fan, you should absolutely check out the incredibly awesome expansion of the HP universe… but back to menswear, ehh?

Just the right gear to hit the road back to NYC. Crosstown Bomber by Public Rec. Voyager Waxed Weekender by Owen & Fred. Waterbury Chrono by Timex x Red Wing Heritage. Strayhorn Mid Sneakers by CLAE x JackThreads. Utility Bifold by Tanner Goods. Vintage ballcap by Goorin Brothers.

Just the right gear to hit the road back to NYC. Crosstown Bomber by Public Rec. Voyager Waxed Weekender by Owen & Fred. Waterbury Chrono by Timex x Red Wing Heritage. Strayhorn Mid Sneakers by CLAE x JackThreads. Utility Bifold by Tanner Goods. Vintage ballcap by Goorin Brothers.

It seems that every time I head to Florida, it gets tougher to leave — especially after a great holiday with family and some beautiful warm weather. But with that being said, it was time to pack up to head back to NYC — to deal with the impending cold weather, I again grabbed my Public Rec Crosstown Bomber¬†and the versatile, travel-friendly CLAE x JackThreads Strayhorn Mid Sneakers. I packed up my gear in my dependable Owen & Fred Voyager Waxed Weekender, which has more than capably stood up to the demands of both summer and fall travel across the past few months. Of course, my travel watch pick was an easy one — my Timex x Red Wing Heritage Waterbury Chrono¬† hasn’t yet let me down! And when it comes time to add to your everyday carry, the Tanner Goods Utility Bifold is a wallet I’d certainly recommend.

Buck Mason - Timeless Design. Made in America.

So, with that gear in my bag, I hopped a crowded flight back to NYC — and already, we’re back in action and looking ahead to the holiday season. I had an amazing, fun, relaxing and reflective time in Florida — being able to dress in style was just icing on the cake. But you really can’t put a price on time spent with family — can you? What’s more, I’m already looking forward to being back to Florida for Christmas next month.¬†I hope you enjoyed your Thanksgiving in style, and I hope you’re ready for a busy holiday season at The Style Guide¬†— tomorrow, you can look for a seasonally appropriate #OOTD entry, and Wednesday, we’ll tell you exactly how to dress for your next holiday party. Beyond that, you can expect the best menswear on tap with our Style Pick of the Week series, and more holiday men’s style ideas galore.

Thanks so much for reading — stay stylish!

-Beau

Pure Michigan: A weekend back in the Mitten

Editor’s note: Click here for more posts related to traveling in style.

Exploring Grand Rapids in style on a summer Friday. Plaid Poplin Shirt by JACHS NY. Slim Ludlow Denim by Mott & Bow. Freamon Sneakers by UGG. Flat Wool Cap by Bridge & Burn. Waterbury Chrono from the Timex x Red Wing collab. Glasses by Warby Parker.

Exploring Grand Rapids in style on a summer Friday night. Plaid Poplin Shirt by JACHS NY. Slim Ludlow Denim by Mott & Bow. Freamon Sneakers by UGG. Flat Wool Cap by Bridge & Burn. Waterbury Chrono from the Timex x Red Wing collab. Glasses by Warby Parker.

Although it seems like I was just in Michigan for a summer wedding yesterday, it’s actually been … well, only about two weeks. And yet, this past Friday, I found myself boarding another plane, this time to head to one of my favorite places in the state (that would be Grand Rapids) for my friend Andy’s bachelor weekend (and congrats on the upcoming nuptials, fella!). Now, the last time I was in Grand Rapids, it was for¬† a November road trip — so the temperature, weather and list of activities was just a bit different. Time flies by in New York City, so it’s always great to slow down, get back home and reconnect with … Pure Michigan (got that one out of the way). Of course, as with my other summer¬†trips — including a stop upstate for a concert and a Memorial Day weekend in New York — I loaded up my bag with all the menswear I could possibly carry; in this case, that’s quite a lot.

Packed up to hit the road. Denim Shirt by JackThreads. Voyager Waxed Weekender by Owen & Fred. Natural Diplomat Boots by Thursday Boots. Legend Sneakers by SeaVees. Hudson Belt by Arcade Belt Co. Flat Wool Cap by Bridge & Burn. Waterbury Chrono from the Timex x Red Wing collab.

Packed up to hit the road. Denim Shirt by JackThreads. Voyager Waxed Weekender & leather luggage tag by Owen & Fred. Natural Diplomat Boots by Thursday Boots. Legend Sneakers by SeaVees. Hudson Belt by Arcade Belt Co. Flat Wool Cap by Bridge & Burn. Waterbury Chrono from the Timex x Red Wing collab. Millbrook Sunglasses by Steven Alan Optical.

Any great trip — to Michigan or elsewhere — starts with a great bag, one with plenty of room to carry your essentials and more. While I alternate between my trusty Navali Stowaway Weekender and my durable Owen & Fred Voyager Waxed Weekender, I chose my O&F bag for this trip. It’s made from premium Martexin waxed canvas and finished off with leather accents from fellow made-in-America purveyors Wickett & Craig. It has interior zipper compartments to hold all your gear, and in my case, that included my always-dependable Herschel Supply Co. Chapter Travel Kit, which I stocked with handy travel grooming essentials from brands like Tread for Men (their Traveler Sunscreen is a must in the summer) and Baxter of California — the Under Eye Complex is an underrated and handy piece to have when traveling. Elsewhere on the accessories front, I knew a hot Michigan weekend was in order. That meant my Steven Alan Optical Millbrook Sunglasses were just the ticket — seriously, we’ve got more than cold winters back home. I always appreciate the chance to rock a¬†subtle, stylish hat¬†when the sun beats down, and the Flat Wool Cap from Bridge & Burn is a nice upgrade to the typical athletic logo ballcap — it’s slightly refined and yet still casual.

