Happy Easter

Friday Jam: “Dire Wolf” by the Grateful Dead, Live from the Shoreline Amphitheater

In honor of my degenerate friend coming into town tonight…

“When I awoke, the Dire Wolf
Six hundred pounds of sin
Was grinnin’ at my window
All I said was “come on in” ”

Solid Front Nine: Anything But Khaki Short Pants

Remember when the only khaki pants you could find were either tan, stone, navy, or olive?  (I’m using the term ‘khakis’ to refer to pants like ‘Coke’ to refer to soda…you get it).  Those were dark days…  Even though Nantucket Reds have been around forever, they didn’t get much play down here until five or so years ago.  Now, the pants color spectrum is all over the place thanks to folks like Bonobos and Sid Mashburn.

Shorts, on the other hand, were a couple years in front of their longer cousins in terms of color choices.  While khaki still reigns supreme, color options are starting to cut into the khaki dominance.  And I’m all for it.  Khaki is a the ultimate ‘neutral’, and therefore easy to coordinate an outfit.  No issue there – better safe than sorry, right?  Well, being that I’m a bit bolder in my color palettes, I prefer to avoid khaki shorts, unless it’s what the doctor ordered.  From the solid color perspective, here are the best in the business:

From top left:

1. Southern Proper Club Shorts:  Top of the heap for a reason (RCS review coming soon).  These shorts in Sea Island Green are about as good as it gets.
2. Sid Mashburn Canvas Shorts:  If you haven’t pulled the trigger on a pair of Sid Mashburn canvas shorts, it’s time to get on board.  The fabric develops a patina after a few wears that gives these shorts a really cool character.
3. Brooks Brothers Red Fleece Lightweight Shorts:  Brooks Brothers has really hit it out of the park with their Red Fleece line – a bit more casual and updated than their traditional stuff.  These shorts may need to be brought up a couple inches, but the ‘Crown Blue’ color is spot on.
4. Orvis Twill Shorts:  You can’t ever go wrong with Orvis.
5. Blankenship Dry Goods Freedom Shorts:  A newcomer to the front nine, it’s hard to leave out anything who’s color is named ‘Augusta’.
6. Onward Reserve 7″ Shorts:  About as standard as it gets…7″ inseam, great colors, and a fabric that is extremely soft and not too think.  These are the staples.
7. J. Crew Factory Rivington Shorts:  I’m a huge proponent of the J. Crew Factory shorts.  The price is extremely affordable, and the fabric is a little thinner than most.  They come in a million colors including the pictured ‘Vintage Turquoise’.
8. Patagonia Stand Up Shorts:  I’ve been wearing these for many years, and still go back to the iconic Stand Ups.  Every once in a while they’ll release an alternate color or two, but it looks like the Forge Grey color is here to stay.  Which is a good thing.
9. Chubbies ‘The Derby’ Shorts:  So it’s business in the front and party in the back.  In terms of ‘anything but khaki’, Chubbies sets the bar awful high.

Get Belted – The Smathers & Branson X RCS Needlepoint Belt Giveaway

Now that the Masters has concluded, it is officially Spring.  What does that mean?  Time to add some ‘color’ to our mundane Winter wear.  There isn’t a better way to add that flare than with a nice, crisp Smathers & Branson needlepoint belt.  To celebrate the season, we’re teaming up with the good folks up in Bethesda to give one lucky reader an in-stock needlepoint belt of their choice.

Tell us which one you would choose…  Me?  I’d pick that new Sage Bonefish belt…it is the perfect theme for my upcoming nuptials.

Here are the details:  Leave a comment to this post with an email address to enter.

For additional entries:

  • +1 (2 Total) ‘Like’ Smathers & Branson on Facebook
  • +1 (3 Total) ‘Like’ Red Clay Soul on Facebook
  • +1 (4 Total) ‘Follow’ Smathers & Branson on Twitter
  • +1 (5 Total) ’Follow’ Red Clay Soul on Twitter
  • +1 (6 Total) ‘Follow’ Smathers & Branson on Instagram
  • +1 (7 Total) ‘Follow’ Red Clay Soul on Instagram
  • +1 (6 Total) Tweet the following about the giveaway ‘Thank God it’s spring..I entered to win a needlepoint belt from @SandBBelts and @redclaysoul Enter here: http://www.redclaysoul.com/?p=6009’

Entries must be in by midnight on Sunday, April 20th.  I’ll announce the winner on Monday, April 21st around lunchtime.

Special thanks to Smathers & Branson for providing the goods for the giveaway…

Yes, More Masters Stuff: My Trip to Augusta, My Stuff, and My Green Jacket

There has been a pretty consistent theme this week: The Masters.  I was lucky enough to score a pass for Wednesday, and really enjoyed it.  Each time I head over for a round, it’s like experiencing the beauty of Augusta National for the first time.  I get giddy.  The place is what I would consider Heaven.  This was my first time at The Masters on a Wednesday, so I got to see some of the Par 3 Tournament.  What a treat.  It’s like watching a cozy version of the original tournament, but with a much more casual feel.  There isn’t much walking around on the Par 3 course, as we were all packed in pretty tight.  I brought in my little handheld camera to take some shots:

Golf cart crossing…at Augusta National…yeah right.

Very impressed with the Smathers & Branson belts.  My two year old green one doesn’t need to be replaced yet, but it’s nice to know that I’ll have the opportunity when the time comes.  The melon option is awesome.

18th fairway.  One of the hardest approach shots in golf.

15, another next-to-impossible approach.

16.  A thing of beauty.

Jimenez.  Cigar in tow.

The prices stay pretty consistent…

I couldn’t resist.

