In what can only be described as the Superbowl of the Americana fashion/blog community, the lady and I took a walk towards SoHo this past Saturday afternoon for the second ever Pop-Up Flea from Michael Williams and Randy Goldberg. Equal parts shopping experience and networking event (I was asked for a business card multiple times - what?) the shop was nonetheless very successful as I met some good people and was introduced to a few things I had not seen before.
The view from Mulberry Street. There was a guy at the door blocking access if you weren't wearing selvedge denim or Red Wing Boots.
Just kidding - there were three guys doing that.
In a testament to the growing popularity of the Flea and perhaps the improving economy (a rising tide lifts all boat shoes?) the Pop-Up was overflowing with goods this time around. On the near right you can see Schott and near left the guys from Rogue's Gallery.
Here is my iambic tetrameter contribution of the day: This coat from Schott I liked a lot.
Their PR person told me it was a unique color that was produced for the German market and the few jackets that didn't sell were brought to the Flea. So basically you can wear a piece of clothing produced by an American clothing firm for the German market based on the jackets originated by 19th century European navies and popularized by the US Navy. Wrap your head around that. The price was in the mid $200s - which I thought was quite reasonable for a unique item.
Jack Spade bringing the quirk. Learn it, know it, live it. Figured Skip would enjoy this photo.
One of the pleasant finds of the trip was the Portland, OR based Tanner Goods. They produce simple, high quality leather goods that I found really beautiful. The usual suspects are all there - wallets, belts, bags - you name it.
Tanner produces unfinished leather goods as well that patina over time. Here is an example of an unfinished leather wallet and the same type of wallet that's been worn in for a year just above it. As you know, part of the reason I like unfinished denim is its ability to wear, durably, over time to the nuances of your body. I never really thought about this as a feature of leather - but consider me converted.
This is a picture of Michael Williams' left hand. It is also a picture of the goods he brought to market under the ACL & Co. label.
One of his bags he did with the Billykirk guys. Kinda reminded me of the Orvis Battenkill bags - but a little more streamlined.
Overall it was an afternoon well spent as getting up close with the goods is way more worthwhile than looking at web images - case in point: Tanner Goods.
Congratulations to all those involved and it was a pleasure meeting some of the industry girls and guys. There are more pictures available at my Picasa page (Pop-Up Flea Fall 2009) and I'll be publishing a followup post shortly on some finds from the Epaulet table and others. Look for it Monday or so.