Buck Mason - Timeless Design. Made in America.

All of that gear helped me pack & transition in style from an early flight out of NYC to a sunny evening¬†in downtown Grand Rapids. As I always appreciate the chance to look sharp and travel in style, I grabbed the lightweight, casual and comfortable Green and Navy Plaid Poplin Shirt from JACHS NY. A well-fitting, casual basic like that works well when worn untucked (as you can see¬†in the top photo)¬†or when tucked in with a lightweight blazer. In this instance, it paired up well with the Slim Ludlow Denim from Mott & Bow. These jeans are built with a hint of stretch, ideal for a long day of travel.The light blue color also played well off my Hudson Belt from Arcade Belt Co.¬†, ith its navy color and stretchy smartweave fabric.¬†That was also the case with the very lightweight, very comfortable UGG Freamon Sneaker ¬†¬†—¬†they looked great and worked perfectly for getting from the airport and around Grand Rapids. Yes, you read that right. UGG does men’s footwear, and they do it well — more on that later. And my tough, rugged and refined Timex x Red Wing Waterbury Chrono¬†also provided on-point travel style.¬†As far as getting around Grand Rapids, it was an opportune time to catch up with my great friend¬†Andy and his future fianc√©e Courtney for a delicious dinner at Derby Station in East Grand Rapids (hint: Get the Adult Grilled Cheese and finish it off with a Farmhand from Brewery Vivant — it’s a light, crisp and flavorful French farmhouse ale that’s perfect for hot summer nights). With Friday off and running, we also had just enough time to stop into The Meanwhile, an eclectic spot that feels like it would fit well in Brooklyn — with gin-and-tonics¬†available for $4, the prices would stand out back in New York City.

Taking on Saturday in sporty, casual style. Vesper Polo and Ace Short by Mack Weldon. Hayden Gray Linen Jacket & Flat Wool Cap by Bridge & Burn. Freamon Sneakers by UGG. Mod Watch from the Timex x Todd Snyder collab. Glasses by Warby Parker.

Taking on Saturday in sporty, casual style. Vesper Polo and Ace Short by Mack Weldon. Hayden Gray Linen Jacket & Flat Wool Cap by Bridge & Burn. Freamon Sneakers by UGG. Mod Watch from the Timex x Todd Snyder collab. Glasses by Warby Parker.

A fun Friday night led into yet another busy day on Saturday¬†around Grand Rapids — and away from the city — with plenty in the works. To take on the day, I reached for a crucial style move in the heat: We’re talking here about the new, very breathable, lightweight Mack Weldon Vesper Polo. With a name inspired by the original martini sipped by James Bond, it was perfect in a figurative and literal sense for the¬† hot weather — seriously, the micro-mesh fabric and crisp Total Eclipse Blue color¬†proved comfortable¬†and sharp. The same thing goes for the Mack Weldon Ace Short¬†— it’s another piece from the brand’s line of essential basics that fits & performs well, thanks to the French terry fabric¬†and multiple discreet-but-useful zipper pockets. And that comfort¬†proved essential for¬†walking the city and grabbing a¬†morning pick-me-up at the renowned Madcap Coffee, one of the top coffee shops in the country and a great place to catch up with my old MSU friend Pat Evans (he’s a heck of a writer and a beer aficionado to boot — grab his book on the history of Grand Rapids beer while you’re at it). We also had just enough time¬†to swing by one of the city’s best new lifestyle shops, Brothers Leather Supply. They make ridiculously well-crafted bags and leather accessories, and they do it right in Grand Rapids — check out the photo below for a sneak peek, and look for more content on them¬†on the blog¬† soon!¬†Pat and I also took the time to hit up one of my favorite Grand Rapids stops,¬†the renowned HopCat (purveyors of amazing beer and great burgers across the Midwest)¬†before I reconnected with Andy and¬†the crew for a¬†vigorous round of foot golf¬†in the Michigan countryside — it’s a heck of¬†a workout if you’re used to sitting at a desk all day! Of course, all that activity meant that accessories¬†like my Steven Alan Optical Millbrook Sunglasses and the Bridge & Burn Flat Wool Cap also proved quite useful.

One of Grand Rapids' finer menswear establishments, Brothers Leather Supply.

One of Grand Rapids’ finer menswear establishments, Brothers Leather Supply.

And it goes without saying that my Timex x Todd Snyder Mod Watch (currently on backorder¬†but still a must-buy) was the perfect, sporty watch to meet the dual focuses of outdoor activity and indoor beer-tasting — it’s a tough job, but someone’s gotta do it.¬† Truly, there aren’t that many watches that can look great and perform well when traveling, bar-hopping or hitting up the Panorama music festival, but that watch is one of them. Of course, the occasion called for comfortable footwear, too. That’s where the UGG Freamon Sneaker came back into play. Featuring the brand’s traction-focused Treadlite technology and a sharp white sole, the¬† Seal¬†(or light grey) option sent courtesy of the brand (thanks, guys!) provided a dash of unexpected style alongside the blues in my outfit. In fact, you can look for much more from them¬†this fall on the blog. .¬†And to finish off the look, I reached for some comfortable, breathable striped no-show socks from Sock Genius¬†— when you’ve got¬†lightweight summer sneakers along for the ride, grab stylish no-show socks to keep your feet (and your sneakers) in shape.

A busy Saturday out and about led us to a night of sampling brews and bites around Grand Rapids — that included a stop through the renowned and quickly growing Founders Brewing Company, one of my favorite spots in the city. We also carved out time to check out the first-ever distillery in the city, Long Road Distillers — they make a mean gin-and-tonic and a refreshing array of craft cocktails. For those activities, I switched up my footwear and reached for the tough, sturdy and stylish Natural Diplomat Boot from Thursday Boots, and I grabbed my rugged Waterbury Chrono from the Timex x Red Wing collaboration — it’s the ideal mix of casual and smart, and it worked just as well throughout the weekend. If you have to travel with only one watch, that just might be the one to grab. The entire combination worked well for a fun night out celebrating our great friend Andy — and it’s got me even more excited to be back in Michigan in less than three weeks for the wedding! If you’ve still got a summer wedding on your calendar, here’s what you should wear.

