10 Best Bets for $75 or Less – Bullet Cufflinks, Blazers, & more.

May's ten, each under seventy five bucks.

Seventy Five dollars.  That’s a lot of money.  It’ll get you a couple pairs of Levi’s, a nice dinner out, or a couple months at your local gym.  Seventy Five dollars.  It is a lot of money, especially if you spend it right.  Ten picks follow, all for $75 or under, and some of them are much, much less.

1. Cool Material .38 Special or .45 Colt Bullet Cufflinks – $23.99

Available in "bang" and "pow"

Available in “bang” and “boom”

Genius.  Well executed too.  Especially the .38 special option.  Made in the USA from recycled casings.  Better looking than 90% of standard cufflinks out there, despite their novelty status.

UPDATE: The .45s are back in stock.  Use COOLTEN for 10% off.  Many thanks to Chris W. in the comments, and note that you have to spell out T-E-N.  It’s not 10.


2. J. Crew Factory Linen/Cotton Sweater – $41.65 w/ SALE30 ($59.50)

Summer sweaters do exist

Summer sweaters do exist

The code SALE30 takes 30% off everything through 5/19.  No word on how much linen makes up this sweater, but this is one of those sweaters you absolutely can wear with shorts. Layer it over a button down poplin for a weekend coffee date, or just have it on standby in your place for when a warm day turns into a cool night.  Flat rate shipping of $4.95 for orders under $100.


3. Clairborne Linen/Cotton Sportcoat – $51.00 – $85

Great fit and not fully lined.

Great fit and not fully lined.

55% Linen, 45% Cotton, and might be even less in store (tag said $51 on the 38R you see here). And holy crap, it’s not fully lined.  Nice work outta them.  Fit is outstanding.  Similar in cut to the cotton peak lapel navy claiborne blazer first spotted months back.  And that fit, with the off the rack taper at the waist and slimmer arms, is lightyears ahead of a similar Linen/Cotton sportcoat Stafford has right now.  That Stafford blazer is boxy with very low armholes.  The fabric on this Claiborne blazer is so-so, and what lining it has is a sorta scratchy poly, but overall it seems like a great buy.
UPDATE:  The moved the price back up to $85 online.  Might want to check in store on this one.


4. Huckberry Explorer’s Cap in Navy – $39.98

Adjustable.  Big headed guys rejoice!

Adjustable. Big headed guys rejoice!

A collaberation between the people who brought you The Eliminator, and the people who brought you The New York Knights from The Natural Baseball Cap.  And… other things. For both of them. Huckberry + Ebbets Field Flannels.  Made in the USA.  Adjustable, which is a big deal for those with big heads.


5. Fifth & Brannan Charcoal Pocket Square – $15.00 

The pocket square that gets well deserve attention.

The pocket square that gets well deserved attention.

Not cheap for a square of cloth, but it ships free, and the fabric is incredible.  Made in San Francisco and will become your navy suit/blazer’s best friend during the spring and summer months.  Or, well, all year round too.  Same goes for lighter blue jackets, oxford cloths suits, etc… Personally prefer this one folded instead of poofed.


6. jcp OCBD – $20 – $27.99 ($40)

Already a legend.

White, blue, pink, and striped options available.

Thanks to Andrew for pointing out that the jcp line’s (which is rumored to be discountinued at some point?) OCBDs are down to (UPDATE: were down to… they’re now back up to $28) twenty bucks. That’s even better than the Ron Johnson fair & square pricing of $25. So, if you’re an OCBD freak and love these things, maybe the time to stock up before they kill off the line. IF they kill off the line.


7. Target Merona Canvas or Suede Bucks – $29.99 – $39.99

Sockless for sure.

Sockless for sure.

Hat tip to Charley (who also sent in the photo) and Scott for the heads up on these.  A step up from canvas sneakers, without stepping up in price.  Also available in suede in grey, navy, and a medium to lighter brown “whiskey” color.


8. Merona Tailored Fit Cotton Shorts – $24.99

Slimmer, but far from skinny.

Slimmer, but far from skinny.

Meanwhile, across the aisle in the men’s department… From Pincord to Polka Dot Chambray to the lightweight oxford cloth seen here, these shorts are as good as it gets.  9.5″ inseam so the legs are going to be a little long if you’re vertically challenged.  Fabric is great on the oxford.  Nice light blue color on this “blue spangle” pair.  … Spangle?


9. Whistle Pig 10 Year Old Straight Rye – $65 – $75

You'll want to buy one that's not empty.

You’ll want to buy one that’s not empty.

Rated 96 points from Wine Enthusiast.  Their review from 2010 says it’s big, brawny, and has a maple syrup color. Seems like things might have lightened up since then, since the bottle above wasn’t quite as dark in color, and was really approachable in taste. Still rye, but not overly earthy. Sweet, fragrant, spicy and the taste certainly sticks around. One of those to take your time with neat. Or, if you want to go high-low by mixing some top shelf stuff, it makes an incredible Manhattan when you use Carpano Antica. More on Vermouth over here.


10. Timex 42mm Easy Reader in Tan/Brown, or Tan/Black – $65.00

42mm.  Ships & returns free through Nordstrom.

42mm. Ships & returns free through Nordstrom.

Some Timex easy readers are so simple they look cheap. Like, Mickey Mouse watch cheap.  At 42mm, these are a bit more substantial and the dial colors and leather bands add some visual weight to your wrist. But not too much weight. We’re entering summer, and tis the season for lightening up and keeping things simple.

For other best bets under $75 from previous months, click here.