When Your Hat and Coat Match Perfectly


The Author in Boston’s North End

Tweed is a complex material. It has deep hues and patterns reminiscent of the areas where it was made. It can have colors in it that you would never find side-by-side anywhere else in Western sartorial culture; purples, pinks, oranges, reds, and more.

There are rules that you should never mix more than two patterns. I think that, like most rules, is complete and utter nonsense. In the photo above I am wearing three patterns: a traditional Barbour Tattersall shirt, a classic Barbour-lining pattern tie, and a Barbour Tweed field coat with a matching cap. The cap and coat are both Barbour Sporting Tweed, which makes mixing other different patterns easier.

But had the cap had a slightly different pattern, would that have had that much of a different impact? That would have been 4 patterns, and so enough about rules.

The Tweed field coat is generously sized, made of Barbour Sporting Tweed (that used to be a ubiquitous pattern for them before they aspired to an upmarket demographic), it was voluminous pocketed with snaps and a bit of fabric to keep them open, it has hand-warmer pockets, and a soft velvet collar lining with leather outside. The hat was from the same line. I had pants and a jacket as well, but I was much thinner when I purchased them.

Sartorial tip: get a traditional Barbour tie; it will match all Barbours and especially the waxed cotton jackets. Look for the scarf as well.

So what do you think? Am I out on a limb here? Let me know and let me know how you like this blog. Please follow and share.

Same Shirt / Same Sweater / Different Tie


IMG_2771A Tattersall shirt offers so many opportunities for matching. Here, the first photo pics up the orange color and carries it into the tie. The second photo shows how you pick up the blue color with a knitted tie that compliments the texture of the sweater. In the first photo, the sweater also has a blue line for the sweater to pick up.

Be bold in your choices and how you match your clothes. You will stand out that much more.

All clothes shown  by Cordings of Piccadilly.

Necessary Things: A Typewriter

Why on earth would you need a typewriter? This is the age of the mobile device, voice-activated speakers; soon texts and emails will be writing themselves. Why on earth would you need a heavy piece of outdating technology


For that very reason. Typewriters are writing machines; much closer to your hand with a pen in it than to a computer. The typewriter is the medium through which you express yourself directly onto the page. It is a portable printing press. Each word is fashioned by hammering a key into the paper and imprinting some ink there, permanently.

Using a typewriter shows that you intended to say what you said, that you thought about it, that you created the letter with a measured intensity because you knew that if you made a mistake there was no backspacing, there was no deleting; the word was there permanently.

Typewriters show a boldness, an affection for times past. When someone receives something that you have typed, they will recognize it as something unique,  one-off. The keys would have made their marks in a unique manner, the spacing, the cross-outs, the type-overs, the notes that you may have written in the margins. Your letter is an unique thing; it has weight and meaning and it was mad only for them.

Each machine is different. You may find yourself buying more of them; different typefaces: cursive, Art Deco, robo-script, italic, pica, sans serif. Each one reflects a different mood, a different purpose. I have one from the 20s in an Art Deco script that looks like Scott Fitzgerald just invited you to a cocktail party. I have one from the sixties in a modernist script meant to look futuristic, Space Age. You can match the typeface to the person. Whatever you are feeling. You could easily buy more than one. I have 15.


I use a typewriter because I like them. I like the ratta-tap-tapping of the keys against the platen. I like the satisfying low-tech bell ring at the end of the line. I like the metallic sliding sounds of the carriage as it clicks back into place. Most of all, I like the delight that it gives my family and friends to receive correspondence from me.

Have you every used a typewriter? Would you every again?



You Cannot be a Proper English Gentleman if you are an American..?

I suppose that you cannot be a proper English Gentleman if you are American and live in America; specifically West of Boston, beyond Concord, in a modest country house at the edge of the woods.

However, you can be the American equivalent. But what exactly are the attitudes, habits, values, aspirations, possessions that go into this? What makes a man classic? Without limiting ourselves, let’s explore this together in this blog.

What can you expect in the days, weeks, and years to come? Discussions on clothes, histories, food, travel, Tweed, England, Style Icons, Prep, vintage items, English television shows, and so much more.

What do you think marks a Proper American Gentleman?

“I shall meet you outside the railway station, you shall know me by the cut of my clothes and the smell of my cologne.” -Sting