Sunday's outfit grid for a day of travel. Denim Shirt by JackThreads. Slim Stone Chinos by Taylor Stitch. Natural Diplomat Boots by Thursday Boots. Hudson Belt by Arcade Belt Co. Mod Watch by Timex x Todd Snyder. Notebook by Word Notebooks.

Sunday’s outfit grid for a day of travel. Denim Shirt by JackThreads. Slim Stone Chinos by Taylor Stitch. Natural Diplomat Boots by Thursday Boots. Hudson Belt by Arcade Belt Co. Mod Watch by Timex x Todd Snyder. Notebook by Word Notebooks.

With a very busy Saturday night in the books, it was time to load up on coffee and hit the road for a relatively easy flight back to New York City (a welcome change from some past travel struggles getting back to Michigan). I still dressed in durable travel gear for the trip — my Thursday Boots Natural Diplomat Boot in particular was the perfect pair of boots to wear to get back to Manhattan; they’re rugged-yet-refined, and went well with my Taylor Stitch Slim Chinos in Light Stone.¬† And my Timex x Todd Snyder Mod Watch¬†was again up to the challenge of traveling in style — each piece was offset nicely by what just might be my new favorite casual shirt, the JackThreads Denim Shirt. It fits slim, the light wash cotton denim is soft and moves well, and the styling potential is on-point (look for it in an upcoming #OOTD post, in fact). And with all that gear ready to go, it was time to hit the road back.

Yet again, it feels like this past weekend in Michigan was too brief. It was great to explore one of my favorite cities in Michigan, and I’m just as excited to return again. And of course, you really can’t¬†quantify the¬†value of spending¬†time with lifelong friends.¬†On the plus side, there’s another¬†chance for me to get back to Michigan¬†— I’ll be back in just three weeks (again!) for Andy’s wedding near my lovely hometown of Mason. That trip will be just as fun, and with just as many chances for … (wait for it)… Pure Michigan relaxation (yes, I went there again). If you’ve got questions on how to travel in style or just want to chat menswear, check out my Twitter account or hit the ‘Follow’ button over on Instagram.

Until the next flight boards,

-Beau

Online Shopping Picks: The Best Men’s Weekender Bags

Editor’s note: For even more online shopping picks covering everything from watches to spring and summer style, head here.

As spring rolls into summer, there’s¬†a very good chance that a lot of us are going to be hitting the road for vacation quite a bit more than during the doldrums of winter. This is¬†definitely the case for yours truly, as I just trekked down to Washington, D.C. for the weekend earlier this month, and have a few more trips in the works. While longer travels certainly require larger luggage, traveling for just a handful of days presents some style conundrums — both in matter of what to pack, and what to pack that gear in. A stylish weekender bag is going to be your best friend in these situations — most have just enough room to hold multiple pairs of shoes and multiple outfits, plus any other gear you might need.¬†And a great-looking bag is the ideal compliment to a sharp travel outfit.¬†Plus, making that upgrade from a standard gym bag or duffle is yet another step on the path that is constantly trying to improve your personal style. Heck, it’s just fun to have a bag that happens to look as good as what you’re wearing. Make packing and traveling easy with one of this site’s picks below for the best men’s weekender bags, and get to booking that flight. Let me know what you think on The Style Guide Facebook page, too!

#1. Owen & Fred Voyager Waxed Weekender — $275

A bag that's built for wear-and-tear, yet still manages to look mighty handsome.

A bag that’s built for wear-and-tear, yet still manages to look mighty handsome.

The first entry on this list is a real tried-and-true, trip-tested bag that’s made in America and built with a ton of quality. Yes, the Owen & Fred Voyager Waxed Weekender ¬†is certainly a stunner, made from Martexin Original Waxed canvas (some of the best of the best) and finished off with durable leather straps from Wickett & Craig, one of the oldest tanneries in the country. It’s beastly, stylish and built to break in over time, complete with two interior zippered pockets for extra storage. After taking it with me on my trip to Washington, D.C., I can say you’ll be very pleased with it indeed.

#2. Everlane Dipped Weekender — $115

An affordable alternative to more expensive options, with just as much style.

An affordable alternative to more expensive options, with just as much style.

Whereas the above Owen & Fred bag packs a¬† heck of a punch in both quality and price, the Everlane Dipped Weekender is a more affordable answer to the question of what you should travel with this summer. It’s made from twill and features a neat, screen-printed look that contrasts nicely with the black leather straps. Everlane has a brand really does it all now from its¬†Slim Pant to bags like these, which really put them on the map. While the price might seem at odds with the expected quality, it’s part of Everlane’s commitment to transparency, and that should work out nicely should you buy this bag.

#3. J. Crew Harwick Weekender Bag — $148

A more casual alternative from a brand that does a lot of things well.

A more casual alternative from a brand that does a lot of things well.

Just as Everlane has expanded its product categories over the years, J. Crew has continued to stick with making all sorts of stylish accessories for guys — like the Harwick Weekender Bag.¬†It’s nylon, so it’s decidedly more casual in construction and looks than the Everlane or Owen & Fred options, but the Dark Navy color should stylish and versatile for laidback weekend trips.¬†It packs in a shocking eight pockets — that’s more than tons of bags on the market, and it means all of your gear — from a classic white Oxford to your stylish dopp kit — stays separate (and clean).

#4. Wood & Faulk Grand Tourer Weekend Bag — $175

A stylish-looking offering from an under-the-radar brand.