The Par-3 tournament.  A lot of sitters.  That seemed to be the theme – find a place and park.

We all know that the Masters logo is as desirable as any logo out there.  The souvenir tents were packed with good stuff, and I took full advantage.  This haul was less than half of what I brought home…lots of friends wanted something…and they got it.

From top left:

DOF glasses.  Super awesome.
Blue hat.  Something different.
Dated white hat.  Gotta keep the streak alive.
Smathers & Branson front pocket wallet.  No brainer.
Peter Millar polo.  Classic style with a pocket.


While this might not be 100% Masters related, it was a recent thrift store find that I have been looking for for quite some time.  A green blazer:

I’m not planning on adding a Masters patch, I do wear this quite a bit.  The green is perfect; it is essentially a substitute for a blue blazer.  It looks great with any oxford, khakis, or jeans.  I wear it quite a bit, as a nod to a classic style that you don’t see too often.

What’s even better, it is from one of my all-time favorite stores: Luden’s (RIP).

 So what do you think so far?  Did anyone get anything good from The Masters?

Masters Picks

I love talking golf.  I seriously love it.  I could talk golf all day long…  With The Masters teeing off this morning, here are the picks from some of my friends:

TJ from Onward Reserve: “At the risk of being generic, I’m for Rory until he brings one home.”
Will from Onward Reserve: “Jason Day”

Sid Mashburn: “I have no idea who’s gonna win, but I’m pullin’ for my man Roberto Castro. Do y’all know him? Super cool guy, great style…”

Keith from State Traditions: “Matt Kuchar”
John from State Traditions: “Jordan Speith”
Maury from State Traditions: “Agreed, Speith!”

Grant from Hudson Sutler: “He’s 40-1 but frankly I don’t care and think the guy is hilarious. I speak of Dufner of course.”

Eleni from Southern Proper: “Russell Henley! From my hometown, Macon, GA!”
Ansley from Southern Proper: “My pick issssssss…Webb Simpson!”
Emmie from Southern Proper: “I gotta pull for Matt Kuchar.”

Katherine from KP Maclane: “Our pick this year is Rory McIlroy”

Alex from La Matera: “Brook and I are gonna have to go with the Argentine Angel “El Pato” Cabrera. He has won the Masters a few years ago, and came so close to winning last year. He is his best on this course.  Like Widespread Panic playing in Athens, you can always expect a great show by Angel at Augusta.”

Martin Dingman: “Rory McIlroy has a good shot this year.  He’s looking for redemption which should be an excellent motivator.”

Hobson from Criquet Shirts: “Dufner.  Just cause.”
Billy from Criquet Shirts: “I’ll go with Dustin. Been playing strong this season, and would not mind seeing a little more air time for Gretzky.”

Barton from Lumina: “This year is turning into a crazy one, but I like both Bubba Watson or Henrick Stenson. Both a long shots, but in the running with all of the injuries, etc.”

Paul (W) from Ledbury: “Bubba for obvious reasons, and Adam Scott is my dark horse pick.”

Josh and Odini from Res Ipsa: “We want Bubba Watson to win because he’s a Bulldog (Go Dawgs!). But Rory McIlroy is our second choice because of our obvious love Scotland and tartans (and he’s a pretty good golfer too).”

Ryan from Bowties & Boatshoes: “I’d love to see Bubbba win another, but I think it’s Kuchar’s year.”

Greg from Jack Donnelly: “Gotta go with the home team – I’m taking Bubba.”

Caroline from Back Down South: “Luke Donald or Rory McIlroy…who knows?!”

Nick from Knot Belt Co.: “Matt Kuchar, bro!”

Micah from The Old Try: “Jason Day will either win it or crumble in spectacular fashion.”

Nichole from G.R.I.T.S.: “I’m going to go with our hometown kid, Billy Horschel, which I realize is completely ludicrous.”

And the official Red Clay Soul pick: JASON DUFNER

Who you got?

Custom Smathers & Branson Needlepoint Belt: An Addition

I gave up buying golf shirts from clubhouses a few years ago.  I got really tired of spending $80 on a shirt that I’ll only wear when I’m on the course.  That and the fact that I really don’t like all the ‘tech’ fabrics, which seem to be the only types of shirts that fill most clubhouses.

I have gotten in the habit of “buying smart” when it comes to golf souvenirs.  By smart, I mean that I buy something that I will wear more than just on the course, but is also unique.  Lately I have been buying belts.  I did this post on all of my emblematic belts a while back, and I need to do a refresher.  The collection has changed dramatically.

A couple years ago, I was lucky enough to go to the Masters, and had the opportunity to get the Smathers & Branson needlepoint Masters belt.

I love it.  I wear it all the time.  And I have gotten more questions from readers about this belt than almost anything else I’ve posted.  Clearly I have brilliant readers.  *Note: the word on the street is that you can buy these belts at all souvenir tents this year, not just inside the clubhouse.  I’m heading to Augusta today, and will report when I get back (unless a reader would like to update everyone in the comments section.

For those of you that follow RCS on Instagram, you may have seen that I had the opportunity to play Burning Tree last Fall.  What an experience.  While in the gift shop, I saw the Smathers & Branson needlepoint belts, but they didn’t have my size, and weren’t expecting to get any in until Spring.  I left my number and my size, and they called me a couple weeks ago.  About a week later, this showed up:

Needless to say, I’m pumped.  I don’t know if I’ll ever have a chance to play there again, but I’ll always have this belt to help me remember the experience.

What custom Smathers & Branson belts do you have?  Shoot me a tweet @redclaysoul or on the Instagram @red_clay_soul.

Next custom S&B belt on the list: Ocean Forest.