1000 Words: My Next Vacation

Apologies for looking like a Costa ad…but hey, if the shoe fits…  This weather makes me mentally plan my next vacation.

Images: Google Image Search

The Black Friday Sale Roundup

Well, today is officially Black Friday, and Monday is Cyber Monday, but based on all the (millions) of emails I’m getting, they’ve all seemed to blend.  And who does that help?  The customer!  Here is a round up of all the sales going on right now, along with what I’ve got my eye on…I’ll keep adding throughout the day, so be sure to come back and check it out.

La Matera has made a code just for Red Clay Soul readers today…use code RCS20 to get 20% off your entire purchase.  Yep, 20%.  Click here.

Onward Reserve is doing 20% off site-wide for Cyber Monday. In addition – 25% off when you spend $250 or more, and 30% off when you spend $500 or more.  Click here.

Oak Street Bootmakers is doing 20% off their entire site.  Click here.

Ball & Buck is doing 20% off all of their B&B and collaborations merchandise.  Be sure to check out their duck cotton chinos.  Not to be missed at this price.  Click here.

State Traditions is BLOWING it out of the water…  35% off your entire order with code THRONE.  Click here.

Brooks Brothers is doing four dress shirts for $199, AND save an extra 10% for Cyber Monday.  You will not find a better deal.  Click here.

Ledbury is doing 30% off site-wide.  Check out my picks here.  Click here for the deal.

Criquet is doing 25% off site-wide for Cyber Monday.  This is a great time to get ready for Spring, or to warm up for Winter.  Click here.

Southern Proper is doing 30% off EVERYTHING.  Code: HUNTER.  Get some…like this shooting vest…  Click here.

Nordstrom is doing and extra 25% off sale items through Monday.  Click here.

Classic Georgia is doing 20% off ALL merchandise with code GOBBLE at checkout.  Click here.

Orvis is doing 30% off selected favorites.  How about this Trout Bum full-zip fleece jacket for $79?  Yes please.   Click here.

Billy Reid is doing 25% off everything (excluding sale items).  How about a pair of his Kentwood Ropers for under $400?  Click here.

Indochino is doing 70% off their entire site.  Click here.

Atlantic Drift is doing up to 75% off selected products.  Get over and check it out because the goods won’t last long…  Click here.

J. Crew is doing 40% off EVERYTHING today.  It’s the staple-house, so get over and stock up.  Click here.

Martin Dingman is doing his annual Orange Sale, where there are shoes, clothes, belts, and accessories at HUGE discounts.  Now is the time, folks.  Click here.

East Dane is doing a huge sale through the weekend.  I did a post about it here…remember, a lot of stuff that usually isn’t on sale IS on sale..so get on over.  Click here.


11/29/15 – UPDATES:

Res Ipsa is doing 20% off your entire purchase with code CYBERMONDAY.  I speak their praises all the time, and can’t say enough great things about them…get your Harris Tweed Black Watch on, folks…

Penfield is doing 20% off your entire purchase…this is their Black Friday sale, so it ends tonight at 11:59PM tonight.  Get over and take advantage quick.  Click here.

Linksoul is doing 40% off all weekend long.  These are the good folks that make the ‘cool’ golf stuff out of California.  We’ve met them before…  Make Par, Not War…  Click here.

Drake’s is doing FREE worldwide shipping through December 15th.  This is a big deal for us here Stateside since their stuff is sourced in England.  Need a GREAT tie?  Click here.

Randolph Engineering released two frames from their archives specifically for Cyber Weekend – the Tomcat, and the Avenger (pictured above).  The best part?  How does $50 bucks sound for a pair of RE’s?  Get some here.

Bill’s Khakis is doing 60% off everything.  Do I need to say more?  I really love their Vintage Twill pants, and you can get them today for under $62 a pair.  Click here.


This should get us started…I’ll post more throughout the day.  Let me know if you see something worth posting about!

HUGE East Dane Sale – The Big One

…and East Dane is having a HUGE sale…get on over and do some damage.  What’s good?  The more you spend, the better the discount!  Let me know what you get…

Thanksgiving Dinner with Ledbury

The folks at Ledbury are doing a serious sale for Black Friday – how does 30% off the entire site sound?  Seems like a great opportunity to do some work…

Here’s how I’d do Thanksgiving dinner:

What about you?