A stylish-looking offering from an under-the-radar brand.

Have you heard of Wood & Faulk? They’re a new brand for this style writer, but given the stunning looks (and presumably, quality) of their Grand Tourer Weekend Bag, they’re worth watching. This piece is made from tough-looking waxed canvas and features leather accents from S.B. Foot Tanning Co. — the same tannery that produces leather for Red Wing Shoes. Talk about stunning quality packed into one piece. End pockets and an inner zip pocket offer additional space, and the brass hardware finishes off this bag nicely.

#5. Troubadour Fabric + Leather Weekender — $855

A pricey, minimal and super-premium weekender bag.

A pricey, minimal and super-premium weekender bag.

It wouldn’t truly be an¬†Online Shopping Picks entry if we didn’t finish things off with a stylish and yes — incredibly expensive — weekender bag. The Fabric + Leather Weekender ¬†features vegetable-tanned leather and a minimal, premium look thanks¬† to the black leather and nylon fabric accents (although the Navy, Khaki and Olive colorways look mighty nice, too). It’s an investment bag that certainly would look right at home alongside your best travel suit — if you’re the type who travels a lot for business but wants a bag that’s different than a standard rolling suitcase, this is the bag you need.
Frank & Oak
While each of the above bags are suited for different kinds of situations — particularly the Troubadour weekender — each is going to stylish and durably complement your travel ensemble and any stylish travel accessories you might be bringing with you. Maximizing a¬†great price, tough quality and handsome looks is going to be critical, too — and hopefully, do-able with any of the above picks. If you’re still searching for that perfect bag, an option from the likes of Herschel Supply Co. might¬†work well. But in the meantime, let me know on Twitter if I missed any picks or key brands!

Stay stylish and safe travels,

-Beau

Florsheim

Capital Style: A spring weekend in Washington, D.C.

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Just the right staples for a spring weekend in Washington, D.C. The Jack in Indigo Star Shirt by Taylor Stitch. Hayden Grey Jacket by Bridge & Burn. Dark blue denim by Mott & Bow. Chariot Runner Sneakers by Brooks Heritage.

¬†As I hinted at in this past Friday‚Äôs weekly reading roundup, I had the chance to travel just a few hours south via train to Washington, D.C. visit my great friend and former college roommate Ian Kullgren this weekend — and a lovely weekend it was. As it were, the last time we saw each other was back in East Lansing after graduation¬†(home of our Michigan State Spartans). So, we had a lot to catch up on! Although the forecast threatened rain initially, the skies cleared up throughout the weekend and we were able to see a ton of Washington, D.C. I‚Äôd been to our nation‚Äôs capital back in November, but this time, the trip it was different ‚Äď it was thankfully a lot warmer and sunnier, for one. And there was more to see given Ian‚Äôs location in the¬†Woodley Park¬†neighborhood of the city. So as the week wrapped up, I planned out what #menswear to pack and hit the road ‚Äď planning ahead based on the weather and itinerary is something that‚Äôs gotten easier for me as time has gone on, (and hopefully, it‚Äôs the same for you!).

Easygoing gear for a weekend of adventures. Waxed Voyager Weekender by Owen & Fred. Legend Sneakers by SeaVees. Stringer Dune Shorts by Bridge & Burn. Sunglasses by Tom Ford. Navy leather card case by Issara. Brown leather watch by MVMT Watches.

Easygoing gear for a weekend of adventures. Waxed Voyager Weekender by Owen & Fred. Legend Sneakers by SeaVees. Stringer Dune Shorts by Bridge & Burn. Sunglasses by Tom Ford. Navy leather card case by Issara. Brown leather watch by MVMT Watches.

Having traveled to some pretty neat places across the past handful of months (including¬†a stylish weekend in Florida and a trip to Detroit), I knew a great bag was definitely needed for this particular trip¬†— we’re talking something that can hold up trip after trip (and you should look for a similarly durable¬†piece). Owen & Fred’s new Voyager Waxed Weekender, as seen above, more than fit the bill. It’s sturdy as heck, made in the USA and finished off with tough 9 oz. leather straps from one of America’s oldest tanneries, Wickett and Craig. Seriously, this bag is a¬†beast, and I could definitely go on — but the rest of the trip calls! (Look for a full feature on the piece¬†in this site’s Style Pick of the Week series soon).

After a quick train ride down to D.C., we still had enough time on Friday to check out some D.C. haunts with our friend and fellow Michigan State Spartan Emily Wilkins. Our mini bar crawl of sorts took us to the always-great Capitol Lounge (an MSU haven)¬†and the renowned Little Miss Whiskey‚Äôs, with enough rare beer on tap and in bottles to make your head spin. We grabbed a nightcap (hot dog, that is) at the renowned Ben‚Äôs Chili Bowl ‚Äď that‚Äôs a great chili dog right there.

A casual, cool outfit for exploring Washington, D.C. Hayden Gray Jacket by Bridge & Burn. Indigo Denim Jack Shirt by Taylor Stitch. Dark denim by Mott & Bow. Chariot Sneakers by Brooks Heritage. Pilot's watch by AVI-8. Vintage ballcap by Goorin Brothers.

A casual, cool outfit for exploring Washington, D.C. Hayden Gray Jacket by Bridge & Burn. Indigo Denim Jack Shirt by Taylor Stitch. Dark denim by Mott & Bow. Chariot Sneakers by Brooks Heritage. Pilot’s watch by AVI-8. Vintage ballcap by Goorin Brothers.

