The Mailbag Lightning Round – January 2013

<div class='at-above-post addthis_default_style addthis_toolbox at-wordpress-hide' data-title='The Mailbag Lightning Round – January 2013' data-url=''></div><div class='at-above-post-recommended addthis_default_style addthis_toolbox at-wordpress-hide'></div>Half a dozen questions.  One soul sold.<div class='at-below-post addthis_default_style addthis_toolbox at-wordpress-hide' data-title='The Mailbag Lightning Round – January 2013' data-url=''></div><div class='at-below-post-recommended addthis_default_style addthis_toolbox at-wordpress-hide'></div>

Some questions are better answered publicly since others might be asking the same thing, or, one of you has the perfect answer.  If you’ve got a style tip, question, or anything else you’d like to pass along, you can send those in here. If you’d rather your question not be featured in a future mailbag, just go ahead and say so in your email.  Feel free to hit the comments with other options for answers to this most recent batch of questions.  Top Photo Credit:  Tracy O.

Q:  South Africa Winter Coat Needed
coats mailbag

Kakadu and Woolrich

I’m going to be in South Africa for 2 months this “summer” (June-July). But that’s their winter months. So here’s my dilemma- I don’t have an appropriate jacket for the occasion since I live in Georgia and the winters aren’t harsh here. I’m looking for a warm, more on the casual end, a bit of a longer coat, and fairly inexpensive. I like the jcp quilted jacket, but don’t think I can pull it off.  I LOVE the look of Bane’s jacket from the newest Batman, but I don’t want to spend the money on an authentic one, and definitely don’t want to take it overseas.  – Cam

Looks like the winters in most of South Africa aren’t that harsh either (20s – 30s for lows)  Also looks like Cam is looking for something more rugged than dressed up.  Try a local Army/Navy surplus and strongly consider a standard peacoat if you can find one.  Meanwhile, what about these?


Q:  You seen this Selvedge denim project on kickstarter?

Thought this was an interesting project dappered readers might be interested in. – Jay

$81 for made in the USA selvedge jeans made from Cone Mills White Oak denim.  Sounds terrific.  But… Kickstarter. Remember the last one?  Antigua?  They’re still delivering bags.  Be careful, hoping the best of course for this startup.


Q: The perfect blazer gift.
Looks great... even in the snow.

Looks great… even in the snow.

My boyfriend’s birthday is coming up, and I want to get him a classic blue blazer.  I want to spend somewhere between $200-$500 on the blazer.  His old, current blazer (which he doesn’t like) is a size 44L.  He wears a lot of J. Crew.  Is there something that you would recommend?  What’s your favorite blazer?  – Amanda

This one’s easy, and the answer, while cliche, has the potential to be a home run:  J. Crew’s Ludlow in Italian Wool. Hands down it’s the most luxurious piece of clothing I’ve ever owned.  The wool is super 130s, so it’s incredibly soft & smooth, and the half canvas has a nice feel to it.  Buttons are non-functioning for easy tailoring, and those buttons are brown instead of a shined up gold or brass.  Looks terrific with jeans as well as dressed up.  $388 is STEEP (lucky guy!), but it is available in a 44L, and you might get lucky and catch an extra 20-30% off $150+ sale.  Otherwise, on the even higher end, there’s the Bonobos Alma Matter Cashmere blazer.  Button stance looks a touch high.


Q: Orient & Dappered, sittin’ in a tree?
Devilishly handsome.

You handsome devil.

How are you consistently landing Orient watch giveaways? Did you sell your soul? – Andrew

Well, yes, but not for a promotional partnership with Orient.  Back in the Scouts, this guy named Josh wouldn’t pass the milk down the table in our patrol site so Erik could put some on his cereal.  I asked him if he’d pass it to me so I would then pass it to Erik.  Josh said only if I sold him my soul, so I wrote up a contract on a piece of loose leaf paper that gave Josh my soul in exchange for the rights to the milk.  Luckily, there was a clause that stated if the contract was ever physically destroyed, the soul that was being exchanged would go back to it’s original owner.  Josh hung it up in his locker at school.  At the end of the year, I got my soul back when he was cleaning out his locker and tore it up.  But as far as Orient goes, nope, there’s no exchange of money to do a giveaway.  And we insist on picking which watches get given away as well as the reviews will be honest for better or for worse.  I think Orient likes the relationship and appreciates the feedback you guys give them (as well as the potential that you could become a customer).


Q:  Fabric Shaver recommendation?
Machine vs Manual.

Machine vs Manual.

I have the terrible problem of the sweater pills that you addressed in one of your posts last fall. In that post, you mentioned using a fabric shaver. What fabric shaver would you recommend? I really want to get one, but I don’t want to buy a cheap one. Any help would be appreciated. – Daniel

The Lilly Brush (mentioned in the post Daniel references) works just fine here at the Dappered home offices, but if you want to channel Tim the Tool Man Taylor and reach for more power, the Izumi Sweater Shaver is well reviewed at $50.  BUT, and this is a big but, some claim those positive reviews are fake.  Try this: Hit the thrift store, find an old sweater with lots of pills, and try using a manual face razor (one with a precision blade on the back?) first.  Plenty swear by it, and even suggested that method in the comments over in the Lilly brush post.  If it doesn’t work, well you’re out two bucks for the thrift store sweater.


Q:  What should you use to care for leather boots?
Sebago Abuse

Uncared for Becaons.  Sebago Abuse

I recently purchased a pair of Sebago Beacon Boots from Bonobos.  Could you recommend a leather care product that I could use on these things? I don’t know which kind of product I should use to take care of them.
– Turner

Big fan of the Sebago Beacon.  And full honesty here:  Never put a lick of any sort of shoe care product on my own personal pair (seen above).   BUT… Andrew over at Primer Magazine uses Saddle Soap on his Frye boots.  Might want to give that a shot, since using a creme or polish on a pair of casual/rugged boots seems to be a little much.

Got a question or a style tip?  Send them in here.  Additional answers to the above questions can go in the comments.