The Fair Isle Sweater(?)

I had an interesting conversation with a stylish buddy of mine the other day.  We were talking about Fair Isle sweaters, and whether there is a place for them in a man’s wardrobe.  I think they look good, but I wonder if it’s an idea vs. execution situation.  What I mean by that is the idea of a Fair Isle sweater is good, but the execution (or actual wearing) of said sweater is poor.

His point was simple: in a professional, even business casual environment, a Fair Isle sweater would be frowned upon.  I’ve never thought about that, but I’ve never considered wearing a Fair Isle sweater to work.  Full disclosure: I don’t own a Fair Isle sweater.  I’ve had a few of the iconic Bean Norwegian sweaters, but I rarely wore those, and have since sold them.  I agree with my friend.  I don’t believe I would ever wear a Fair Isle sweater to work.

My argument is this: there is a place for a Fair Isle sweater in a man’s closet, but the opportunities to wear them (especially in the South) are limited:

  • Late Fall/Winter – they are usually made of wool/cashmere, so they are going to provide a bunch of warmth.
  • Casual environment – look at all the models below.  They are all dressed casually.

So, if you are heading to the mountains for the weekend, picking out a Christmas tree, hanging by the fire with your significant other, or your heat goes out, then bust out the Fair Isle sweater.  A Fair Isle sweater is the adult version of the vintage loud Patagonia fleece snap-Ts that we all clamored over in college.

The second part of the discussion went in the direction of “Tacky Sweater”.  This is touchy.  A Google Image search on Fair Isle sweaters will display some jewels.  There are some really nice ones out there; wearing one gets you a free bowl of soup.  You have to be careful, so stick with Fall and winter hues.  Here are a few that I like:

From Top Left:

1. Polo Ralph Lauren Fair Isle Merino Wool Sweater: The breakfast buffet.  Lots going on here.
2. Bonobos Fair Isle Raglan Sleeve Lambswool Sweater:  Good looking – the two colors keep it muted.
3. Penfield Freeman Fairisle Crew Sweater:  Probably my favorite of the bunch.
4. Several Fair Isle Wool Sweater:  Nice, but maybe a little too Charlie Brown?
5. Brooks Brothers V-Neck Fair Isle Sweater:  If you are really on the fence, go with The Mothership.
6. Brooks Brothers V-Neck Fair Isle Sweater, part deux:  Again, she rarely steers wrong.
7. LL Bean Fair Isle Sweater:  Another two colored option.  Very Grand Cherokee.
8. Marc by Marc Jacobs Fair Isle Sweater:  Frosty the Snowman-esque.
9. O’Connell’s Scottish Shetland Fair Isle Sweater:  Everything from O’Connell’s is cool.  Period.

What do you think about Fair Isle sweaters?  Are you a fan?

Red Clay Soul Gift Guide #2: From Russia With Love

For our second act, we are looking out for the travelers, the road warriors, the tire burners…  In the 007 vein, let’s call this on “From Russia With Love,” one of Sean Connery’s best Bond films from 1963.  If you have not seen this film, and I do not want to know the reason why not, then add it to your Netflix queue immediately.

If you are looking for a gift for someone who spends time on the road, this guide is for you:

From Top Left:

1. Travel Sized Hand Sanitizer:  Cleanliness is next to Godliness.  Keep one of these in your dopp kit, one in your travel bag, and one in your suitcase.  Use liberally.  The easiest way to get sick as a result of traveling is touching something disgusting.  And all airports are disgusting.  Fight back.
2. Aviate Hat:  I always bring a hat in my travel bag or briefcase.  It’s good for when your part gets mess up, and your hair just don’t look right, or for pulling it down over your eyes when you need some shut-eye.  The good folks at Aviate hit the nail on the head with airport codes…show some hometown pride.
3. Lotuff Leather Luggage Tag:  Don’t be the guy (or gal) that has some gross Hello Kitty, neon pink, and glittered luggage tags.  You aren’t in a video game.  You are an adult.  Stand out by getting a quality leather luggage tag.  They are just as easy to spot.
4. Braun Travel Alarm Clock:  Yeah, I know your phone has an alarm clock.  But – if you have a hard time sleeping in hotels (like most people), then the ‘tick-tock’ of this travel alarm clock will put you to sleep in no time.  Don’t believe me?  Try it…
5. Res Ipsa Weekender Travel Bag:  We’ve talked about leather duffles for quite some time, and while they are great, Res Ipsa’s kilim weekender is a welcome alternative.  If you dress well and carry yourself with confidence, their bags, and shoes, are for you.
6. Hudson Sutler EDC Bags:  For those that are organized, which should be everyone, you know all about packing bags.  I love them, and use them every time I travel.  Hudson Sutler just released their EDC bags, which are a GREAT size for packing specific goods while traveling…one for chargers and cords, one for notes and books, and one for unmentionables.
7. Travel Charger Adapter:  You have the power…but connecting on the other side of the ocean can be prohibitive without an adaptor.  Here you go.
8. SunCloud Explorer Zip Sunglasses Case:  This is a $10 investment that will save your sunglasses.  Keep it in your travel bag and don’t give your shades a second thought.
9. AKG Noise Cancelling Headphones:  There are a ton of noise cancelling headphones out there, but a lot of them look like ET phone home.  These are still over-the-ear, but are a little more streamlined.  And the sound quality is great.
10. Tumi Alpha2 International Suitcase:  I’m a little anti-black suitcase, as I like to stand out from the crowd.  I’ve also been dipping my toe into the hard shell options.  This Tumi might be the perfect option – the blue and grey is a masculine alternative, and the shell has a little give for those heavy packs.  Oh, and four wheels.  A must.
11. Col. Littleton Passport Cover:  Take care of the things that are important.  When you need your passport, it’s extremely important, so take care of it.
12. Ghurka Breast Pocket Wallet:  There are a bunch of cards that we don’t carry every day (insurance, frequent flyer cards, gift cards, etc.), so I got into the habit of having a breast pocket wallet to carry the non-wallet essentials when I’m traveling.  These are also a great place to store receipts for those damn expense reports.
13. Filson Double-Zip Tin Cloth Travel Case:  I recently converted to this thing, and haven’t found a better travel bag.  The tin cloth isn’t as bulky as their canvas, so there is more room for ‘stuff’.  The two zippers give easy access.
14. Sharper Image Travel Speaker and Microphone:  When you are trying to participate on a conference call on an iPhone, you sound exactly like you are trying to participate on a conference call on an iPhone.  This little upgrade will do wonders for your virtual meetings…and you can jam out to some tunes while you are raiding the hotel mini-bar.
15. Boast Pique Double Face Quarter Zip:  I learned the hard way that traveling is a cold game.  I prepare accordingly and always carry an extra layer.  Something cotton.  This quarter-zip from Boast is perfect for the bus from the rental car place, a beer at the airport bar, or a redeye flight from a couple time zones away.  Doubles as a pillow.

The RCS Wish List

I love doing gift guides…they are seriously a lot of fun.  But what is on my Christmas list?  Well, thanks for asking:

From top left:

1. Fox Brass Belt Buckle:  Extra foxy.  I’d put this on one of my Dingman gator straps…for that extra umph.
2. Orvis Two-toned Waxed Cotton Hat:  For morning walks with #FrankDawg
3. Glock 19 Gen.4:  We must protect this house.
4. Col. Littleton No. 28 Pocket Journal:  I’ve been using Moleskines for a few years, and love them.  The problem is I don’t use them up as fast as I should.  The outsides get pretty danky after a few months.  This is the solution I’ve been looking for – and they hold the 80-page journals.
5. Moleskin Refills:  For number 4.
6. “Cheer the Fox” DOF Glasses:  I have the Snooty Fox set, and get compliments all the time.  These would be yet another compliment.
7. South Sweatshirt from Bitter Southerner:  I know, I can’t believe I don’t have one yet.
8. L.L. Bean Slippers:  The last pair of these I owned lasted for about ten years.  Time to re-up.
9. Ball & Buck X Randolph Engineering Hunter Sunglasses:  I told you these were on the list.
10. Cobbler Union Noah III Suede Shoes:  These are seriously cool shoes.  I’ve seen these in the flesh, and they are just about perfect.  These with jeans, khakis, or tweed trousers…they would be immediately added into the lineup.

What’s on your list this year?