Saturday proved a busy day that took us around D.C. on foot for long periods of time ‚Äď in that respect, I was glad I packed comfortably and with versatility in mind (like the outfit you see at the top of the page!). For exploring everywhere from the National Mall to the bustling 14th and U Street areas, I grabbed some extremely comfortable (and sharp) navy, light blue and red suede sneakers from the Brooks Heritage line — the sport-inspired lifestyle line from Brooks Running. While the pair you see here is now unfortunately sold out, there are plenty of versatile options to be had — and something clean and simple like the GREATS Rosen Runner would also work just as well for travel adventures.

The lightweight, comfortable Hayden Gray¬†Jacket from Bridge & Burn topped off what’s perhaps my new favorite shirt, the Jack in Indigo Star from the fine folks at Taylor Stitch¬†— versatility is key when traveling for a quick weekend trip, and this shirt (just like a classic chambray shirt) definitely nailed it. And no matter where you go, some crisp and classic dark denim is always a solid bet — particularly if inclement weather is potentially in the picture. I grabbed¬†a pair that’s a personal favorite, my Mott and Bow Skinny Mosco denim (the brand also stocks classic dark denim in other cuts, too). They’re simple, slim-fitting and particularly effective for a casual trip.

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We covered a lot of ground, from strolling through the Sculpture Garden at the National Gallery of Art to marveling at the National Archives and the Declaration of Independence ‚Äď the first time I‚Äôd been back there since my 8th grade class field trip (no blog post covering that trip, sadly). We also made time to meet up with two old college friends (Go Green!), Gabby Saldivia and Colin Marshall, both talented folks who work at NPR ‚Äď being around so many communications pros reminded me why I picked up that degree in the first place! If you fancy¬†gobbling up¬†some gourmet brews and delicious bites,¬†Glen’s Garden Market is the place to do just that.¬† A post-dinner drink was definitely in order, this time at Smoke N’Barrel. Although we didn’t eat any of the restaurant’s famous barbeque, it looked mighty tempting.

Sunday's outfit grid for D.C adventures -- a Pima Crewneck Tee from Mack Weldon, Slim Light Mercer Denim from Mott & Bow and Brown Scout Chukka Boots from Thursday Boots. Customized Fairfield Watch by Timex.

Sunday’s outfit grid for D.C adventures — a Pima Crewneck Tee from Mack Weldon, Slim Light Mercer Denim from Mott & Bow and Brown Scout Chukka Boots from Thursday Boots. Customized Fairfield Watch by Timex.

For the rest of the trip,¬†I brought along another trusty pair of denim from Mott & Bow, the all-new Light Mercer. Think of these as a step down from chinos and a …. step sideways from dark denim¬†in terms of color and texture. That is, they can be dressed up like chinos or dressed down like denim — but you get¬†a lot of comfort either way. For Sunday explorations, I also threw on a comfortable Mack Weldon Crewneck Tee. It’s admittedly simple and minimal, but the tee is comfortable and a great match for the color of the light denim. Crucially, the combo was¬†also the¬†perfect match for a terrific pair of Brown Scout Boots from the always on-point team at Thursday Boot Company.

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During my last trip to Washington, D.C., I also brought along a pair of chukkas from the brand, but I swapped out the Chocolate Suede Scout Boot¬†for the brown leather boots you see here — and I was just as pleased with the results.¬†They took me seamlessly around the city all throughout Friday night and on¬†Sunday.¬†The sturdy rubber sole of that chukka definitely helped for lots of on-foot trekking (and bar-crawling, if we’re honest with ourselves).I closed out Sunday with a quick stop in the D.C. outpost of Frank & Oak, one of my favorite men’s lifestyle brands — that was a real treat! And it was great to be able to grab a quick afternoon coffee at The Wydown, one of the city’s best coffee shops.

Sunday done right in D.C. Pima Crewneck Tee by @mackweldon. Slim Light Mercer Denim by Mott & Bow. Sunglasses by Tom Ford. Customized Fairfield Watch by Mott & Bow.

Sunday done right in D.C. Pima Crewneck Tee by Mack Weldon. Slim Light Mercer Denim by Mott & Bow. Sunglasses by Tom Ford. Customized Fairfield Watch by Timex.

Packing for any trip also requires some attention to the little things, the same sort of accessories you might wear at home — namely, a stylish casual watch or two. I was definitely pleased with the versatility and durability of my new AVI-8 Flyboy (similar to the model shown in the link), complete with a¬†black leather strap that matched up just fine with my suede sneakers.¬†And whenever I travel, my trusty MVMT Watches 40 Timepiece¬†is also a frequent companion. Plus, my new¬†Timex Weekender Fairfield¬†(seen above) is sharp, stylish and a terrific value. A¬†minimal leather watch can pair with everything from navy sneakers to brown chukkas, and it works with a blazer and khaki chinos if your travels call for something a bit more polished. So given the laidback nature of this trip, it worked more than fine for both travel and exploration.

I also prefer to bring along finishing touches that can make all the difference between traveling in comfort and, well… not traveling in comfort. In this instance, that means my dependable dopp kit from the Byrd x Richer Poorer collaboration, as well¬†as a few everyday grooming essentials from the always-reliable Baxter of California. And additional pieces like a great pair of Mack Weldon boxer briefs¬†and stylish-yet-understated American Trench socks weren’t overlooked in my bag — and they shouldn’t be in yours, either.

As trips like these tend to go, it felt a bit too brief (such is life when trying to coordinate around the schedules of a journalist and a PR guy!). But I really felt like I was able to experience much more of the city than in past trips, from a stop through the National Archives that gave me some great historical perspective, to a walk through the National Gallery of Art and time spent along the bustling, hip U Street area. It‚Äôs a city that‚Äôs more varied than meets the eye ‚Äď it‚Äôs not all tour groups and national monuments (although¬†seeing those monuments¬†made me feel pretty patriotic). There‚Äôs a burgeoning menswear scene, the dining (and local craft beer selection) is on-point, and it‚Äôs quite easy to get around ‚Äď that‚Äôs just a handful of the major pluses I experienced in a quick weekend. I‚Äôd say it‚Äôs absolutely worth a visit ‚Äď and if you‚Äôve been before or you live there, you already know that! I‚Äôll be back again. Until then, look for more on The Style Guide tomorrow covering a stylish spring outfit suggestion.

Thanks for reading!

-Beau

Florsheim

Fighting the chill: A November weekend in Michigan

Editor’s note: For more travel-centric blog posts, click here.

The sun sets on a crisp fall Saturday in Grand Rapids.

The sun sets on a crisp fall Saturday in Grand Rapids. View courtesy of my friend Chris’s apartment.

As I explored the lovely city of Grand Rapids this past weekend, I was struck by how lucky I am to have lived and grown up in such a beautiful state, and to have such great friends. The opportunity to travel back is, of course, not lost on me either.While it was tricky to balance working from Brooklyn and hopping on a flight back to Michigan after a whirlwind week of Timberland-centric press work, I did indeed manage to make it in one piece! And it was truly a great time in Grand Rapids, the home of famed festival ArtPrize and also some decent brews (to say the least). This was all in spite of the fact that I was greeted, in characteristic Michigan fashion, by a bit of brisk weather. Luckily though, I had proper style gear on-hand to brave the elements.

Stumbling upon cool murals was a highlight in a city known for its burgeoning art scene. Slim denim by Mott & Bow. Down jacket by JACHS NY. Sunglasses by Randolph Engineering. Leather chukkas by Timberland.

Stumbling upon cool murals was a highlight in a city known for its burgeoning art scene. Slim denim by Mott & Bow. Grey jacket by JACHS NY. Sunglasses by Randolph Engineering. Leather chukkas by Timberland. Dive watch by Invicta

To get¬†home, my¬†Satchel & Page Slim Mailbag and Navali Weekender were¬† more than durable, yet that wasn’t my primary concern! Packing gear to beat the cold while also¬†in transit was¬†the bigger ordeal– how to pack light yet layer up and stay comfortable? Answer: A terrific pair of Mott and Bow denim¬†with stretch built in,¬† plus some solid outerwear. It’s pieces like these that can make your travels a heck of a lot easier in terms of comfort (UNIQLO also offers somed nice stretch denim at a different price point). To complete my travel get-up, I went with a striped J. Crew henley¬†— always a rugged style suggestion for fall — underneath a quilted yet surprisingly lightweight down coat from JACHS NY. The jacket was comfortable to get around the airport and not too hot — it would be a good travel pickup as you look to bundle up and hit the road this holiday season.

Just a look at some of the cold-weather gear I packed, including my Reef x H.D. Lee workshirt, Iron & Resin gloves, American Trench merino watch cap and black Reef chukka sneakers.

Just a look at some of the cold-weather gear I packed, including my Reef x H.D. Lee workshirt, Iron & Resin gloves, American Trench merino watch cap and black Reef chukka sneakers.

Complementing my travel outfit were my trusty Timberland Coulter Chukka Boots — I’d also recommend you pick up a nice pair of leather chukkas for fall.¬†To say they go with everything ‚Äď even a T-shirt and jeans ‚Äď is an understatement. To keep things simple packing-wise, I opted just to bring one watch — my ever-reliable Invicta 8926 Pro Diver (still ticking!). However, I loaded up on a few pairs of comfortable and stylish American Trench socks, plus my nice watch cap from the brand. The cap was a huge help, and though I had hoped it would be temperate enough to forgo them, my Iron & Resin gloves also proved invaluable in the cold.

Exploring Beer City U.S.A was a highlight. Workshirt by Reef x H.D. Lee. Slim Travel Jeans by Bonobos. Navy henley by United By Blue. Merno watch cap by American Trench. Black chukka sneakers by Reef. Glasses by Warby Parker. Photo credit: Jesse O'Brien.

Exploring Beer City U.S.A was a highlight. Workshirt by Reef x H.D. Lee. Slim Travel Jeans by Bonobos. Navy henley by United By Blue. Merno watch cap by American Trench. Black chukka sneakers by Reef. Glasses by Warby Parker. Photo credit: Jesse O’Brien.

To get around¬†Grand Rapids,¬†I¬†layered up¬†in a nice, insulating ribbed cotton henley via the fine folks at United By Blue (you might remember that piece as¬†this past week’s Style Pick, in fact). I layered that underneath a brushed flannel workshirt from the new Reef x H.D. Lee Shelter Supply Collection Holiday capsule. You might recognize H.D. Lee as Lee Jeans, and the brand teamed up with noted surfwear retailer Reef on a seven-piece offering that you won’t want to miss if you love American heritage style (and who doesn’t??). Look for more on the workshirt this coming week on the blog,¬†as it was a durable-yet-cozy layering piece that’ll quickly become a winter essential.

A superb burger paired with a nice stainless steel dive watch by Invicta.

A superb burger paired with a nice stainless steel dive watch by Invicta.

And as far as tough style goes, that was definitely in play from location to location. I had the chance to check out the legendary Stella‚Äôs, a Grand Rapids icon that serves more whiskey than you can shake a fist at ‚Äď and oh yeah, their burgers also took home a pretty prestigious prize from GQ in recent years. A stop there for a late dinner Friday night was followed by trips through the tasty Mitten Brewing Company and a stop at Long Road, a great distillery that serves up excellent crafted cocktails (a tip: try The Machine, a coffee-and-vodka combination). To round out the night, we hit up The Winchester, another great bar with an easygoing vibe and plenty of Michigan beer on tap.

After all that, um, activity Friday night, we needed a bit of a pick-me-up on Saturday morning, so clad in my trusty Reef workshirt, we headed to Grand Rapids Brewing Company for an incomparable Bloody Mary bar (can’t beat $4), and a little Saturday college football action featuring our beloved Michigan State Spartans.

Ben Sherman US

I paired the workshirt with my Bonobos Travel Jeans in a fall-appropriate shade of light brown. and the combination worked seamlessly with some new black chukka sneakers, also via Reef. Having the option to take off and add layers while navigating around the city (and namely, from brewery to bar and back) was quite crucial. As to travel style — if you haven’t explored the potential of tossing on a workshirt in place of a jacket, either via Reef or another lower-priced option (like this number from UK clothier ADDICT), I’d advise you do so! Workshirts can be layered over chambray shirts, or worn on their own atop a henley, and the results scream rugged style. When you consider that it can be worn as a jacket or as a true shirt on its own,¬†it’s worth paying a bit more than for your average flannel.

A reverential approach to beer (the brewery is housed in an old funeral home) keeps things classic at Brewery Vivant.

A reverential approach to beer (the brewery is housed in an old funeral home) keeps things classic at Brewery Vivant.

For yet another night out on the town in Grand Rapids on Saturday,¬† I met up with my best friend Chris, the unfortunate guy who accidentally sat next to me on the bus heading to my first day of kindergarten. So it was awesome to catch up (look for Chris running absurdly fast at your next marathon). The¬†option as to what to do or where to go was pretty easy ‚Äď being in Beer City U.S.A. makes things rather easy in that regard, so it was excellent to stop into the revered Brewery Vivant. If you want outstanding beer in a beyond-cool environment, I‚Äôd recommend you hit up that spot. (Of note: the Farmhand Farmhouse Ale is excellent.).

Stops through a series of Grand Rapids bars followed on Saturday night, including The Meanwhile, an eclectic bar that wouldn’t be out of place in Brooklyn. We¬†also managed to make it for a nice beer at the relaxed Harmony Brewing Company to round out¬†a nice night filled with great times and great friends.

The Urban Institute for Contemporary Arts features a relaxing loft space filled with Herman Miler pieces. Slim denim by Mott & Bow. Leather chukka boots by Timberland. Striped socks by American Trench.

The Urban Institute for Contemporary Arts features a relaxing loft space filled with Herman Miller pieces. It’s the ideal spot to stop and recharge as you explore the city.¬†Slim denim by Mott & Bow. Leather chukka boots by Timberland. Striped socks by American Trench.

Of course, Grand Rapids is about more than beer though ‚Äď it‚Äôs got a bustling arts and culture scene, and if you‚Äôre familiar with the massive, citywide art fair and installation that is ArtPrize, you definitely know it‚Äôs worth the trip. And the Urban Institute for Contemporary Arts fits right in with the city’s cultural scene.¬†My friend Chris and I had the chance to explore it on Sunday, and the tranquil¬†setting, crisp design and engaging artwork definitely made¬†an impact on¬†me. ¬†The city, of course, also has a nice mix of up-and-established large-scale entertainment entities (like the VanAndel Arena), and it‚Äôs on the come-up as they say: construction is booming, new apartment complexes are popping up left-and-right and the city is hanging onto its reputation as being family-friendly. Other outposts like Madcap Coffee, a world-class downtown spot, helped make an afternoon spent exploring the city all the more enjoyable.

Sunglasses by Randolph Engineering. Delicious, creamy Oatmeal Stout by Founders Brewing.

Sunglasses by Randolph Engineering. Delicious, creamy Oatmeal Stout by Founders Brewing.

To cap off a whirlwind weekend, we made a stop at yet another revered beer institution, Founders Brewing. The space now features heated outdoor seating, and a relaxed vibe plus some excellent beer was a tremendous way to cap off the trip.¬†The beautiful weather¬†and eclectic¬†mix of new and tried-and-true spots¬†made for an awesome weekend reconnecting with some great friends and exploring a bit more of a city I hadn‚Äôt seen in a while. When you travel there, I‚Äôd of course recommend bringing some cold-weather travel gear ‚Äď but more than that, I‚Äôd recommend you simply enjoy your time in a city that‚Äôs a fine example of the Midwest.

What do you think of these cold-weather style picks? More importantly, have you been to Grand Rapids before, or are you traveling there soon?

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Coast to coast: Capping off a weekend in Los Angeles

A casual outfit for a casual (yet busy!) L.A. weekend. Rust V-neck by Pistol Lake. Dark denim by Mott & Bow. Navy sneakers by GREATS Brand. Sunglasses by Randolph Engineering. Stainless steel dive watch by Invicta.

A casual outfit for a casual (yet busy!) L.A. weekend (picture taken outside Angel City Brewing). Rust V-neck by Pistol Lake. Dark denim by Mott & Bow. Navy sneakers by GREATS Brand. Sunglasses by Randolph Engineering. Stainless steel dive watch by Invicta.

After a rather exhausting cross-country flight, the book is closed on my trip to Los Angeles. And what a trip it was. Cramming lots into a weekend can sometimes be difficult and overwhelming to do when traveling, but I can definitely say I have a newfound appreciation for the city  (even moreso than I did before), and there was zero stress in getting around; it was absolutely worth being just a bit tired today at the ole’ desk job, too. Luckily, I was able to navigate the city in style, and I found what I packed to be just enough, with a few exceptions.

A highlight of the trip was a Friday evening (or rather, a late Friday night) spent at Good Times at Davey Wayne’s, an eclectic bar styled like what can only be described as a cool, albeit 70‚Äôs-themed, house party. It‚Äôs a must-visit bar with a neat outdoor patio area and (crucially, cheap brews. I made use of my Mott & Bow denim and a United By Blue pocket T-shirt (unfortunately not line now)¬†that transitioned smoothly from travel (along with my Grayers Russel Baseball Jacket) into a night on the town. Having versatile layers that keep you comfortable is key when traveling and making quick changes on the go, and those items served me well. I also was pleased with how my Timberland Coulter Chukka Boots held up during the transition from travel to sightseeing (although I picked up this pair through my day job, I‚Äôd recommend everyone grab a reliable pair of trusty leather chukka boots for all kinds of style situations).

Spending some more time outside Angel City Brewing before sampling some terrific beers.

Spending some more time outside Angel City Brewing before sampling some terrific beers.

As we rallied from a less-than-optimal night of sleep to watch our¬†beloved Michigan State Spartans beat Purdue, I again turned to my Mott & Bow denim ‚Äď they‚Äôre an exceptionally comfortable pair of jeans built with a nice amount of stretch. I‚Äôve found the Skinny fit to be the ideal silhouette for the sorts of outfits I like to wear, although the brand‚Äôs Slim and Straight options appear to be just as reliable.¬†The comfortable fit and versatile, dark color of my pair definitely served me well on the rest of our adventures through Los Angeles — it was truly awesome to be able to visit Angel City Brewery in the city‚Äôs burgeoning Arts District on Saturday in particular! I took along my Randolph Engineering sunglasses along with my ever-present Warby Parker glasses.¬†It was only fitting to be able to take in everything while outfitted in a comfortable, soft V-neck from Los Angeles’ own Pistol Lake.¬† Of course, the beer at Angel City was the real highlight.

A shot from inside the well-designed, enjoyable Angel City Brewery.

A shot from inside the well-designed, enjoyable Angel City Brewery.

They have a positively massive, multi-level warehouse space built out with pleasing industrial d√©cor, an outdoor food stand and of course, excellent beer brewed on-site. Sampling flights of delicious beer and taking in the atmosphere on a beautiful day made it worth the trek across town. It’s part of an area of Los Angeles that seems to be coming up quickly — and it’s also close to the well-designed Apolis Common Gallery. Filled up with great beer and ready to tackle the rest of the day, our adventures took us through much of the rest of downtown L.A., including Grand Park, the Grand Central Market and portions of the city’s Historic District. Viewing some of the city’s surreal architecture was quite neat — the California Department of Transportation is a distinct highlight (even for a government administration building).

The perfect shirt for a night out, and the perfect bag for cross country travel. Polka dot short-sleeve Oxford by Saturdays NYC. Stowaway Weekender Bag by Navali.

The perfect shirt for a night out, and the perfect bag for cross country travel. Polka dot short-sleeve Oxford by Saturdays NYC. Stowaway Weekender Bag by Navali.

As a lot of walking was involved throughout the rest of the day and into the early part of the evening, my reliable navy suede Rosen sneakers from GREATS Brand proved the perfect sneaker both in terms of versatile style and comfort (just as I had hoped). For the larger part of the night however, I turned to my Coulter Chukka boots from Timberland, along with one of my all-time favorite shirts, a polka dot short-sleeve Oxford from Saturdays Surf NYC (as seen above). And the night was certainly an adventure — more great beer was on-tap at Sunset Beer, a Silver Lake bottle shop featuring a wide range of bottles available for purchase and consumption on-site; the draft selection included hard-to-find (in NYC) brews from heavyweights like Deschutes. Checking out nice cocktail bars like¬†The Thirsty Crow¬†in the trendy neighborhood was also a highlight.

The Devil's Mess egg scramble featuring some solid sides.

The Devil’s Mess egg scramble featuring some solid sides.

And a¬† much-needed Sunday brunch also brought us back to Silver Lake, and the delicious Millie’s Caf√©. As you can see in the photo above, the meal was something else!¬†Given the laidback nature of the day, I¬†kept my outfit rather simple on Sunday, but opted (mistakenly) for shorts rather than denim — a bad move considering temperatures were breezy and in the low ’60’s! And on that note, I would definitely swap out another pair of shorts in my bag for another pair of denim or chinos. However, my Michael Bastian x Uniqlo polo proved polished enough for all the day’s adventures, including lots more walking through Silver Lake. To go with the sportier style I tried out, my Goorin Brothers vintage ballcap (back in stock in November, I’m told!), was a solid accessory to pair with my clean, minimal Daniel Wellington Classic Bristol watch throughout Sunday, in addition to¬†the rest of the trip.

Perusing the excellent Shinola flagship. Polo by Michael Bastian x Uniqlo. Vintage ballcap by Goorin Brothers. Linen-blend shorts by Frank & Oak. Braided leather belt by Target Merona. Glasses by Warby Parker. Classic Bristol leather watch by Daniel Wellington.

Perusing the excellent Shinola flagship. Polo by Michael Bastian x Uniqlo. Vintage ballcap by Goorin Brothers. Linen-blend shorts by Frank & Oak. Braided leather belt by Target Merona. Glasses by Warby Parker. Classic Bristol leather watch by Daniel Wellington.

In addition to brunch, our Silver Lake exploration also took us to the outstanding Shinola flagship store. The selection of watches was, as always, outstanding. And as one might expect from such a design-focused company, the layout was pleasing and the rest of the product, including fine leather goods, journal supplies¬†and an amazing shearling bomber jacket done in collaboration with Golden Bear, was stellar. Although it wasn’t in the cards (or the budget, rather) this time, a Shinola timepiece is definitely on my wish list. Swinging through Hollywood finished up what proved to be a whirlwind trip (but closing it out with an excellent Thai coffee near my friend’s apartment was the way to go).

It was¬†a trip that packed a ton into a short period of time, but it’s certainly one I would repeat. Navigating the city was an adventure, but not overly difficult, and covering so much ground and seeing so many different cultures and sights n such a short period of time was definitely the best way to experience the city. There are some standout, up-and-coming spots and some excellent menswear stores, too — all good things to look for when traveling if you’re like me! It may have been a quick trip this time, but I’ll definitely be back.

Ever been through Los Angeles? What’s your favorite spot in the city?